In March this year, I was bouncing between 215 and 213 lbs. I set a goal for myself to drop to 180 lbs. I went to work by developing two habits.
First, I developed the habit of waking up between 4 and 4:30am every weekday and going on a 4 mile walk (1 hour). I had been developing this habit for the last two to three years. This year, I simply didn't let myself off the hook. I'm at a point now where I simply can't live without going on my 4 mile week day walk. It's like sleep - I just do it. As a side tip, I leveraged the "Alarm Clock Xtreme Free" app to ensure I get up and stay up in the morning. In order to turn the alarm off, I have to solve 6 complex math problems, which require me to get up, sit at my computer, open the calculator and punch in the numbers. By the time I'm done solving the problems, I'm too awake to go back to bed.
Second, I developed the habit of weighing myself before and after my 4 mile walk. I have a "weight record template" I print out and hang on my closet wall, right above the scale. I love recording my weight and seeing how it drops. It's basically positive reinforcement for walking and eating well.
Along with those two habits, I developed a system that works quite well for me. This system allows me to enjoy eating the foods I love while still losing weight. The system goes like this: Monday through Friday are "work days." It helps to have a very busy life and work schedule to keep your mind occupied. Sitting around being bored at home causes boredom eating. During the week days, the only food I eat (and the only food my mind and body really need) is as follows:
1. Isagenix Cleanse mix + Crystal Light (caffeinated) + 90oz of ice water. I drink this on my commute to work.
2. Isagenix Refresh (like Gatorade) + Crystal Light (caffeinated) + 90oz of ice water. I drink this during my first two hours at work. I also take an Isagenix metabolisim boost pill.
3. 90 oz of ice water. I drink this during the latter part of the morning.
4. Depending on the day, I may eat lunch with co-workers. But on those days when I don't eat lunch, I eat a 30 calorie Isagenix wafer.
Now, at this point, you're probably freaking out about the lack of food that I'm eating. And you're probably wondering how this is even possible. Believe me, I've tried lots of different systems (eating breakfast, lunch and dinner; eating six small meals, snacking on veggies ... I've tried a lot of different systems). But, for many different reasons, those systems just didn't work for me. The weight would stay on; I would get tripped up on trying to keep track of calories; my mind would be fuzzy, I'd be sleepy ... there are many reasons why those systems didn't work. The bottom line is, this system works for me on many different levels. I have energy. I have focus. My mind is clear. I'm not so sleepy. It is sustainable.
5. After commuting home, if I didn't eat lunch, I will have a small, healthy snack and then make myself an Isagenix protein shake. One scoop of ionix and two scoops of the strawberry protein mix with iced water.
6. After the shake for dinner, I drink 90 oz of water. And then I'm pretty much done ... I feel full and I don't think of food or eating.
That is my routine during the week.
Then on the weekends, if I feel so inclined, I will allow myself to indulge a little - go out to dinner. I also allow myself to eat my favorite indulgence: frozen greek yogurt (usually blueberry or peach). I also double my miles on Saturday and Sunday. I will walk 8 miles each morning. So, 4 miles each weekday, 8 on Saturday and Sunday equates to about 36 miles a week along with normal walking. Per my FitBit, I average about 13,000 steps a day.
And that is pretty much it - that is my system that works so well for me. I love it! It's sustainable! And I don't anticipate any changes to my system anytime soon. I think the weight will stay off for a long time.
So what has this system accomplished for me? I weighed in at 178.8 this morning. According my my records and estimates, that is the lowest I've weighed in about 20 years. That is even lower than when I did the Shangri-La diet 9 years ago (see this post).
The next habit I want to develop is getting into sit-ups and push-ups and bi-cep curls. I'd love to be able to do 100 push-ups and 200 sit-ups in one session.
But for now, I'm basking in my achievement!