Today is your Day 1?
Welcome to r/Loseit!
So you aren’t sure of how to start? Don’t worry! “How do I get started?” is our most asked question. r/Loseit has helped our users lose over 1,000,000 recorded pounds and these are the steps that we’ve found most useful for getting started.
Why you’re overweight
Our bodies are amazing (yes, yours too!). In order to survive before supermarkets, we had to be able to store energy to get us through lean times, we store this energy as adipose fat tissue. If you put more energy into your body than it needs, it stores it, for (potential) later use. When you put in less than it needs, it uses the stored energy. The more energy you have stored, the more overweight you are. The trick is to get your body to use the stored energy, which can only be done if you give it less energy than it needs, consistently.
Before You Start
The very first step is calculating your calorie needs. You can do that HERE. This will give you an approximation of your calorie needs for the day. The next step is to figure how quickly you want to lose the fat. One pound of fat is equal to 3500 calories. So to lose 1 pound of fat per week you will need to consume 500 calories less than your TDEE (daily calorie needs from the link above). 750 calories less will result in 1.5 pounds and 1000 calories is an aggressive 2 pounds per week.
Here is where it begins to resemble work. The most efficient way to lose the weight you desire is to track your calorie intake. This has gotten much simpler over the years and today it can be done right from your smartphone or computer. r/loseit recommends an app like MyFitnessPal, Loseit! (unaffiliated), or Cronometer. Create an account and be honest with it about your current stats, activities, and goals. This is your tracker and no one else needs to see it so don’t cheat the numbers. You’ll find large user created databases that make logging and tracking your food and drinks easy with just the tap of the screen or the push of a button. We also highly recommend the use of a digital kitchen scale for accuracy. Knowing how much of what you’re eating is more important than what you’re eating. Why? This may explain it.
Creating Your Deficit
How do you create a deficit? This is up to you. r/loseit has a few recommendations but ultimately that decision is yours. There is no perfect diet for everyone. There is a perfect diet for you and you can create it. You can eat less of exactly what you eat now. If you like pizza you can have pizza. Have 2 slices instead of 4. You can try lower calorie replacements for calorie dense foods. Some of the communities favorites are cauliflower rice, zucchini noodles, spaghetti squash in place of their more calorie rich cousins. If it appeals to you an entire dietary change like Keto, Paleo, Vegetarian.
The most important thing to remember is that this selection of foods works for you. Sustainability is the key to long term weight management success. If you hate what you’re eating you won’t stick to it.
Is NOT mandatory. You can lose fat and create a deficit through diet alone. There is no requirement of exercise to lose weight.
It has it’s own benefits though. You will burn extra calories. Exercise is shown to be beneficial to mental health and creates an endorphin rush as well. It makes people feel awesome and has been linked to higher rates of long term success when physical activity is included in lifestyle changes.
Crawl, Walk, Run
It can seem like one needs to make a 180 degree course correction to find success. That isn’t necessarily true. Many of our users find that creating small initial changes that build a foundation allows them to progress forward in even, sustained, increments.
You will struggle. We have all struggled. This is natural. There is no tip or trick to get through this though. We encourage you to recognize why you are struggling and forgive yourself for whatever reason that may be. If you overindulged at your last meal that is ok. You can resolve to make the next meal better.
Do not let the pursuit of perfect get in the way of progress. We don’t need perfect. We just want better.
Now you’re ready to do this. Here are more details, that may help you refine your plan.