Are you one of those women that look back at your high school photographs and say, “I wish I looked like that again”? Many people want to be the same size they were when they were a teenager. A few kids later, who can have that body again?
For me, I have always been a bigger than others. As a teenager, I was a size 12, which I know is not a huge size for a full grown woman. As a teenager, being a size 12 can make you feel really fat.
My weight is something I have always worried about. Obesity runs in my family and I have always made sure that I eat healthy. No matter how healthy I ate or how much I worked out, I did not ever dip below a size 12.
Shortly after I was married, I ended up moving into a size 14. I told myself that I wouldn’t get larger than that. Eight years and three kids later, I was on my way to a size 16.
Baby number three seemed to pack the weight on my body in a way the other two hadn’t. I was getting bigger and felt really helpless about losing weight. I’ve never been able to lose weight successfully before, even though I had been trying since I was a teenager.
Counting Calories is Key
Here I talk about counting calories and how that has been the main thing I have done to lose weight. Both my husband and I have done this in the past and seen success. Right now, we are counting our calories again to drop a few pounds.
I don’t really have before and after pictures, but I do have a picture of myself in my sister’s wedding. Then another picture of me in Austin’s sister’s wedding two years later.
In the picture where I am in the blue dress, I weighed around 175. That was a few months after I had my third son. The other picture is of me 2 years later. I was weighing about 147 in that picture.
A Look at a 1435 Calorie Day
One day I decided to take pictures of everything I ate. It just so happened that I had to eat out for dinner, which can really kill a day for calories. With what I ate this particular day, I stayed within my limits.
For breakfast, I had 1 banana, 1 clementine, and 1/4 cup of nuts. This breakfast bowl of food totaled 330 calories.
I had two cups of coffee that morning which totaled 160. So before lunch I had a total of 490 calories.
For lunch, I had a hard boiled egg, vegetables and hummus. This lunch came in at 185 calories. That is a pretty low calories meal, but since I had eaten so much at breakfast, I needed to keep it minimal.
For dinner, we met my parents out to eat while dropping off the kids. Cracker Barrel is not my favorite place to eat out, but it is where we can meet up with my parents. They actually serve some low calorie meals that are quite filling.
I ordered a oven baked chicken breast, sweet potato, steamed broccoli and coffee. The meal was around 500 calories. I did not put the sugar that comes with the sweet potato on it. I used a small amount of the butter, so that might have added 20 calories to the meal.
I drank three cups of coffee and the amount of creamer I used made those cups of coffee put me at 120 calories. All total for dinner was 640.
Since we were able to drop of my kids and have a little date before heading home, we decided to stop by Starbucks. If you don’t order right, you can consume an entire meal’s worth of calories in one of those drinks. I opted for a the skinny vanilla latte. It comes in at 120 calories for the smallest size.
By the end of the day, I had eaten 1435 in calories. That is more than my targeted 1380, but I went out to eat that day. If I had skipped out on the last coffee, then I would have been good. It doesn’t bother me that I went over a bit, especially since Austin, and I were able to go out.
Exercise is Important to Gain Muscle Tone
While I didn’t originally focus on exercise and working out, this go round I have been. When Austin came home and told me he had bought into a biggest loser challenge, I was less then thrilled. I did not buy into the challenge with him, but I told him I would be more diligent with my calorie intake and drop the few pounds I have picked back up.
Since I have gotten a lot closer to my ideal weight, exercising has become an important part of my day. If I didn’t lose another pound, I would be ok. However, I have really enjoyed the muscle tone I have gained from working out.
Someone gave us an exercise bike that they no longer needed. Every day, I aim to ride a bicycle for 20-30 minutes. I do not have a lot of time to invest in riding it, but I feel that every little bit helps.
Also, I have incorporated a few muscle toning exercising that are firming up my legs, arms, stomach, and rear. Each day I try to do toning exercises for my rear end. I do have a lot of junk in my trunk that is for sure.
I do 20-30 reps of stomach crunches focusing on my lower stomach.
I have a set of exercises I do for my arms that was given to me by the orthopedist after my shoulder surgery. I only stick to those few moves for the sake of my joints.
Increase Water Intake
Statistically, most of us are not drinking enough water in a day. I have an added disadvantage to the statistic, because I do not drink very much in general. I have to force myself to drink anything most days.
Sure, I drink coffee in the morning and sometimes throughout the day. Usually I drink 2 cups a day and occasionally one in the afternoon. When it comes to other liquids, I drink 1 glass of water at lunch and 1 glass of tea at dinner. That would be enough for me if I didn’t make myself drink water.
There is a challenge about drinking 1 gallon of water a day. I can’t meet that challenge, even though I have tried really hard. I can get down about 3 quarts, but that has been it.
However, it is really important to drink excess water when losing weight. On days I do not drink as much, I am hungrier than on days I have had at least 10 glasses of water.
Seeing Progress After 2 Months
These are the three main things Austin and I are doing to lose weight. To date, he is down 10 pounds and has been on this track for 2 months. I am down 8 pounds and have been going at it the same number of months as he is.
What is important to remember about loosing weight is that it is hard work. There is no easy way to drop the pounds, and anyone that tells you they have the key to make fat melt off your body, is selling you a bunch of junk.
You need to commit to really tracking your food, increasing exercise and drinking more water. There are other things you can do, but these three main things are what is working for us.
What have you done to be successful in losing weight?