Chris Kept Snacking and Lost 100 PoundsPosted on Dec 23rd 2010 3:00PM by Martha Edwards
Start Weight: 325 pounds
Current Weight: 206 pounds
Goal Weight: My target weight is wherever I feel comfortable settling. I would love to be in the "normal" range of the BMI scale -- that would mean getting down to about 180. But if my body won't go that far, I'll just be happy with how far I've come.
My Weight Loss Approach: I have never been a small person -- I was wearing XL shirts and size-36 pants as far back as high school. I had a very demanding job from 2006 to 2009, and during this time I ate fast food for breakfast, lunch and dinner. When I transitioned back to a more standard desk job, my eating habits did not change and the pounds really began to pack on. I was eating at the same speed as before but not moving anywhere near as fast. After the 2009 holiday season, I found that my clothes were no longer fitting. My wife and I joked at the time that we were going to start dieting January to November of every year and then just go crazy during the holidays.
I started to lose weight in the simplest of fashions: I ate less and began exercising. I began with eating mostly salads and started walking -- soon I was at our local community gym three to four days a week spending 45 minutes on an elliptical. Once I discovered a comfortable process for tracking my calories and began using some online tools, my eyes were opened to the basic formula that was keeping me fat -- I was simply eating too many calories, and I wasn't burning nearly enough. For me, as simple as it sounds, that was an eye opener.
Knowing the calorie impact of what I was eating was the major guideline that I needed to make the right food choices. I began tracking my calories very closely. I used several online calculators to figure out what my calorie intake should be in order to maintain the target weight for my age/frame. I worked to get my daily calories to that level consistently, and I can do it for the foreseeable future with no major issues. I am not starving myself now in order to achieve a weight level that will be impossible to sustain.
Since my calorie intake level is already set at maintenance, in order to get the weight off a little quicker, I knew I had to exercise it off. I vary my exercise on a weekly and seasonal basis to keep my body guessing and to push myself physically on a regular basis -- walking, elliptical, circuit weight machines and swimming have all been in the rotation. Most recently I have undertaken a goal of accomplishing a 5k race.
I get asked frequently what the key to my weight loss success is. As the name of my blog states, it's snacks. People eat in different ways and for different reasons, but the key is having the right things available to eat all the time, so that when there is an impetus to eat (whatever that is for you -- and it's not usually actual hunger), you have what you need to take care of it and not get off track! It's okay to eat if you are mad, sad, glad or drab -- just eat responsibly!
My self-confidence on this journey has been a gift from God. My progress has been so miraculous that I have even been able to stop taking medications for both blood pressure and cholesterol. I want to be able to share long life and love with my wife and children and I am finally on a healthy path that will help make that happen.
Why I Wanted to Blog About It: I was getting a lot of questions about how I was losing weight, and I found that people were not believing my "eat less, exercise more" mantra. They either checked out mentally when I was explaining it further or just looked at me like they did not believe it. I really wanted to be able to explain in detail and small "bites" how easy it has been for me to get where I am. There are plenty of complicated and expensive methods for weight loss available. I wanted to provide a plain, simple and easy one, the one that worked for me.
Best Comment I've Received: The best comments I receive are along the lines of "reading your story gave me a new sense of inspiration that I can lose the rest of the weight to reach my target weight goal."
What's Next for My Blog: I want to continue to feature new products that address the food desires of my readers. I hope to field requests and find items that help them address their needs while maintaining sensible calories and price.
Chris is currently doing the Couch to 5K program in preparation for a 5k race.