I don’t diet. It absolutely sucks, it’s hard, and I like pizza too much. I have this thing I call the Abs to Wine ratio. I want abs, but only until I have to stop drinking wine. Then abs can go fuck themselves. Wine brings me way more happiness than abs would. As does bread and cheese.
However, I can commit to eating or drinking these things less often. I just can’t cut them out. Diets don’t work for me because I can’t stay committed to something where I feel deprived. And for those of you that can actually stick with a strict diet or cleanse, you probably gain the weight back fairly quickly once you stop. Because this shit is impossible. The trick to staying thin or getting thinner or stopping weight fluctuation is consistency. This is the way I eat after learning from a nutritionist and it’s not super hard, I don’t feel deprived, and you should do it too so you can stop that diet bullshit.
1. Limit (Don’t Leave Out) Carbs
Everyone loves to blame carbs for being fat. But the thing is, carbs are actually really important for brain function. This is why your friends who do keto are insane and can get real fucking mean. Those bitches are hungry (and probably faint-y). Carbs get a bad rap because they’re most likely to be stored as fat if you don’t use them as energy. So to prevent this issue, try to limit yourself to only one bread-based carb serving a day, make it whole wheat, and eat it before your workout. Whole wheat takes your body longer to process, meaning longer lasting energy and less of a chance for it to be stored since you have more time to break it down. The rest of your carbs can be from veggies, rice, and other sources. Also? If you have to say “fuck it” and eat a burger at 10pm while drunk, do it. Just don’t do it too often.
2. Eat Small Frequent Meals
Most women only burn around 200-300 calories an hour at most (and around 500 an hour for men) outside of working out. So if you eat more than 300 calories in an hour, whatever you didn’t burn gets stored as fat. This is bullshit and I hate it, but it’s the way our stupid bodies work. This is the science behind the whole “eat small meals” thing. If you limit all your meals to no more than 300 calories, you will burn your food as you eat it, thus you have no risk of storing excess fat. So cut your portion sizes and figure out the calorie content of your meals. You can eat the other half of your sandwich (on whole wheat bread) in an hour or two. The bonus to eating small portions is you get to eat all day long. Try to eat six or more times a day, spacing out each meal by one to three hours. Not only does this keep your blood sugar from crashing, but you’re also less likely to binge because you never get yourself to the point of starving. It also keeps your metabolism stimulated. However, this only works if you’re eating small meals. You can’t eat like shit 20 times a day and wonder why you’re fat, Susan.
3. Know Your Macros (and Calories)
Macros are how much fat, carbs, and protein you need in a day. Know them. Love them. Use an app like MyFitnessPal and make sure the pretty chart lines up or MFP will rudely tell you in aggressive red text that you fucked up again. The importance of getting your macros right goes into how your body will look and feel. If you get the right amount of protein (your weight in kilograms is how many grams of protein you need), you will be full longer and your muscles will repair better post-workout. Also, protein is the least likely to be stored as excess fat. You also don’t want to go over your carb allotment because it’s the most likely to be stored as fat. Read your nutrition labels, eat enough fiber (20-25g for women and it helps with fat loss), and don’t eat too much sugar. That said, tracking your food will also help you stay within your calories instead of just guessing. You need a calorie deficit to lose weight and you need to not go over your maintenance calories to keep from gaining weight. You don’t have to track forever, but learn what this looks like.
4. Whole Ingredients
I’m not a fan of “diet” foods. You want a cookie? Eat a fucking cookie. Just make sure it fits in your macros for the day. Don’t eat weird, sad diet cookies. Life is too short. If you’re going to eat a burger, make it yourself or go to a restaurant that uses high quality ingredients, as opposed to going to McDonald’s. Pay attention to the quality of food you eat. Also, when products take things out —i.e., gluten-free, fat-free, etc.—they have to replace it with some kind of filler. It’s better to eat whole ingredients less frequently than to eat fake food. Also? Unless you have a gluten allergy, eat fucking gluten. Gluten-free offers no health benefits unless you’re actually allergic. You all need to stop it.
5. Limit Alcohol
This is the one that is hardest for me and saddest, because I love to drink. Sue me. And it’s so easy to drink frequently, especially if you socialize. Mimosas at brunch on Sunday, wine while watching The Bachelorette on Monday, Tuesday is bar trivia, Thursday happy hour, and then of course, it’s the weekend. Congratulations, you’re now an alcoholic. Not only that, alcohol majorly fucks with weight loss—not just because of the calories, but it also messes up your metabolism because your liver needs to process the alcohol before anything else. To get maximum benefits from your elevated metabolism (from working out or eating small meals), limit your drinking to one to two times a week. I would probably be so thin if I cut out drinking completely, but then I would lose my will to live and possibly murder someone at a family gathering instead of just pouring another glass of wine.
All of these things will contribute to fat loss (or at least not gaining weight, depending on your goals) over time, but the biggest thing is that this lifestyle is easy to maintain. You can do this forever without dieting and never worry about gaining 20 pounds the second you get sick of Whole30 and go ham on french fries again.
Images: Giphy (4)