Hey there, and welcome to my blog for a super special post that’s near and dear to my heart. Today is the start of the third year of my keto journey! (insert balloons and confetti here) That means I’ve spent two years on the keto diet, and boy oh by, I’ve learned a lot. I honestly can’t believe it’s been this long and I’m so happy I’ve found something that really works for me. If you’re curious about my keto journey, and how I’ve made keto sustainable for long-term use, read on! I can’t wait to tell you how much my life has changed along the way.
Why I Started Keto
Some of you may already know my “why,” but if you don’t check out this YouTube video!
The Hardest Part
Honestly, the hardest part of this journey was finding the intersection of “Why” and “Why Not” and deciding which path to take. It’s so easy to be comfortable in what’s always been “normal” for you that it’s hard to see the benefit of something that hasn’t happened. People get really stuck on what could go wrong. If you’re thinking about starting keto (or anything new in your life, really), I encourage you to think about what could go right.
Let’s do a visualization activity.
Think of something you know you need to change. I’m sure you’ve been thinking about it for a while. If you visualize yourself in a year after doing nothing to change, where will you be? What about in 2 years? 5 years? 10? The list goes on. Whether you need to make a change for your health or your happiness, this visualization can be scary.
Now think about what could happen if you just try your best every day. Where would you be in a month? 6 months? 12 months? And so on, and so forth.
There is definitely a learning curve that comes along with starting something new. You have to go into it with the mindset that you will fail but you will pick yourself back up and keep going because you are resilient. Remember that failure is vital to the learning process, so when you mess up, congratulate yourself! You learned something new about what works/what doesn’t and how you innately respond to that. And then use what you know to put yourself back on track.
How I Stayed Motivated
There are loads of ways to stay motivated, but it all boils down to your “why.” Once you have a goal in mind and a strong reason to follow through with it, you can use external resources to help you. I’ve used Reddit’s r/xxketo forum for tons of support in the beginning when I thought I was going to quit. Instagram has a ton of useful information, but you’re going to have to weed out the “crap accounts” that are basically money mills. You’ll know you’re looking at one when the page is full of stolen content that’s used to push some sort of 28 day program and/or ketones. Don’t follow these accounts.
TikTok is an incredible new resource for keto dieters looking for accountability and support. I also highly recommend ruled.me, Diet Doctor, and Keto Connect for beginner information.
If you don’t want to surf the web for a billion different pages on keto, you can also download my ebook that will help you start keto (for free). Here’s the link to get your copy.
Is Keto Sustainable For Long-Term Use?
The real question here is, is anything sustainable? If you set yourself up to succeed (e.g. research and coordination with a health professional), then yes, 100%, absolutely. I’ve had my health checked since losing weight and starting maintenance and my blood panel was perfect. I’m much more active than I used to be. I don’t have the issues with asthma and join pain that I used to have. And I don’t spend all day thinking about how much I hate the way I look or how restricted I feel.
I met my goal weight at the end of 2018 (around 7-8 months on keto) and began maintenance at the beginning of 2019. The only difference in my way of eating is that I eat the correct amount of calories to maintain weight (instead of a calorie deficit) and I hover around 30 net carbs or less on a daily basis, instead of 20 or less.
If you’re looking to use keto to lose weight, there’s no dirty secret. There’s also no product that can guarantee it. The trick is to get in ketosis by eating correctly proportioned macros AND eat a moderate calorie deficit. I don’t recommend deficits greater than 25%, and if you don’t have a lot of weigh to lose, I recommend 20% or less of a deficit. This will keep you from experiencing burnout.
What I’ve learned through this process is that the only way to find success on a meal plan is to do something you can maintain long-term. Yo-yo dieting is seriously rough on your body and mind. It gets you stuck in this continuous cycle of gain/loss and you never get to stop to just enjoy your body and how hard it works for you. If you’re used to the dieting cycle, I encourage you to ditch it and start something that you can continue after you’ve reached a maintenance weight. And remember, your body is doing everything it can to make sure you are able to do the things you want to do (AND to keep you alive, duh!), so be kind to yourself.
Here’s to 2 full years of a weight loss, maintenance, self-love journey.
Until next time,