A Magic Pill

If you missed it, I wrote a guest post for Mizfit Online. Here it is:

A Magic Pill

“How did you do it?”

That is the question I get a lot when people find out I lost over 100 pounds. I then proceed to tell them just how I did it. And I watch their faces fall.


I counted my calories.

“Oh, I can’t do that.” They say.

I started swimming.

“I hate exercising.”

Most of the time the conversation ends after that. No, I don’t have a magic pill that melted off my 110 pounds.  Many people aren’t interested in hearing any more after that.

The truth is, people have to decide for themselves when they are done being fat. No one else can make that decision for them. Concerned family members can’t guilt or browbeat them into losing weight. They have to hit rock bottom on their own.

Rock bottom is different for everyone. For me, it was 250+ pounds, size 24W jeans and pre-diabetes. Being labeled “obese” by my doctor was rock bottom. Being in my mid-20’s and not doing the typical things a 25 year old does was rock bottom.

2005 -250 pounds

Food addicts hitting rock bottom is no different than being an alcoholic and hitting rock bottom. It feels the same: despair, hopelessness, and worthlessness. It feels like nothing is ever going to change, nothing will ever be good again.

So you hit rock bottom and decide there MUST be a better way. There MUST be a change that is sustainable. There must be something I can do to be happy. Once you have that realization, there’s no turning back.

110 pounds is a lot of weight to lose.

Not only that, I did it without doing any programs. Jenny Craig, Atkins, Weight Watchers, Slim Fast, Medifast…all of those programs are expensive! And what happens when the program stops? Often times the weight comes back (and more).

Instead, I taught myself how to eat the right way. I learned what serving sizes were. Once I got started, there was no turning back. It’s hard to “unknow” something. I look at food completely differently now.


Eating half a carton of ice cream in one sitting….I can mentally calculate the calories and that stops me short. Deciding what to drink at the bar….One beer has 170+ calories in it….but a shot of Vodka is about 100.

There are a million and one choices I make regarding food.

You may read that and think, “Wow, she’s taken all the FUN out of food and eating.”

NOT TRUE!! I assure you I still eat good food. But it’s about eating in moderation and eating for the right reasons (something I’m still learning).

I could eat half a pizza by myself in one sitting (and I have–many times). But now I know how that will make me feel. I make a different choice now.

I love carbs. Give me a slice of freshly baked bread and I’m in heaven.

Now I eat carbs the day before a long run to fuel my body and keep me from crashing. I eat carbs but I eat them in moderation and solely for fuel. If I didn’t, if I gave into ever whim I had, I’d be fat.

Reach the Beach 2010

Unused carbs turn into fat in the body.  I eat protein after a good weight lifting session in the gym to repair my muscles. I eat dessert almost every evening because I definitely have a sweet tooth. However, I eat it in moderation and make healthier choices.

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anaiis Nin

Every day is a different challenge. I love that challenge.

No, I don’t have a Magic Pill. Losing weight takes determination and hard work. Losing weight takes a desire to change.

How do you want to change your life?

Author: Lisa Eirene

About Lisa Eirene Lisa lost 110 pounds through calorie counting and exercise. She swims, bikes, runs, hikes and is enjoying life in Portland, Oregon. Her weight loss story has been featured in First Magazine, Yahoo Health, Woman's Day and Glamour.com.

15 thoughts on “A Magic Pill”

  1. Lovely post. I enjoy your blog because you eat REAL food (and real GOOD food, not just piles of vegetables – and beer, and wine, and sweets, etc) and seem to be one of the few out there who have genuinely found a healthy balance. Keep it up, chica!

  2. What a great post. I have a lot of the same reaction when I tell people how I lost my 95 pounds. Sometimes people just wish it was easy as taking a pill (don’t we all) but when they hear they have to re-learn how to eat and think that is just too hard for some.

  3. Great post – I agree with Shelby that you eat GOOD REAL food. I love your magazine pics! And your Reach the Beach always makes me excited to get back on my bike and TRAIN. Boo yeah!

  4. It is really funny how quickly some people will dismiss plain old fashion diet and exercise after asking how I’ve lost weight. They immediately launch into the “oh I could never do that” routine.

    You are right. There is no magic pill.

    Eat less. Move more. It is that simple.

  5. I really love your current picture, you look amazing!! I may have already told you, but you accomplished a really hard thing, and you deserve the praise!
    I know, aren’t people silly? Oh, you eat right & exercise? Isn’t there a better way? NOPE. It takes a strong willed person to do those things.
    And I wouldn’t say you take the fun out of eatting, you get fun out of the exercise and eatting the fuel that exercise!

  6. You have the most amazing story Lisa. You look great in that latest picture. It boggles my mind what we can do when we put our mind to it.

    Good Real food is a plus. I get tired of the usual “I eat massive salads everyday” type blogs.

  7. I agree with everyone else….great post! I totally resonate with what you’re saying about you have to hit rock bottom and decide to stop being fat for yourself. It’s also really interesting how people don’t want to hear that you did it the hard way. I haven’t gotten that yet…people are still just wow’d that I’m doing it (nearly 40 lbs gone!). Thanks for the encouragement and viewpoint!

  8. It actually makes me sad when people don’t want to hear anymore after you’ve told them about counting calories and exercising. I feel sad for those people because they “bluff” themselves.

  9. Hi Lisa!

    What always baffles me is people who ask you “how did you lose your weight” and you tell them and then they don’t want to talk about it anymore.

    Its simple you eat less, burn more!

  10. It DOES take hard work and determination! Sometimes I feel that slipping from my grasp, and then I think, I’ve come too far to go back now! I’ve lost about 45 lbs. and I want to lose at least 55 more, and I KNOW I can do it! Counting calories, exercising, it’s not a magic pill, but it feels damn good when all that hard work makes the pounds slip away!

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