Ch-Ch-Changes!

So, one of the many reasons (and, perhaps, actually the worst reason) I wanted to stop bingeing is because I knew it would make losing/maintaining weight—both now and in the future (because, let’s face it, everyone gains a few pounds on occasion, though I would hope I don’t find myself staring down a 10-pound gain again)—much easier. And, it has. For the sake of accountability, here’s my weight from the pass 10 weeks in addition to how many calories I ate on average per day in the week leading up to that particular weigh-in day:

Date: Weight, Average Daily Caloric Intake (Notes, If Applicable)

1/15: 142, Calorie Count Not Available (I ate hell of terrible up to this point. Oops.)

1/22: 139.5, 1700

1/29: 136, 1700

2/05: N/A, 1850 (I started weighing myself ever other week around this time, something I’ll touch on in the anti-binge post. This is also the first week where I introduced the “Anti-Binge,” increased-calorie week [See Below])

2/12: 134.6, 1700

2/19: 137.6, C.C. Not Available (This is the week I slipped up and binged.)

2/26: 132.8, 1640

3/05: 132.2, 1700

3/12: 131.9, 1700 (At this point, I was a little frustrated, so I introduced a “Plateau Week.” [See Below])

3/19: 131.3, 1900 (The Plateau Week worked!)

So, yes. As you can, although my weight loss has slowed down a bit recently, it’s a big improvement over steady, big loss followed by a huge step back. What’s made for better progress?

a) Not bingeing, obviously.

b) “Plateau/Anti-Binge” Weeks. My mom actually came up with this idea when she noticed that, about every three weeks, the diet tended to go out the window. So, rather than just tossing it entirely, she decided to give herself a week—every three weeks—where she got extra calories. Not a ton, mind you (about, on average, 150 extra calories per day), but it was enough to keep her from falling off the wagon. And, it worked for me, too. Eventually, when I went a few weeks without bingeing, I decided I didn’t need the help, anymore, and got rid of the “higher calorie” week in the interest of losing weight more quickly. But, when I hit a plateau, I re-introduced it and ended up losing more that week than I did the week before, when I ate less. Neat! So, now I institute a “Plateau Week” whenever two weeks pass and I lose less than a pound.

c) A higher fat diet. Inspired by Susan‘s “Fatty February,” I made a conscious effort to start including foods with higher amounts of healthy fat. And, it knocked out my appetite. Now, this may not work for you, but getting rid of the “diet foods” in my diet (e.g., “Light” bread, products engineered to be fat free, etc.) and including more fat (and, consequently, more protein, as many sources of healthy fats are also goods sources of the p-stuff) helped me feel more satiated and, thus, less like bingeing. Also, my hair is super silky now. Seriously, it feels like I have a kitten on my head. Want to try a higher fat diet, yourself? Try having hard boiled eggs with miracle whip for lunch instead of a turkey sandwich, or introducing more tuna and nut butters/nuts into your diet. Good stuff, and good for you. HOWEVER, if you’re not counting calories/Points and you decide to switch to a higher fat diet, keep in mind that a lot of food with healthy fats are also higher in calories than their leaner counterparts. So, when you make a PB + J, make sure you aren’t putting as many ounces of P on your bread as you would have of turkey if you were making a turkey sandwich, otherwise you’ll be gaining teh weightz and wondering why.

Other changes:

d) Fewer miles per day. When I stopped writing in January, I was working towards running 10 miles in one set. But, I’ve found I really don’t enjoy long runs (packing snacks for excercise? Water coolers on your back to stay hydrated? No, thanks; too lazy). So, now I do a maximum of seven miles in one session, but my total mileage for the week is the same.

e) More strength training. I used to have my Cardio/Weights/Yoga weeks, but now I lift weights three times a week every week, and I really feel like it’s helped me maintain muscle mass and that, now, I’m losing more fat than muscle. NEAT.

Yep! Of course, the basic structure of my diet is pretty much the same (1,500 calories per day and 1,400 bonus calories per week, unless it’s a Plateau Week, in which case I get between 2,450 and 2,800 bonus calories for the week), and I hope it keeps workin’ for me. Who knows, maybe if I’m lucky, I’ll be in my 120s by this Friday (Eeeeee!) ┬áLast time I started a diet post-holiday season, it took me until September to reach the point I’m at now, so I’m pretty pleased, regardless. But, I’m also going home on Friday and will be celebrating Easter in that time, so hopefully I can keep it together while splurging in moderation. Woot.

ANYWAY … any questions?