I have bad news and good news.
So lets start with the bad: I fell off the writing wagon. For the past two days, I have been MIA. It’s been such a crazy week, and my days have been so busy that I was too tired to write at the end of the day.
The good news is I stayed on the sugar-free wagon for the full ten days! While I wasn’t as strict as last time, this was good: I felt better and I felt that this was a sustainable lifestyle, which is fairly important. And in other good news, over that ten day period I lost two pounds! Huzzah! Don’t get too excited though. While being sugar-free is certainly helpful to weight loss, it isn’t its primary cause. Being sugar-free is a lifestyle, not a weight loss solution. If you start with a lifestyle where sugar is part of your daily life, when you cut out sugar, you will most certainly lose weight at the beginning. But eventually your body will become used to this new and healthier lifestyle, and your weight loss will plateau. This isn’t a bad thing and it doesn’t mean that you aren’t being successfully sugar-free. Sugar- free is a lifestyle like being a vegetarian or paleo. It is a healthy way of living, and allows you to be more in touch with the food you’re supplying your body with. To lose weight, you have to decrease calorie intake and increase exercise (and unfortunately calorie intake is a much bigger part of it than exercise). This isn’t to say that cutting out sugar won’t help. Doing both these things as well as taking out sugar means that you’re less likely to have sugar cravings and hanger episodes. And so you can maintain the diet over a longer period of time and have a higher chance at reaching your goal weight.
So that is the next step in this lifestyle altering journey for me. I’ve cut the refined sugar out of my diet (although the sugar cravings are still crazy, I’m more able to ignore them now and hope it’ll only get better) so that I’m living a healthier life. Now I’m going to focus on maintaining that and shrinking my waistband. I’ll give myself this weekend to enjoy my success and first cheat day. Starting Sunday, I’ll be reducing my calorie intake to 1,230 calories per day with the goal of losing 1.5 pounds a week. This is going to be very difficult for me, more so than cutting out sugar I think. Counting calories for me is the absolute worst, and just the idea of doing it makes me hungry, but this is really the only way to get what I want. I am hoping that my sugar-free lifestyle will help me avoid hanger lash outs, and that I when I’m hungry it’ll be from actual hunger and not sugar cravings. Also every Saturday, I’m going to give myself a controlled cheat day (for both sugar and calories). I’ll try not to go to overboard with the sugar, and I’ll only be allowing my calorie binge to go up to 1,480 calories because I don’t want to negate the week’s hard work all in one day. In a couple of weeks to a months I’d like to start integrating exercise in, but I’m not sure what kind yet.
This is going to be hard, but if I actually manage to lose 1.5 pounds a week, I can be at my goal weight in 10 months. And while that will be incredible, I don’t think that’s what’s going to happen. I’m sure that I will have days where I just can’t take it anymore and go on a binge session, or I’ll go on vacation and eat a little more than I should. Bottom line is: life happens. If I manage to meet my goal weight in the year I’ve designated to it, I’ll be ecstatic and if I don’t, that’ll be too bad. But of course I won’t give up till I get there, because I’m in this for the long haul. I’m going to reach the weight I want and I’m going to stay there, with the goal of never having to diet again. This is it for me: no matter how long it takes, I’m done with yo-yoing between diets. I’m finally going to find my balance between, happy, healthy and delicious.
And through it all I’ll be keeping you updated on my progress, trying to write a blog every other day or so, letting you in on recipes that don’t break the diet but satisfy my soul, innovative ways I find to exercise, my thoughts and struggles, and once a month letting you know how I’m doing with the weight loss. Wish me luck: I’ve got a long bumpy road ahead of me.