In the past 9 months, I’ve managed to lose 30 pounds and have kept it off. I was motivated by a couple of things:
- A guy at work who works in India and sees me relatively infrequently said, in not so many words, I looked like I had put on weight.
- I was running out of clothes to wear.
- I was diagnosed with type-II diabetes.
The third one was the kicker. Once you look into diabetes you realize how bad it can be: blindness, stroke, circulation problems leading to amputation, etc. Being overweight was a major contributor.
So I began a weight loss program of my own design. It is actually pretty simple.
Rule #1: Take in fewer calories than you burn. This is a basic statement like saying you need to know F=ma to get to the moon. Is is necessary but far from sufficient to succeed. I keep a mental note of my calorie intake per day and adjust as necessary.
Rule #2: Make time to take care of myself. I dedicate 1/2 hour every morning to walk on a treadmill. I typically do this early in the morning. I considered it a way to justify having breakfast.
Rule #3: I weigh myself every day. If I am up a little, then I eat a little less for the day.
I changed what I ate, partly because of the type II diabetes:
— cut carbs
— increase fruit
— increase protein
— increase sugar-free, no-added-sugar, reduced-sugar “stuff”
You must pay attention to labels. For example, most flavored yogurt has a lot of sugar.
Analyze your food triggers. I found that stress at work made me want to eat. It is not that I don’t eat; but I recognize the trigger and maybe will eat an apple or a large glass of water.
Recognize that your relationship with food is going to change. There’s an old story about an actor talking with Cary Grant and Cary told him to not get involved with food to keep yourself in shape. In my case, I try not to eat what I don’t enjoy and then eat less of what I do enjoy. I think that has to become pretty pervasive.
I also take Metformin for my diabetes. This has the side effect of helping in controlling hunger. In my case, metformin has some unpleasant side effects (gas) and if I didn’t need it for my diabetes I certainly wouldn’t take it.
We’ll see how long I can keep this going. I certainly feel better. I find that my average speed walking on the treadmill has increased. I’m hoping that my metabolism is improving.
There are also different plateaus. I’m at 185 pounds and I definitely have to work to maintain that. I would like to lose 10 more pounds but it will require a redoubling of my efforts. I want to stay stable for a while.
Let’s see where we are a year from now.