Well....I started eating overall healthier foods, and adjusted my portion sizes. I also started exercising. I know that seems so vague. Yea, I could go into way more detail. But really, it all boils down to eating better and moving more. That's how I did it. That's "it".
And now I'd like to tell you how I DIDNT do it.
I did not find long term success by going on some crash diet.
I did not follow some ridiculous fad. No HCG diet for me (don't even get me started on that one... Uuuugh the money being made on something so ineffective and potentially dangerous....just makes me cringe).
I didn't pay a shit ton of money for a stupid "weight loss supplement" or some diet pills.
Oh, and Atkins? Hell yea I lost 40 pounds on it before my wedding in 2004!! They had to take my dress in 3 sizes! It worked fantastically! But guess what happened less than a year later? When I couldn't realistically sustain it any longer? At least, not without being miserable and going insane....yep. I gained it all back. So no Atkins for me this time around.
You know what else? I don't have to replace real food with some expensive shake that I pretend is delicious but actually tastes like flavored chalk.
Oh and no "detoxes" for "rebooting the system". I'm not a computer, I don't need a reboot or a system cleanse. Who knew....we all come from the factory with a little component called a LIVER that does this work automatically! (Disclaimer: yes I'm aware of legit medical exceptions).
I realize I might touch a nerve with supporters of above methods and I want to clarify that a few of them, I'm not totally against. Like meal replacement shakes for example. I'm not "anti shake". Heck I don't mind a good protein shake post-workout! I just don't feel that relying on them for weight loss is smart. Living the rest of your life drinking 2 shakes a day in place of real food sounds pretty miserable. I'm also not against low carb...in fact, I sometimes try to limit certain simple carbs myself. What I'm skeptical is the extent to which Atkins limits. Not because it doesn't work...because it does. For awhile. But it's not sustainable for the vast majority of people!
Another thing, in case anyone is wondering. Programs such as weight watchers. Do I put those into the same category as the things listed above?
Now, Weight Watchers is not for me. I actually once attended an info session, not long before starting my journey on my own. I wasn't impressed and didn't want to pay all that money to be told how to eat healthy, when I already knew how to eat healthy. My problem was putting it into practice and controlling myself.
But, the points system and group accountability does make things easier for some and to that I say: go on with yo bad self! At least you're eating real food and not stuffing yourself with pills or injecting HCG while eating too few calories.
Ultimately, everyone is different. What worked for me may not work for you. Just be mindful of investing money, time, and hope in some method of weight loss that you can't keep up. Lots of the things I listed do work...in the short term. But what you need is to find something that is sustainable for the long term, too. A life change that is easily balanced and that you can be happy with.