I’ve posted numerous times here on my blog about how I lost weight. Here and here, for instance. My stalkers STILL accuse me of lying. All. The. Time.
I lost weight by eating fewer calories than I burned.
Swear to God.
I tried a few different diets. I tried veganism, I actually did pretty well on it, because I was getting plenty of carbs (which gave me lots of energy to exercise), and because I really enjoyed the food. Veganism didn’t make me lose weight though. Eating fewer calories than I burned made me lose weight.
I tried paleo. I didn’t do very well on it, I wasn’t getting enough carbs and my energy was in the toilet. I didn’t recover well from workouts, and I didn’t WANT to workout because I had no energy. I didn’t really like the food. I actually gained a few pounds on paleo. Paleo didn’t make me gain weight though. Eating more calories than I burned made me gain weight.
I tried the USDA’s MyPlate dietary recommendations. I did well, because the plan allowed me to eat foods I enjoyed, and because it gave me a realistic and sustainable calorie target (2600 a day). I lost weight on MyPlate. But MyPlate didn’t make me lose weight. Eating fewer calories than I burned made me lose weight.
Most of the time, though, I didn’t follow any specific plan. Most of the time, I just ate what I wanted. Sometimes I wanted to eat lots of salads and green smoothies. Other times I wanted to eat ice cream and scones. Still other times I wanted to eat fish and yogurt. Usually, I ate a little bit of everything. I kept track of my calories, and I made sure to get enough protein every day. I aimed for roughly 2800 calories a day, because that is the number of calories that support a weight of about 160 pounds at my current activity level. And I aimed for 100-150 grams of protein a day, to support muscle retention and recovery.
Other than that, I ate what I wanted. Sometimes salad, sometimes ice cream.
Swear to God.
The diet gurus tell us that we have to give ourselves eating disorders in order to lose weight. We do not. My stalkers tell me that I can’t possibly be as lean and fit as I am without being obsessive and strict with my diet. They are wrong. I am not obsessive and strict with my diet, beyond making sure I’m eating the appropriate number of calories to support my weight and activity (2800-3000 calories on an average day) and an adequate amount of protein to support my training. If I want ice cream, I eat ice cream. If I want fish and yogurt, I eat fish and yogurt. If I want salad, I eat salad (I like salad and eat it pretty often). I eat a wide variety of mostly healthy foods, but I am not obsessive, I am not ‘strict’, and I don’t spend my life fixated on food. You do not have to either.