The exact steps to losing weight will look different for everybody.
No two weight loss journey’s will be the same. But, there are a few universal principles to the age old question “how to lose weight?” It’s so simple it’s infuriating.
In this blog post I will attempt to break down some key components to my personal 60 LB weight loss.
It’s been a while since I lost 60 LB but the procedure for losing the next 25 LB (my goal for 2019) will be the same.
As of September 2019–I just managed to break past a serious plateau. A weight loss plateau that was more mental than physical. After two months of losing and gaining the same 9 LB, I am approaching new territory.
I expect to lose an additional 25 LB before the year is out. But to accomplish this, I will have to dig deep in my weight loss bag and use every single trick up my sleeve. Periodt.
But how? How do I go about losing weight at all?
Let’s get into it.
Determine Your TDEE
To lose weight you must burn more than you take in. That’s the basic parts of weight loss.
You have to create a caloric deficit to see weight loss.
It’s extremely important to know how many calories you need to cut to begin seeing actual weight loss.
Finding out my TDEE is NUMBER UNO on my to do list whenever I am ready to start a new weight loss regimen.
You can do a google search and find hundreds of websites that will calculate your TDEE or how much calories you need to lose weight. Some websites will even tell you how many calories you need to cut in order to see a specific amount of weight loss by a specific date. My fave.
It’s a great way to start getting motivated about the journey ahead.
Why calculate TDEE? You will be so surprised to see how little of a decrease in caloric consumption you need to start losing weight. Science says cutting 500 calories per day will provide about a 1-2 lb weight loss per week.
Most people usually fluctuate 5-10 LB without ever even noticing it. When I got to see that it takes damn near 3000 calories to maintain my weight, it put all of my overeating into perspective.
Knowing that I need to consume such a large amount of calories to maintain my weight showed me just how out of control my eating habits were.
This is my absolute favorite website to calculate my TDEE.
Check that out and tell me how many calories you need to maintain your weight in the comments.
Document Your Food & Track Your Calories
I don’t know what you’ve heard about tracking calories but let me tell you, it is the only way. It’s the only way!
Unless you possess some sort of calorie Asperger’s and can recite the calories in every food you come into contact with then you should be tracking your calories with a calorie counting app.
9 out of 10 times, you are probably underestimating the amount of calories you take in. And THIS reason alone can be the number 1 reason why you are unable to break past the plateau, your estimation is off. Don’t be that girl, girl.
Calorie counting gets a bad rep but it’s truly the only way to really see actual weight loss. Of course over time you get a little better at eyeballing some of your routine meals. For instance, I know that 1 large egg is 70 calories. But, other than that it’s difficult for me to know exactly what amount of calories I’m taking in without putting it into my favorite little app.
I have an app that will calculate calories for me. It’s as easy as typing in the food and/or scanning the barcode and done. I sometimes put my entire meal plan in before the day starts just to get an idea of the amount of calories I’d be working with. This let’s me know if I need to change something or add more.
This is crucial, if you haven’t already GO DOWNLOAD a calorie tracking app NOW!
Weigh Your Food
Don’t be the girl that works extremely hard to eat clean and do movement for over a month and sees little no weight loss. I tell you not to be her, because she was me for at least 60 days.
Yep! I was tracking calories but guess what, I was still underestimating the size/portions/weight. For 60 days, I felt like I was truly sticking to my meal plan but I could not see any weight release.
I decided to pull out my food scale and weigh everything! What a difference this makes. Why do I weight my food? This ensures 100% calorie accuracy. If the calorie app says 4oz of chicken breast is 200 calories but my chicken breast is 6 oz, then I can accurately determine the amount of calories in MY food.
A lot of what is on the calorie counting apps are estimates. For exacts, you need to weigh it.
Let me say it louder for the people in the back, DON’T BE THE GIRL EATING CLEAN AND NOT LOSING A SINGLE POUND.
WHATEVER YOU DO SIS, WEIGH YOUR FOOD SIS.
Did you get that?
I can hear you now, “that all sounds like a lot of work.” Maybe but, it’s either this or waste your time and effort, you choose.
Water Is Your Bestie
Water is like, the holy grail of satiety. Ok, so what this means is the more water you drink throughout the day, the more full your body will feel and the less likely you are to give into simple temptation.
Water is my secret weapon of weight loss. Anytime I have a gallon or more of water per day, I am at at least 99.99% compliance with my meal plan.
I’m more likely to take a bite of the kids snacks when I’m extremely thirsty and haven’t reached my intake level for the day. It’s science actually.
Science says that sometimes the hunger we feel is actually dehydrated thirst. Not going to lie, I believe this, wholeheartedly. Water is so very crucial to your weight loss success. You need it!
I personally use about 1 gallon per day.
Pro tip? Buy 7 gallons of water at the top of the week. The presecene of the gallons give you more incentive to drink them off each day. It’s a constant reminder that you need to drink your water, and gives you more insight to how much water you’ve taken in. I usually end the day with an entire gallon.
All Movement Is Good Movement
Gym rats are going to hate me for saying this but again, I’m using information pulled directly from two places. Science and my own personal experience.
I have a histamine intolerance which makes vigorous exercise problematic for my body. Vigorous exercise like the kind we see rampant on social media will put me in a place of pure agony.
You do not need to be a gym rat to see real weight loss. In fact, there is very little difference between the amount of weight you will lose by diet alone than with diet and exercise.
BUT! This does not mean you should skip working out altogether. Science still supports daily exercise as a beneficial component to the overall physical condition of your body. BUT! I recommended easing into the process of movement.
All Movement Is Good Movement. Can we make this a movement? 🙂
For me, I’ve been sticking to a goal of moving at least 30 minutes per day, 5 days per week. What does this look like for me? I walk at my local park for 30 minutes. I might get on my home treadmill for 30 minutes. I sometimes walk around my neighborhood for 30 minutes. It doesn’t matter how I choose to spend the 30 minutes, I just need to commit to some kind of movement.
If you aren’t someone who is accustomed to working out vigorously every single day, this alone can become a deterrent for weight release. If the workout isn’t as intimidating, you might be more likely to stick to it.
I suggest developing a movement tolerance first before jumping head first into a 90 minute cycling class.
Plan It Out
Don’t underestimate the power of planning. It’s essential to every opportunity of success. You cannot succeed if you have no direction, no plan, no measure of progression.
Hi. I’ve made that simple for you. Download the free ass weight loss planner below.
Why do you need to plan? Has not having a plan worked for you in the past? Probably not. This is because when you are organized enough to know what you will be eating for the day, or the week, it makes it easier to commit to.
Furthermore when you put things into writing it solidifies it in your mind. It signals to your brain that this is serious and it’s go-time.
What do you need in a weight loss plan?
- Meal plan: Whether it is an exact list of what you will eat or a rough estimate. The plan can be for a few days at a time or for the entire week.
- Grocery list: If you plan on shopping for food to cook for meal prep or just food for the days of the week, that meal plan will require a grocery list.
- Workout calendar: The calendar shows you just how serious you’ve been with your move goal. It’s a reminder of your progress.
- Progress sheet: The best kind will include opportunities to check your mental before/during and after. A good progress worksheet will also include opportunities to determine your goals.
Start Believing That You CAN do this!
Weight loss is far more mental than it will ever be physical.
How do you feel each time you get that urge or “motivation” to begin again? Feels good for about the first 10 minutes doesn’t it? Then something happens, like a impromptu pizza party, or you drive past your fav fast food place and immediately all of your will power evaporates.
Losing weight will certainly requires an enormous amount of physical energy. But, working out is the easiest part.
How will you remain committed to your goals once that day one motivation dissipates?
Decide you can & will Decide that your will to lose the weight is much stronger than a cookie or slice of pizza.
Tell yourself YOU CAN, over and over again, until resistance is as automatic as it is for you to sneak a bite, lick, or taste.
Once I decided that I am capable of losing the weight. I did. Once I decided that I wanted to lose this weight and there wouldn’t be anything to stop me. I did.
This takes practice but, you can start training yourself to believe in yourself.
The problem is the human problem of habit. Humans are habitual. I did not decide this, this is a scientific fact. We are extremely regimented in our daily lives–and our train of thought. We get so used to telling ourselves that we cannot do something, that we aren’t strong enough to accomplish this and we give up before we can even get started.
Each time you’ve given into temptation–you’ve subconsciously told yourself “I cannot resist this.”
In the very beginning of my journey, I started to take note of every single time I told myself “I cannot resist” and immediately changed it to “YES I CAN.” Whatever the hell the temptation was, did not exist. It was not a temptation anymore. It was just an ordinary cookie. It was just a non factor ass piece of cake.
It was not this huge thing that I absolutely needed, because the faith I had in myself, the desire I possessed to see actual weight loss was far greater.
Belief in oneself is the undisputed champion of HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT. Belief that you know HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT and you CAN lose weight. This time WILL be different.
Sounds cheesy huh? Yeah well thats probably because you are one of those people who constantly talk negatively to themselves.
In conclusion my basic weight loss principles are:
- Calculate TDEE.
- Create a plan, including workout and meals.
- Practice a ton of self care.
- Set a move goal.
I think the biggest factor in my overall ability to lose weight is the mental parts. I have overcome a ton of self limiting beliefs through practices of self care. For me, self care looks like a brisk walk in the park, writing, and listening to music.
When I am taking care of myself mentally it’s easy to find the space and time to care of my body.
In the comments, share some of your practical weight loss tips!