One of my favorite blogs right now is Obesity Panacea by a graduate student and a newly minted PhD. This post about a recently attended conference prompted yet another reassessment of my "approaching 40" project which was to either loose some weight or learn to be happy with my weight. I targeted loosing 10 pounds over winter by adjusting what I ate and exercising harder. I wasn't sure it would work because I was already exercising regularly but it seems so easy - eat less calories than you burn.
It's a popular idea, you look around on the web there are many supplements to help suppress appetites, programs to help one eat differently, exercise more and harder. Since I like to write stuff down I got a program for my PDA that would help me track my food intake and exercise and I got a kitchen balance so I would know pretty well how much I was eating. While I weighed myself every day, I did the overall less calories on a weekly basis. This means I didn't eat much during the week when I was very structured due to work but on the weekends I could go wild. Gradually I got used to smaller serving sizes and healthier food choices - although I still love deserts.
I'm lucky to live when I have access to an excellent range of fitness classes with an experienced, motivating lead instructor. If here was a t-shirt with "body by Grace" I would have one because I wouldn't be where I am without her. If I'm not looking forward to a class then it's time to change things up. I mix up my activities according to seasons, switching to walking and golfing in the summer, but look forward to seeing the gang again in the fall.
In a way I'm glad I didn't know about all the research giving mixed results on diet and exercise - this is counter intuitive to me. My plan worked for me because I made my diet changes a habit. I'm used to choosing lower fat higher fibre foods now and making active choices. Now I am more concerned about my metabolic health than just weight which is a good thing I think.
Oh and I met my goal 10 years ago, now average 2 kg less than my goal and achieved "6 pack abs" for a couple of weeks when I was 46. Not bad.