Out of the top ten new years resolutions Americans make year after year, losing weight is number one and staying fit and healthy is number five. Yet, only eight percent of people are successful in achieving their resolution. Well, enough is enough. If your new years resolution was to either lose weight or stay fit and healthy, we’re dedicating this blog post to help you achieve your goals.
Our very own staff member, Katy Meagher, has lost a whopping 54 pounds (and counting!) and she is sharing what worked for her:
“For me it took a change of my mindset to get going. I had to stop pretending that I could eat whatever I wanted and lose weight. I never liked exercising, but I knew I had to get moving. So I started walking.
And I realized that I don’t know a single thin person who doesn’t watch what they eat or who doesn’t exercise.
Then I started a log. I had to keep track of every bite I ate…every single one. I was told by my trainer (my cousin) to eat 1500 calories or less per day to be able to lose weight. That was a huge reality check, because it made me look at labels for the first time. And forget going out to eat. Not that I don’t go now, but I had to change the way I ate when I went out. Restaurant portions are outrageous, and most times the plate is 2 or 3 servings. Salads are a huge culprit too; one salad can be 1000 calories, once you add cheese and all the extras plus the dressing. So if you are like me, and have clean-your-plate syndrome, well, dining out is a huge challenge. You really have to know what food costs. Not money wise, but calorie wise.
However, there are great apps for smartphones that have helped me tremendously. The first one I use is called Lose It. It tracks my goal, my calories consumed each day and the exercise I do. And if you exercise, you get to eat more! The app has a huge database of every kind of food from apples to zingers at your favorite restaurant. You can even scan the barcodes on tons of products and voila, it loads it into your log. I also use CalorieKing Food Search and Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker by MyFtinessPal for when my Lose It app doesn’t have the food in the database I am looking for, which isn’t that often.
I have been on my weight loss journey for just over eight months now. I have lost 54 pounds and feel amazing. And it’s not just about the thinner me, it’s the healthier me. I saw my doctor in September (I was only down 28 pounds then) and I had my annual checkup with blood work and all. He was thrilled with my results. I had lost over 10% of my body weight, my cholesterol was perfect and my blood pressure was great.
Now a rule for me is nothing is off the menu, but you can’t just eat whatever you want and lose weight. And you should eat better anyway; all these processed foods have chemicals in them that are no good for you. One of those boxed dinners state they’re 450 calories and are called “lean”, but to me they’re nothing and they’re loaded with salt. I have twice as much food for the same amount of calories, by making my own dinner. Grilled chicken, brown rice, veggies, whole grain pasta with sauce and lean sausage, pork chops, broiled fish, and so much more. I am eating like a king.
I am training to run my first 5K in April, and believe me I am no runner. But I love running now. Did I mention I wasn’t a runner? I didn’t even like to run if I was chased. But my whole life has changed. My body has changed, and I feel better about myself. I sleep better and I look forward to exercise. I have another app called Free Pedometer, I use it when I walk or run. It tracks my steps, speed and calories burned.
I also purchased a bike at Wal-Mart for $88 and I take long rides. I use another free app called MapMyRide GPS Cycling and it tracks my speed and even shows my route and then I can post it to Facebook, which I like because then all my friends cheer me on. That’s the best part, the support of my family and friends. They are as excited as I am for each milestone I reach.
Join me – the least athletic person you will ever meet – in your weight loss goals. I will be your biggest champion. You hear them say it all the time on those commercials for weight loss programs: “If I can do it so can you.” Now I know what they mean. You really can.”
One of four Komen’s recommendations is to make healthy lifestyle choices which include maintaining a healthy weight and adding exercise into your routine. We hope we have motivated you to make healthy lifestyle choices in 2013!