First I set my weight loss goal from 2lbs a week to 1. When I was 309lbs, it was fairly easy to lose 2-3lbs a week. At 230, my daily calorie goal was 1500 if I aimed to lose 2lbs. That’s way to few to live on without going crazy with hunger. I adjusted by ensuring I exercised every day for at least 500 calories worth. Still, it’s an unstable system for me. I began to see exercise as a way to eat more food. And when winter came and my exercise slowed down…my eating did not. Ergo, weight gain.
Right now MyFitnessPal says I can eat 2200 calories a day, not exercise, and lose 1lb a week. That’s an amount that I can live with. No, it’s not a generous amount that lets me snack morning, noon and night. But snacking like that is how I started gaining weight again.
I’m still exercising most every day. Lately I’ve been walking 2 hours a day (an hour in the morning and again in the evening). I like my walks. I record my exercise at the end of the day so I don’t see the “calories earned”. No matter how much or how little I exercise, my eating is to remain steady. The exercise helps make up for any mistakes or misestimates in recording what I eat, and of course, for more rapid weight loss. But now my exercise is focused on it’s health effects. It doesn’t allow me to eat more.
No more walking for an hour and then eating a NuttyBar because I “earned it”. I may eat a treat from time to time. But a “treat” is not something I do every day, and certainly not between every meal and before bed. That’s how Fat Lee got fat in the first place.
I don’t just walk. I have a 4 mile trail I walk that has three hills. I sprint up the hills. I stop at the half way mark where there are some tables and I do incline pushups (have to work back up to the regular ones).
After such a big loss, I’m not expecting much for this week. But I have eaten within my plan for two weeks now. Tomorrow I’ll see the results.
ps: I do not subscribe to “a calorie is a calorie”…I strive to eat real foods, not processed foods. I aim to cut way back on sugars and grains. But there simply is a big convenience to being able to have a number that lets you know “eat this much and no more”. Unlike some folks, I really can eat too much protein and fat. Tracking what I eat, whether paying attention to calories or not, helps me be mindful.