Friday, July 27, 2007

I'm Half My Size! - Weight Loss Success Stories

Good Housekeeping has an article, "I'm Half My Size," about several women who successfully lost a great deal of weight (they all lost over 100 pounds) and kept it off. These women didn't do it quickly either; it took a year or more to lose all that weight.

Each story includes a Worst Moment and a Turning Point, making them very poignant. Some interesting points:

  • Several women used formal diet plans, such as Weight Watchers, Weigh Down (a Christian organization), Nutrisystem, and Slim-Fast. I wouldn't actually recommend all of these, but this shows how rules can help you lose weight. Almost any rational diet plan would work, but having everything laid out for you, with specific do's and don't's, is helpful.
  • Several women mentioned the value of re-directing attention, avoiding TV and other times when it's hard to avoid eating, and so on. Avoiding food (and even the thought of it) can be a good way to avoid overeating.
  • Exercise was important to several of the women-- in addition to modifying the diet. A couple mentioned running. However, not everyone mentioned it.
  • Paying attention to your body was a recurring theme -- eating only when your body tells you you're hungry.
  • Several mentioned, in the Turning Point section, being told that they were borderline diabetic or had other health problems due to their weight. I've mentioned before how fear can be a motivator.
Here are Shelley Napier's Favorite Tricks: "I carry around protein bars, because if I don't, my hunger takes over and I end up in line at a bakery. When I'm cooking, I splash Tabasco sauce on everything — the spicy kick makes me eat slower, so I don't consume as much. Another trick: If I have time on the weekend, I'll grill up six chicken breasts, steam some veggies, portion everything into containers, and pop the food into the freezer. Then on weeknights, when I come home from work hungry, I can have a healthy dinner in minutes. During the holidays, when I'm hosting big family dinners, I insist that my guests take all the leftovers."

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