Diet in the weight loss sense implies that you are sticking to some sort of regimented plan or process. I am doing none of that and yet I’ve managed to shed 15 pounds since about late February. It’s slow going but I’m fine with that because it’s actually sustainable. There are a lot of diets out there and you can get my whole feelings on weight loss and diets in general in this post. For purposes of this post however, I’m going to just lay out what’s been working for me.
Just remember that what works for me won’t necessarily be the right fit for you. It also may not work depending on your own goals and starting point.
Alright so really, it isn’t really a plan per se. I’m not counting calories or macros. I’m not even working out right now. I was for a bit but had to ease up due to some chronic pain issues.
I’m just making better choices meal to meal and making sure I always have better options on hand. That’s it. It means more grocery store runs to keep fresh fruit on hand and repeating the same snacks (like this yogurt bowl).
Repetitive meals are key for me because the minute I try to complicate things with new meals or snacks every day is when I start to get overwhelmed. I’ll give you a sample of what I eat in a day:
Breakfast – I’m not a big breakfast person. On workdays I have coffee and I may grab a banana or apple on the way out the door. But I’m not starving before lunch hits because I have a few snacks before that. On the weekends, I’ll scramble some eggs and make an omelette or just eat it with some sliced tomatoes on the side. Sometimes I’ll add a whole wheat English muffin with butter on it. Exciting, I know.
Snacks – Apples, bananas, oranges, carrots, strawberries, yogurt and grapes. I load up my lunch box with fruit so I don’t succumb to the lures of the vending machine. The snacks get me through the times before lunch and after lunch and sometimes the car ride home. I’m pretty much grazing lightly all day. Keep in mind that I’m at a desk all day so this is easy for me to do.
Lunch – Salad. I have a salad pretty much every day for lunch. Usually with tuna or chicken that I prepped in my Instant Pot the Sunday prior. No crazy salad either. 50/50 spinach and spring mix, tuna, tomatoes, cucumbers (from the garden!), onions. My go to dressing is olive oil, lemon juice and adobo. Seriously, I’m not a huge salad dressing girl. This is how my mother seasoned our salads growing up and I prefer it to anything in a bottle.
If I forget my salad, I go to the commissary and buy the ingredients to make one at my desk. I keep tuna pouches as a back up as well. If I’m home, I do the same but I may sauté some shrimp to use as my protein instead.
Dinner – Whatever everyone else is eating but sometimes I omit the carb and sub a salad. So say we are having steak and potatoes, I’ll have steak and a salad instead. But also, sometimes I just eat the potatoes. It depends on if I want dessert or not afterwards. Regardless, I keep my portions smaller.
I will say that I’m not depriving myself of certain things. I think that’s where the danger in diets lay. You restrict yourself so much that one day you’re halfway through a carton of rocky road and then the guilt sets in and the roller coaster takes off again.
I want off that diet ride. So, I allow myself treats here and there. I don’t have cheat days or cheat meals. I just try to balance it all out. So if I have a few Oreos as a snack then I won’t have any the rest of the day. Kind of how Weight Watchers gives you bonus weekly points. In the grand scheme of things, three Oreos once a week isn’t going to derail your progress. What wasn’t working for me previously was eating rice with my fried eggs in the morning, snacking on Oreos in the afternoon, eating more rice with dinner and having a sundae for dessert multiple times a week.
There were some days I was eating rice three times a day. So, cutting it down to say 1/2 cup at dinner has made a huge difference.
Also yes, I’m eating sugar. Yes, sugar is not good for you. But its much easier for me to ease into eating better this way than going cold turkey on a restrictive diet. You know what’s happened as a result? I don’t even want the snacks as much as I’d use to. I eat way less processed foods and find myself reaching for more healthier options like fruit.
Ok yes, I still eat ice cream (especially during my period) but in moderation. However, I’m no longer eating a big ole bowl every night after dinner.
If you’re looking for an actual plan to follow…
A plan I do recommend over and over again is the 21 Day Fix meal plan. It’s been the easiest for me to follow, track and stick to. You can look up the plan and info online but overall its big on portion control which is what I needed. P.S. You DON’T need to sign up with a coach or buy their Shakeology drink too be successful on it. Check Pinterest and online for recipes and tips and you’ll be golden.
You basically use color coded containers to portion out your food groups. Sounds restrictive but you’d be surprised what you can fit in them and I was never hungry on the plan. Some days I even had containers left over at night. You can’t do ice cream on the 21DF (unless it’s nice cream) but you can have certain things in moderation like wine. Back in 2015, I lost 15 lbs (and lots of inches) while doing the meal plan and exercising.
I’m actually about to ramp up my efforts (hello Jamaica!) and quit the ice cream for the next three weeks to see what kind of progress I can make.
Whatever you decide to do, just make sure you pace yourself and focus on feeling better over the number on the scale.
Let me know if you have any questions about my lazy diet, lol!