I Quit Smoking and Dropped 65 Pounds!
A_scoggins has reached her goal of losing 65 lbs and what makes her story so inspirational is she did this after quitting smoking. See how she monitors her calorie intake and makes sure she eats healthy without depriving herself.
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 would have to say that I had always been saying "someday". Someday, I was going to quit smoking, and someday, I was going to lose weight. It was last year, when I turned 30, I realized that none of this had happened and "someday" wasn't going to show up unless I did something about it.
So, I put down the cigarettes, and after that I started my diet and I haven't looked back.
2. What other "diets" (programs, products, plans, or services) had you tried in the past?
Over the years, I would have told you that I've tried to lose weight many times, but really I didn't. All the things I had tried were with some sort of stimulant such as Ephedra, or I would join a gym like Curves, but I lacked the discipline. It's now after I have changed from "the diet mindset" to this "new lifestyle mindset" that I know I never really tried before now.
3. What changes did you make to your usual diet, activity, lifestyle, and attitude?
The first thing I did was completely revamp my eating habits. I started counting calories and imagine my shock when I realized I had been eating between 2500 and 3000 a day! I immediately cut that down to 1800 calories per day and then down to 1500 calories per day.
I also started working out. I love watching TV so I would work out on my Wii Fit. This way I could customize my routine or just watch TV while using their step aerobic option. This was key for me as it helped me get past that point of "I don't want to work out, I want to watch TV." I was able to do both. Now, I'm past the Wii Fit routine and I'm running outside. However, during those first 6 months the Wii Fit was the motivator for me and helped me get used to working out.
4. How did Calorie Count help you to lose weight?
Calorie Count is awesome! I was using a different website at first, but as I started looking up my foods and how many calories were in them, my search engine kept taking me to Calorie Count! I quickly realized that Calorie Count was much more than just a food browser and that it is awesome.
Continuous monitoring of my calorie intake was crucial to my diet and the mobile application made it even easier. Especially when dining out, I was able to make smarter choices.
Now, that I'm at my goal, I'm trying to concentrate on getting all of my vitamins and minerals, and again Calorie Count was there for me with introducing their new revamped Analysis.
Overall, reading other success stories, or just learning about new healthier food alternatives, Calorie Count is always there for me.
5. What was most challenging about losing weight?
I'd say in the beginning it was the initiative to workout. It's so much easier to be a couch potato while eating potato chips, slowly but surely, you get past that and now it's finding new ways not to get bored with my workout. Also, finding ways to treat yourself, without going over your calorie allowances. I've searched for low-calorie options, healthier cooking habits, and low-cal sweets. I have a sweet tooth so, finding something not loaded with calories, but still enough to curb that craving was important.
6. How long did it take you to see results?
It took 30 pounds before anyone noticed. 30 pounds! So, although I could see small differences, no on else could. After my 30 pound mark, though, the weight fell off. I started buying new clothes and people started asking, "Have you lost weight?" or "Your face looks thinner" all the time.
7. When did you realize that you were a success?
When I hit my goal of 150lbs, I said Wow! "How the heck did I do that?" I really proved it to myself that I could.
8. How do you prevent relapse?
I keep going and it's now about maintaining. I'm keeping my "new" eating habits and my workouts are more intense, but I can have a few more calories if I want. I'm sticking to a diet from 1500-1800 calories a day. This keeps me where I need to be. The goal is to never go back; I don't want to be that 200 pound girl saying "How did I get back here?" That girl is gone... it's only the new me now!
9. How has your life changed now that you've lost weight?
Now that I've lost the weight, I'm more active. I've found that I naturally see the healthier choices and it's easier to say no to the bad choices. My husband and family are all proud of me, but most of all, I'm proud of myself and that makes a huge difference. I'm happier that I can go shopping and not get depressed. It's so much easier to shop for a medium rather an extra large size in a department store. The funniest thing is I'm still paying off my credit card from my Plus Size store and it's taking me longer to do that, than it did to actually lose the weight!
10. What five tips do you have for other dieters?
- Find a workout routine, and stick to it. If something works, keep going with it.
- It's okay to be neurotic with your calorie counting (I was), but keep it to yourself, no one else will understand, but when they start seeing the difference, they will ask you what you have been doing.
- Be diligent; all the cheating adds up and it's so easy to cheat again if you are not careful.
- Before you go out to eat, go to the restaurant's website first. Lots of restaurants post their nutritional info online. This allows you to pick out a healthier choice.
- Lastly, remember it is possible to lose weight, and if this former chunky girl can, then you can too!
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.