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Tips n Tricks

Alrighty so here are some tips n tricks I have been using that help make the whole losing weight thing easier, feel free to give some or all of them a try, they are not in order of importance – more like order I remembered them in, lol…oh and I’ll add more as I think of them! 😀

Tip 1

ALWAYS Weigh and/or Measure everything you eat!

I am not even exagerating about this. I don’t eat anything that can’t be weighed or measured so that I can calculate the accurate number of points for the food. Sure, I get it, you think you know what a tablespoon looks like, and a teaspoon…a cup, 29 grams…you can eyeball it right? Wrong! In our overly bountiful North American society portions are so skewed we don’t have any idea what a real measurement looks like. Trust me on this, whine moan bitch about it but do it! Soon, measuring/weighing your foods and condiments will become second nature and you’ll be surprised what the real amount looks like. Be very careful to weigh/measure on the days you feel like crap, are sick, bored, pms-ing, just plain don’t wanna do it anymore cause those are the days you are most likely to con yourself into thinking you are eating the correct portion…the easiest person to lie to is yourself so don’t give yourself an out.

Tip 2

Stop using the dinner plate that came with your dish set

Use the middle or small plate (depending on how your set works) – it will make the proper sized portions you are now eating look large thereby tricking your mind. A big part of losing weight is tricking (or a nicer way to look at it is retraining) your brain in to realizing what a proper portion is and that it is plenty of food.

Tip 3

Gradually increase your liquid intake

Most people need to increase how much fluid they are taking in on a daily basis. We used to all get preached at by “the experts” about drinking 6-8 glasses of water a day. That has changed a bit, now it is liquid in general, so if you are like me and at work you drink about 4 cups of tea a day well get up and dance cause those count! You don’t have to add an additional 6-8 glasses of water to what you are already drinking, just add however many glasses you need of liquid to put you at 6-8 total.  🙂 Oh, and do it gradually, if you just all of a sudden start drinking that much fluid in one day you’re gonna end up with a sloshy tummy and be running to pee about every half hour. lol.

Tip 4

Don’t go to restaurants for a while

Not forever, don’t freak out on me here. Just for a little bit. Until you know you can go to a restaurant and order your meal from the “healthy section” and avoid the appetizers and desserts. Sounds a little depressing right? I know, trust me I know!

Tip 5

Pre-Plan your restaurant dishes

Since I am on the topic of restaurants, check out the nutritional information for a restaurant before you go. It helps if before you even step in the door of the restaurant you know what are the dishes that fit in your points and what are the scary bad for you dishes that you shouldn’t even look at let alone order.

Tip 6

Snack on veggies

Most veggies are zero points, wOOt! so snack on those when you are nibbly but don’t have a lot of points to play around with – or if it is between meals. Also, if you are at a “thing” (aka, party, work event etc) most times there is a platter of raw veggies with dip sitting amongst the yummy looking spinach dip, chips and other bad for you hard to calculate the points foods.  Eat the veggies…leave the dip.

Tip 7

Stop ordering appetizers and if you have to have dessert share it with someone

Looks like I am back to restaurants…I should organize this better. lol. You don’t need appetizers, main course and dessert. Who on this planet actually needs that much food in one sitting? Nobody! Restaurant main courses are bad enough with the portions they serve and how they are cooked, don’t compound that by getting the appie and dessert, it’s overkill.

Tip 8

Eat slowly and wait 20 minutes after you are done eating before getting a snack.

Remember when you were a kid and kept getting told to take time to chew? Well, that was because your parents were worried you were going to choke to death. I am telling you to eat slow (and chew!) because your body needs time…time to realize it is getting fed, time to realize it has enough food to satisfy you…it just needs time. It takes 20 minutes for your brain to realize you are full so if you eat quickly, even if you ate more then enough to be full your brain doesn’t know it…that’s why you end up back in the kitchen snacking. So eat slowly and don’t snack until you have been done eating for at least 20 minutes – more then likely, if you wait, you won’t be hungry and won’t want the snack.

Tip 9

Easy to reach goal

I don’t mean overall, and I don’t mean for you to forget about your main goal. I am talking about setting a realistic goal you can reach in a month or two…it can even be weekly. So, you could say your goal is to lose 2 lbs every week, or 15 lbs a month. The goal doesn’t have to be about your weight – it could be working up to running 5 miles in a month, or even aiming to exercise 3 times a week. Get my drift? Have a closer goal then your final weight, that way you have small (but important!) celebrations along the way…you’re on a journey, you’ll do better on your path if you have some happy moments while making your trip.

Tip 10

Support system

Fairly self-explanatory – get one. It is really hard to go it alone. You don’t need other people who are also on weight watchers or even trying to lose weight in general, what you need around you are people who aren’t going to shove pizza in your face or ask you if you want to hit up Dairy Queen for a Blizzard. lol. Even just one or two people who know what you are doing and who can ask how  it’s going, people you can talk to and share your progress with. Celebrating is always more fun if you aren’t partying alone.

Tip 11

Pack a lunch

Do you work, go to school? You must go somewhere for the majority of your day. Wherever you go take your meal with you. That way you can control what you are eating, you can eat whenever you get hungry, you won’t have to stand in a food court and make the healthy choice when surrounded by yummy smelling unhealthy choices…oh, and bonus! you will save money!

Tip 12

Figure out where your food groups are coming from

At the end of the day take a look at what you ate and figure out where your protein, veggies, carbs etc came from. This helps you see if you are slacking in one or more areas of your diet. Did you have absolutely no dairy that day? Have some yogurt the next day. Only one fruit/veggie serving? Cut some fruit up and top your breakfast cereal, eat some raw veggies in the afternoon after lunch but before dinner. Not enough protein? Add some fish to your diet. You want to make sure you’re not only eating within your points but that you’re getting your food groups and nutrients.

Tip 13

Track your food and exercise

It’s easy to mis-remember what you ate in a day, you might think you have a lot of points left when really you snacked them all away…sadness, but it happens. If you write down everything you eat and how many points it was then everytime you go to eat something new you can take a look at your tracker and see how many points you have left. Also, write down how many exercise points you earned – that way you know how many exercise points you get to eat.

Tip 14

Find an activity you like to do

If you don’t like being a gym rat then don’t force yourself to go, you won’t like it and you won’t stick with it. Try new activities out until you find something you like then have fun!

Tip 15

Weigh yourself once a week, measure once a month

Your weight will fluctuate on a daily basis, if you weigh yourself daily you’ll make yourself nuts. Pick one day a week and weigh yourself every week on that day – try for the same time of day too, cause time of day matters. Don’t measure yourself more then once a month, the changes will be small on a weekly basis and you’ll feel like you aren’t making any progress. Write down your weekly weigh in result and your monthly measurements…seeing the numbers get smaller can help give you a confidence boost on low days.

Tip 16

Physically track

While you are writing down your changing weight and measurements try to find a more touchable way to measure your success. Pick a pair of pants you can’t wait to get in to and once a month try them on to see how much closer you are. Or even better, a pair of pants that fit a bit too tight now, try those on every week or so – you’ll notice when they start to fit better, then fit well, then are too large and knowing a pair of pants that didn’t used to fit are now falling off will make you do all kinds of happy dances.

Tip 17

Try out new healthy foods

When I started I thought the only healthy foods out there were boring, bland and uninteresting. Try something new at least once a week – it can be anything, a new fruit or veggie, fish if you only eat beef and chicken, even a frozen dinner that you have calculated the points for. Troll the internet, find recipes you haven’t tried, foods you don’t know much about. If you buy a new food you aren’t sure how to cook go online and google the food, see what others say about it. Someone out there will know what to do!

Tip 18

Shop the perimeter of the grocery store.

Yes, you will have to go in to the aisles at some point but fill your shopping cart with the foods on the edges first – that will get you your fruits, veggies, dairy, bread…then go in to the aisles for only what you really need…say, canned fruit when it’s winter, frozen veggies (cause face it, they last longer and are cheaper), frozen dinners, condiments…all those kinds of things.

Tip 18

Wear form fitting clothes.

Ok, this may seem weird, and I don’t meant wear clothes too tight for you out in public lol. What I mean is if you are chilling at home and you realize you are thinking about or are already indulging in a snack fest put on a tighter outfit. When I chill at home I am wearing baggy pants and baggy shirts, I look like I am in a tent, when dressed like this I am always more likely to snack when I am not hungry and eat a larger portion size if I am having a meal. I think it’s to do with not really being able to see what I look like…since I’m in a tent lol. But! If I put on a more form fitting t-shirt and when slouched on the couch can see my tummy sticking out well that right there is a reminder of why I shouldn’t be snacking when I’ve eaten my calories for the day.

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6 Responses to “Tips n Tricks”

  1. VeeEmm October 21, 2010 at 8:40 pm #

    Re Tip #14 – remember what you liked to do when you were a kid? Try it again – was it dancing? jumping rope? hula hoop? bowling? skating?
    Chances are, if you liked it then, you’ll like it now, and will be more inclined to do it. Have you tried Zumba? that’s a really good, fun workout, if you like to dance.

  2. shrinkingwmn October 22, 2010 at 10:09 pm #

    Very true, we were less inhibited as children and found more enjoyment in activites cause we weren’t thinking about what we look like but just having fun. I have heard of Zumba but haven’t tried it, I really want to try Jakari but it is very specialized and not easy to find classes. Looks like fun tho! I think I will go google Zumba classes…Thanks! 😀

  3. lynned83 July 30, 2011 at 1:09 am #

    Hiya!

    Just stumbled onto your blog. I’m in the process of doing the same thing……

    I really like your “Tips” page. There’s some really good advice there, although I still have good days and bad days! 😉

    Well, good luck with everything & keep up the good work!

    x

    • shrinkingwmn August 9, 2011 at 8:25 pm #

      Hi,

      Thanks for reading! 🙂 Glad you like the “tips” page, friends are always asking me for tips so I thought I’d just write em up as they came to me lol.

      No worries about the bad days, we all have them, they suck but hopefully the next day is better. 🙂

      Good luck with your weight loss!

      Cheers. 😀

  4. Lana October 10, 2011 at 7:58 am #

    These tips are really good! Thanks 🙂

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