People are constantly asking me how I lost all my weight.I didn’t realize I was carrying an extra 20 pounds and how much that was until I actually lost the weight.I went from wearing large sizes to now being in between a small and a medium.Ten more pounds and a medium size will be a memory! To put this in perspective, I searched Google to see what things weigh as much as I’ve lost. I was shocked at what I found.
1. Car Tire
2. 2 / 10 pound bags of potatoes
3. 2 gallons of water
4. 80 sticks of butter
5. 2 / 2 liter bottles of ginger ale and 6 can of canned food (yes, I searched my cabinets)
To be honest, it took me almost 2 years to lose 20 pounds, but I have gained a lot of muscle as well.I’ve probably lost a lot more in fat pounds.It sounds like a long time, but it really isn’t. I was looking at it as making life long health changes.I didn’t do any fad diets, take any diet pills or starve myself. I realized I had to minimize some of the types of bad foods I eating and well as increase the amount of healthy and natural foods and herbs. Oh yes, and add exercise.
Here is a list of things I did that helped me lose 20 pounds and 5 dress sizes:
1. Drink water: I know everyone claims that this helps. It really does. I drink a glass of water as soon as I wake up. This helps to wake up the metabolism and flush out toxins. I bought a Starbucks venti cup and carried that everywhere I went. I drank and still drink water all the time.
2. Green tea: I love my green tea. It helps with detoxification, is an appetite suppressant, provides energy, helps with depression, but most of all is high in antioxidant. Drinking green tea on a daily basis is a must for me. I will either drink loose tea combined with other herbs or I drink matcha, the purest of all green teas.
3. Snacks and junk food: I just stopped buying them when I went to the market, period. I use to stack up on snacks and chips to just have around the house. I love to entertain so I always felt I needed to have snacks around. The problems is I couldn’t stay away from them. If I’m really craving chips, then I’ll just buy a small bag and eat it. However, I think really hard before doing this.
4. Fruits and veggies: I try to incorporate fruits and veggies into all of my meals. Spinach and mixed green salad with tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, onions, etc. I eat an egg white scramble almost every morning with every veggie I have in the fridge. If you haven’t tried putting zucchini and broccoli in your scrambles, you are missing out!
5. Watching calories: This is probably one of the most important things I learned. 3500 calories equals 1 pound. Once I realized that I had to have a deficit of 3500 calories to lose a pound, that changed everything for me. I calculated approximately how many calories I was eating a day. Then, at first, I ate 200 less calories per day. I used the app, my fitness pal, to enter everything I ate and drank. Doing this made me realize things like 1 tablespoon of butter has 100 calories. So eliminating some of the non-sense calories made a lot of sense. One tablespoon of olive oil is 120 calories. Although olive oil is good for you, I would choose to steam some of my foods to avoid those extra calories on something that wouldn’t even fill me up. This is when I decided to put veggies in most of my meals. Veggies have very low calories and they are very filling. It’s just about making smarter choices about what you eat.
6. Walking: I started walking almost every day. I use to think that you had to run to lose weight. I found out that was not true.Not only does walking help you lose weight, it helps you relax and release stress. Stress is a huge indicator for weight gain. Most of my friend make fun of me because I’d rather walk then drive. I walk to the market, to the mall, to friends houses and anywhere I can. Grant it, I live 1 mile away from the mall and the market. But, I walk to the market now 3 to 4 times a week and only buy what I need for the next couple of days. That’s 6 to 8 miles just for market runs.
7. Yoga: Just like my green tea, I love my yoga. At first, I really didn’t like it at all. I was not flexible and my balance was awful. Not only did yoga help me with my back pain, the stretching and twisting actually helps the body and its organs detox. My sleep has somewhat improved, which also helps with losing and maintaining weight. It also helps to reduce anxiety and stress. All contributing factor of being unhealthy and overweight. But best of all, I never thought I would gain so much muscle tone and strength.
8. No restaurants and fast food: There was a time in my life when I was working countless hours and on weekends driving my kids all over town for baseball tournaments. That only led to having to eat out very often. This was a huge problem. The foods that are served in restaurants and fast food chains are fried and filled with toxic chemicals that prevent the body from breaking down the foods. It is very rare that I eat out now and when I do my stomach gets very upset with me.
9. Minimize carbs and cheese: Bread, cheese, bread!!! I could eat bread and cheese all day long. The average slice of bread is 70 to 100 calories. And cheese, do I need to say more. I experimented and left a bag of cheese out all day. It melts into this blob looking thing. I realized that blob was creating that fat around my waste. My egg white veggie breakfast sandwich went from 350 calories to around 200 just not adding cheese and bread. Do that for 23 days and that alone will allow you to lose 1 pound. Now add walking and yoga and you’ll see a huge difference.
10. Alcohol mixers: Everyone who knows me knows I like to enjoy a few drinks. I thought that a vodka tonic with a splash of cranberry was a great drink for watching my weight. I was so wrong. Just one cup of tonic water is 83 calories and one cup of cranberry juice is 137 calories. Women tend to drink vodka cranberries. Well a shot of vodka is almost 100 calories. Do the math, it adds up. Try using club soda instead. It has zero calories. For the past couple of years, I take my vodka on ice and squeeze a few lime slices.