Since reaching my weight loss goal I have shifted from the weight loss portion of my journey to health to a maintenance mode. In order to go from fat burning to maintenance means that I have a transition period where I will begin to add back in calories and foods that were not part of the weight loss plan.
This is a time period I was both looking forward to and dreading. On the one hand it meant that I had reached my weight loss goal but on the other hand it meant giving up the safety net of a structured eating plan that I just had to robotically follow instead of making food decisions on my own.
Take Shape For Life had been preparing me for the past 12 weeks to begin this step by educating me in making the right food choices. There is a lot of difference between reading something in a book and actually putting it into practice.
Thankfully my health coach Amy is there to answer any questions I have and alleviate any fears I may have about faltering along the way. The transition phase is time dependent and is based on how much weight I had lost. For me it would mean that the transition would last approximately eight weeks.
The first step of transition is to slowly increase the number of calories into my diet. For the past three months I have been tracking my food intake and have averaged approximately 800 calories per day. For the first week I will increase that amount by 200 calories and introduce new vegetables to my diet.
After three months I will once again find myself eating things such as carrots, corn, potatoes, and other forbidden foods. At first I hesitated bringing those back into my diet. After all, I have been pretty happy with the results I have had the past 12 weeks and felt healthier than I have in my entire life. Why would I want to jeopardize that?
Instead of running out and stuffing myself with new vegetable dishes I’ve decided to continue eating what I have been for the past three months but adding additional amounts of those to my lean and green meal.
This transition phase is also an opportunity for me to test my portion estimation skills. For nearly three months I have religiously measured every single thing I have eaten. Now I am going to estimate how much food to eat then see how close I am to what I should be eating.
For the first couple of weeks I will put items on my plate then before eating measure it to see what deltas there are between what I thought and what reality was. Society has a way of distorting your view of the proper serving size and I need to retrain myself to survive post weight-loss.
So while I start this next phase of my journey with a little hesitation I am confident that I will be able to be successful based upon my past accomplishments and the support structure I have in place to help me lead a healthy life.