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Jan 11 2012

My Plan to Lose Ten Pounds in Three Months


Everyone needs a plan to lose ten pounds in three months. We all want to lose weight fast and find the easiest shortcut to get there. It seems that it’s the hardest to lose weight when you don’t have that much to lose.

I believe that losing weight is 85% eating better and 15% working out. It doesn’t matter if you’re running marathons, if you’re eating Big Macs and supersize fries and shakes every night, you’re not going to lose weight.

The following are my guidelines to losing weight, not rules. Rules are meant to be broken, guidelines are meant to be followed… most of the time. Here are the steps I’m taking to lose ten pounds:

Stocked Healthy Food

I no longer have to worry about what I’m going to take to work for lunch because there is always prepared healthy food to take. On the weekends, I roast a bunch of chicken breasts and cut them up into tiny cubes to use in salads (for the Mr., because I don’t eat salad), burrito bowls, etc. We also keep a whole tupperware full of home-made black beans–none of that sodium-filled canned stuff. Super easy to make in the crock pot. Beans are full of fiber, which helps keep you full longer. But they’re also high in calories. So only one cup per serving (about 100 cals). And I measure out my servings.

We also have cooked brown rice and servings of Chicken Tortilla Crockpot Soup (only 163 calories per serving!) separated into their own tupperware. We have a lot of tupperware. But now I never have to question what I’m going to eat, because there’s something prepared.

Weigh-in Mondays

I used to weight myself on Friday mornings, because I would always pig out on the weekends, and by Friday I’d be back down to normal weight. However, these weekend calorie-fests were sabotaging my weight-loss goals. Now, I weigh myself on Mondays to force myself not to go crazy on weekends.

Limiting carbs

I know some people are all about not restricting yourself from anything, and while I’m definitely not restricting anything from my diet, I am limiting carbs. I try not to have them at dinner, except on special occasions. Last week, as part of our date night at home, Eric and I made a healthy baked spaghetti that was only 300 calories per serving! I ended up having 1.5 servings, plus some garlic bread. Yum!

One cheat meal a week

It’s hard to stick to a diet every day. Allowing myself one cheat meal, rather than a cheat day, lets me go crazy one evening without going overboard. Because I can do a lot of damage in one day, but in one meal? Not so much.

MyFitnessPal

If you’re not on it, you should seriously consider joining (and add me as a friend! I’m under newlywedsbudget). MyFitnessPal  is like Weight Watchers, but free. You get to track all your calories, all your exercises, and see your friends’ progress as well. I love this website!

Schedule Workouts

Every week, I schedule my workouts for the week: running, barre class, spinning, workout dvd. I try and mix it up so I don’t get bored. I also walk for 30 minutes during my lunch hour–on most days.

I also have something up my sleeve that I’m not quite ready to share yet…but I will soon! Update: I shared! I’m running a half marathon!

What are your tips and tricks for losing weight?

 

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  4. Julie Gaudet

    Excellent plan; thank you for your willingness to share. What I am impressed is that you’ve got a goal and associated plan. So many people through out their goals arbitrarily and wonder why they couldn’t achieve it. Having a visible target to work towards is the best possible strategy. My tip would be to add a daily morning stretching routine to your program. This allows you to limber up and also gets the blood moving to kick off your metabolism.

  5. emmi

    A cup of cooked black beans is more like 230 calories. Just FYI. We do the bean diet too, substituting chick peas, split peas, all kindsabeans for carb portions. This worked great for about a year and a half and then our bodies adapted. Now I’m watching the portions a lot closer.

    The free ride is over now, but it was great losing weight without “trying” just by that one substitution.

    Also, no beer and no corn products. Those are totally off limits. You might as well eat lollipops and jelly beans. Actually those would be better, at least that’s sucrose, not maltose and glucose, which are deadly simple sugars.

  6. Saving My Toonies

    So glad I saw this challenge before sign ups were over! I am very excited to start!!

  7. Financial Samurai

    My plan is STARVATION! :)

    How heavy and tall are you guys anyway? I’m going to read the next post, so don’t answer if that’s in there.

  8. Jess @JessCantCook

    I love My Fitness Pal, I have the app on my phone so it’s super easy to track everything!

  9. Face & Fitness

    I had no idea beans had so many calories, which is a shame, because they’re high-fiber and high-protein, and vegetarian (I like to go meatless or at least low-in-meat whenever possible).

  10. John@MoneyPrinciple

    I’m one of those really annoying people who don’t have a problem with weight but I do see a lot of people out and about who do. So hats off to everyone on the challenge and good luck to you all! (Maria included of course!)

  11. Kim

    I count calories & work out. I don’t have cheat days, I just eat each day up to my limit, regardless of what it is. Counting everything/anything in addition to calories was too much for my little brain. But since I have a calorie limit, I know that junk food won’t get me far through the day. Crock potted beans is a great idea! I shall try that. I keep hard boiled eggs for the same reason.

  12. Lane

    Good luck! I use my fitness pal as well and am trying to better portion control.

  13. 444

    We use myfitnesspal also, and we weigh in every Wednesday morning (three of us in the household are losing weight – one person with more success than the other two of us.)

  14. Jamie @ This is me...Mastering Money

    I use both MyFitnessPal (I sent a friend request) and Sparkpeople.com. I need all the support I can get if I’m going to lose weight and get myself healthier. I’ve taken to carrying a water bottle around with me. It’s actually making it a little bit easier for me to give up soda again.

  15. Shaun @ Money Cactus

    Great plan, you will be there before you know it. Looks like there are plenty of people that want to do similar that will keep you motivated. good luck!

  16. Marissa @ Thirty Six Months

    I weigh myself when I see my scale. One of the things that most people who diet have to learn about is what types are slow to digested in their body. Because everyones’ metabolism works differently, not everyone has issues with the same food. Men, for example, sometimes have issues with certain types of fish etc.

    .

    And I done with nerd talk. :)

  17. Pam at MoneyTrail

    I have been more successful with Monday weigh in also. Great advice. I definitely need to schedule my workouts.

  18. Andrea

    I used to have one cheatday a week, if I skipped those I usually fell off the cliff not too soon after, it’s all about moderation, good luck!

  19. World of Finance

    Weigh-in Monday is a great idea… that way it forces you to think about what you are eating on the weekend :)

  20. justrealhappy

    I should definitely try My Fitness Pal. I forgot that I have a Droid and can download awesome apps that can help with these things. Thanks!

  21. Jane Harrison

    Hi Erika: I have cut out a few things like salt, caffeine, sugar, alcohol and eat nothing after dinner. I do have an afternoon snack, usually yogurt and an apple because that is traditionally my hungriest time. Also I have protein at every meal and snack as it keeps me fuller longer. For exercise we hike every Sunday and I ride an exercise bike 100km per week. I don’t get bored as I either read, use my iPad (play Sudoku) or watch something on TV – the time flies by!
    Good luck! Oh yes, and I weigh myself EVERY day, its the only way for me to stay honest each and every day.

  22. Teacher Girl

    I know you are going to do it! Excited to see your progress. I need to do this too.

  23. Aloysa @ My Broken Coin

    Great plan. I weigh myself on Mondays too! Once a week to see if I am having any results. I don’t plan workouts per se. I just alternate one day weights, one day cardio. I reduced my carb intake by A LOT. :-) I am excited to see the results!

  24. Jana @ Daily Money Shot

    In addition to those, I need to have a support at home. My husband loves to eat and that peer pressure gets me. If I’m clear about what I need from him, and he’s on board, losing weight is so much easier.

  25. Irene

    Thank you! Just checked out myfitnesspal and its perfect for what I want to track.
    The bf and I have be planning our workouts too and its been working great.! Our gym has free classes and I want to start going to one of those each week just to spice up my exercise schedule.
    Good luck!

  26. jobo

    These are great, my friend! And as we talked about last night, I hope you take my suggestion on the calories…you will still see a difference and be more successful IMHO ;-) XO!

  27. Angela

    I am on myfitnesspal too! Next month will make a year, and I’m down almost 30 lbs, so within 10 of ultimate goal :) Otherwise, those goals sound just like me! Awesome.

  28. J.Mill

    I count cals on MyFitnessPal too! Something that I had to do for my health, sanity, faith and budget was to cut back on drinking alcohol. I could go through several bottles of wine a week and that was not good for my hydration (skin, digestion, sleep, food-intake-level) and was a ton of extra calories I didn’t need.

    My new years resolution (that I actually started in Dec) is to “go” 5 miles a week. Walking, running, hiking – anyway to add up to 5. I also try to push myself once a week to run .5 miles faster than I think I can and to go for a longer distance that I feel comfortable. It’s working!

  29. Taylor

    I’m following largely the same principles as you Erika, but instead of my fitness pall, I’m on Sparkpeople.com I’ve been on that site for a year and a half, and I love it. Tracking, community, inspiration etc. It’s great.

    Good luck on your journey!

  30. Nichole @ Newlywed Nichole

    I think weighing on on Monday is great! I know I have a really hard time not pigging out over the weekend, so this may help! I also def eat less carbs and that seems to help me lose weight. My problem is exercising; but I like how you have a schedule for that too…I need to “plan” better

  31. Hannah

    We’re doing a lot of the same changes except I don’t count calories (I cook from scratch for every meal and I hate measuring things – it doesn’t work out well for calorie counting) and I don’t use a scale {usually} because a healthier, thinner me usually is a heavier one. And I’m okay with that. (So I often use measuring tape to watch my waist and thighs, instead)

  32. Daisy

    These are almost the exact same guidelines I gave myself when I started my weight loss, except for the carbs.

    Cheat meals are great. I never went for fast food with them, but I’d have pizza at a restaurant without worrying about how many calories I was eating.

    I lost 18 lbs with these guidelines. I really think calorie counting is one of the best ways to lose weight, since all weight loss is, is just a simple math equation. Eat less, exercise more, lose weight.

    GOOD LUCK! You’ll do great :)

  33. Paula @ Eat: Watch: Run

    I actually plan my workouts for the MONTH. Seems kinda anal, but it works for me. I don’t always go by it 100% but for the most part I do. Not that I’ve lost the 10lbs that I want to, but at least it helps me stay active. I think I just need to get the eating thing under control.

  34. Niki

    Good luck to you Erika!

    You have a great plan. I love the weigh in on Monday. Makes you think twice about weekend laziness. I have the MyFitnessPal app. I like it for counting calories when I am out and about.

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