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Calorie Count Blog

Changing My Lifestyle


By Sheila on Jan 04, 2010 12:00 PM in Success Stories

Looking back Cassymichael was always unhappy with her weight.  Deriving inspiration from a popular fitness game, learning to say no to junk food, and trying out healthy foods have helped her shed over 62lbs in the last year.

She contacted us through our Share Your Story feature and provided the following answers to our questionnaire.

1. What made you decide to lose weight this time?

I've wanted to lose weight since I was little girl but never did anything to do so. One day I decided to check out Wii Fit since we were looking at getting a Wii system. I figured it looked like fun and I would give it a try but didn't honestly know what to expect and didn't really expect anything significant to happen.

2. What other "diets" (programs, products, plans, or services) had you tried in the past?

Nothing! You hear so often people claim to have tried everything. I never made any real attempt to lose weight before.

3. What changes did you make to your usual diet, activity, lifestyle, and attitude?

It started with a little exercise on Wii Fit. After losing 10 lbs but bouncing back and forth between a 5-10lb loss I figured I needed to take a closer look at what I was eating. At first I just wanted to eat healthy and cut out the junk but didn't take into consideration things like portion size and I didn't realize that some things I thought were healthy weren't so much and were high in calories. Eventually I gave into calorie counting based on my BMR and ate what I wanted and slowly improved my food quality. I still continue to learn and improve more every day

4. How did Calorie Count help you to lose weight?

Over the last few months my weight loss had slowed to almost a complete halt. I had hit the dreaded plateau.  I decided it was time to amp up my game and needed to change how I approached not only exercise once again but also how I look at my nutrition. Since joining Calorie Count I have started shedding the pounds again.

5. What was most challenging about losing weight?

For me it was exercise.  I found it much easier to just stop eating things then to actually get off my butt and workout.  You actually have to be proactive. But I noticed quickly that a body losing weight without exercise is much flabbier then a toned body with exercise. I just don't like the idea of losing muscle with the fat so it keeps me pushing every day.

6. How long did it take you to see results?

I saw little changes right away but I really started to get results when I started counting calories, I was suddenly losing consistently every week.

7. When did you realize that you were a success?

When I realized that I had changed my lifestyle and I couldn't stop living this way even if I tried. Especially this October when I had reached my one year anniversary. I have accomplished so much in the past year and I have my whole life ahead of me!

8. How do you prevent relapse?

A healthy fear of going back to the way I was. It took so much work to get here and I know it would take nothing to get back there in a matter of no time. So I keep pushing, even if I have a bad day or week I never give up. I'm never looking back.

9. How has your life changed now that you've lost weight?

I don't have to shop in specialty shops. I can buy my clothes anywhere and find my size and it's not the biggest size for once either.  I have a whole new level of confidence, more energy then I used to and I accomplish so much more day to day.

10. What five tips do you have for other dieters?

  • Plan to change your life. You have to look at everything you plan to do and say "can I do this for the rest of my life?"
  • Say yes, you can do it. If someone told me I'd have gotten this
    far a year ago I wouldn't have believed it, I still cant believe it.
  • You can't exercise on a poor diet.  You can spend hours in the
    gym every day but if you don't change your eating habits you won't get
    anywhere. It takes hours to burn just a few hundred calories, only a few
    seconds to eat them.
  • Strength training is just as important as cardio. Too many people
    only care about cardio because it burns more calories in the moment
    but strengthening your muscles helps you to burn more calories when
    your not working out and helps prevent muscle loss when in a caloric
    deficit so you end up with a more toned look and half the weight your
    losing isn't muscle mass, just fat!
  • Keep pushing! Even if you have a bad day or a bad week pick yourself back up! The only way you can fail is if you quit. NEVER
    QUIT!

 

If you would like us to feature your success story, you can submit it here. The most insightful stories will be featured on this blog and in the weekly "Success Stories" newsletter.



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Comments


The only way you can fail is if you quit. NEVER QUIT!

That's an excellent mantra for the New Year.  Thanks.



Congrats!!! I really liked the way you said, "It takes hours to burn just a few hundred calories, only a few seconds to eat them." I started thinking that way as well. I now ask myself, How long do I need to run on the treadmill if I eat this snickers bar? I'll tell you, tooooo long.



Original Post by: joeb1golf

Congrats!!! I really liked the way you said, "It takes hours to burn just a few hundred calories, only a few seconds to eat them." I started thinking that way as well. I now ask myself, How long do I need to run on the treadmill if I eat this snickers bar? I'll tell you, tooooo long.


You are so right.  At Xmas I got an iPod with a pedometer on it and I'm learning that it takes ages to burn calories.  So far today I've done 6970 steps and only burned 329 calories - that includes a fast 40 min walk in the snow with the dog.  What a meagre return for the effort involved.  I am learning to respect my food more with this device.



Excellent blog -- I'm guilty of either exercising or watching my diet, but not both simultaneously ---- YOU have made me see the light --- your words about the time it takes to exercise OFF calories as compared to the time it takes to EAT them has made a lasting impression.  Thanks a million



I just started the Wii Fit today can you tell me what you do to get results? According to what I've read I should consume 1200 calories a day and I am really trying todo that. I could use any advice that you may have.



I have been messaged about my thoughts on wii fit and I figured I would copy my reply here so that it could help any one else who might have questions

Hi! I would be happy to answer your questions about wii fit.  yes it does work, like any exercise, it work as much as you make it work. It helps to keep you on track by doing a daily body analysis so you always know where you stand, and constantly trying to better your score is motivational among other things. Ideally I like to do 1 hour of a mixture of everything. I like to focus on strength training exercises and feel the the yoga poses are great for stretching before and after. If you do decide to get wii fit get wii fit plus, it has a lot of extra features that I really enjoy.   I currently still do not attend a gym for 2 reasons. I'm a stay at home mom/wife with NO license, And I really couldn’t afford a membership right now anyway, and honestly, I don’t feel I NEED a gym. I have however expanded on my exercise. I own a few workout DVDs (Jillian Michaels 30 day shred is AMAZING) and yoga DVDs and I have a treadmill. I use the bottom step of my stairs to do some step aerobics and I use a few hand weights. I Also like to expand how I use my wii fit by using my hand weights during some of the exercises. That being said, wii fit can be expensive between the system and the game and aside from the balance and other games there's nothing on the wii fit  that you cant do on your own. things like lunges pushups and sit-ups or crunches are thing that anyone can do and should do. wii fit is only a way to make it more fun and motivational. If you want any more information, I have made a thorough review on the subject on a forum that I frequent http://www.anotherdietforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=289 and feel free to ask any other questions


Congratulations!Smile

You ended the old year well, and entered into the new year even better!

"It takes hours to burn just a few hundred calories, only a few
seconds to eat them."   If you are the originator of that quote, you should copyright it and then have some refrigerator magnets made with the quote printed on it.  I will buy several (for me, family, and friends).



I too am learning that I have to eat better to lose weight. I once started to try to lose and only exercised, I lost 1 pound in a whole month, and I was dedicated to exercising, but not to eating right. With some resolve I will be eating better. Your post is the one I can relate to the most. I have heard people say they tried "everything", but they leave out the part that they only did it for a few days or a couple of weeks, or how much they really cheated. I have heard it said by experts, 'You can lose weight on any diet you follow to the letter, keeping if off is the problem.'



That's fantastic! Keep up the great work. Laughing

I only hope I can come on here in a year with a similar story to tell! Wink



So true that if you exercise and continue overeating you will *not* lose weight. Case in point: myself! Since I was walking 30 minutes a day I was convinced I could eat whatever I wanted. I just started CC this weekend and immediately become much more aware of the amount of calories I was consuming...3 slices of pizza - 900 calories when my daily total should be 1300!! Without any control I would probably eat 3000-4000 on a "normal" day! Believe me, 30 minutes of slow walking burned nothing *close* to that amount of calories and no surprise...I;ve steadily gained 10 pounds over the last 2-3 months to finally tip over 200 pounds (I;m 5'0"). As long as I did not hit 200 I was kidding myself I was not "really fat" - so hitting that milestone was in a way a good thing for me since it convinced me that I need to do something. So here I am and appreciate the online support very much.

Thanks for sharing your inspiring story!



good story. During the holidays as I felt the eating get a bit out of hand, I told myself, don't worry, I am a different person now. I won't go back to the way I was before. I know what she means about getting into new habits and feeling that change be permanent.



Well, here I am.  A new member.  Reading this blog feels quite positive.  I lost a good 50 lbs about 10 yrs ago and I've kept them off since.  That's the good news.  The bad news is the last 30-35 are being very stubborn.  I've been following weight watchers and it was good to get my eating under control.  But, I think I need to follow the calories exactly and it is more exact.  I've hit this plateau.  I go to the gym 3-4 times a week for about 30 mins. each., but I think I need to go more often and work harder.  I'm going to try to get up early and go to the gym 5X a week, each morning before work (5:15AM), and hit the elliptical machine for a good 40-50 mins.  My work schedule won't allow me to go after work.  So, I need to give this a try.  I'm getting older and it's not getting any easier to lose the weight.  I once weighed a total of 105 lbs.  That was me.  After my 3rd child, who is now 18 yrs. old, I've been struggling with lots of weight.  So, I am determined to lose it now and return to my youthful weight.  Hopefully this will help.



This is a great and inspirationaL story!  Thanks so much for sharing it!



Wow.. I can not believe that 3 slices of pizza are 900 calories!!! Well, I guess that explains it all! I never really realized how important watching my calories would be. Your stories are very inspirational and I am looking forward to learning alot from this site. I am hoping that the 100lbs I have gained since marrying the love of my life and having 3 children, will finally come off if I follow this. It's obviously about time I did something about my situation and since I'm turning 40 in June, my goal is to lose 40lbs between now and then. I know I can do it and will look for help every now and then.. Laughing



Original Post by: dbhadra

So true that if you exercise and continue overeating you will *not* lose weight. Case in point: myself! Since I was walking 30 minutes a day I was convinced I could eat whatever I wanted. I just started CC this weekend and immediately become much more aware of the amount of calories I was consuming...3 slices of pizza - 900 calories when my daily total should be 1300!! Without any control I would probably eat 3000-4000 on a "normal" day! Believe me, 30 minutes of slow walking burned nothing *close* to that amount of calories and no surprise...I;ve steadily gained 10 pounds over the last 2-3 months to finally tip over 200 pounds (I;m 5'0"). As long as I did not hit 200 I was kidding myself I was not "really fat" - so hitting that milestone was in a way a good thing for me since it convinced me that I need to do something. So here I am and appreciate the online support very much.

Thanks for sharing your inspiring story!


you know I always say to people, even if you dont want to calorie count forever, do it for a week, find out how many calories you consume. It's a real eye opener! something that seems so obvious now didn't occur to me then. I would eat a whole box of extra cheesy mac and cheese not knowing one 3/4c serving was about 400 calories alone! now I wont even eat the stuff simple because 3/4c of anything isnt worth that many calories! I'm glad you decided to make a change in your life.. you goals may seem impossible at times but pound by pound you'll get there and look back and say WOW.



Original Post by: carlacnp

Well, here I am.  A new member.  Reading this blog feels quite positive.  I lost a good 50 lbs about 10 yrs ago and I've kept them off since.  That's the good news.  The bad news is the last 30-35 are being very stubborn.  I've been following weight watchers and it was good to get my eating under control.  But, I think I need to follow the calories exactly and it is more exact.  I've hit this plateau.  I go to the gym 3-4 times a week for about 30 mins. each., but I think I need to go more often and work harder.  I'm going to try to get up early and go to the gym 5X a week, each morning before work (5:15AM), and hit the elliptical machine for a good 40-50 mins.  My work schedule won't allow me to go after work.  So, I need to give this a try.  I'm getting older and it's not getting any easier to lose the weight.  I once weighed a total of 105 lbs.  That was me.  After my 3rd child, who is now 18 yrs. old, I've been struggling with lots of weight.  So, I am determined to lose it now and return to my youthful weight.  Hopefully this will help.


I've read a lot into hitting plateaus when I finally reached one. I thought i would be able to avoid it by slowly lowering my calories as i got lighter but it wasnt enough.

It's a good idea to mix things up, when and how you excersize and eat. tracking your calories is a GREAT idea, but you might also want to try changing the frequency or time you eat. To help my plateau I moved more of my calories to the morning and less at night AND try to keep my eating cleaner. Though i would always be within calorie range, the things I ate weren't exactly good foods.  

Also, shake up the excersize! I know it's hard to fit in different times of day, but your body get used to the old routines and becomes efficient at it. You need to keep the body guessing. More importantly, if you dont do so already, add some strength training excersizes to routines. Pushups and lunges you can easily do at home between things! just before a shower, while your waiting for dinner to cook... im sure there are a few times in the day you have 5 minutes to spare... When your at the gym, switch out a workout on the eliptical for other workouts a few times a week. make the best of your membership and try out some other machines.  I promise you, if you make those changes to your eating and excersize you'll be making progress again.



and speaking of calories, how do you figure out how many calories in microwave popcorn? I want the count for the entire bag, but gives in tablespoons. Does anyone else have this problem?



Congratulations!!!  I was shocked when I read your story because it so closely mirrors mine.  I have also been overweight since I was a little girl and also never tried dieting before.  And I also started my weight loss journey by using the Wii Fit.  Thanks for the advice/reminder about strength training, because I have gotten away from that in favor of cardio.  Keep up the good work...you look great!



I needed this today. thank you for your inspiring story!



Keep up the great work! You look great!   I soooo need to get back into my weight loss goals, We all know its a struggle but stories like yours really help motivate people like me. THANKS!!! I NEEDED THIS.Laughing



i'm truly inspired! I have a wii fit too! but stopped last summer due to school. I'm back on it now and with your experience I have a reason to stay on the goal and actually make it, thank you!



Your story is wonderful! By the way, I totally agree - Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred is an incredible DVD. I've been using it for a week and I'm blown away by the results. Thank you so much for the inspiration. You look fabulous!



Original Post by: dbhadra

and speaking of calories, how do you figure out how many calories in microwave popcorn? I want the count for the entire bag, but gives in tablespoons. Does anyone else have this problem?


it should tell you how many grams there are per bag on the front of the box, the nutrition information tells you how many grams per serving. devide the amount per bag by the amoung per serving wich would most likely be about 2 servings per bag. multiply the calories per serving by 2 or whatever your result is. Try buying the single serving bags next time, its more then half a bag but less then a whole bag and has less calories but by the end you feel like you've eaten a whole one. thats how i feel anyway!



Thanks so much for all your nice comments. I really do hope to help people as much as I can! Especially those like you who are willing to help yourselves! congratulatons to all of you!



There is 2 things I do that help me the most.

One is I LOVE ICE CREAM, so I don't keep any in the house. If I buy a half gallon, I will eat the whole container in a day (ouch). I found out that McD's soft serve ice cream cone has 150 cal. (including the cone). So several times a week, I pick one up and make sure I keep my cals within my goal.

The second is I started eating on small plates. It makes it look like you are eating A LOT of food and it isn't nearly as much as a large plate. Also, for those that we taught to clean our plate when we were kids (because of all the straving kids) cleaning your plate isn't that bad.

Bonus Tip: I just thought about a big one for me: DO NOT GO TO THE GROCERY STORE HUNGRY!!! If I do, I'll fill the cart up with junk food.

Hope this helps.

 



Thank you for your story. It really motivates me. I am very happy for your success.



I just got the "just dance" dvd for the WII. talk about a workout! its fantastic! congratualations on your weight loss! I hope I have that kind of success!



You are an inspiration. I am a newbie and this story helps my heart. Smile



Hi

I have lost quite a bit in the last month or two. I have lost about 5 lbs so far and have been able to keep it off. I am going to fight for the new me



Just to say, just keep at it... I want to loose 7.8 kgs by end of April. I have a weeding to attend. My motivation is I have already bouthg a dress one size smaller , a size 10.



I meant a wedding to attend...... =) ... I have upped my exercises and I will not stop until I get to 65kgs ###10stone 3 pounds.... at the moment i'm 72.8kgs... Iwill update this blog every day to keep me motivated... Tomorrow i'm going to the park for a 4kilometre run and I intend to run at least 3 times a week and cycle at home at least 5 days a week.

I see myself in that size 10 and I told myself i'm not going back.... I should be able to control myself ...because that's the only thing I can control in life....

 



I agree 1000%!! The WII fit plus program is AWESOME, I LOVE IT!!! I've lost 30 lbs. myself in about 2.5 months just doin the WII and cutting out the junk foods that I already KNEW I shouldnt have been eating in the first place.

Dont get me wrong, i still have my occasional sweet treats, but now a days i make much SMARTER choices. You can eat just about anything you want as long as you keep in mind the calories per serving, watch your portion sizes, and drink lots & lots of WATER. 

Also, remind yourself "if you EAT it today, you better be ready to WEAR it tomarrow." This little saying usually helps me stay on track.

GOOD LUCK TO ALL!! Wink



CoolI did real good today. I only took in a total of 1173 calories and Im not graving any food after I eat. Is my body chem changing? Im going to find out, I need to find out what sugars and fats I can eat. I know one thing that I have to cut out is sweet & low in my coffee or flavored Creamers. I HAVE TO HAVE TO IN THE MORNING. Im on my way to 157lbs. Cool Cool



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