I Joined Weight Watchers, so Here’s What’s Next!

Making healthy eating choices is the story of my life! I struggle so hard to eat right even though I know everything there is to it. I know what has proven to help me lose weight. I know the foods that make me feel bad. I know what foods are high in antioxidants, alkaline, good for my blood type, my particular metabolism, you name it, I know it! But… I STILL struggle to make the right choices that will keep me on a losing weight path whether it be to quickly lose the weight *cough cough* Keto and Quick Weight Loss Centers or simply counting calories- which is the slower route but better in the long run to keep it off.

Here is why I think counting calories is better. I have shared before how I have done Quick Weight Loss Centers program which worked. I lost over 30 pounds. Once I stopped following the plan, the weight quickly came back on. Then, I tried the beloved keto diet. That worked like a charm with intermittent fasting. I lost right at 30 pounds. Went on vacation last summer and got off plan. And…once the school year started, I began stress eating and oh my goodness the weight came back worse. Got on the scale I was up 20 pounds before I knew it. Basically, every time I have tried the quick route, the weight falls off but quickly comes back when I stop following the strict rules. And sometimes, in the case of QWLC I would be hungry. I was eating very little food; of course, I was going to lose weight.

My weight is something I have battled majority of my life. But being a mom now, I need to have an out pour of energy because my toddler is extra busy, and I really want to enjoy her.

Well to help a sista out, I joined Weight Watchers. I have been admiring Oprah eating whatever she wants and staying slim and all these other folks on her commercials. Plus, one of my great friends is a WW success story. So, I figured I paid Quick Weight Loss tons of money, why not try WW which is much less. I went to my first meeting, it went well. Then, I went to the second meeting, lost 5+ pounds my first week. THEN… I stopped tracking my points and eating whatever. That lasted for 2 weeks. The following Monday, I started tracking again, by Wednesday I fell off the wagon. Tried it again the next Monday. Lost 2+ pounds that week. So a total of about 8 pounds lost in a month. Not bad, right?

Yet, I was like this is taking too long. I want results now. I called my sister and told her I am starting Keto the upcoming week. Like that was going to keep me accountable. That lasted all of 5 days, if that. Meanwhile, my friend that has done WW before, she had gained a few pounds during the school year and started when I did in May to lose what she gained. Fast forward to today, she is steadily going down with the program! She may not always lose a pound a week, but she loses at least half a pound (which is what WW indicates, anywhere from .5-2lbs a week). Girl is down over 10 pounds. She is so faithful, and has a beautiful regimen that is so simple that I must get down to doing. However in the meantime, I am going to stick to tracking my points for now. Monday began week 1 for my restart, it’s ok if you are laughing at this point. I have restarted so many times in the past two months. Can’t help but laugh at myself. With that said, I have been on track since Monday. I track everything I eat, even down to butter. My friend doesn’t track that intensely. Perhaps one day I will get there. I did not weigh myself Monday as I refuse to get on the scale anymore. Yet, I will be attending the meeting this upcoming Saturday. Saturdays are my weigh in days. Fingers crossed for some rapid weight loss from a few weeks ago because I know I have probably gained during the time I was not tracking and eating whatever. But even with no weight loss or gain, I am going to press forward, and do better for the week after that.

I am sharing all of this to say that I have started an Instagram account just for this. I figured by putting it out there in a private IG account I may be able to keep myself accountable and on track towards a healthy weight. If you would like to follow along and provide health suggestions please follow me @dmstrivingforhealthy.

Apple Cider Juice. Recipe on my Instagram @dmstrivesforhealthy.

To all of you out there that understand this struggle, we are in this together. You can do this! I can do this! It is really just about making up your mind that you are going to cut out bad habits. There are so many people losing weight with WW, keto, counting calories, Whole 30, yoga, drinking a gallon of water a day, the blood type diet. Whichever of these float your boat, do it. The goal is to be healthy. My friend always shares how she wants to look good besides her kids when they take grad, wedding pics, and other milestone moments of their lives, and she is so right. I do not want my little one remembering me obese, out of breath, and looking plump beside her in those future photos. She loves me however I look, but I want to be my best self for her. And weight loss is not a race. With steady consistency in eating habits and incorporating more movement, we’ll get there. Most importantly, it takes loving the version of yourself you are now, and realizing that you will feel so much better as a lighter you. If you truly love thyself, you will do what it takes to heal and be a healthier you. I love being plus size. But this tummy has to go! We can’t be friends anymore. It aint’t cute, for one, and two, it is very unhealthy. I can write a list of reasons why having a midsection is unhealthy, but that is another post.

Lastly, look forward to challenges that I will be doing. Feel free to join in and share how you are doing as we progress. As being week 1, I just wanted to get started again with making better choices. Next week, I will implement a small challenge that will hopefully become a habit. I will share those on the blog as well as Instagram.

Best wishes to you all, Jewels and Gents! And to those of you who are already on a weight loss journey or in maintenance mode, feel free to share your success! I love recipe and workout ideas.

Cheers to healthy habits! Don’t forget to follow @dmstrivingforhealthy!

The Keto Diet: Does it Really Work?

Ever since I can remember, I have always sought out the next diet fad. One may work for a little while, eat wrong and you gain every bit of what you lost back. Or worse, it is not healthy or doctor approved. But mostly, diets are extremely difficult because we are not eating enjoyable food. Essentially, that is truly what it is.

Well, just to give a little bit of history. I can recall doing Tae Bo with my sister after she had my niece to attempt to lose weight, to tell you how long ago that was my niece is now in college. She lost weight, I gained. I have tried cutting out all the white foods, that lasted for a few days, and I lost nothing. How about joining the gym in December in hopes of actually going through with my tenth year in a row New Year’s resolution. EPIC FAIL! Nothing has worked. Atkins, personal trainer, gym for two weeks then off, Miami Beach Diet, going vegetarian for a while, drinking a gallon of water a day. None of these fads work. And this is not to say that they don’t. Perhaps they just don’t work for me.

I have been successful with Quick Weight Loss Centers; however, if you cheat, or not even eat all of your food, you will gain, or your weight will stall. And when this happens you have to eat dissatisfying foods to get back to losing. By the way, the food was not bad, it is just that I was always hungry. And bonus, you could only eat their snacks. That got pretty expensive, pretty fast.

Fried Bacon and Cabbage
Bacon Fried Cabbage, yum!

So, I was left thinking that I should just accept being fat. Earlier this year, my cousin introduced me to the Keto Diet. Bacon? What? That sounds so unhealthy. But when I saw the weight dropping from her body, I was like healthy or not, I have to give this a try.

Well fast forward to now, I have lost over thirty pounds, I have a ton of energy, and I feel great! I could have never said that with Quick Weight Loss. I was tired and hungry. With keto you are full off of the healthy fats you are consuming, which has allowed me to fast up to thirty-seven hours. One day I hope to reach seventy-two hours. But the point is, KETO WORKS!

Keto is not a diet where you can just say don’t eat this, eat that. Well kind of. Yet, it requires a lot of knowledge. This is especially so if you are anything like I was, keto is so unhealthy. You do not have to eat bacon. And healthy fats are not the same as McDonald’s.

While I would love to post a before and after picture, I am completely embarrassed at this time. But all of my family and friends that have seen me recently see a major difference. Post baby, I am down over fifty pounds. In clothing, I have gone from a size 18 to some 12s but comfortably and loosely size 14 clothing. All in all, I feel so much better. And the biggest component to my desire to lose weight is to have the ability to keep up with my outgoing daughter. I could be much smaller if I had not enjoyed my summer vacation as much as I did the last month of summer, but what the heck. My body paid for it. I surely was not feeling my best and drained.

Well…What is keto? Keto is a high fat, low carb diet. Essentially, you will want to calculate your macros. Simply google “macros calculator” and follow the directions from there. As far as carbs, it depends on who you talk to. I see weight changes as long as I do not eat over 27g of carbs a day. But I like to stay under 20. 20g of carbs should be your goal. That is the ultimate number for weight loss. However, some people suggest not going over 50g of carbs a day. As I have mentioned, there are so many thoughts on what is really keto and how it works. With that being said, I am not telling anyone how to eat or what keto really is. Anytime I share about anything related to food and weight loss it is from what has worked for me. I am not a doctor. I just know what has worked for myself and my friends.

Now there is some extra calculating that goes into this such as net carbs. I will get into that later on. For now, please know that you must avoid sugar, bread, pasta, carbonated drinks, aspartame. Consume meat, fatty oils such as avocado oil, olive oil, nuts- my favorites are pecans and almonds, and dark and green leafy vegetables. Pork skins go great with many dishes. They’ll become your best friend. There is so much to share. But at least you can start with something as easy as eggs and sausage for breakfast, a salad with avocado, cheese you shred- I’ll explain later, bacon, chicken- I use rotisserie chicken sometimes,  a boiled egg, you can add sliced almonds, pecans- whatever you like as long as it is low carb, and a low carb salad dressing. For the dressing, you can never go wrong with ranch or cesar. I love the Olive Garden Italian dressing and their Parmesan Ranch. They have like less than 1g of carbs. And for dinner, a shrimp and asparagus foil pack is great or instead of shrimp you can have chicken or steak or salmon. You eat really good with Keto. The recipes are endless. Simply google or pinterest them.

salad meal prep
Meal prepped salads for lunch

Lastly, caffeine is your best friend. If you like coffee like that. I am an addict, so I have to have it every day. I have a post that shares how I have my coffee. But to add to it, I normally have black tea iced or hot with stevia and heavy whipping cream. Or, I’ll have iced coffee with heavy whipping cream or half and half with stevia. And sometimes, I drink my caffeine beverages black with or without stevia. This is due to dairy products sometimes cause your weight to stall. You cannot have milk because it contains sugar, but there are many dairy products you can consume- I’ll get into this later. Again, there is just so much to this way of eating.

I truly support low carb/ keto lifestyle because I am not limited on what I can eat. I am fuller longer, and I have so much more energy. Stay tuned for more news and facts about the keto diet. If you are uncomfortable with the fact that keto is a high fat diet, try low carb. When we cut a drastic amount of carbs and sugar from our diets, you are bound to see results.

To good health Jewels!