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Over the last many years, I have tried a LOT of things to lose weight. I mean, a lot a lot. First, there were the diet pills joined with eating better. Then there was just regular ole eating better and exercise. I lost a couple pounds that way but hovered at the same weight for a month before I got discouraged and ate an entire cake... haha! I tried Couch to 5k, in which I lost exactly zero fat but did gain stamina, which I appreciated... before I quit. In September last year, I drastically reduced my drinking, and this year, I am proud to say that I have only had one drink - and I was peer pressured into it.
I kept my calories below 1200, and swam 2 to 3 times a week. I did that for more than three months, with no change. It was the first time I had been really inspired to stick to my goal, and I felt like a failure.