There is always a lot of discussion online and IRL about how many calories are the right amount to eat per day, how much exercise, should I cut this or that out of my diet. My advice is to only do what you can sustain for the long term. Depending on how much weight you have to lose, you could be at it for a long time. Even when you are down to your goal weight, things shouldn’t change that dramatically in order to maintain your new weight. If you go back to all your old habits, you will gain all of the weight back.
If you love pasta, don’t cut out all pasta. Just reduce how much pasta you eat, make sure to keep an eye on portion sizes. If you hate jogging, don’t jog. Find other exercises you enjoy. If you crave sweets, have a small treat each night, or every few nights, like a piece of dark chocolate. Find ways to make your favorite foods healthier, for instance finding light versions of your favorite recipes. If you love to go out to dinner, do it…just do it infrequently (think of all the money you’ll save!) and try to make good choices.
Reduce the number of calories you eat per day down to something you can sustain, and never under 1200 calories per day. I am 5’2″, and I exercise pretty regularly. When I first started, I was eating between 1400-1600 calories per day, and now I am between 1300-1500 calories per day. I eat more on days I’m hungry, and less if I’m not as hungry. I am working hard on listening to my body and giving it what it needs.
I started out small with exercise, only doing Zumba on the Xbox 3 days a week for about 30 minutes, on an easy setting. I have added a lot more exercise because I enjoy it.
When people approach me about my weight loss, they always mention how much hard work it must take. It absolutely does take hard work. However, I feel like all of my hard work has already been done, months ago. The hard work was changing my habits, eating less, exercising more, slowly changing my life to this healthier way of living. That’s done now, and this is just my life. Yes, I’m hoping after I get to my goal I won’t have to log all my food anymore, but maybe I will. As with all the other changes I have made, it is something I can sustain.