Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Facts

  • Since February 14, I have had some type of formal exercise 4 - 5 days per week, each week, for at LEAST 30 minutes. Most days I go to the gym. A few days I have walked 40 - 60 minutes at the park. At the gym, I usually do 45 minutes to an hour of cardio (elliptical and bike).
  • During this time, I have not lost a lot of weight. My pants are definitely looser, and my double chin has almost disappeared. But the numbers on the scale are staying around 305 - 310.
  • I counted calories and journaled for about 2 weeks, but have now slacked off.
  • I realize that I need a STRUCTURED eating plan. I need guidelines.
Yesterday, I binged.
(I really hate admitting that.)

It was not one of my "normal" binges of the past. I didn't sit and eat 10 Cadbury eggs in one sitting, I didn't stuff myself at one meal. It was sort of an all day thing. I ate way too much, and gave into cravings. I actually drove to Publix and spent money that I didn't have on a cupcake and some sushi. After I ate it, although it was good, I felt sick about it.

And something different happened. I actually prayed about it. I knew I had lost control, and I needed to know how I was going to get it back before I failed again.

The answer was clear... I need to find an eating plan and stick to it for a while.

Thankfully, exercise is becoming a habit. But if I have been exercising regularly for 5+ weeks and I am not seeing changes, eventually I am going to stop. I don't want to stop. I want to keep going.

I own almost every major diet book ever published. So I started looking through books and plans that "fit" with what I am looking for. When I successfully lost weight 2 years ago, it was mostly by eating clean, unprocessed foods, limiting sugar, and adding good fats to my diet. It wasn't a formal "plan", but sort of like a mixture of plans that a good friend helped me put together.

You know what they say... if something worked in the past, it only makes sense to try it again.

Starting tomorrow, I am going to follow the guidelines in the Abs Diet for Women. The "Power 12" are foods that they recommend eating daily.
  1. Almonds and Other Nuts
  2. Beans and Legumes
  3. Spinach and Other Green Vegetables
  4. Low or Non-Fat Dairy, Yogurt, Cheese, etc.
  5. Oatmeal
  6. Eggs
  7. Lean meat (turkey, chicken and fish)
  8. Peanut butter
  9. Olive Oil
  10. Whole-grain breads and cereals
  11. Whey protein powder
  12. Berries (Raspberries, blueberries and strawberries)
All of these foods are foods I enjoy and find satisfying - so that absolutely raises my chances of sticking to the plan. Most, if not all, of these foods are already in my pantry. I also plan on limiting my sugar (sigh). I know that it's necessary. I am an addict.

I will eat 5-6 meals per day, no more than 4 hours apart. For the first week, I will journal, because I like numbers and they help me see what I am REALLY doing. I will limit my caffeine and alcohol (not really a problem). Oh, and I will drink lots of water!

Ok. That is officially my plan for eating. I will give it a month and see what happens. And I will keep hitting that gym 4 - 5 days per week for at least 30 - 40 minutes or more.

I have 4 full days until I go back to work, so it's a good time for me to get this started. My goal jeans are hanging up in my room where I can see them. I can still wear them by my birthday if I buckle down!


  1. Hollie- I like the idea of clean eating. I think sugar increases your cravings for more food and in addition to emotions, I think sugar triggers binges. Thank you for being so honest. You really are inspiring me.

  2. Awesome plan!! I will be praying for you and am excited to read about all the success I know is coming your way!

  3. The biggest thing to avoid is the sugar.. I know it's hard but you can do it! Sugar/carbs are what gets stored as fat, only a small part is used up by your muscles and liver the rest is stored in your fat cells. The only time I lose weight is when I watch the amount of carbs and sugar I take in each day. If you are around 300-350g of carbs a day you are Eating way too much.. keep cutting it down and continue with your exercise and you should see the pounds come off much quicker! Once you start getting use to exercise, start adding light weights or resistance training into your routine.. the more muscle you have the more calories you'll burn.. you'll be a fat burning machine! Good luck! Tiana

  4. Don't give up! Are you measuring yourself as well? Sometimes the weight might be muscle.. stick it in there.

    I want to start a blog following my weight loss and you've inspired me to do so!!

  5. Sounds like you have a great plan of attack. I find for me that I have to have a plan and usually I set mini-goals within it. Like weekly goals and sometimes even daily goals. Keep it up!

  6. H:
    Sometimes it just takes a little while for the weight loss to show. I encourage you to "fight on" even if the scale doesn't acknowledge that you are losing, mainly because you seem to be feeling better and you're staying active. Here's something to be aware of: portion sizes. If you are eating the "good foods" but are eating more than you should, that could be slowing your results.
    Reading your blog makes me feel less isolated and I wish you the best!

  7. just recently came across your blog. the plan sounds great...good luck.

  8. Hollie...I sat down yesterday, too and made a new plan for myself. I am binging again and that feels just soooo wrong. I was on my way, too...but usually when I am I mess it up somehow. I eat many of those power foods when I am on the right path. I am headed to the store today to buy many of those on your list!!

    I support you, Hollie!!!

  9. Hollie,

    In reference to the exercise, you are seeing changes...pants looser, double chin disappearing, etc. If there is not much weight loss, that is because muscle tissue is replacing fat. Muscle is more dense, hence loose pants. You know the fat is going because you can see and feel the change...looser pants, disappearing chin.

    Yes, you do need an eating plan, but the occasional "binge" is not that terrible, either. It may be your body's way of saying, "Hey, I need some calories down here, lady! And how about a reward for good behavior?"

    Many fitness and weight loss experts actually recommend giving yourself one free day a week to eat whatever you want. It is what you do the other six that is going to have the most effect on your fitness and weight loss goals, not that one day of glorious "sin" that you can actually plan and look forward to enjoying rather than giving in to on a whim and feeling "dirty", weak, and sad afterwards.

    Keep the faith, baby.

    Your 66 year old fitness buddy,
    Senior Health and Fitness Blog

  10. That is a great plan! I will be praying for you!

  11. I'm very proud of you. Keep it up, you will get there. I'm right with you, I love me some sugar!!!

  12. Hey, Hollie! Having a strict plan with rules is a good idea. For so long, I just tried to do what was right, but never kept track of anything, and over the years, gained because I wasn't paying close attention.
    Some of us work better with rules, and your plan will be a great way to go!
    Check out how I stuck to my rules.. in my blog.
    Specifically, the month of March '10. That was when I really started buckling down, and devised this calorie counting plan that I'm still on! And with only 20 lbs to go, I'm glad I finally got smart! GO FOR IT! :-)

  13. Hi Hollie I'm starting a weight loss pan too and the foods on your list are exactly the foods that I have been told I should eat. Like yourself I will struggle with no sugar :-(
    I have just started my own blog today and I'd love you to take a look -
    Looking forward to your next post - Good Luck!

  14. Great plan Hollie. Remember if you need that sugar 'hit' have a piece of fruit or something. if you want ideas for meals or anything, jump on my weight loss blog -
    You're not alone!!!

  15. Don't give up!

    I love reading your blog and as I have stated before I truly do feel like you are on my weight lose journey with me since we started at the same time. The list of food you have provided are really great choices to add to your diet. Seriously though, the books don’t rely on them so much because you really need to customize your menu for you. Sit down and really think of the foods you are struggling with and focus on a better alternative for them. My sister started dieting along with me and no lie for about a month I felt like I was being quizzed by her. She came up with every food possible that was bad yet delicious and I had to come up with the healthier alternative to it. Let me tell you something, I did! I must admit though I would definitely feel discouraged if I had been working out that much and not seeing any type of results but there has to be something missing, so just take a seat and think it all through. One thing I notice is you stick just to the elliptical and bike. Switch it up, do some weights or if your gym has a pool swim some laps. Also, you should start taking flaxseed oil/capsules. Those really will help you with weight lose and they are good for your heart since you are being more active. If you have any questions about healthier menus please message me. One more thing (sorry this is getting long) plan your meals out the day before. It's easier to eat healthy when it’s quick and already prepared for you.

  16. Don't give up! Are you measuring yourself as well? Sometimes the weight might be muscle.. stick it in there.

    I also have a weight loss blog maybe you whant to visit it ?

  17. thanks for sharing Hollie, you are definately motivating me to lose weight.It's tough, I've been yo-yo dieting for years, I'm 33 years old and I sometimes eat like a little kid. I have to make better choices for my well being.

  18. I have been eating clean for about 3 weeks, and while the weight is slowly coming off, I can see HUGE differences. When you eat clean you feel more full and satisfied and the cravings hardly ever come unless you forget to eat one of your mini meals. You can do this...just don't get TOO caught up in the scale :)

  19. I like your plan but doing cardio is so old fashion. If you trying to lose weight or reduce belly fat you need more of a full body workout that can make you sweat more calories off. But you do have a great blueprint.

  20. That's a great plan. Stick with it and you will feel amazing
    Click Here!

  21. Glad to see a fellow kindred spirit sharing their reality. It isn't just about "putting down the cookie" check out my blog for another story.

  22. This was my first visit to your blog Hollie and I just want to say thanks for sharing your journey! Your plan sounds very good--especially limiting the sugar in your diet. Sugar is my biggest trigger when it comes to binges.
    I look forward to reading about your progress.

  23. I think thats a great plan. Eating all unprocessed foods will definitely push the scale in the right direction.

    I am doing Weight Watchers and like that alot because it promotes healthy, clean eating but also allows you to have the foods you like, like a Cadbury egg if you wanted it. Thats always my recommendation personally. Good luck tho, you are halfway there with the working out!

  24. I came across your blog yesterday and added it to my google reader! Keep pushing! Even if you only lose one pound a week it's better than gaining one pound. I've been having the same issues where I'm going to the gym everyday but not seeing real results.

  25. HOllI
    I FEEL You pain and I to did the same thing! At first it came off and then ALL OF a sudden, WOW, that was it. I still have that last 40lbs to lose. BUT DONT STOP! I kept going for another week and I changed my workout routine. YEP, that helps. Do something different. If you are working out in the gym, then start fast walking instead. I promise you will see the difference. PLEASE HAND IN THERE!!
    Follow me also

  26. Hello. I found your blog and im so happy I did. Its so what i needed right now! Its so inspiring. Thank you.

  27. Great post, it is good to read posts that are honest to make you feel like you are not the only one. I am the opposite, i find it hard to stick to the workout routine but have a good eating balance most of the time.

  28. I have been associated with many weight-loss success stories. Among the common denominators in ALL of them, is eating 4-5 small meals at 4 hour intervals each day, doing steady-state cardio for 30+ minutes 4-6 days per week, and allowing 1 good cheat, yes, even BINGE day, every two weeks or so.

    I think this is a reasonable path -- so long as yu stay on it.

  29. That is very interesting to see Peanut Butter is one of the 12 on your list. It's also on the list for my Blood group diet.

  30. Great Blog! Love your eating plan! Hope you succeed in your clean eating.

  31. I have just started out on a journey of trying to finally kick the extra weight I have by eating better, sorting out major sugar addiction and being more active. I have only read this one post of your blog but everything you say sounds so familiar to me. I can see you are going to be inspiring me with your honesty and progress. :oD I am blogging too to try and help keep myself on track.

  32. Your honesty inspires me. I hope you reach your goal.

  33. Hollie

    Your exercise is already a good start to setting a lifestyle that will help you lose weight and ultimately stay healthy. Good Eating Habits is really important and can help you overcome those days when you get pulled in by one of your guilty pleasures. Your story is motivating and we are all hoping to watch you make your goal. Your are so inspiring and provide hope for everyone. If you need anyone to help you along or to provide your support, feel free to reach out to any of us.

    Thanks for your inspiration and motivation.

  34. You are so genuine and real. I love to read your entries. I have had the same struggles lately and went off the deep end last night. I can really relate and you makeme want to try harder. You go! I can't wait to see your progress!

  35. You can do it, I have been in the same boat several times in my life, and finally feel as though I am in control, instead of my weight controlling me. Here is my story:

  36. The guilt after a binge -- an experience/emotion I'm all to familiar with.

    I'm glad you were able to find some solace and regroup.

    Wishing you much success,

  37. Where are you at? I hope everything is going good in you world!

  38. Hey Hollie! Clean eating has worked for me as well. I also very recently cut out of the majority of dairy products (even the Chobani that I love) and noticed that I don't bloat anymore or get that yucky heavy feeling. I haven't yet Googled the connected between what's happening do my body since letting go of most dairy, but I'm about to right now! ;)

  39. Good luck with your weight loss goals, you can do it!

  40. My dietitian has me on the same kind of meal plan. Eating 6 times a day, 3 meals 3 snacks. I struggle with portion control and the whey proteins really disgust me but they are really good for you...

  41. My dietitian has me o the same type of plan, 3 meals & 3 snacks a day. It is hard to fit them all in if you dont preplan them out. And although the whey protein podwer is good for us, don't you agree that they are disgusting???

  42. You can also eat as many protein as you can such as meat, egg, fish. This will keep you full as it is protein


  43. Hi I've had the same trouble as you, trying everything and anything. Check out my blog, maybe you'll find something useful for yourself. I'm trying out the Tracy Anderson 30-day Method workout and meal plan. You can check it out here:
    Best of luck and success to you!!!


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