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Update on Elizabeth

Elizabeth Dott, creator of the getfit4dogagility yahoogroup, updates us on her weight-loss progress.

(Elizabeth's story begins here.)

Well, it has been seven weeks since I first started this weight-loss journey and posted my first YouTube video and I must say the time has gone so quickly.
I would like to say I have followed my plan by the book and I have been perfect, but that is just not the truth. Actually I have won and lost some battles. This is how I look at my weight loss struggles. I am a food addict and every day I wage a war to make the right choices. Some days I find it is easy to win. Other days it is about impossible. In spite of this, I have lost 22 pounds and I have kept going. I have learned something as well this time. This time when I lose a battle I accept it and start over. I think that is what it takes to conquer any kind of addiction. Instead of cheating, giving up, and saying it is too hard, you have to keep going.
I would like to tell you I am following a set plan. For the most part I am, but I now realize following a plan perfectly does not work in the real world all the time. Because of this I picked the easiest plan that fit in with my busy lifestyle. I had done Weight Watchers with some success a few years back and found it was the easiest plan to follow. Their plan allows you to eat in any situation and still remain on track. Instead of a diet it is a lifestyle change. This is the plan I try to follow when I get up in the morning and most of the time I succeed. As their plan advises, I try to write down everything I eat which helps me be accountable to myself, but there are days I find myself too busy.

It's not that I don't know exactly how many calories are going into my mouth at any given time. Ask anyone who has a weight problem how many calories are in something and they can tell you exactly and probably quote you the fat and fiber content as well. This is because we have started and failed so many diets in the past. Heck I could probably be a dietician. Since I know what foods I can have and should stay away from, I can pretty much follow my own plan and have created one perfect for myself. I think this is key in diet success.
I started by cutting out the things I really could live without or learn to live without. Soda was a big one for me. I drank almost 10 cans of soda a day. Sodas are now out and instead I opt for water or unsweetened tea for the caffeine I need in the morning. This eliminated thousands of calories from my diet. Another elimination was real butter. I now use spray butter with 0 calories in it.  I gave up french fries for salad and changed from very fattening ranch to oil and vinegar for my salad dressing. I also opted for a lower calorie cereal and measure my peanut butter I put on my toast. I eat twice as many veggies as meats and try to eat a serving of fruit for every meal.
Then I evaluated what I could not live without. This was occasional dessert, fast food once or twice a month and a really good bag of popcorn at night when I watch late night TV followed by one Weight Watchers chocolate chip cookie and a glass of milk before bed. I find that the other sacrifices totally opens up these things from have "nots" to "haves". After all, I am in no way a saint and could not live the rest of my life not eating what I want on occasion.
The bottom line is, in order to succeed, you have to do some soul searching and find what works for you long term. This will lead you on a path to complete success. Until then, keep waging the war and you will find that you will come out a winner.
One last note, I want to thank all of you who have written or joined our get fit for dog agility group. I commend all of you for taking the big step to change your lives.

Elizabeth Dott lives in Orlando Florida and has been competing in USDAA events since 1994. She owns three Border Collies and competes with her two girls, ADCH Golden Gem's Airtight Alibi and I'll Fly with You Sophie MAD. She is a dog groomer and student pursuing a degree in Marketing and Advertising.


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