Super Dieters share their six weight loss tips

super dietersEver since this story aired on the evening news I haven’t been able to get it out of my mind.  For years the National Weight Control Registry has been keeping records and documentation of those who have lost weight and kept it off for years.  The term “Super Dieters” tends to turn me off a bit because we all know diets don’t work and no one should be called “Super” as if figuring out how to manage your weight somehow gives you magic powers.  I’ve been a member for several years.  The questions are extensive… they ask everything you eat, your activity, how much you weigh, did you gain, did you lose, etc.

Ok…. so they gave us six tips these people seem to have in common and I’m thinking most people won’t get past the first one.   Just like knowing the sky is blue, this first tip will be just like being told it isn’t….but what if this nugget is really spot-on?  Truth is it won’t apply to everyone but I’m going to attempt to explain why it might apply to way more than you think.

Let’s get the next part over with (the posting of the list) so we can go ahead and get done with the screaming after reading the first rule.

Rule No. 1. Don’t ever cheat. They never give themselves a break, not even on holidays or weekends.

Rule No. 2.  Eat breakfast. The National Weight Control Registry shows that’s one of the most common traits of those who succeed in keeping those pounds off once and for all.

Rule No. 3. Get on a scale every day.

Rule No. 4. Put in the equivalent of a four-mile walk seven days a week.

Rule No. 5. Watch less than half as much TV as the overall population.

Rule No. 6. Eat 50 to 300 calories less than most people.

So rule 4,5, and 6 deal with the “stuff” we’ve heard forever….calories in/calories out.  For years I never ate breakfast because every day for over three decades I woke up with the idea that I would go as long as possible without eating.  Too bad no one was around to tell me in the 4th grade that I was destroying my metabolism.  So check…Rule 2 is a given. Since finding out there are about approximately 2,000 steps in a mile, most days…Rule 4, check!

Rule 5 done.  Sometimes I watch TV while I’m walking so I’m not sure exactly how that fits in.

Rule 3 is an absolute for me.  “Hello scale” every morning…it just gives me feedback and it has no special monster powers.   I’ll do a “part two” in order to cover this in another post because this one is for everyone still laying on the floor from a cold faint after reading Rule 1.

My surgery was nearly 13 years ago and I’ve learned many, many things.  Some beliefs that were absolutes changed and Rule 1 was one of them.  I’ve told this before and I’m telling it again.  Early on I would allow myself my one guilty pleasure ONLY IF I was able to get 5 pounds below goal. (It was a Quarter Pounder with cheese – insert my self induced shame).   I was somehow able to stick to that but what I noticed was on the days I couldn’t have it, I wanted it!  Eventually it became harder and nearly impossible to get 5 pounds below goal and after some period of time I also realized that I was beginning to forget how my “crack” meal tasted.  Then I totally forgot and I didn’t even crave it anymore.  Because I stopped eating it I had successfully rewired my brain to lose the cravings.  I was also acutely aware the cravings would come right back if I ate another one…even one bite.   Um….duh.  That’s sort of like quitting cigarettes and having one just for fun after 3 years.  I’ll say this again too. For me, the idea of taking a bite of something to get past the craving equates to giving an alcoholic a sip of beer to stop the craving.  SOME of us can take these bites but so many cannot.

If I had a quarter for every post-op that told me the M&M story, I could take a trip to Mexico.   The M&M story you might ask?  Maybe it’s because they are tiny…but the story always starts the same.  “I was doing great for 2 years, 4 years, (sometimes even longer) and I ate one M&M.  Really what could that hurt?  Next it was two then three…then a small bag, a bigger bag.”  Some call it testing the waters.  They went such a long time without one single M&M and nobody died, they certainly didn’t miss out on anything of nutritional value and they were doing great until they decided they could try just one. In other words they never cheated during that time and most were at the weight they wanted to be or at least smaller than after they started the M&M’s.   You CAN be abstinent from sugar and junk food and it is far easier if you have none instead of a little for those that struggle with not being able to stop.

Again let me repeat….IF you can “eat just one”, go for it.  I’m beyond thrilled for you!!!  If you find you are not losing or you are in the process of regain, you could always try stopping any food you don’t wish to crave. Try it for a month but approach it one day at a time.  When I’m somewhere and there’s a bowl of M&M’s, I look at it as if it’s a bowl of cyanide. Sugar put me in the prison of an obese body and at the end I would have rather died than spend another day at my heaviest weight.   And really….if you were a drug addict would you allow yourself a cheat snort once a week?

This is a great quote that applies.  100% is easy, 99% is a bitch.  Not eating processed sugar and junk food 100% is so easy but 99% leaves a ton of wiggle room.  It has became totally effortless for me to avoid these foods but please don’t misunderstand…..my journey is still something I work on every….singleday.

If you still think this is utterly ridiculous, file it away for later.  My favorite quote:

  • There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance — that principle is contempt prior to investigation.

It means don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.

And just in case you might have missed this before… I’ll leave you with an oldie but goodie.. .

quarter pounders

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2 Comments on “Super Dieters share their six weight loss tips”

I shared this blog as an article on Bariatricpal.com and there are some great comments there.  You might want to check it out.
http://www.bariatricpal.com/page/articles.html/_/support/super-dieters-share-their-six-weight-loss-tips-r172

Love your insights on weight loss and I’m glad you realized early on that skipping breakfast is the enemy to a fast metabolism.

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