Long-term maintainers may continue with some behaviors that helped them lose weight, but not all. Maintaining needs to feel easy and not as hard as losing. In order to achieve this, you need to focus on something called "habit forming."
The people who have had hostile reactions to my diet -- despite my best attempts to stay under their radar -- are either overeaters or heavy drinkers, or both. Once they fire a shot, I back away. Call me crazy. And while you're at it, color me healthy. And very happy.
This is where the real weight loss work comes in. It's not so much losing the weight, although that can be challenging for sure, but what follows that determines one's success, or lack of it, at keeping the weight off.
This is who I am now, someone who takes care of herself -- and is consumed by things more interesting than what's on the scale. Junk food still calls, obviously. But I don't answer. And that feels terrific.
No matter what your most tempting foods are, you can still have them -- in moderation and in healthy portions. And with tools like measuring cups, we can eat well and not overdo it to the point of triggering a binge.
Variety may be the spice of life, but it seems to be the undoing of eating well. It's much easier to call it good when the choices are limited. Subject someone to a buffet and there's a tendency to want to at least sample everything -- and to go back for seconds, and thirds, and fourths.
I realized that keeping my portions and food choices in mind was something I was going to have to stay committed to for the rest of my life -- assuming I wanted to keep fitting into my newly aquired "regular size" clothes.