You’ve finally made up your mind that you’re going to be more physically active, you’re going to eat better, you’re going to take care of yourself and you’re going to be rewarded with weight loss, increased energy and a whole new zest for life. Kudos to you, there are a ton of people out there that should be following your lead. But wait… nothing is happening you say? You may be feeling a little better, but the weight… it’s still there… what the hell? You raided your pantry so it’s free of all things processed, you’re making your own meals and not relying on restaurant food to sustain you, and you’re even working out three times a week!
So what’s the issue?
Well… it could be lots of things. Exactly what it is, is different for every person but maybe, just maybe, I’ve hit on one or two things below that might be presenting a problem to you. (I only ask for praise in return 😉
You’re spreading out your meals, eating a small meal or snack every 3 to 4 hours… but you’re not keeping your portion sizes down. Using small containers and plates as a guide is extremely helpful in controlling the amount that you eat. Seeing a plate filled to the edges tricks your mind into thinking that it just hit the food lottery and won’t need another helping for at least a couple of hours. Learn to see with your eyes what the proper amount on your plate should be by thinking small bistro portions instead of Cheesecake Factory portions (which could feed a small Indonesian village for three days.)
You’re writing everything down that you eat… but you’re forgetting that liquid calories count just as much. Put down the soda can, stop with the sweetened iced tea, don’t even think about downing that glass of Kool-aid, and for the love of all things skinny, after work go directly home, do not pass Happy Hour! Those strawberry daiquiris are a ruse. You think you need one after a hard days work but that’s just the foreplay part of happy hour. Soon to follow are the cheesy nachos and fried zucchini sticks (they’re a veggie, right!) Pitfall extraordinaire is the Happy Hour! So enticing, so full of promise and fun, the Happy Hour is the summer time drug. I’ve fallen prey to it many a times and I’m sure I will again, but the key is to not let it happen week after summer week. Those calories stick with you well into the winter months since they offer nothing nutritious. Use caution next time that mass email goes out inviting everyone out to happy hour. What they’re really inviting you to is ‘Fatty’ Hour!
You’re eating your vegetables… but are you eating enough of them? Please, overindulge on your veggies. Eat them for breakfast, lunch and dinner, they’re little nuggets of youth. They provide you with innumerable amounts of vitamins and minerals (just like fruit) without all the sugar of fruit. (You know that belly you have that you want to lose? It’s most likely due to the amount of sugar you consume.) Veggies are lower in sugar and provide a natural punch to gut of diseases and illnesses that it should cover half your plate at every meal. And don’t be afraid to spice them up or make them tasty with herbs and spices. The best thing you can do for your diet is to learn to cook with spices… they make even squash taste good. (And I’m an anti-squasher.)
Perhaps there is some connection between you, your lack of weight loss and my suggestions, or perhaps not. But if anything, I hope you walk away with the knowledge that veggies should be eaten in abundance, happy hour = fatty hour and if you’re eating a slice of cake the size of your head, you need to seriously rethink your portion sizes.