My Lifestyle Change

My Lifestyle Change


It all began in June of 2012, My Lifestyle Change. I had quit smoking, with the help of Vaping. Fearing that I would gain weight, as I had heard, many former smokers will. At that time, I weighed about 235 and did not want to get any further north of that weight. Click here if you want,  you can check your BMI here

Looking at several different diet plans, none of them were attractive to me. Realizing that I am not the type of person that takes restrictions very well. I could see me failing fast on the plans I was looking to try.

Reading up on my dilemma, rediscovered an idea, calories in, calories out. Seem too simple, but you also need to be sure you are eating the correct foods. And the proper nutrition is paramount. You must keep a check on this.

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Portion control is not difficult. Although, at times it can be frustrating. Any package of food will have a Nutrition Facts on the package Get in the habit of reading these labels. I did. There is a lot of information there, there could be more. Pay careful attention to the serving size and the calories.

You will get, if you don’t now, a good feel for portion sizes, what a cup looks like or what 3 ounces of chicken breast looks like. In the beginning, I weighted or measured everything. Got myself a digital kitchen scale, works wonderful.

Whatever I am planning to eat, I weight it. Some foods you may want to weigh after cooking, see how much fat or water cooked off and now you don’t have to eat.

Superfood Smoothies click here

You can get the correct calories and serving sizes, from a calorie counting app on your phone. I use MY FITNESS PAL. This one works excellent.

And it is free, that’s always good, right? Then you tell them what kind of life you lead. First one that says party, party, party is disqualified.

Just active or sedentary or in between, this will make a big difference in the calorie you are allowed. Not that they will punish you. But surely you will punish yourself, you will, right? Sometimes there is a little pain in a Lifestyle Change,


When you start with My Fitness Pal, you fill out your profile, your weight and your goal weight, also the amount of weight you want to lose per week. Log all your meals, beverages, water. The calories you are “allowed” will be displayed at the top. Your job is to finish the day under that number.

You will need to know how much you have eaten or drank to input your meals. For instance: chicken breast, baked, boneless, skinless if you put that in the search a list will come up of different portions and other options.

Such as some dishes from restaurants. Pick the one that is right and change the portion size to match your meal, then calories are assigned. Don’t worry, it is not as involved at it seems.

There are many other calorie counting apps and websites, look them over and find one you like. For my zero cost, My Fitness Pal is easiest and has been completely free of freeze ups or crashes. And there is the nutrition information you need, right in the app, for the foods you have entered.

You will need to figure out how many calories you want to “spend” on any food you are considering, based on the calories you are allowed. You should split them up between your 3 meals.  Don’t forget you can “earn” extra calories by working out. Of course if you “eat” your exercise calories, losing the weight will be much slower or not at all.

I’m a pizza lover, my favorite is New York hand tossed pepperoni, almost 400 calories a slice. Believe me I can devour 4 slices without batting an eye. On a 2300 calories, a daily limit, team that up with a couple beers,  I am done for the day!!!

You may have foods like that you love, you do not have to give them up. A Lifestyle Change does not have to mean restriction forever.



This is what allows you to have your favorite, fat laden, sodium time bomb food. Would you like that? It is what I do and I don’t see why you could not.

The trick, as far as what I did, was to stretch the time out as far as you can. The pizza example above, occurs about every two weeks sometimes three. Not too, long is it? Considering I love pizza and used to eat it about 4-5 times per week.

Of course, back then I was tipping the scales over 250. Now 187. Not just the pizza, beer, burgers, fries and all the “good” stuff. These things, I still eat, only not very often.
Moderation is a large help for me, it may be for you also. Remember, it is a Lifestyle Change, not a diet.


What occurred when I started my lifestyle change, I am at a loss to explain. But I will attempt to do just that. More than a wish to be better, healthier, stop taking pills and feel stronger and fitter.

It was a passion, a desire, a will that would not be denied, a knowledge that I would not stop, would not quit, no matter what occurred. A commitment.

I thought of my granddaughter, just 12 this year. I plan to dance with her on her wedding day. I’m not going to do it with a cane or from a wheelchair. A snappy little swing number is what I am thinking. Sound good? By the way, I’m 63. And I will do this, and do it right, even if I’m 85-90.



When I was starting. this lifestyle change I knew there was going to have to be some burning off calories. So, joining a gym was the easiest solution. Most have a multitude of machines, weights, classes for different things. And of course about any piece of cardio equipment you can envision.

Walking is an excellent way to burn off some calories. Hiking, riding bicycle, playing sports in general. Board games do not count as sports!! Ya think?

BE SURE before any physical exertion, check with your doctor. And stretch and warm up, failure to do these things increases your chance for an injury. Ouch!  We don’t want that, do we??


How do you know if this program is helping? You will be losing the healthy slow way. You will be seeing your doctor, pay attention to your blood tests.


They should, they will improve each time you get one. Cholesterol, the good (HDL) will come up and the bad (LDL) down, your triglycerides (fat in your blood) will go down and all the other items will improve. If you are eating right and getting some exercise.

Before starting any duet or exercise, you should meet with your doctor. Of course if it takes 4-6 months to get an appointment. At least talk to a doctor.


There is no doubt in my mind you can accomplish this. You agree ?


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Astronomical Obesity Epidemic–Read Here

Mediterranean Review–Read Here

Vegetarian Review–Read Here

Vegan Review–Read Here

Paleo Review–Read Here

15 thoughts on “My Lifestyle Change

  1. Hello here. You joined the company of successful winners against laziness, the lack of self- eastern.
    I know that it is not easy to lose twenty pounds but you lost a lot more.
    I wish that more people would be conscious about their lifestyle and wellbeing. So many things we can do when we are healthy, feel flexible and energetic.
    Junk food just drains vitality because sugar makes own damage with the increase in insulin and leading to chronic diseases.
    Your website can be the place for inspiration and knowledge what to do when someone wants to lose weight.
    All the best, be healthy and wealthy, Nemira.

  2. Thanks for the great, user friendly tips!
    I haven’t installed my fitness pal yet, but I have several friends who swear by it. I have been meaning to do it, and you’ve motivated me to get it done!
    I generally eat healthy, natural foods and although I feel good, I like to manage what I do quite closely and I think using this app will help make it simple.

    1. Thanks for the comment, Joanne. That app gets a lot of my attention every day. Logging my meals/snacks and checking the blog for posts, recipes and information on physical activity. Sure you will love using it.

  3. I think the calories in versus calories out principle has some merit, but I believe it largely depends on the type of calories being consumed. People who eat virtually nothing but carbs are generally going to struggle with weight issues more than someone who eats balanced or consumed more proteins.

    Of course, exercise also plays a vital role. I think once a person is down to their ideal weight they can eat pretty much anything they want so long as they exercise enough, although eating healthy will feel a lot better than filling up on junk food.

    1. Thank you Darren for the comment. Calories in-out is basic, you also have to keep a close eye on you nutrition.

      Eating balanced is the goal each day. Knowing what you shouldn’t eat is as important. I have moderated the “bad” foods and remained nutritionally fine.

      Exercise is key, you cannot lose enough with diet changes alone. And it offers so many benefits.

      Come back again and visit again

  4. Hey Cowboy James,
    Great article, thank you for sharing. I love your story and it’s obvious it’s inspired you to not only make the changes yourself but to also share your experience and knowledge with others. I applaud you! I think you’ve hit on some key points, in particular portion control (how appropriate with Thanksgiving right around the corner) as well as finding a balance. It’s funny how so many people are “too busy” but the reality is it comes down to what’s important for each of us.
    Cheers! Mat A.

    1. Thank you. Portion control seems to be overlooked too often. It is all important, if they have time to eat, they should have time to do it right. My opinion.

      Thank you for the comments

  5. This is a very inspiring blog post, I’m glad that you were able to quit smoking and eat healthier. It must have taken lots of willpower and determination to do this, I applaud you. How long have you been a smoker? Have you noticed a difference in the way you feel and the way you look since you made these changes?

    1. Thanks for the comment. I was a smoker for about 45 years. I feel much better which I also attribute to working out and eating healthier.

  6. I totally agree with you that hard restrictions are definitely hard to maintain and I remember one time I try to go vegan and it was just too intense for me. I lasted about two weeks and slowly start to fall back into the cycle of eating meat. I love your style of natural weight loss rather than through diet pills pr some instant result product that doesn’t work.

  7. Thank you for being so candid about your health regime. You certainly seem to be doing well on it. I have always been a firm believer that all diets have the same principle. Eat less, move more. No matter how they market it. Eating the right foods are more beneficial to health than weight loss alone.
    I really like the idea of the fitness tracker and I think digital scales are a must buy for me too. I have never been great at portion sizes.

    1. Yes, Karen the good foods have the bonus of doing both jobs. The tracker and kitchen scale are invaluable to me.

      Thanks for the comment and come back again.

  8. I can actually vouch to the effectiveness of My Fitness Pal, as I have used it in the summer and have actually lost a stone. All I kept doing every day was stick to the calorie allowance by scanning each item of food I had. You are right, the secret is in the quantity as much as in the quality of your food. But, I soon had to learn that my body does not process sugar based food as fast – so, I soon had to give up all forms of biscuits, cakes, and of course the odd chocolate. Now I don’t adhere to the daily calorie count any more, as I have learned more or less which food and how much of it I’m allowed. But, should my weight start creeping up again, I know I can easily get back onto the program. So yes, all very good!

  9. Good to know a person is determined to have a change in lifestyle only and for the purpose of having physically fit.

    I really believe that change in lifestyle is based on one’s principle coupled with determination.

    I hope your readers will learn from your modeling as inscribed here on your site.

    1. Thanks for visiting and reading. being physically fit has many benefits, mentally and physically.
      I can use all the benefits I can get.

      have a great day Jimmy!

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