To change my diet I didn’t make some huge insane change right away. Sure I dramatically gave up carbs and carbs were really all I ever ate… but this diet was something different than I had tried before because I made one important rule.
I will only change things that I can live with for the rest of my life.
A simple rule but completely game changing and different from what I had done before.
I always looked at diets before as temporary “I’m in hell” periods of my life all in the name of a smaller waistline. So I would try these insane diets because they promised to shrink me fast. And I’ll admit some of them lead to great success for me.
For example, I lost 85 pounds in 2003 by throwing away all food around me and only eating weight watchers Smart One meals.
But shockingly (Ha) I could not live a life hiding from food and eating only Smart One meals and so when I couldn’t do it any longer I gained back that 85 and added 50 pounds more on for good measure.
You can’t lose weight if you choose temporary fixes. Sure you will lose it… but will you keep it off?? And if you don’t is it really worth it?
So this time I did something completely different. I followed my rule. In order for this to work for me I have to be able to maintain it. What’s the point of doing some crazy diet if I will only stay on it for 6 months and go back to my old ways???
So could I pick a diet where I was drinking my food and taking a zillion pills?? Nope. That violates my rule because no matter what my jean size is I’m not going to live the next 50 years drinking my meals. So quick fad diet fixes were out.
Could I live 50 years eating diet meals that taste like cardboard?? Nope… I had already seen that I couldn’t keep that up.
Could I live with no carbs? Nope. Life without pizza is one I don’t want. But I could lower them.
So I started making a dozen small changes that I can maintain.
Can I live with switching my sandwich from bread to low carb tortillas?? Yep.
Can I live with telling the waitress to hold the croutons on a salad? Sure.
Can I switch from French dressing to Ranch? Of course.
Could I switch from sugar to a natural sweetener? Yes! It tastes the same!
Could I make sure my plate has more meat on it than anything else? Yep!
Could I give up drive thru? Unfortunately no because I run around too much… but I could hold the bun and ketchup on burgers.
And thus formed my diet… a diet created by me, one I formed with no purchase, no strict plan. A diet not formulated by some expert sitting in his office telling me how to eat. A ton of tiny changes that I can maintain. When faced with a suggestion on how to eat I analyze it to see if I can do it. Sure I read countless articles with suggestions on how to eat. But before I do them I run them by my rule. Some I can do, others I can’t.
People get overwhelmed with diets because it’s a huge change to how to eat. But don’t do that to yourself. You will fail if you do. Just make tiny changes and stay consistent. Don’t worry about whether your weight loss will be fast. Hey I could have lost my weight in half the time if I would have done some fancy expensive diet plan… but losing weight doesn’t mean anything if I can’t keep it off.
I eat the way I do now because I feel so great by doing this. The food I choose is full of fat so they taste amazing! I fill up. I have energy. I’m not sluggish. Everytime I eat off my plan I’m always left with hunger, an upset stomach and low energy. So I actually prefer my “diet” over eating how I used to. So this is why I can stick with it without being miserable.
Don’t get me wrong you are different than me so you may be able to maintain a weight loss program that I can’t. But before you shell out the money or energy in a diet… ask yourself if this is something you think you can do when you are 80. If the answer is yes… sign up now! If the answer is No then what’s the point in doing it??
Stop thinking of diets as a temporary fixes to get you into a smaller size. It has to be a permanent lifestyle thing or you will live like I did for my first 38 years… in that constant roller coaster of dieting. Gaining, losing, gaining again.
So remember… In order to find success you have to find things you can MAINTAIN. If you can only maintain eating healthy for 3 days a week and eating what you want the other 4… then that’s okay because you will be able to maintain it. If you can go Low carb but you can’t give up your Subway fluffy bread… then that’s okay. Maybe you could go low carb every meal but lunch. Just run everything thru my rule and see where it leads you. It may be slow and steady… but you will ultimately win.
Small changes lead to amazing results.