I became serious about my weight loss at the beginning – mid September 2018. As I mentioned in my introduction post of this series, I’ve gone on a strict calorie counting diet of 1000-1200 kcal a day, with occasional dinners out where I don’t count calories.
At the beginning, I was doing a lot of research into foods that are beneficial to dieters. Drinking a lot of water is for sure one of the main building blocks to being successful. Foods high in protein and fibre are vital, so I wrote these in my weight loss journal that I’m keeping. Every now and then I refer to this list to try to come up with new foods and recipes with ingredients I might not typically cook with very much.
To help with planning my food and count the calories, I started writing a list of common ingredients I would be using, with their calorie content. I keep adding to the list as I go along.
On the first week, I lost 2.5kg (5.5lbs). Now, I’m under no illusion that that would’ve all been fat, but nevertheless, the scale showed that much less at the end of the week, and it’s kept going down!
After five weeks, I had lost 6.2kg (13.7lbs), and my waist measurement had gone down by 4cm (1.6 inches).I also had a couple of planned work dinners, as well as went out for a meal or two with my husband. It was great to see that even when I did this, the weight didn’t get up, but instead kept going down. At the end of the day, you need to get calorie deficit over a period of time, and occasionally having a day where you don’t contribute to that deficit won’t do any harm. Also, don’t be too alarmed if after a fuller meal the scale has gone up, just carry on with the diet again and it will go back down. And don’t forget that even things like whether you’ve had a good sleep can affect on what the scale is showing. I go on the scale every morning, however only write down a weekly measurement every Sunday morning.
And this all came at a time where during the first couple of weeks I had about three work dinners, and two meals out with my husband. To be honest, I was amazed myself, too, that these had no negative effect!
This was more than double to where I was expecting my total weight loss to be at this stage. I was, however, conscious that my metabolism will shut down at some stage, with such a low calorie intake, once my body gets used to it (more of that in the next post).
I was extremely hungry all the time at the beginning, however after a few weeks your body will get used to it, and you won’t be hungry anymore, so just stick with it. Also, I was occasionally feeling very cold in the evenings. usually, when this happens, the weight has done a big jump down when measuring the next day.
But how did I do it?
My typical breakfast is 1dl (3.5 oz) uncooked porridge oats, cooked with 2.5 tbsp skimmed milk powder, pinch of salt and 2.5 dl (8.8 oz) water. I also have a cup of coffee with semi-skimmed milk. I get about 200 kcal from my breakfast.
My typical lunch is a salad, with always one hard boiled egg for protein. My standard salad ingredients are lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, celery, pepper. I tend to have standard lettuce, mixture of other salad leaves, and I love pea shoots so they most of the time find their way into my lunchbox. I sometimes add radishes, cauliflower, spring onions etc. I get about 200-250 kcal from my lunch.
My typical dinner normally includes a large oven grilled chicken breast, handful of fresh tomatoes and / or a handful of cooked Brussels sprouts or other vegetables. Towards the end of the first week, as I had lost so much weight I added some boiled brown rice to my dinner. And I can make this same dinner for my husband, who isn’t trying to lose weight. I’ll just add some potatoes or rice on his plate. For variation, instead of chicken, I might have other meat or fish such as pork, turkey, beef, (lamb), salmon, mackerel etc, however chicken is the one I have the most. I have become very aware of calorie content of many things, and always count total calories when making something. Cooking oil is very high in calories, so I tend to mostly oven grill or steam my food.
I do of course make other foods too sometimes. One example is this super tasty vegetarian bake, which is very low in calories, click here to view.
Occasionally, I might have a handful of nuts between my lunch and dinner, but be aware, because even though they are healthy, they are quite high in calories, just like avocado. It’s ok to have these, as long as you count these calories towards your daily allowance.
Also, if very hungry in the evening, or I haven’t reached my daily calorie allowance, I might sometimes have a snack of 1dl (3.5oz) of natural yoghurt with a small banana or fresh berries. Other one of my occasional snacks might be 1-2 slices of rye bread, which is much healthier than wheat bread. Again, these will count to your total daily calorie intake. I might even have a cheeky piece of chocolate, however I do check the calorie content and then consider what my calorie intake from other food has been that day.