Support is what got me started, and support keeps my head in the game. My main supporter left on her trip to Thailand in December. I knew I would need more support, and previous to December I was pretty "hush hush" about my weight-loss journey because I didn't want people to know in case I failed... again! So I started my Facebook Page, and then decided to give blogging another go. So now here I am, and I have found such a wonderful group of women on similar journeys!! They have all helped inspire me to do my best. Also, I found a whole bunch of people, already in my life, that were so excited to cheer me on during my journey! I was really nervous at first, but having it all out in the open is very freeing.
Wow, MyFitnessPal! I cannot say enough great things about this app/site. It has helped my be aware of everything I put into my body and learned to balance my food. When I know I'm going to be indulging, I can plan ahead and save calories, or work out and earn extra calories! I've had many challenging days but only one week where I didn't lose (and actually gained). MyFitnessPal also helps make me accountable because I keep my food diary open for all to see. It shows the days where I have gone over, and all my other successful days. My MFP friends get to cheer me on for all my under days, every pound I lose, and any updates I post there!
Or as I like to call it my "Life Enhancing Device". I absolutely love this thing. I have my MFP app on my phone which makes logging my food VERY convenient, and making food decisions while I'm out of the house, even easier. I also have my pedometer app, my couch to 5k app, my iMapMyRun app, and many more apps that make this journey easier! Apps rock my world!
4. Polar Heart Rate Monitor
My heart rate monitor accurately measures the calories I burn during a workout. This is very useful for me with my tracking because it makes sure that when I track my exercise calories burned and decide to eat them back, I can accurately gauge exactly how many that is so I don't over-eat. It also helps motivate me during my workouts because I can see where my heart rate is, and know whether I need to step it up a notch, or back it off.
5. Easing up on myself
So, sometimes I mess up. Sometimes I mess up BAD! This happens to all of us who are not perfect. I have worked, and I am still working, on letting those days go and actually using them for motivation to work harder and keep going. I used to let these days derail me and make me feel like I couldn't do it because I couldn't do it perfectly. I have learned that the real success isn't doing it perfectly, but learning from my mistakes and getting back on track no matter how hard it may seem at the time. Often I am only one good workout, or day away from being right back where I was and continuing on my journey!
6. Small goals
Well, I started with 167lbs to lose... Over half my body weight. How did I get there? I thought 20 was too hard to lose, then 60, then 90, then 120... you get the idea. NOW I work in 5lb intervals. Much smaller, much more attainable and I get so excited when I meet each new goal! I'm 3lbs away from my next one (239lbs). Its only a few days, or maybe a week and I bit until I meet or surpass that goal, and it keeps me working hard! I also think weekly weigh-ins have helped, but it didn't make this list.
7. Fitness goals
So once the eating became routine, and the pounds started going down, it was exciting. Eventually it starts to get kind of repetitive and this is a point where people are at risk of losing sight of their journey, especially when they have a lot to lose. Setting goals outside of weight keeps me motivated to continue on regardless of bad weeks and routine. I wanted to complete Couch to 5k, and I did it. I'm working on completing the 30 day shred right now. Next I want to to Chalene Extreme, then Turbo Fire, the P90X. ALSO I want to run. I am signing up for a half marathon later this year that will require some real athletic training! All of these things will help me with my weight-loss goals, but also make me feel good to be working towards them in themselves!
8. Fitness DVDs & Games
So simple. Don't know what to do with weights, or want to mix up your regular workout routines. My DVDs keep it exciting. I started with Turbo Jam (which I LOVE and will be doing for the foreseeable future), The Shred is a DVD, my Chalene Extreme is a DVD set, I have a Jillian Michaels Extreme Shed and Shred I am excited to do in the future, I have hip-hop abs, Yoga, Pilates... and I will be getting more. My workouts never get boring because I have so many to mix it up! I also just started using our X-Box Kinect. I have The Biggest Loser game, Just Dance 3, and Zumba!!
9. Alarm Clock
Sounds silly, but waking up in the morning can be really challenging. I like to get workouts in in the morning so I don't have them hovering over my head all day, and also I don't know about the rest of you, but in the evenings I am BEAT! Sometimes I can make it to the gym or go for a walk, but sometimes I just want to relax, and then I find it even harder to get myself motivated. I have an alarm clock app on my phone that uses graduake so the music starts very softly so I don't get that jolted away feeling. **When I wake up to loud noises I can be one CRANKY B****.
10. Yummy Low Cal Snacks
Yes. I have a huge sweet tooth. Having healthy low-cal treats like Skinny Cow, Vitatops, and Fiber One bars keep me feeling satisfied without having mega calories. One of my new favorites is a toasted Vitatop with a 1/4 cup of vanilla ice cream on top! 160 cals of delicious and a good hit of fiber :)
** I'm just saying that these things work for ME. They may not work for everyone, but the trick is finding what works for YOU!