How I Maintained my 100 Pound Weight Loss for One Year

Today marks one year of maintaining my 100+ pound weight loss as well as three years of my start date from attempting to lose weight. 

I'd say that attempt was pretty successful!

On January 15th of 2014 I took these before photos and then on January 16th I dove head first into weight loss: I started working out every single day and counting calories using the My Fitness Pal app and decided that at my heaviest EVER weight of 246 pounds, it was time to make a change and stick with it.

I blogged monthly throughout my first year of weight loss which is organized here so you can read those post to see how I lost the weight in more detail.  If you don't have time I'll give you the cliff notes version: I ate healthy 80% of the time, worked out, and decided to never give up no matter how many bad weekends or cheat meals or screw ups I had.  THAT'S REALLY ALL THERE IS TO IT! There is no secret to weight loss: it honestly just takes work and dedication.  If you stay committed and consistent long enough you will see result! On my first year weight loss anniversary in 2015 I had lost 78 pounds!

I continued working hard in 2015 and saw more and more pounds drop.  I hit a plateau at around 90 pounds down and was stuck there for awhile until I really started to feel motivated to hit 100 pounds down and started to really buckle down.  Along my whole journey I ALWAYS would give myself some time off on the weekends to relax my diet a bit and have around two cheat meals: it honestly kept me sane and able to stay focused during the week! But I actually cut most of those cheat meals out after being stuck at my plateau for so long and was able to make it down to 95 pounds down...and then got stuck AGAIN.

I was happy with my body but frustrated.  When you get soooo close to losing 100 just want to reach it gosh darn it!!! I also couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong: I was eating really healthy and exercising (still having some cheats with wine!!!) but the scale would not budge.

Finally, I decided it was time to switch things up.  I switched from solely counting calories to the If It Fits Your Macros diet plan where you track proteins, carbs, and fats. I started to lose weight IMMEDIATELY because I realized my body needed much more protein than I had been eating before, and less carbs and fats.  Suddenly after being stuck for months, after only one week tracking macros I hit my 100 pound weight loss goal ON MY TWO YEAR FITNESS ANNIVERSARY! On January 16th of 2016 I woke up and weighed in to see that I had gone from 246 pounds to 146 pounds in exactly two years.

Thus began another year of staying dedicated to my health and fitness...but instead of actively trying to lose weight my goal was now to just maintain which in some ways is easier, and in some ways is a COMPLETELY different game.

At 146 pounds and 5 foot 6 feet tall, my BMI is 23.6 or in the "normal weight" range of 18.5-24.9. Ultimately, I just want to be healthy.  I don't need to be a model, I don't want to train for a figure competition, I don't want to run a full marathon (at least I don't think so as of now!) I just want to be a normal, healthy girl who can live her life! So my mindset throughout this past year has mostly just to been to continue what I'm doing to maintain this 100 pound loss.

So: how exactly am I doing it? How have I went a full year maintaining my loss? Well I'll tell you first and foremost that mostly I'm doing the same thing I've been doing all along! You can't reach your goal weight and then just STOP and go back to your old ways or the pounds will creep back on in no time.  One of the biggest things that has not changed for me is my exercise routine: I still workout pretty much everyday!

Exercise has always been the "easier" part of weight loss for me. No, it's not always "easy" when I do it but it's easy for me now to make sure I always fit a workout into my day.  A lot of weeknights I will go workout right after work, and if I have something going on after work I make sure I get up early to get it done before work! It's just part of my schedule and something I always do now.  Sometimes it DOES sucks. I've had long days at work where I just want to come home and lay on the couch and eat pizza (hah!) or there have been Sundays that are so cold that I just REALLY don't feel like going out and doing a long run...but I do it anyway. There have also been plenty of times where my workout is the most cathartic part of my day. I've taken spin classes or barre classes where I get lost in the music and the teacher's instruction or other times where I climbed the stair master like it was my JOB and loved every second of it. I randomly decided to go out and run a half marathon on a trail by where I live one Sunday in October and finishing that run was one of the most EMPOWERING moments in the world knowing that I've trained and worked and stayed dedicated to fitness long enough that I can go out and run a half marathon on a whim!

My current exercise routine normally includes going to the gym about three times a week where I do a mix of cardio and weights.  My favorite cardio is the stair master and on week nights I will normally do 45 minutes on the stairs and then 15-25 minutes of different weight machines.  I like to get a long workout in on Saturday mornings if my schedule allows where I will do an hour on the stair master and then 30 minutes of free weights and/or abs.   I try to run twice a week (it's harder in the winter) with one shorter run during the week and a longer run on the weekend.  I go to a barre class every Friday morning and then will often do another workout at home one day with various different workout videos.

For my diet: I've still been following the IIFYM diet plan and track my macros pretty consistently on average around 5 days a week. I paid Poppy Locks to calculate specific macros for my body/workout routine/diet history that add up to about 1700 calories with 145 grams of protein, 170 grams of carbs and 47 grams of fat.  These are "fat loss" macros for me so if I stay on this set of numbers, I am supposed to lose weight.  It's amazing how well my body has responded to this diet plan: whenever I am consistent with tracking my macros I always see the scale drop! Since I'm not trying to lose any more weight though, I only follow these macros around 5 days/week and give myself a break the other two.  This is just what has worked for ME. Some people will do a "reverse" after hitting their goal weight and gradually increase their numbers and eat more every day, but I like the freedom of having two days to not care about weighing my food or worry if I'm exactly hitting my macros within 5 grams. It makes me feel "human" and normal and not like a crazy macro girl all the time ;)

Does this mean I go completely crazy and eat whatever I want those other two days? Most of the time no ;) I still get a workout in and I eat mostly healthy but will often drink on those days (sometimes wayyyy more wine than I could ever work into my macros!) or get an extra coffee (that I put way too much sugar in) or go out to dinner and get something that sounds a little more exciting than having a salad topped with grilled chicken. This method has been working for me to maintain since around 70-80% I stick to my fat loss macros and eat a lot of whole and healthy foods.  I mostly fill my diet with natural foods and don't eat a ton of processed food. I eat a TON of veggies, lean protein, egg whites, greek yogurt, and then throw some fun stuff in here and there. Here's a sample meal plan from a regular day for me:

Breakfast: Egg white scramble with veggies and spinach topped with low fat cheese.  Side of grapes on this day but often will be plain greek yogurt mixed with pb2 powdered peanut butter (affiliate link)

Lunch: A bunch of roasted veggies (broccoli, cauliflower and green beans) with some grilled chicken

Afternoon Snack: Alternative bagel from Western Bagel (code "mygirlishwhims" will get you 15% off your first order) with low fat strawberry cream cheese

Dinner: Greek yogurt chicken salad on lettuce wraps

Dessert: Protein bar from Good to Go Bar (code "GIRL" for 20% off any order)

I am used to cooking and eating healthy most days of the week now but do enjoy taking a bit of a break every now and again - realistically I think we all need it! Often times my two "non-tracked" days come on the weekend and I will have different events going on where it's hard to perfectly track macros anyway. Sometimes it's just nice to go to a birthday party and enjoy a piece of cake with everyone else. It's fun to watch football at a sports bar and drink and eat wings and mozzarella sticks. It's nice to go out to a BYOB with my boyfriend and eat sushi and drink wine and just have fun and relax! That is my favorite part about maintenance: the freedom that I have to sneak in some more of these extra indulgences that would have set me back further than I would have liked while l was trying to actively lose weight.

To be completely honest though, sometimes it's really, really, really hard to remember that these extra indulgences are just supposed to be that: INDULGENCES and not the norm.  That is the hardest part about maintenance.  I DON'T have to eat 1700 calories every day any more to maintain - I have some extra freedom and sometimes getting a taste of that freedom makes it hard to get back on track.  I never struggled with binge eating when I was heavy because if I wanted something, I just ate it! There have been times this past year though where I have eaten to the point of making myself sick.  Honestly it normally comes after drinking, but I will just start shoveling food in my mouth without stopping! I think it feels so freeing to me because I DO strictly track my macros most of the time so after getting a little buzzed I've found myself elbow deep in the peanut butter jar spooning gobs and gobs into my mouth or eating four protein bars in a row or slice after slice of pizza (like literally one time I ate all but two slices from a regular sized pizza!!!) It feels almost "fun" to me to be able to eat as much as I can shove into my mouth of these foods because I know I could never make that amount fit into a "normal" day for me.

Does this happen often? No. Do I feel gross and shameful and like a failure every time after it happens though? Yes. I went through a phase once where it was a pretty common occurrence and I started to feel pretty sucky about myself.  I finally had to be up front with myself and realize though that just because I shove peanut butter in my mouth after having too much wine or eat more pizza than I should on a date night every now and again DOES NOT MAKE ME A BAD PERSON. I am still a good human being: I work hard, I'm kind, I'm compassionate, I love my family and friends and try and do good in the world.  "Cheating" or eating bad food sometimes doesn't make me any less of a person.
However, I AM still trying to stick to a healthy diet and eating 8 slices of pizza or half a jar of peanut butter on the regular is neither healthy OR good for maintaining a 100 pound weight loss! Luckily for me though, one thing I have always been good and consistent about is my ability to get back on track every single Monday. THAT is the key to weight loss and even more so for maintenance now. Some weekends my diet is great, some weekends my diet is bad but every Monday just the same I get right back on track. Giving up is just not an option for me anymore.  I've chosen to change my lifestyle and most of the the time I really DO enjoy it. I actually enjoy exercise now and I like the food that I cook and fill up my meals with.  There will always be times be times when it is hard: someone brings a huge pan of brownies into work or some of my friends meet for happy hour when I need to go fit my workout in...and THAT is where the true test of will power and consistency comes into play.  It's my norm now to just ignore the extra treats at the office, my schedule includes an hour of exercise everyday instead of an extra hour of TV, that's just all part of staying dedicated to my healthy lifestyle and what has kept me successful at maintaining.

I also recently took a challenge to go four weeks without drinking and it has been SUCH a good reset for me.  I think you can still drink and be successful at weight loss/maintenance but I was letting drinking turn into an excuse for just eating whatever I wanted which is NOT a good habit to get into! I'm about halfway through the challenge and feeling better than ever.  I needed this mental reset to realize that even when I have my "cheat" days or non-tracked days I still need to stay in control of my food choices.  As someone who was heavy her whole life, I am ALWAYS going to have to watch what I eat. It doesn't always seem fair: we all know people in our lives I'm sure who it seems can just eat whatever they want and never workout and stay in shape just the same while I'm over here tracking and weighing every little bite of food I put into my mouth and getting up at 5AM to go workout. Unfortunately, life isn't always fair though!!! Staying in shape and being healthy is important to me now so if that means tracking my food, working out daily, or even giving up my beloved wine for FOUR WHOLE WEEKS to stay successful with maintaining my weight loss, then that's just what I'm going to have to do.

So where am I now and what is my game plan? I currently weigh around 142 pounds putting me at about a 104 pound total weight loss.  My plan for this next year is to just keep on keeping on! I want to keep working out, keep eating healthy, and keep giving myself some breaks when needed. I'm at a really fun point in my life and I can honestly say that I'm happier than I've ever been before, partly because I'm healthier than I've ever been before! I have some fun trips coming up including some trips to Atlantic City, a weekend in Florida, and a whole week in Punta Cana (my best friend is getting married there in March!) and I'm so excited to be able to dress up in some heels and fancy dresses or throw on a bikini and just be able to have FUN and enjoy all of these experiences without having to worry about being uncomfortable from being so overweight or self conscious of how I look anymore.

I am forever grateful for the 246 pound girl who three years ago decided that she was capable of MORE. She was strong enough to change her life, strong enough to fight through the cravings, the sweaty workouts, the months where the scale would not budge and stay dedicated long enough to lose over 100 pounds and 42% of her body weight! Taking control of my health has been the BEST thing I have ever done for myself and I'm so excited for another year of staying on track.


  1. You are fabulous! Well done on your amazing dedication, positive message and results :)

  2. Congrats to you! What a HUGE accomplishment. I am down 50 pounds from my heaviest and 30 down from October. I still have a way to go on my journey. Btw this is themissusj from ig

  3. I am starting my journey (I want to lose 30lbs... I know it doesnt seen like a lot) and I am so thankful you are so honest about the stuggles you have because I have the same ones.
    I am following you and your best friend that is getting married on instagram and both of you help me stay on track #30lbsGoal

    Thank you very much!!!!

  4. Your story amazes me. Good job. You look fantastic.

  5. I followed your weight loss story all the way from France. What amazes me the most is your willpower to keep going even though you were stuck for weeks. That is usuelly when I give up. Congratulations and enjoy your well earned wonderfull body, being sporty makes you even more thin than what your scale tells you.

  6. Are you eating more calories now with IIFYM than you were when counting calories without the macros?

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