The last weight loss challenge was called the 'Super Tracker Challenge'. Run by Nutracheck nutritionist Emma, the aim was to keep a consistent food diary for 66 unbroken days – even the days where you went over target (66 days being the time it takes to establish a new habit).
For brave members wanting an even tougher goal, there was the 'Extreme Super Tracker Challenge!' Not good enough to keep a food diary for the duration, but they had to make sure it was a perfect food diary – every day! Participants had their food diaries scrutinised by our nutritionist Emma, so there was no cheating!
The result? Both groups lost weight. But the 'Extreme Super Trackers' who stuck religiously to their targets lost MORE – twice as much in fact!
1) Forum member 'Dippyem'
Reading the very honest online blogs written by NC people who had successfully managed to lose weight and keep it off. I adapted what had worked for them as much as I could to suit my own needs. Not one of them claimed it was easy. They all say you have to put in the work and this was vital to me.
2) Forum member 'Granny68'
I plan my 5 a day, and enjoy oranges every day at the moment, but there are other fruits & veggies I am trying out. I feel that I must have my 5 a day.
Also I have learned to be honest with myself – and measure everything – including milk in my coffee/tea as I have a lot of hot drinks. Plan my day...."just do it today". Other tips – remove sweets, crisps, etc., from the kitchen. I also have cans and frozen packs of my 5 a day in, plus dried fruit as fresh fruit/veg first choice, might run out. Keep moving more. The perfect diary works! And don't give up!
3) Forum member 'Soo'
I eat out a fair bit so I always plan what I'm going to have ahead of time, otherwise it is just too easy to go off track! I try to stick to restaurants/ cafe's which provide nutritional information on their menu whenever I can to remove the guess work. If I do go somewhere that doesn't provide the nutritional info then I try to stick to simply prepared foods like grilled or poached fish and veggies.
I plan my workouts for the week on Sundays. Walking is by far my favourite exercise but I've been adding in couch to 10k and some dance workouts to challenge myself and add some variety.
4) Forum member 'Madhu'
My best advice is to plan in advance. I always fill my diary in at the start of the day so I know I'll stay on track. This way I can make allowances for my favourite foods, so I don't have to feel like I'm missing out. This was key for me too – still being able to enjoy the foods I love.
And join a Challenge to motivate yourself to exercise. The challenge spurred me on to make sure I always reached my 200 calorie burn target – even on a Sunday!
5) Forum member 'Costa Lady'
My top piece of advice for anyone wanting to stick to the plan is to always weigh and log everything you eat – I still do this every day even though I have now reached my target weight!
6) Forum member 'Amy-Liz'
Reach out to people – use the NC forums – share your achievements, have a rant. It's so much nicer to know you are not the only person in the world doing this! Also communicate with the people close to you. Make sure your family know you are serious about losing weight and ask for their support. Tell your best friend what you're doing so she doesn't drop round with a slice of cake or two (or three!) with tea.
7) Forum member 'Skinnyme'
Join a Challenge! I think the first motivating factor was the possibility of winning a prize! I really wanted to win and that was the carrot dangling in front of me all the time.
Secondly, I didn't want to let my team mates down, and so I applied myself as much as I possibly could. Their camaraderie was invaluable.
To sign up for the next weight loss 'Spring into Action Challenge', see the Challenges forum.
Nutracheck co-founder Rachel Hartley, BSc (Hons) Food & Nutrition is passionate about food and diet. Rachel's philosophy is providing accurate, up-to-date calorie information to help people make the right food choices.