Forgive me, Readers, for I have sinned. Gosh, it’s been almost four months since I last blogged here. There’s actually an unpublished post I wrote about a month ago sitting in the backend. For some reason, I couldn’t bring myself to publish it. It’s called “I lost 25 pounds” — I never got around to finessing the title. I couldn’t bring myself to publish it because, I guess, I wasn’t ready to share, I needed more of a blogging break, or I just didn’t like it (it didn’t sound like me). So it remains in the backend collecting Internet dust; and so it will stay. Especially because…I’ve now lost 33 pounds! Hehee.

Check me out opening Toronto’s Disney on Ice show a few weeks ago on behalf of Today’s Parent (I’ve lost a few more pounds since then, too) — what an honour!

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Yes, I’ve finally lost the baby weight — something I’ve been trying to do pretty much since I started writing this blog (with a 10-month reprieve while I was preggers with the Rascal).

I’m pretty sure it took so long to lose the baby weight because, as I wrote at Today’s Parent (and please forgive me for spilling my guts there rather than here — it’s a bloggy balance I have yet to strike, clearly), having school-aged kids is awesome. The kids are amazingly more independent now, so they can entertain themselves more willingly when I’m riding the stationary bike or while I cook healthy food for us or while I count Weight Watchers points.

Yes, I’m on Weight Watchers (online — no in-person meetings for this introvert!). I chose this program because my friend Lolo (remember her?) was also on the diet, as well as several of my fabulous Today’s Parent colleagues. It was helpful to text Lolo whenever I was in a bind, and to vent about plateaus, tweet and restrain from eating office treats with my colleagues. Mind you, I never had a problem with office treats, but at least I didn’t have to refuse them alone anymore!

OK, I’m getting to the point where I’m wondering if I should publish this post or not. I seem to have left my blog legs at Today’s Parent. I am sooo busy there right now. There’s a lot of exciting stuff happening, and you’ll see a lot more writing from me — not just about celebrities! I even just had an article about — gasp — pregnancy published in our Today’s Parent Pregnancy magazine. I posted a photo of it on Facebook, if you want to check it out. I didn’t realize how graphic it was at a certain point. I probably should have cut the photo off before the vagina and rectum part.

Anyway, I know a lot of you have been trying to lose weight with me all these years. So, here are the little trickies I’ve learned on my weight-loss journey.

1. Give yourself a treat day
Even Jillian Michaels recommends this — for her kids, but still, it works. My treat day is Saturday (woohoo, almost there!). So, if I have cravings during the week, I put the food away and think to myself, “You can have it Saturday!” I even recommended this strategy to a smoker friend of mine. I suggested she try to refrain from smoking all week and then smoke all she wants on Saturdays. It hasn’t worked for her, alas, but you really have to want to quit, or to lose weight, to make it happen (see #2). Make sure you don’t go overboard on treat day, though, or it does sabotage your efforts, and you will feel sick. I speak from experience.

2. Be wanting and ready to lose weight
When I was at my highest weight, back in September, I started feeling physically averse to my flab. It’s sort of like when you really need a haircut, and, like, you need it now! I needed the fat off NOW. In the five years I’ve been trying to lose weight, I never had this fierce, physical desire or drive. It’s definitely key. Maybe it involves getting to your highest weight — or, as they say, hitting rock bottom. It was a key factor for me.

3. Control your cravings and log your food intake
I’ve plateaued a couple of times during my weight-loss journey. To get through plateaus I had to really take a look at what I was eating, and what I was craving — that’s easy to do if you’re using a weight loss app, like Weight Watchers’, which has a food log component (SO KEY). For the most part, I noticed, I started plateauing when I was eating too much bread or baked stuff: a homemade muffin for breakfast, crackers and hummus for lunch, bagel and peanut butter for dinner. It was all well within my daily points allowance, but not nutritious, and I was craving these foods. The more bread you eat, the more you want it. So, to lose the last 10 pounds or so, I’ve been limiting the bread and baked goods, and replacing some of those missing carbs with healthy whole grains, fruits and starchy vegetables. And, lo and behold, the weight peels off and I don’t need spelt ShaSha cookies for dessert anymore.

4. Exercise
Biking, sweaty Ashtanga yoga, walking, kickboxing DVDs, snowshoeing, skating….

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It’s all about convenience. This means I crack open the yoga mat more often at home than at the studio (alas), and I bike in front of the TV while dinner’s cooking, etc. The most I exercise (formally) is around 45 minutes, six days a week; I take a break on treat day. I also try to be as active as I can throughout the day, i.e., by taking the long route to the office washroom, parking a little farther from my destinations, walking instead of driving to the bank machine, tackling the dog, chasing the kids, etc.

4. Have a bite
Sometimes treats happen beyond “treat day.” My kids know that Mama’s treat day is Saturday. But I don’t want them to see me being rigid. If we’re presented with a cake, I’ll have a bite, even a sliver. They just know that having a treat day helps me eat healthy most of the time — which is what their goal should be, too.

I’m sure I’ll think of more tips after/if I press the “Publish” button here. But, let’s talk about it in the comments…or Facebook or Twitter. I’m happy to answer any questions you might have about Weight Watchers, weight loss, Betty White — who recently got groomed (in case you were wondering based on the photo above…).

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She was still mad about getting groomed when I snapped this picture.

Alright, this was fun! We should do this more often. Truth is, I am SWAMPED at work, so it’s hard to find the time. And this whole post is a symptom of a little procrastination problem I’m having this morning. But, I guess now I’m warmed up to write!

See you soon.

Love!
xo Haley-O