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Old 06-05-2016, 03:25 PM   #41
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I must be a fantasist because I have never even considered portion control. I think the goal of my eating is pleasure, nutritional adequacy, and keeping insulin low. But better educated members than I have said that insulin in only one among many factors, and that the rubber meets the road with cico.
Some people find that they help themselves stay away from calorically dense, nutritionally poor food by constructing a narrative about insulin, gluten, animal foods, GMOS, eating right "4" their blood type, eating like paleolithic man, eating a biblical diet, etc. That's fine. It doesn't have to be a scientifically accurate narration, if it works for that individual. It's just that while some people seem to thrive on every one of those trademarked diets, not a single one of those diets will work for everybody. Even when people initially do well, they often either backslide into old habits or learn how to eat calorically dense treats that fit into their narration and then gain weight back.

Not everyone's weight loss needs are the same either. It's one thing to lose 10-20 lbs of middle-aged spread and something entirely different to lose 50+ lbs that you've been battling with since your mom bought your clothes from the "husky" section of the Sears catalog. The former is easy, the latter is a real bear.

Most people who have more than a little weight to lose will have a higher likelihood of success, if they use some form of tracking -- not necessarily explicit calorie counting -- to monitor what they eat and to keep treat foods in check. That's only a small part of the picture, though.
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Old 06-05-2016, 03:48 PM   #42
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I use my belt loops as a gauge. I weigh maybe once a week or every other week. If my normal belt loop feels like it's getting tight then I make an effort to modify for a couple of weeks.

I used to eat out a lot due to travel. After a number of years thinking I could eat anything I modified my intake and the types of proteins I was eating along with side dishes. This year I've had a number of bad gout episodes so further modifying my diet.

The one thing I've done for over 25 years is work out 4-5 times per week. Mix weights and cardio days. When I traveled I took my gear and worked out after I flew in and then early in the mornings on subsequent days. I just have made this part of my life. The workouts are hard and burn significant calories.

Biggest thing is keeping an eye on my sweet tooth.
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Old 06-05-2016, 03:59 PM   #43
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Once when I was in my 20s I bought a bag of red licorice pieces, started on them, and had finished them on the drive home.
I was still doing this into my 30s. Luckily back then exercise was enough to keep me at a good weight.

I am 5'5" and 125lbs and 47 years old. I still have more fat around the midsection than I would like and I am working on it. What works for me is to weigh myself daily. If I miss a couple of days it is very easy for me just let loose, eat lots of junk food and before I know it I have gained 5 -7lbs. Don't worry about the small 2lb daily fluctuations, but notice when it is trending up and nip it.

I am a long time vegetarian and unfortunately I find that most weight loss advice is to eat lots of animal products. My favorite "diet" book is "Eat to Live" by Joel Furman. Yes it is vegan, it is a long term lifestyle change, but I think it really works.

I jog usually 7 days a week. I say that I jog 6 days a week, but that gives me the option to take a break one day a week and not feel like I have lost momentum. Any exercise is good exercise. Find something that you actually like and will do.

It is easy for me to eat the same things over and over. For the last 7 years I was working I ate a Tofurkey sandwich every day for lunch at work. I still keep some meals pretty regimented: breakfast is always 1/2 cup oats with lots of spices added. Lunch at home is usually lentil soup with 1/2 frozen spinach added. If canned soup doesn't taste very interesting add curry powder, or paprika or cumin. I try to make one of my meals an enormous salad. My snacks are fruits, particularly fresh pineapple which I have to ration myself so that I don't take the enamel off my teeth. If I don't have apples and oranges in the fridge I feel like there is no food in the house.

One thing I liked to do when I was working was to notice what other people ate. I noticed that the women who seemed to be "naturally" slender tended to avoid all the junk food that was brought in. The overweight and obese women generally went right for it. Of course the very young can often get away with eating whatever they want, but I wanted to be one of the slender women.
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Old 06-05-2016, 04:10 PM   #44
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I jog usually 7 days a week. I say that I jog 6 days a week, but that gives me the option to take a break one day a week
That's exactly what I'd do, back when I was running every day. Promise myself one day off a week, "Just not today".
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Old 06-05-2016, 04:17 PM   #45
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Stay active. Don't get carried away. Read labels. The only liquid with calories in it that I drink is skim milk.
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Old 06-06-2016, 12:45 AM   #46
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Many diets will help one lose weight, but the big variable is finding a meal plan that will allow you maintain healthy eating without regressing.
One thing I wish I had talked about more in my long post is that it is really possible to change tastes and to integrate certain habits for long-term maintenance. Truly changing food tastes has been a slow process for me. I remember when I used to work full-time and every afternoon I would go down to the vending machine in the basement and get a full-size Snickers bar. Now, I honestly wouldn't be tempted by that at all. (I might be tempted by a single bite of a bar or one of those little squares but a full size one is just too much sugar and I wouldn't enjoy it).

One thing I often do to keep calories down and protein up is to make a large salad. I did various greens and low calorie veggies and put it in a bowl. Then I add about 3 ounces of skinless chicken breast (or possibly a similar amount of salmon or tuna). I then make a salad dressing of 1 t. balsamic vinegar and 1/2 T. of olive oil. Depending on the calories I can "afford" that day I might add some slices almonds or some feta cheese or parmesan cheese.

Anyway, when I started that I did it because it was a good way to get in veggies without a lot of calories and I got some protein. But, now, I really like that salad. I look forward to it and if I don't have it for awhile I would miss it. My tastes changed.

I don't eat now what I used to eat. I was at the grocery store today for the first time after having surgery a few weeks ago and was thinking of buying some frozen meals since it is still tiring to do much cooking. But, so many things I used to buy I wouldn't buy. That one has white rice (I wanted brown rice). That was has regular pasta (I want the whole wheat). That one has too many total carbs for a single meal. That one has too many artificial ingredients or stuff that I don't know what it is. I ended up buying only a couple of things. 5 years ago, I would never have even thought of those things.

Now, it is just ingrained. And, what I think of as something really good to eat is in many ways different than what I used to like. I do still like some of those foods (I still like pizza), but the thing is that what I like has expanded so much that I find that I can happily eat foods that help me maintain my weight so really don't miss those that I still like but rarely eat because they don't fit in with my maintenance goals as foods I should eat very often.
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Old 06-06-2016, 08:29 AM   #47
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I remember when I used to work full-time and every afternoon I would go down to the vending machine in the basement and get a full-size Snickers bar. Now, I honestly wouldn't be tempted by that at all. (I might be tempted by a single bite of a bar or one of those little squares but a full size one is just too much sugar and I wouldn't enjoy it).
I can remember loving a snickers or hershey bar, but after reducing my dependency on sugar (processed carbs), it doesn't appeal to me at all. Just wish my pasta/pizza desire would go the same way.
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Old 06-06-2016, 09:12 AM   #48
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And let's face it Snickers in not even good chocolate. It's mass produced stuff that tastes waxy. If I want chocolate I buy dark sea salt bags by Lindt and eat one square. It's more then enough, I have one with a cup of coffee and don't a second piece.
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Old 06-06-2016, 09:51 AM   #49
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One thing I wish I had talked about more in my long post is that it is really possible to change tastes and to integrate certain habits for long-term maintenance. Truly changing food tastes has been a slow process for me.
Great point.

You can change what foods and tastes that you enjoy. Habits too.

A salad used to be a bunch of vegetables I didn't care for, smothered in dressing that I thought I did. I could have just chugged the bottle, sounds great?

Now I seldom put anything on a salad. Maybe some dry roasted sunflower seeds or 15 grams of blue cheese. Guess what vegetables taste great! We cut out so many calories that really didn't improve the taste of what we ate it wasn't a sacrifice.

Our neighbor taught us an important lesson about maintainability of your diet. She dropped 50 by eating 800 calories daily(way too few) then gained it all back plus some. We didn't desire that outcome.

Another point is don't always believe what others say, even experts. DW is on a medication that "is impossible to lose weight on" said her doctor. She offered to change it to something that didn't have the nasty weight issues. DW didn't want to change as the med worked well. When the same doc saw her after she dropped 50 lbs. it was priceless! Not sure if her jaw is off the floor yet.
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Old 06-07-2016, 01:36 PM   #50
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My wife eats so little, she does not even bother to use the scale. I use the scale daily to see if my weight is inching up. Usually the scale just corroborates what my belt already tells me.

We never count calories. I just try to eat not so much of the high-calorific food, particularly carb. I don't eat breakfast.

My typical lunch consists of a small piece of bread with ham or salami and cheese, a 5-oz yogurt, and a banana. I do not know how many calories that is. For dinner, I eat a more heavy meal with meat or fish, vegetable, and carb like rice, bread, or pasta. We eat fruit for dessert. For snacks between meals, my wife likes to eat sunflower seeds. I rarely snack.

We drink mostly tea in the winter, or ice water in the summer with a squeeze of lemon, no sugar. The only soda in the house is a bottle of tonic water to go with my gin when I feel like it. And I usually have a glass of red wine with dinner, and a bottle lasts about 4 to 5 days. I drink perhaps a couple of beer bottles a week in the summer, and none in the winter.
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Old 06-07-2016, 01:59 PM   #51
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Most people who have more than a little weight to lose will have a higher likelihood of success, if they use some form of tracking -- not necessarily explicit calorie counting -- to monitor what they eat and to keep treat foods in check. That's only a small part of the picture, though.

I think you are right. I fell out of that habit and put on weight. I used to think I could eat all I wanted, which was true, but what I wanted was usually soups and salads. I remember people at my first job laughing because I was thin but used to bring my lunch in a grocery bag, not a lunch sack like everyone else, because I filled it with a lot of low cal but high volume produce.
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Old 06-07-2016, 03:21 PM   #52
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I used to eat a huge amount of salad. My salad plate was big enough for a family, and people asked if I were a rabbit.

Something changed inside me, and my digestive system can no longer handle such a huge amount of fiber. So, I have scaled way back on vegetable.
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Old 06-08-2016, 08:55 AM   #53
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I exercise 7 days a week. Not as excessively as I used to do but I do something every day. I do some ab exercises, of varying type, just about every day also to keep the love handles down.

I don't overeat and I almost always, except special occasions, skip desert.

It's all habitual and not very difficult.
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Old 06-14-2016, 08:56 AM   #54
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I exercise 5 days a week and work in my yard/do housework the other two days of the week. I started by buying a copy of "Turbo Jam" off eBay for $9 and doing the workouts in my living room. Just follow the schedule and you'll do fine (although I substituted the "Great Abs Guaranteed" bonus workout for "Turbo Jam" Ab Jam workout because Ab Jam didn't work.) Then, I got into doing taekwondo and became so good at it that I'm now an instructor. These days, I lead taekwondo classes three nights a week and do "Turbo Jam" the other two nights of my exercise schedule. If you really want to motivate yourself to exercise and lose weight, find a way to get paid for it, like I did. Nothing is more motivating than cold hard cash. I lost over 30 lbs and now I have an athletic build.


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Old 06-14-2016, 09:19 AM   #55
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I do some ab exercises, of varying type, just about every day also to keep the love handles down.
You cannot exercise one portion of your body thinking that you can reduce fat on that particular part of your body. When you exercise you will lose fat for all over, although that may not seem obvious.
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Old 06-14-2016, 02:27 PM   #56
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I've had good results with paleo type eating. Mostly veggies (except few potatoes and other starchy ones), meat, eggs, some fruit and nuts. Little to no grains of any kind. I'm at my high school weight of 165 (6'1") and feel better than I have in decades.
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Old 06-14-2016, 03:00 PM   #57
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I got a heart rate/activity tracker, whose application also lets me record The application also lets me record food, and has a large pre-built database of what others have already entered. The two together showed me how much activity (or lack thereof) I had in a day, along with the number of calories (and types) I was consuming.

I now strive for a least an hour of "high" activity daily (gym, brisk walk, pushing lawn mover, etc.) I also cut back on "empty" carb calories (e.g. found ways to curb the sweet tooth) and upped the fruits, veggies, lean meats, and protein (I actually like my "protein powder + whatever I feel like putting in the blender" shakes). Almost everything else I drink is water or hot tea - I think I've drunk maybe 20 oz of soda in the last year. I wasn't real overweight (5' 10" and hitting close to 190), but in 4 months I'm down below 175 lbs, more energy, and not having a problem maintaining it. Now I seem to be eating more calories, but actually losing weight .
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Old 06-14-2016, 05:14 PM   #58
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While still not overweight, I did gain 10-12 pounds after retiring despite keeping same workout. Realized I was missing out on the 5 miles or so a day I walked when working and replaced it with enjoyable couch time. Bought a cheaper Brett Favre endorsement step tracker and wear it. Forces me to get my 20,000 steps in without trying to mentally cheat it away. This alone has helped rid me of the problem.


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Old 06-14-2016, 05:28 PM   #59
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There are 3 stages of eating;

1) I'm not hungry anymore
2) I'm full
3) I'm stuffed

If you stop somewhere between 1 & 2, you will do well. The most important exercise is "pushing away from the table"
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