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So it’s been just a little over a week since I reached my goal of 170 pounds.  I am now headed into my 27th week on my weight loss kick and I am at 166 pounds today, a total loss of 70 pounds now.

Over the weekend I had this big community event with my boss, actually it was her local oath of office ceremony to be exact.  We held it on the front lawn of the Martin Luther King-Harbor Hospital in Watts with hundreds in attendance.  It’s funny because there were a lot of people who didn’t even recognize me when I came up and said hi to them.  That really tripped me out because it happened like five times.  When I look in the mirror I see the same Jasmyne, but I guess when you lose weight in your face it can make you look different to others.

As I said in my last journal entry I was going to keep on my weight loss until I got to somewhere between 160 and 165 pounds so I could have a little cushion.  I plan to have that completed before my birthday next month.

This week I hung out with my girls Michelle, Roz, and DJ Spark over at Michelle XXX.  It’s funny how you drop some weight and all of a sudden you want to go to the club, lol.  Besides going to Michelle’s XXX, I went to the Catch for the last two Saturday nights as well.  And believe me when I tell you people noticed.  The Catch’s manager 14K was at the door was like “what’s really going on to bring you out to the club twice in the same year!”  I had to lol on that one, because I am notoriously known for not going out to clubs.  It all stems back to my insecurity about myself.  And while I am still working those issues out, I’ve been able to muster up the inner strength to go out and drop it like it’s hot a couple of times, lol. 

So I received an overwhelming amount of email inquires asking for advice and for me to share some of the things that I did to lose the weight.  And rather than respond back to all of the emails one by one, I decided to answer all of the questions in this week’s weight loss journal entry because I am in no ways trying to keep the info to myself and am happy to share any helpful tips that will help get someone started on their way.

Now I’ve said before that I am not a professional at this weight loss thing.  It took many many tries to get it right and to exercise the self-discipline that I have for the past six months.  The kind of self-discipline that I haven’t had my 29 years on this Earth until now.  But along the way I picked up a few habits that I will say have done me well and so I will begin with sharing the top ten things that you can incorporate into a plan that suits you, your goals, and your lifestyle wherever you are.

  • Every Sunday after I hike I go to Trader Joes and I buy my food
    for the week.  I make sure to buy lots of fruit, usually bananas,
    pears, and strawberries.  I also buy pre-made salads that I then take
    to work for lunch during the week to make sure that I don’t fall into
    the trap of not eating or eating the wrong stuff because I’m hungry.
    Buying just enough food to last you for the week is key.  No more, no
    less.  That way there’s no extra food in the house at 1 a.m. when you
    get a craving to go into the kitchen and eat.
  • I don’t eat after 7 p.m.  that’s a cardinal rule because the
    food oftentimes sits on you when you do and you gain weight.  Of
    course, there are times when you have to eat after 7 p.m., like when
    you work late, but if you can mange to avoid doing so as much as
    possible it will really help you. 
  • For those times that you have to eat after 7 p.m. or when you
    need a snack, I suggest fruit and yogurt.  I get cravings at the
    weirdest times and instead of eating a whole meal, I reach for my fruit
    or a yogurt.  I buy nonfat yogurt.
  • Bread.  If it’s one thing I can say about the past six months
    that has really made all the difference is the fact that I stopped for
    the most part eating bread and in particular white flour.  And I a not
    just talking about the lovely white bread and butter they bring you at
    California Pizza Kitchen while you wait for your food that is so damn
    irresistible, lol, but I’m talking about pancakes, pizza, cookies,
    muffins, croissants, bagels, etc.  Yep, for the most part I gave all of
    that up.  Occasionally, I’d have a cookie here and there or a sandwich
    but those times were far and few between.  If you can manage to cut
    your bead intake, it will really help you in the long run.  If you have
    to have bread, go whole wheat and leave the white flour alone.
  • Salads.  There are so many different variations of salads out
    there that have the joy in eating them is picking which one to get.  I
    use to hate salads but I just spent the last six months eating a salad
    or two almost everyday and I really do credit salads with my weight
    loss too.  I had to find the right salads to suit my taste. I need
    chicken or shrimp in mine.  Once I discovered the right salad it was
    all good.  For my Angelino’s I love to get a good salad from Simply
    Wholesome on Slauson and Overhill and at Z Pizza in Larchmont.  Simply
    Wholesome has a great grilled chicken salad that’s to die for an Z
    Pizza has a pear and Gorgonzola salad and a spinach salad that I get
    with chicken and avocado added.  Now I will say that I have trained
    myself to be able to eat salads without salad dressing.  It’s not for
    everyone though I realize.  But if you have to have salad dressing try
    a balsamic vinaigrette and leave the thick heavy dressings like ranch
    and Thousand Island alone.  Remember that whatever dressing you get,
    it’s going to add fat and calories to your salad.
  • Soda.  Leave it alone.  I stopped drinking soda for the most
    part and I don’t really miss it.  I was a die hard root beer fanatic,
    but I’ve been able to kick the habit and not a moment too soon.  I was
    never a Coke or Pepsi drinker to begin with so all of those low or no
    calorie versions of those sodas were never really an option.  But I
    know there are some people out there that feel the same way about Coke
    and Pepsi that I do about my Starbucks and they just gotta have it.
    For those folks, I’d just say find the lowest caloric and sugar
    version. 
  • Fast Food – It’s got to go to.  And I know for some that’s a
    real big challenge, it was for me.  I don’t think anyone loved
    McDonald’s French fries more than I did.  However, if you’re really
    serious about losing weight, this is one indulgence that has to come to
    a stop as it is a huge contributor to being overweight, especially if
    you rely on fat food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  If you go to
    the store at the beginning of the week and pick up your food for the
    week, you shouldn’t have to eat fast food.  But in those rare times
    when you do, I suggest the following…Quizno’s, Subway, and El Pollo
    Loco.  With Quizno’s and Subway, get a salad, leave the bread alone.
    With El Pollo Loco, think protein and leave the tortillas there.
    That’s what I did when I found myself without lunch at work or
    something to eat for dinner in the evening.  I came up with those
    selections by looking at what the fast food options in my neighborhood
    were and reducing them down to the healthiest ones.  Sure, I could
    easily go to McDonald’s and get a salad, but why put myself in the
    position of see and smelling French fries and other things that I
    really don’t need.  Who needs that pressure?
  • Exercise – I was the queen of circling the parking lot to wait
    it out for the closest possible spot to avoid walking more than I had
    too.  But after I started to lose weight, one of the things that I did
    was make an effort to park as far as away as possible (and still be
    safe) from the door to where I was going.  I did this so that I would
    have to walk.  Walking turned out to be one of the things that really
    made a difference for me.  As I have said before, hiking in Runyan Canyon
    really helped get my legs and tummy down.  If you’re in L.A. and you
    want to give it try, hit me up and you can join my crew that hits the
    trail every Sunday.  The best advice I can give is to walk every chance
    you get.  As for the gym, I gave it a try several times.  In fact I was
    going to the gym every other day for about a month and it did help me.
    But in the end, I decided that hiking was more my thing and l I left
    the gym all together.  But now that I have completed my goal, I am
    headed back to the gym for the all important toning.  My arms and legs
    need toning like no one’s business and the gym is where that’s going to
    happen.  Someone emailed me about my arms and I think they were
    mistaken.  My arms aren’t toned in any way.  Maybe it was angle I was
    standing at or something, but if there’s one area that I would say
    hasn’t changed on my body, it’s my arms, lol.  You have to find
    something that you enjoy that is a form of exercise.  Be it swimming,
    hiking, walking, running, going to the gym and using the cardio
    equipment, you need to choose something and stick with it, preferably a
    couple of times a week.
  • Sugar – It goes without saying I think that anyone really
    serious about losing weight is going to have change their sugar
    intake.  I did and it really helped and after a while, like with the
    fast food, bread, and soda, I didn’t even miss it.  I am so used to
    getting my latte sugar-free that I don’t even miss the sugar I used to
    enjoy when I was drinking white mochas.
  • Be Realistic – Don’t set yourself up for failure and set a
    realistic goal.  And once you set tat goal, stop procrastinating and
    start working your plan.  It took me a while to see a change but I
    didn’t give up.  I thought I was going to complete my goal by July of
    this year and as we all know that didn’t happen but it didn’t make me
    stop either.  I kept going until September 14 when I did eventually hit
    my goal.  I think this is key because if you’re 300 pounds, it’
    realistic to say that in 6 months you’ll lose 150 pounds.  So if you
    make a plan and set a goal that is attainable you are less likely to be
    disappointed.  And like I said, if your first try doesn’t work, get
    back on the plan and try again until you get it.

Thanks for all of the emails and congrats.  If there’s something
that I didn’t touch on, send me an email with your question and I’ll
try and answer it for you.

Thanks!

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