19.11.12

Day #125: Diet Tips

Let's face it. Dieting and trying to get healthy is not fun sucks. However, there are right ways and wrong ways to do it. Fortunately, being a nurse, I do have a decent understanding of health and nutrition so I figured I'd share some tips with you since the holidays are looming and that is when people tend to gain weight.

There are 3 body types: ectomorphic, mesomorphic and endomorphic. Ectomorphic body types have little body fat, little muscle and tend to be more on the delicate side. These body types struggle to gain weight and are naturally skinny (Uh, I wish!) Mesomorphic body types naturally gain muscle and tend to either gain or lose fat quickly. Endomorphic body types are larger and tend to struggle to lose weight and have to work hard to lose weight. That's me. I have a large body frame and struggle to either lose weight or gain muscle. Each body type loses and gains weight at varying levels. It's important to understand which body type you are when setting goals, otherwise your expectations might be skewed and thus, frustrating while you are dieting. For example, I will NEVER be "skinny" or ectomorphic. I can lose weight and feel better physically, but I will still be curvy. No matter what you're body type is, dieting has the same basic principles: eat healthy and exercise.

Count your calories. My Fitness Pal is an excellent tool to help with this. I put in my weight and my goal weight. Next, I put that I want to lose 1.5lbs each week. It then calculates how many calories you should stay under each day to meet this goal. This does NOT include exercising. So, I can eat 2100 calories a day and still lose 1.5 lbs. However, many nutritionists recommend that you "zig-zag" your calories. This means to eat a different number of calories a day, so you keep your body guessing. This reduces the chance that you will hit a plateau.

Set realistic goals. As I said before, I will never be "skinny" so for me to hope to be 120lbs and look like a supermodel is unrealistic. I like to set my weight loss goals in 20's. I weigh 277lbs. My goal is to weigh 257lbs. When I hit 257lbs, I will set a goal of 237lbs. 20lbs is a realistic goal and prevents me from getting bored, plus gives me a chance to reward myself. 

Don't cut out ALL your favorite foods. I love sweets. I tend to get bored with salads, veggies, and other healthy foods so my diets sometimes end before they really have time to show results. It's important to reward yourself and in moderation. If I do good all week, working out and staying under my daily calories, then I will eat one piece of candy like a reeses peanut butter cup for example. One won't kill you AND you only live once...why cut out your favorites completely?

Exercise. This is a must. Dieting will only get you so far. Plus, dieting decreases your metabolism...exercise increases it. Start slow. I lost 60lbs two summers ago. When I first started working out, I knew I couldn't push myself too hard or else I would give up. I started by walking on the treadmill for 20 minutes, three times a week. After a week or two, I slowly started to increase speed and incline, and eventually the amount of time I walked. By the end of the summer, I was working out almost everyday and switched to an elliptical machine for 45 minutes. I felt awesome. Unfortunately, I slowly stopped working out and gained all those 60lbs back plus 10. Ugh. 

This was me after losing 60 lbs.
It's hard to tell since my dog is in the way, but I was smaller  than I am now. The pic on the right is me this summer, the left was summer 2008.
Eat a something small before you work out. I used to eat granola bars an hour before I went to the gym. This helps boost your metabolism.


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3 comments:

  1. Trust me girl if I can do it ANYONE can do it. You will do a great job. I think you are headed in the right direction with setting smaller goals!!

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  2. Thank you for this post I NEEDED this! I am REALLY struggling with my weight right now and it can be so hard to lose and to keep my motivation. I used to be the skinny girl and now people do not even recognize me :( They will even tell me so...ugh people! ha So thank you for you encouragement and inspirations. You are beautiful!

    Have a blessed day

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  3. I just came across your blog and I think we need to be blog/diet buddies!!LOL!!! I have struggled with my weight all my life!! Have tried everything and still trying!! Thanks for the "body type" explanation!!

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