I woke up this morning and, like so many other days, I hopped on the scale. I'm not really supposed to weight myself more than once a week, but when you are hovering at 59 lbs lost and waiting, waiting, WAITING to see the number go down by one more digit, you get a little...well...obsessed.
So, I sleepily stepped on and there it was. That one pound that I'd been waiting for was gone. It marked a 60 lb total loss for me in roughly one year. I just stood there for a minute, letting the moment wash over me. I was more than half-way to my ultimate weight loss goal of 115 lbs. 60 down and 55 to go.
I've blogged over the months about the various eating plans I've used to lose those 60 lbs. But the purpose of today is to give my verdict on Take Shape for Life, the program that helped me lose 14 lbs in 5 weeks.
Much of the info about the program can be found on my original post, The Next 50 Lbs: Diet Test-Drive: Take Shape for Life! There, you can read about how the program got started, what you get to eat and the incredible infrastructure and support system that is a major part of the plan.
For me: 5 Medifast meals a day + 1 "lean and green" protein and veggie meal + lots of water + some exercise = a 14 lb weight loss in 5 weeks. That is averaged out to 3 lbs per week, although for me it was really a large weight drop in the first week of 8.5, followed by another 1 - 1.5 lbs per week over the next 4 weeks.
There have been days when I have stepped off the program to enjoy a special occasion, but I have gone right back on plan for the next meal. There have also been a couple days where I go off of plan for the entire day. I don't really beat myself up over this. If I take a little break from the program I just jump right back on and all is well.
People have asked me about the cost of this program. It works out to roughly $11/day for the Medifast meals, plus maybe another $2-4 per day for my lean and green meal at night, for a total of about $15/day. If you look at a typical American diet day, it might look something like this, per person:
Starbucks Venti Frappucino - $4.95
Starbucks Breakfast Sandwich - $3.75
McDonald's Fast Food Lunch - $7
Homecooked Meal - $3
GRAND TOTAL: $18.70
Substitute the homecooked meal for a meal at a restaurant like Olive Garden or Outback Steakhouse and that $3 moves closer to $15 - $20 for a new grand total of $30.70 - $35.70.
So, $15/day isn't lookin' so bad now, is it?
I have tons of energy and interestingly, when I stick to plan I never feel hungry. I have found the items I love and I repeat order them. For instance, if I were stranded on a desert island with only the Beef Vegetable Stew, the Chocolate Crunch Bars and the Honey Mustard Pretzles, I'd be happy the rest of my days. Honestly.
The other thing I like about the program is the fact that once I reach my goal weight, I will move onto a Transition Plan that will help me transition back into eating 6 small meals a day of regular food, followed by a Maintenance Plan that will help me stay at my target weight.
I am in the process of becoming a certified health coach for the program because I firmly believe it is a safe, healthy road to weight loss. My recommendation: If you are thinking you'd like to try the program, you should contact me and I will help you get started.
There are plenty of ways to lose weight and Take Shape for Life is just one of them. But, my diet test-drive has proven to me that it works quickly and with a minimum of fuss.
My verdict: IT WORKS!