Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Benefits of Losing 10%!

Life is a highway!

I decided to take the past few days "off" since the weight loss challenge ended. I needed a break from counting calories and quite frankly I needed wanted pizza, ice cream, cake and nachos! Okay, we all know that I did not need any of these things and quite frankly although they tasted good I did not feel good after having them. The things I noticed most after eating these foods was that I was tired, lethargic and crazy thirsty. I am sure I was thirsty from the amount of sodium that was in these preserved items. Plus, I noticed that I was not sleeping as well. Although I fell off the wagon, I am not disappointed in myself. I expect to have those days every once in awhile and again in the future. Moderation is the key. The real determinate is if you lace up those boot straps and go at it again. That is exactly what I have done. I am already back on the "Healthy Weight Loss Wagon".

My Goal is to lose another 10%. That means that I want to lose 14 lbs. This will put me smack dab in the middle of my weight range, which I feel is a healthy spot for me. I am not the type of girl who will ever weigh 115 lbs. like I did in high school and I am more than okay with that! I want a realistic healthy goal. My goal is to lose the last 14 lbs. over 7 weeks. Which means losing a healthy amount of weight loss of -2 lbs. per week.

Why 10% as my goal?  I remembered reading an article from Weight Watchers years ago that stated,

"It's much easier to reach for an incremental goal that promises sizable health benefits: Losing just 10 percent of your current body weight."

"So many projects in life are better managed by breaking them down into small chunks," says Karen Miller-Kovach, MS, RD, chief scientist at Weight Watchers International. "Weight loss is no different."

Plus, here's just a few of the things that you'll gain by losing 10 percent:
A Healthier Heart
By losing just 10 percent of your body weight, you can lower your cholesterol and reduce your blood pressure, says G. Ken Goodrick, PhD, psychologist and associate professor of medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. High cholesterol and elevated blood pressure are two major risk factors for heart disease.

Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
If you're overweight, you're at increased risk for type 2 diabetes, which means your body can't make enough, or properly use, insulin, a hormone that helps convert food to usable energy. By losing just 10 percent of your body weight, you'll improve your body's ability to use the insulin it makes, possibly preventing the onset of the disease, Miller-Kovach says. If you already have type 2 diabetes, shedding that 10 percent may improve your symptoms and possibly prevent complications, she adds.

More Pep
"Just a 10 percent weight loss increases feelings of vigor and vitality," says Miller-Kovach. "You'll feel better and have more energy."

A Mental Edge
Losing 10 percent can give you the self-confidence and motivation you need to keep going. "Success builds on success," says Miller-Kovach. But be sure you recognize it. "Losing 10 percent is a milestone in the journey," says Miller-Kovach. "Once you get there, take the time to congratulate yourself on your efforts."

Reality Check
After losing 10 percent, you gain a sense of what it will take to lose the rest and reach your final goal weight. "It gives you a context in terms of saying, 'Am I willing to put in that much more effort to lose even more weight?'" Miller-Kovach says. If the answer is no, that's okay. "Some people only lose 10 percent and that's it," says Goodrick. If that's you, pat yourself on the back. "Health-wise, a 10-percent weight loss is a great achievement," Goodrick says.

During the weight-loss challenge I lost 12.8% of my current weight. Which is over 10%. Honestly, I feel so much better. My clothes fit again, I have renewed energy, a better mental edge and I even run better! The best  part is as a family we have completely changed our eating lifestyle. We eat fresh, organic vegetables, fruit, meat and milk. My kids beg for smoothies each day that always contain organic fresh fruit, almond milk, spinach, and greek yogurt. As a Mom this makes me feel so proud! Plus, my husband's blood pressure is within the normal level!  Prior to the weight loss challenge my husband was being monitored by his doctor for his elevated blood pressure levels. The next step for him was medication. I was beyond worried for him as he is the love of my life and he is too young to have this type of health concern. But with the changes we have made that is a distant thought and memory. I could not be happier! With changing our lifestyle my husband's blood pressure is within the normal level and he lost 10 pounds. This was all from me changing how I cooked and shopped for my family. It just shows with hard work, dedication, and a concentrated effort on what is important to you things can change. No one says it is going to be easy, but the reward is amazing! I encourage you to start your journey today. You won't regret it!


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