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Woo Hoo They Fit Again!

So...this happened!
I've had these jeans for a long time. In January, I couldn't get them up my thighs, much less button them. Yesterday, I did! Now, I am not saying they are comfortable or that I would wear them out yet, but give me a couple more weeks...
In March, I talked about how I lost 22 pounds since Christmas. I am proud to say I am now down 30 pounds and two sizes!
I am very much enjoying this place I am at in my journey of changing my lifestyle. I have struggled with weight loss for almost five years and it's been difficult at times. I am not really sure what made this time different or what gave me renewed motivation. I think finding the right people (a nutritionist and a trainer) that taught me some good things from the beginning made a huge difference. I didn't feel like I was shooting in the dark and they made it very simple. No cleanses, no removal of a certain food group from my diet, no "cheat days," no crazy workout regimes. Just eating better and working out effectively and consistently.
I have been working out at the YMCA for over a year now, and my trainer I saw in January, Bob, has been telling me for weeks, "You know you get to see me three times for free, when are you going to come see me again?" I set up an appointment last Friday and we reviewed my workout routine and we were able to tweak a few things to keep going on my journey. My goal right now is to make my muscles as strong as can be so they can work for me and keep my metabolism high. I have a journal I keep at the gym, now, that helps me keep track of when I work out, how much weight I am lifting on the machines and how long I do cardio. I am up to 35-40 minutes on the elliptical at a 20 incline and 39 resistance. My heart rate is in the170s for at least 30 minutes, three times per week. I have a weight training circuit I complete each day, three times per week. My eating hasn't been as clean, but I still continue to lose weight and inches. I could probably do a strict calorie count again for a week or two to lose a few more pounds quickly, but right now, what I am doing is working and I am happy with my progress.
Here are a few more tips I can offer you:
1) Stop drinking sugar!
Really, a lot of us probably consume more sugar and calories in our drinks than we think. You could down 500-1000 in sodas, creamer, and sweet tea without blinking an eye. Switch to tea sweetened with Stevia, diet soda, or other lessor-calorie options.
2) Go to the gym, even if you don't feel like it.
There were only a couple of days I really didn't feel like going to the gym and I just didn't go. I went the next day, though. There were some days I literally got on the elliptical for 8 minutes and just got off and left. I went back the next day. Most of the time, I knew if I just did it, I would be happy I did. And I was. When I didn't feel like it, I just went the next day. But I didn't go days and days without going, because the second I let myself slip for too long, it would be too hard to get back into the habit.
3) If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
I could write a whole post about this is almost every area of life, because I have failed many times because of my lack of a plan. So, here are ways you can plan to be successful at weight loss, because any of these NOT being done could be used as excuses, and I didn't need any more of those!
-I had plenty of workout clothes to wear. If my workout clothes were dirty, I wouldn't go, so I made sure to have plenty of socks, pants, and shirts ready so I could get up, throw them on, and go.
-Have plenty of great music or books available to listen to. I would look forward to going to the gym because I spent a few dollars here or there to get music I wanted or a book to listen to. I would even watch Netflix on my phone! And have a couple extra pairs of headphones. They are cheap and it's a pain to get to the gym and not have them for me to use. I almost wouldn't work as hard if I didn't have something to distract me! 
-Know what your goal is at the gym and it shouldn't be to LOSE WEIGHT. It should be specific - "My goal is to keep my heart rate above 160 for 30 minutes today." "I will do 100 crunches today." Know what your plan of attack is for that day when you go and keep altering it every day.
-Make sure and have at least five go-to foods in your house at all times that you could eat if you had no other options. If all you have is chips and Little Debbies, no matter what your self-discipline, you will eat them.
4) Don't make changes to your diet you can't sustain for more than two weeks.
Not eating carbs for two weeks will do nothing for your weight loss goals, except have you yo-yo back and forth with weight. You shouldn't spend every moment of your life thinking about all the food you wish you could eat, but won't let yourself eat. There are so many alternative options for food and diabetic candies and sweets, there should be something you could find as an alternative for bad food choices.
5) Realize it's a marathon, not a sprint!
Always think to might take a year to get where you want to be, but that year has to start somewhere!! In the course of 365 days, a few bad days won't derail you completely. Just think of things as a goal that will take some time. It helps you keep things in perspective when have worked out for two weeks, but haven't lost 45 pounds and 5 sizes.
Keep it going!! Find your motivation and more power to you!


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