I’ve maintained a 40 lb weight loss for 3 1/2 years, more or less. It’s not the first time I’ve lost that much weight, but this time I did things differently — and it seems to have worked (even when it feels like it’s not working). So today I’m Thinking Out Loud about the ways I lost that weight, and how I maintain that weight loss.
I’m not a nutritionist, doctor, nurse, and I firmly believe that every body is different, so what works for me may not work for you. I hope that you can take away something that helps you, though.
And then of course there’s always the furkids — they tend to be on the skinny side, but that’s because I can control what they eat (to some degree).
This one is thanks to Mr. Judy
He said it a long time ago, and he was right: just leave over a few bites of your meal.I don’t do that much at home, as I’ve usually planned out my meals (more on that below).
But eating out? Yes, I do it all the time. I know some of you are of the clean plate generation. Think of it this way: is the extra food you’re eating doing you any good? And is it actually going to do anyone any good if you eat every bite on your plate? It’s hard to change habits, I understand.
I definitely do this with desserts out. Usually Mr. Judy and I share if we do get dessert. Occasionally, like after a half, I’ll enjoy every single bite. That decadent chocolate PB dessert I ate at brunch? No, I didn’t finish it.
I’m happy if I can just get people to think in new ways.
Preplan your meals
If you don’t have a weight problem, you probably just want to skip on down to the Bandit update. Or you might just want to read through it anyway — maybe you picked up a few pounds over the holidays? Keep an open mind. Try the things that appeal to you.
Yes, I try to preplan most of my meals. Usually the day before, but sometimes the day of. I may change my mind a gazillion times, depending on how I feel, but it gives me a blueprint and a better idea of what I can swap in if I’m not feeling what I planned.
Not to mention it takes the angst out of what the heck am I going to eat for dinner tonight?
There are lots of carb cycling plans out there. I’ve tried a few — and they’ve been too rigid for me. So here’s what works for me: eating more carbs on days I’m more active, less carbs on days I’m less active.
I don’t count carb grams, by the way.
No carbs at night
Except for one or two nights a week, I don’t have any carbs with dinner. Well, not the starchy kind (no rice, no potatoes, definitely no bread). I will usually have some fruit as dessert, so yes, there is carbs in that (actually, there’s carbs in just about everything).
The theory behind that one is that we are less active at night, and far less likely to burn the carbs off. I am actually all about balance over time, so while the truth is I think you can eat carbs at night and maintain your weight, I’ve just found that this works well for me.
I don’t think carbs are the devil. If you’re active, you really need those carbs. The less processed you eat, though, the more your body knows what to do with the carbs.
I try to concentrate on things like brown rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes, plaintains. Apples, bananas (so many things you can do with bananas that are yummy!).
Let the guilt go
This might be the most important diet hack of all.
I thought by now, with Mr. Judy being around a bit more during the holidays, that Bandit would have almost complete freedom in the house. But last week he chased Gizmo — not in a playful way — when Gizmo was running around one morning. So we continue to take and slow and easy.
Don’t get me wrong, both Chester & Lola also had to learn that chasing Giz is not acceptable. I’m pretty sure that Bandit will learn that too, but I would rather continue to keep a close eye on him than have someone lose an eye.
In the good news department, last week I started to walk them on the double leash I used for Chester and Lola. I truly though that that would never happen. I do have to really keep an eye on them, and sometimes hold Bandit’s leash so he doesn’t pull Lola along, but so far, so good.
On the other hand, one day they were both coming upstairs with me and Lola was directly in front of Bandit and he jumped over her. That could have ended really badly in so many ways, but thankfully no one was hurt.
Talk to me. Tell me in the comments:
What’s your favorite diet hack?
Exciting plans for New Years (nope, not at all here — and I don’t stay up to midnight, either)?
What was the last blog you read (besides mine)?
I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her: