So I’m sure you’re all here because of my title (a year and a half ago I was clicking anything with the words “weight loss tips” in them). I’ve been thinking about writing this post for awhile, but I’ve hesitated because for one, this story is quite personal, and two, I don’t want to come off as self-righteous. The truth is, what I did to lose 30lbs might not work for everyone, so please take these weight loss tips with a grain of salt 🙂 However, if you’re like me and you’ve decided it’s time to make a change, then I think these tips are gonna be just what you’re looking for!
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A year and a half ago…
April of 2016 was when I made the decision to change my life. I was 172lbs, the heaviest I have ever weighed, and I was feeling pretty shitty. Not because of the number staring up at me from the scale, but because of the way my body felt. I have a medium frame, I’m tall (5’8″), and pretty lanky. The extra weight I was carrying left my body feeling bogged down. I was suffering from acid reflux (something I had never experienced before gaining weight), and I know it sounds crazy, but I even felt like I walked differently due to the extra weight in my thighs. At this point, I knew I had to make a change, if not to lose weight, then to make sure my body felt right!
Making a lifestyle change.
When I started my weight loss journey, I knew it wouldn’t be enough for me to just cut out carbs or count calories. I’d tried the fad diets before, and they work for a minute, but as soon as you stop them, the weight comes right back (plus 5 extra pounds!). The thing about fad diets is that, in my experience, they don’t teach you how to live a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. Sure, you can lose 25 pounds by cutting carbs, but after you’ve reached your weight loss goal and you introduce carbs again, what do you think is going to happen? If all you’ve done is cut out an essential food group to lose weight, and you haven’t made any other changes to your eating habits or exercise routine, you’re just gonna gain the weight right back. Since I had watched this happen with myself and my friends and family, I knew in order to successfully lose weight and meet my fitness goals, I was going to have to change not just my diet, but my lifestyle in general.
Weight Loss Tips
- Become informed about what you’re putting in to your body. I don’t mean you absolutely have to count calories, but you do need to know what’s in the food you’re eating. The app I use to keep track of my eating habits is called My Fitness Pal, and seriously you guys, this was life changing for me. Just by keeping track of the food I ate made me realize what I really could live without. It made it SO much easier to cut out unhealthy food, because the app told me exactly how much I should be eating in a day if I wanted to reach a certain goal by a certain date. Knowing this has also made it easier for me to incorporate healthy eating habits in to my day to day life, even when I’m not tracking or trying to lose weight.
- Ask for help! The very first thing I did when I started my weight loss journey, was hire a personal trainer. It’s expensive, yes, but just by purchasing 10 lessons (a total of $500.00, almost a third of the cost of having one grande soy vanilla latte a day for a year), I was able to establish a workout routine I knew I could continue after the sessions were over.
- Celebrate small victories. I can’t stress this enough! One thing that really helped me was to set small goals for myself. In the beginning, I told myself I wasn’t going to buy any new clothes until I got down to 160lbs (I’m a shopaholic, this was difficult LOL). This helped me to focus my energy on reaching a small goal, that way it didn’t seem like my progress to my goal weight was taking forever.
- Give yourself a break. One of the hardest things for me to do is workout when it’s cold. Apart from the fact that I have a bum knee, the cold weather just puts me in hibernation mode. I’ve tried and tried to force myself to be as physically active in the fall and winter as I am in the spring/summer, but it just doesn’t work for me. So I’ve learned to give myself a bit of a break and only work out 3 times a week instead of 5-6. During this time, I just focus on maintaining my current weight, instead of trying to continue to lose. Plus, who wants to be dieting during the holidays? #NOTME
- Understand that changing your life takes time, it’s not going to happen over night. This is seriously so true. The pictures in this post were taken in March (11 months after I started my journey) and June (14 months) of this year. In June of this year, I was 156lbs, which means I had only lost 16lbs total. However, it was at this point that I was feeling really good, and I realized the eating habits and working out were not only enjoyable, they were easy. I had successfully changed my lifestyle in a positive way, and I started seeing the fat literally melt off after that. Between June and September, I lost an additional 16lbs and I have visible ab muscles. Yeah, VISIBLE ABS!!! It’s literally all about patience and dedication you guys, I can’t stress this enough!
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Sorry for writing a freaking novel you guys LOL. I just had a lot to say on this subject, and it’s a topic that is very important to my heart! I hope you enjoyed, and please share any weight loss or fitness tips you may have in the comments below!
Photos by Rachel Cossette