50+ lbs lost with No Counting: Calories or Points

Did you know I've lost 50+ pounds without counting? No counting daily calories. No counting points - activity or food related. No counting # of meals or # of fruits/veggies. No COUNTING.  Though I was a math major in college and am currently teaching Babycakes to count (She's really good with "one two" and "eight nine"), I have never found it very manageable in my daily life to count calories.  First of all, it's super tedious.  Second of all, most of us underestimate our daily calorie intake by as much as 30%!!  So even if you ARE counting calories, it might not be effective.  Additionally, I've come to believe that a calorie is NOT just a calorie, and the type of foods you're eating make much more of a difference in your overall health and weightloss than just cutting calories. 

What I've found to be effective:

  1. Adding veggie juices to my diet.   After my initial Reboot last year, I kept on juicing about once every other day or so.  I would juice at night, enough to have a glass in the evening and to take a blender bottle full to work.  I found that drinking veggie juice between 2 - 3PM really helped me get that extra energy I needed to finish my day.  Rather than the other office "snacks" available.
  2. Cutting out sugar from my diet.  For the most part I don't eat much sugar.  I rarely eat sweets or dessert.  In fact, from my birthday last year (Sept through Feb), I only had one dessert: a slice of pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving.  And it wasn't even that good!  I "treat" myself in other ways.   And honestly, I don't feel I've missed out on that much over the last 8 months of not having added sugar.  My life is full of so many other amazing things!
  3. Eating smaller portions.  Portions are such a major factor in losing weight!  For me, I just use the guidelines on each particular food for serving size.  1/4 cup granola = 1 serving, well then I'd eat 1/4 cup of the granola.  3/4 cup yogurt = 1 serving, well then I'd eat 3/4 cup.  I also started eating more out of bowls, which have a finite (MATH NERD WORD!) amount of volume they can hold, versus a standard dinner plate that you can just pile, pile, and pile higher. 
  4. Preparing healthy meals at home.  I have eaten out much less often while losing this weight - and have cooked homemade meals.  You can make smart choices when going out, like substituting fattier things with grilled, asking for sauces on the side or not at all, boxing up half your meal at the start, etc... but most restaurant meals are double or TRIPLE the portion size most of us should be eating!  Check out my recipe list for lots of healthy homemade meal ideas.  I'm adding to the list daily!
  5. Eating intuitively.  Only eating when hungry.  Stopping when I feel full.  Not eating based on an emotional need or to numb something inside.
  6. Bringing healthier snacks.  I almost always pack snacks to work now - veggies & hummus, yogurt & granola, roast beef & a slice of cheese, etc...  This helps me avoid overating or snacking on unhealthy alternatives.

Some people have asked me if I eat carbs.  The answer is yes.  I eat carbs... sometimes.  When I do, I'm purposeful about it.  

Things I love (when I'm not on a Juice Reboot):

  • Hummus, hummus, & more hummus (my fav is edamame hummus, which right now I buy at my local market, but I'm determined to make my own recipe to share with you so you can make your own!!)
  • Bell Peppers
  • Bowls of blueberries
  • Wraps - with veggies & roast beef or ham
  • Eggs - scrambled with cheese, red peppers, and salsa served with black beans (OK, NOW I'M SERIOUSLY HUNGRY!!)
  • PEANUT BUTTER!!  (though I'm trying to adjust to PB2, which is a powdered pb with less than half the fat and calories)
  • Yogurt w/protein granola
  • FISH TACOS... seriously, I can't believe this wasn't #1 on the list.  Clearly this juicing is getting to my head!
  • Tomatoes 
  • Chicken Sausage with Apples & Gouda
  • Did I mention fish tacos? :)
So, what I've chosen for my weight-loss journey is a lifestyle change.  It is something that can continue for the rest of my life.  It is not a season.  It is not a specific amount of time where I'll sacrifice and count and scrutinize every bite.  It is relearning how to eat.  It is giving my body the fuel it needs to do life.  It is choosing to love myself more.  The best part is, it's working.  And I am really starting to live the sweet life... no sugar added! 

Questions:

  1. What "methods" have you used to lose weight / get healthy?  Have they been effective?
  2. What are some of your favorite healthy foods?

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