I find it funny, and just a little disturbing, that I avoided "counting calories" for so long. My reasons don't make a lick of sense to me now. I mean, how can "I don't need to count calories", "The food I eat doesn't have that many calories in it" or "I don't eat enough to have to count calories" or even "I don't have time to count calories" - how can any of these excuses have made their way to my brain?!! Thank goodness I came to my senses when I did, because heaven only know how much more weight I would've gained!
All that to say that I'm rather enjoying this "new" diet. It's really nice to look at my notebook at the end of the day and see that I haven't gone over my allotted calories, or that I still have room for a little treat. What I once considered a burden (because I'd never tried it...) has actually given me a ton of freedom! At this point, I'm allowed 1700 calories a day. This may seem like a lot, but it allows me to lose approximately 2 pounds per week. Of course, this will adjust as my weight continues to go down, but for now it's perfect. I'm learning the ropes and finding that I really do enjoy fresh veggies and fruit. I'm working more proteins and good grains into my diet and trying to make this a change for a lifetime - not just until I lose the weight.
I'm also allowing myself one "free" day per week. At first, I ate whatever I wanted to on that day, without thought about calorie content; however, I now try to be more reasonable about it. For example, if we go out to eat, I try to make that my free day. But instead of ordering the smothered chicken with fries and a caesar salad, I will order the roasted chicken with fries and a garden salad. I know, fries are bad. But I LOVE fries, and if I allow myself to have them once a week then I don't crave them all the time. Hopefully, someday down the road, I won't need to order them, but for now...
As for the progress I've made since beginning this "new" diet? Well, I started the year at 230 pounds and on February 1 I weighed in at 222 pounds. When I weighed myself a week and a half ago, I was at 218, so hopefully next week will be less than that. This means I've lost 12 pounds this year! And all that from counting some simple little calories.