20 Changes I Made to Lose 100 Lbs and Save Money

Losing weight

By David Cummings

It’s funny how it’s the little things that seem to make clear what you have known all along, but refused to acknowledge. On March 20, 2011 I bent down to tie a shoe lace that had come loose — and I couldn’t. I literally stood there stunned. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t bend over to tie my shoe. It was at that moment that I realized that I had to do something about my growing weight problem.

There is no way to beat around the bush. It sucks to be overweight. It really sucks. It sucks almost as much as smoking. When I quit smoking, I started gaining weight. A lot of weight. About an extra 150 lbs. Then the shoe tying incident happene


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20 Responses to 20 Changes I Made to Lose 100 Lbs and Save Money

  1. Leeora says:

    And just think…no costly medical expense to have lap band surgery. I know someone that has lost the weight after having the surgery, but will never keep it off if they have to have it reversed for any reason. He/she still eats the same food that got him/her to being overweight, just not much of it. The way I see it, you are so much further ahead.

  2. Greenday says:

    Can I just say that I think that it took a lot oc courage to write this. It’s not easy sharing things that society doesn’t look favorably upon such as excess weight. You should be proud of yourself and I hope to hear back again when that last 50 pounds is also lost.

  3. Lee says:

    Amazing article! There are some very practical and useful ways you’ve mentioned to lose weight. I like how you talked in depth about your weight loss and how you’ve achieved it. I have 50 pounds I need to lose, and I can see how to do this, step by step. I definitely could relate to all of the different triggers to overeating that you mentioned…it was like you were talking about my struggles. Keep up the good work, and get the word out, if you decide to blog about your weight loss. I know many people could benefit, including myself. Thanks.

  4. bben says:

    Congratulation on your weight loss. With today’s instant gratification lifestyle, it’s good to understand that it took years to put those pounds on – and you aren’t going to get rid of them and keep them off overnight by doing some fad diet.

    It seems as you are also eating much healthier and getting much more exercise as well. All three will help improve your health. And cutting out those expensive sugary sodas, overpriced snack foods and fatty fast foods are all great ways to save money as well. I don’t buy soft drinks or snack foods like potato chips. If they aren’t in the house, I don’t eat them. And I won’t go to the store a half mile away just to buy a snack. (saves money on gas too) And rarely go to a fast food place.

    My own preferred healthy snacks are the little bags of baby carrots. Yes, the small snack sized bags of carrots are more expensive, but if I get a larger bag, I eat more. And sliced apples. I do slice my own though.

    As for meal planning. I limit myself to one trip to the store a week. I don’t even allow myself to get bread when I run out. The only exceptions are when the grandkids are over and there just isn’t anything they will eat – except my apples, carrots, plums bananas and other fruit which are soon gone.

    A kitchen scale is a great help when you are making up meals in advance too. It keeps me from putting just a little bit more in each freezer bag.

  5. Neil says:

    Excellent article! I found that when I either attend a support group, e.g. Weight Watchers, or have a competition with a friend to see who loses the most weight, I stay on track. It wasn’t under I joined Weight Watchers that I lost 60 lbs. I’m going to apply a lot of these tips.

  6. Danielle says:

    thanks for all of your helpful tips. i havent eaten anything in two weeks. i drink only water. i cant exercise because i injured my back. even a ten minute walk immobilized me for a day and a half. i also tried working with a nutritionist. but i still havent lost even one pound. i’m baffled. i always hear about people losing weight after just a few days with the flu or after a stay in a hospital so i thought i would definitely see some loss by now. i know all the lectures, i.e. eat good foods and more often, get active, get into a program, blah blah blah. absolutely nothing has worked for me. but i thank you for inspiring me to try again. i have done a few of your “tricks” during previous attempts to lose weight. but you have some great ideas that i never thought of and i appreciate you sharing them. some of them i cant do, such as cleaning out the kitchen cupboards (i have a house full of kids and inlaws). but sitting to eat, pre-prepping meals, eating before i’m hungry, and a few more, are all great ideas i never thought of. a friend of mine has a rule of not eating anything after 7pm. and she says it helps her. i also used to try to make my “good food” meal just before the “bad food crew” gets in the kitchen and the grease starts sizzling. that way i can be a part of family dinner time instead of eating separately or sitting with them with an empty plate in front of me. my goal is to lose at least 75 lbs. so i guess tomorrow i’ll start eating again and if nothing else, at least i wont have to hear everyone nagging me to eat all the time. i’ll be thanking you every time i’m using one of your tips. wish me luck! and thank you again.

  7. Renee says:

    One additional tip that worked for us, we repackage all of our snack foods into individual serving sized bags. This way we never eat more than one serving. We found if we didn’t rebag everything when we unpacked the groceries, we kept putting it off.

  8. Minny says:

    Exercise, last night there was a TV programme, Horizon, about exercise which was very interesting. There was one idea that I found attractive. It is called NEAT and here is a link to an article about it. http://www.kcby.com/news/health/13565082.html

    It is, put simply, putting more movement into your everyday life. You do it when you take stairs rather than ride and park at the far end of the car park.

    As for healthy snacks, that’s a poser. I get around it by not eating many. The idea of going to the shop to buy unhealthy ‘treats’ is something we do as well and it works. There is a chocolate treat called a ‘Waggon Wheel’ which sometimes calls to me. The idea of the ten minutes walk there and again back usually quashes the craving!

    Good for you for realising that diets are useless for long term health. It is changing your life habits over time that works.

  9. Gail says:

    Danielle, your body has most likely gone into starvation mode and is trying to conserve calories. Not eating fro two weeks is not a good thing to do to your body. You should have much more success doing the things David mentioned.

    Congratulations David. Those are great ideas!

  10. Sydney says:

    David, You make some really excellent points here – and each of your tips are so easy to implement into daily life. We eat from salad plates and drink from 6 ounce glasses in my house. Always have. Whenever we go to a restaurant, my kids can’t believe how big the plates are – and they end up taking most of their food home for the next day. Getting a handle on portion size can do wonders for the grocery budget, as well.

  11. Barks says:

    You wanted a good source for healthy snacks. Check out paleomg.com

  12. baselle says:

    I enjoyed your list. I myself have lost 45 pounds over the course of 6 years, and I found a couple of new tips here. Might I add one of my own to help you:

    I Do Not Reward Myself with Food

    Especially with exercise, there is a big mindset out there that goes like this: I’ve (put your exercise) x miles, or worked out on (hated machine). Now I can have z food. Z food will easily undo everything you’ve done.

    As a lark, when I walk long distances, I look for change on the ground. I use what I find as my reward and it encourages me to walk more …. maybe I find that dollar bill windfall strewn on the ground in the next block.

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  15. Sophia says:

    I appreciate this article a lot as I would like to lose at least 100 pounds. I have enjoyed minor successes over the years (20, 30 and 50 pounds lost on different occasions)with various diets but would put it back on and them some…. I am tired of dieting and I am now ready to make life changes instead. Your strategies will help in that regard.

  16. Aaron says:

    David, your article really hits home for me. My weight gain happened when I quit smoking as well, and I put on the same amount of weight you did. My realization really hit when my family and I took a vacation a couple weeks ago and I saw myself in our photos. I don’t see myself being that big, but when I am able to see myself next to other people in a different perspective, it really hurts. Many of your tips sound like some that I have been wanting to implement for a long time, but just haven’t had the motivation. I do have it now. This is where my journey begins, and I truly hope I reach the same results you have made for yourself. You are an inspiration, and I am sure I will look to this article many times to keep myself on track. With that, I just want to say ‘Thank you’.

  17. Andrea says:

    Great article! These tips really do work if you stick to them consistently. I follow most of the tips myself and I’ve been able to lose 68 lbs in 11 months. I still have about 50 to go, but I know if I stick to it, the weight will be off in no time!

  18. Marianne says:

    I think this article has helped. Im overweight and need to lose it for various reasons . Im glad I came across to this. So far i wrote this stuff down and do farther research for me and try to see if it works. Im hoping to lose a good amounto weight before I graduate from high school in 2015.

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  20. Naffster says:

    I know this article is quite old now, but this has given me the inspiration to lose some of my weight. I am not good at sticking to diets and have tried and failed many fad diets. However, after reading this, I can see now that making simple lifestyle changes can actually be better for you. I am a student and don’t have a lot of money so this is perfect.
    I decided to make a ‘survival guide’ (haha) and in the new year I am going to follow it religiously. I know it’s going to be a lot of hard work, but this seems like a better, more sensible option, especially as it worked so well for you!

    A tip – a woman I worked with used to eat boiled eggs everyday for dinner, for a couple of months and lost a lot of weight by doing this. Obviously she dieted at the same time, but not where she followed the diet everyday, except for the eggs – she used to eat it with ryvita and a bit of salad. Not sure why but it worked for her and might work for other people too!

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