The title is one tip that our this week's featured member, Mikey8437 would like to share with you. He tells us about his dietary and physical fitness routines that have helped him lose over 145lbs and it’s a plan he will continue to follow until he reaches his goal.
He contacted us through our Share Your Story feature and provided the following answers to our questionnaire.
1. What prompted you to begin this weight loss journey? Did you have an "Aha!" moment?
At the age of 25 I graduated from college (Biology Major) in Puerto Rico. I wanted to continue my studies in medicine but I really didn't have the money. My sister who was in the Army suggested I joined the service and when I went to the Recruiter he said I should lose about 120 lbs if I even wanted to be considered. At this time I was suffering from high cholesterol and heart problems plus diabetes runs in the family so I decided it was enough, time to start a new life.
2. What other "diets" (programs, products, plans, or services) had you tried in the past?
In the past I tried numerous diets including Atkins, Low-Carb Diets, even Starvation or Crash Diets all of which never lasted more than a few months. I would gain the weight back faster than what I lost it - which caused me to quit.
3. Please describe how you reached your weight loss goal. What changes did you make to your usual diet, activity, lifestyle, and attitude? Did you implement any other strategies besides Calorie Count? What was the most important change?
At the beginning I just did cardio exercises 3 or 4 times a week for about one hour. There weren't many changes to my diet at first other than reducing fried foods, fast foods, sodas and alcohol. Later I started adding weight training and started watching my calorie intake. I did a ton of research trying to find a program which fits my lifestyle and stuck with it.
4. Please describe how Calorie Count was instrumental to your weight loss.
Calorie Count is an amazing tool out there for everyone. It's very simple and it will help you reach any goal whether it's weight loss or just to maintain - It's Awesome!!!
5. What difficulties did you experience losing weight?
Along the way I encountered many difficulties including injuries, plateaus and personal situations which tried to stop my progress. I believe in resilience, the ability to bounce back from these events with a positive effect, keeping your goal at all times and working hard, nothing comes easy.
6. How long did it take you to see results? When did you realize that you were a success?
It took me approximately 16 months to lose the initial 120 lbs. After Basic Training I lost another 20 lbs and I'm currently working on reaching my next goal - which is 200 lbs.
7. How do you prevent relapse?
I prevent relapse by looking in the mirror every morning and seeing the results of my hard work. Keeping my diet clean and working out consistantly. Using wonderful apps to keep daily entries so I can see what I need to work at
8. How has your life changed now that you've lost weight?
I feel very confident and comfortable with my body. I finally had the courage to ask a lady on a date and today she's my beautiful wife. She inspires me and motivates me every day to look and feel good about myself. She is my Battle Buddy!
9. How long have you maintained your current weight?
I have successfully maintained the weight loss for almost 3 years now. It's a continuing battle. Just because you meet one goal doesn't mean you can go back to bad habits. Make new goals, push yourself every single time.
10. What five tips do you have for other dieters?
- Work Hard- Every time you head to the gym have a goal. Remember "failing to plan is a plan to fail".
- Think positive- Our body is capable of more than we think.
- Work with a buddy- In the Military we call it "Battle Buddies". Every now and again think of it as a competition to spice it up a little.
- Write everything down- Log what you eat, keep a chart with your weight loss and log your workouts... This will inspire you to keep working hard.
- Never Quit- This is the most important tip. It's one of the ARMY Values and I live by this every day.
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.