i have been hearing that question a lot lately. it's simple really. i can sum up what i am doing in one easy, simple sentence.
i am making good decisions.
that's it. i am making the right decisions. it helps that i have been paying attention and/or listening to my body. i know what foods add that extra pound overnight. i know what makes me feel bloated and makes my gut feel heavy. i know how to satisfy my sweet tooth without boatloads of chocolate now.
so i want to throw in my two cents about how you, too, can make better decisions. but trust, it does not happen overnight. (unless you are one of those cold turkey, all or nothing people). and also, and hear me loud and clear here: I AM NO EXPERT, DOCTOR, PROFESSIONAL, OR COUNSELOR. SEEK ADVICE FROM A PROFESSIONAL.
snack when you're hungry. almonds, granola, a mini peanut butter smoothie, hummus and corn chips. there are plenty of snacks out there that are not full of sugar and processed junk. find them. use them to your advantage. you shouldn't let your body starve or ever feel starved. God gave us food. we were meant to fill our bellies, so do it. just don't OVER do it.
cut your portions back. i know that dinner you just had was soooo tasty, but for real, just say no to that third and second helping. don't say that you still feel hungry, either. that won't fly with me. but if you think you are, next time, eat more protein. and also, sit for a few minutes to let your food settle to see if you really are still hungry or if your taste buds are just trying to rule your mind.
i know that facebook has been littered with all these delicious recipes lately. don't let that detour you from what you really want: health. listen, this is how i not only simplified dinner, but made it healthier. meat + veg + potato. that's what we have errrr night. (except me, because i don't eat meat or dairy). you can make fish... there are all kinds of fish out there, chicken tenders, chicken skewers, roasted/rotisserie chicken, steak, steak skewers, pork chops. all you need are some good salt-free seasonings. i use sea salt versus regular salt. we love it. just slather whole chickens and fish in olive oil and season it right up. and the rest, season the heck out of them (to your taste).
and for potatoes: skewer them, roast them, bake them, mash them (i use plain almond milk and fake butter in mashed. even though i shouldn't use fake butter). google potato recipes. just avoid too much cheese or sour cream or any other add-ins.
veggies, my favorite. the easiest two ways we make our veggies: skewered or sauteed in the skillet. i discovered that pretty much any veg can be thrown in a skillet with some olive oil and spices and taste amazing. my faves are zucchini and broccoli. or make a salad. again, avoid cheese (at least go easy) and deli meats, those are bad news. use a potato peeler and and make carrot shavings, cut up cucumbers, dice tomatoes and avocados, and use whatever veg you like in your salad. skip the croutons and bacon bits, and pick a dressing that is low in fat and weird ingredients like msg.
so stop making casseroles and other things that you have to use a lot of soups and other processed junk (cans and boxes). it's easy to make a meat/veg/tater dish. it really is.
because i stay home, i am able to make my lunch fresh and how i want it. i love having heated and seasoned black beans smothered in salsa (preferably homemade) on top of a corn tortilla. i rarely eat out these days because everything (except maybe subway) is smothered to heck with salt and who knows what else. so i just avoid it.
i also don't have dessert. *gasp!* but it's true. if my sweet tooth kicks in after dinner, sometimes i have a spoonful of peanut butter with honey and cinnamon on it. and then my sweet tooth is satisfied. but just ONE spoonful. i don't keep eating straight out the jar, peeps.
also, STOP DRINKING POP AND SWEET TEA AND ALL THE OTHER BAD DRINKS. for real. drink water. add fruit, or cucumbers and mint, or lemon if you need it flavored. like, you will be amazed at how you feel after a couple weeks as a water-holic. for home, go buy a big-honkin' cup. if you don't have to refill your glass so often, you'll drink more. for work or out and about, get something you can keep refilling with a lid or cap of some sort. get an app on your phone that helps you down the water. i like Waterlogged or iDrated.
if you are one who needs a swift kick in the butt, let me do that for you: MAKE BETTER DECISIONS. at this point, it is mere choice that is stopping you. if you are struggling hard core with it, PRAY. ask God to help you make good choices at the start of every morning and before every meal and even before bed.
if you are one who just needs some love and encouragement: YOU CAN DO THIS!! you can! you are strong and beautiful and capable. and pray about making good choices daily.
i find it also helps to take before photos. in your skivvies. i ain't kidding. go find a full body mirror, get down to your undies and bra (or just hold your shirt off your belly and arms). take a front with one arm straight out, a side, and a back. this is one time you want as much skin (not boobs. obviously) exposed as you can get. note the date you did the befores. because in month or so, you'll want to do it all over again to prove to yourself that you are, in fact, making progress. note the date every time you photo your progress. i even did this. and i can see the progress! praise sweet Jesus!
so there you go. perhaps i sound mean? sorry if i do. well. only a little sorry. but just know that asking others what they are doing will not make you do it. only YOU and Jesus can make the right food choices. nearly every bit of my 32lbs, two pant sizes, and one shirt/dress size came from my diet. healthy eating, not depriving.
also, i did start the 30 day shred. i hate working out. i injured my finger a while ago and sorta stopped working out back then. BUT i just started doing some hard-ish yoga poses (see my instagram) and i feel sore from doing them. and i'm enjoying that way more than the shred. so i think probably i'll shred every other day and yoga at least that often, too. if you hate working out and are plus size, like me, don't worry, just changing how you eat will drop a lot of weight for you. but getting in that cardio and strength training is important. so do it if you can.
pay attention to what you eat and how you feel afterwards. i know that wheat filled foods (like breads or pastas) make my gut feel heavy and make my weight loss slower. i know that steak (when i ate meat) made me feel the same way. avoid those foods, no matter how good they taste. you will love how you look WAY more in a month or so than you loved those two minutes of satisfying your taste buds.
if you have any questions, i will do my best to answer them. again, these are just my thoughts, not my professional opinion. because, i'm not pro or expert or doctor. and really, you CAN do it. you just hafta actually DO it.
you've got this, beautiful! and never forget, God made you in his image and you are truly a STUNNING creation. you are.