It's been a while. I know! I haven't updated on my fitness journal in around about five months, and while I haven't stopped trying to lose weight. My weight has remained at around the same number for months, and it is so frustrating.
If you've seen my previous posts, then you know that I've tried a lot of different tactics to lose weight. I've tried Weight Watchers, Slimming World, Rosemary Collins, Jane Plan, Exante, Detox, Gluten Free, Whole foods, Calorie Counting, 5:2 and so much more that I can't even think of right now. On top of that, I've been a member of a gym in the past, as well as doing various different exercise programs at home.
Despite all of this, today I weighed in at 11st 11 lbs. Which, is pretty much the weight I've been hovering around for a year now.
So, putting the failure of all the diet plans behind me. I'm tackling something new and approaching weight loss from a new angle.
I'm not going to diet.
Yeah, you heard that right. No restrictions, I can eat what I want when I want it and as much as I want. No calorie counting. No judging myself for eating that chocolate or for a Venti drink from Starbucks.
How am I going to do this and still expect to lose weight? Well, I'm going to change my mindset and follow the artful eating principals.
My mum first mentioned this approach to me after reading Artful Eating: The Psychology of Lasting Weight Loss by Karina Melvin and I was skeptical. Throughout all of my dieting, whenever I was fully sticking to any plan, I had one constant. I used MyFitnessPal to track my calories. On some of the plans, I was worried that I'd go over my calorie allowance, whilst on others, I was concerned I was going too low. So, I'd track everything and make sure my calories were looking good, rather than focusing on what those calories were going on. There were times when I'd cut down on my healthy dinner or skip it just so I could fit in a slice of cake! But, I'd eat the cake and track it so I felt like I should still be losing a bunch of weight. I didn't.
So, being the calorie counter that I was. I was nervous to follow a plan that was telling me I could eat anything I wanted, without counting calories, points, syns or anything else. I didn't have to log it anywhere. I just had to eat and enjoy it without attaching a number to it.
It took some convincing, but eventually, I decided to give it a try and then I got sick and couldn't keep any food down. So, today I am restarting properly now that I'm feeling better.
What does artful eating involve?
Well, I'm new to the idea and still learning, but the basics as I know them right now is that you can eat and enjoy the food you love. You don't count calories but you do need to follow some basic rules. Listen to your body, eat what you fancy and only eat when you're hungry and stop when you're full. This has also been an issue for me.
I got myself in the headspace where it would reach between midday and one thirty and I'd tell myself, it's lunchtime so it's time to eat and I'd make something and eat it, even if I wasn't hungry. I also, especially when it was a meal I particularly love (Indian Takeout) wouldn't stop eating when I was full. I didn't want to waste it so I'd cram myself full to the point of feeling unwell. But, recently I've been listening to my body more, and when I had Indian Takeout the other day, I genuinely felt full after eating about half, so I put the rest in the fridge and I had lunch for the next day sorted.
My focus now is going to be on nourishing my body with food that will make me feel good, but not restricting myself and telling myself I can't have something if I really want it. I just need to be mindful of how much of it my body really needs.
The only restrictions I have now, are gluten which I found I have a problem with so I've cut out completely, and dairy which affects my eczema so I have to limit my consumption of that. Beyond that, I'm going to eat and enjoy what I want and see where it takes me.
If you want to check out more about artful eating, there's more information on KarinaMelvin.com