What do you think of when you think about losing weight? Does your mind immediately conjure up images of being on a diet: meager portions, calorie counting, not being able to have any of the foods that you love? If you are trying to lose weight in that way it can be discouraging, but did you know that there is another way? A way where you are not feeling deprived, where you are not looking at meager portions, or left counting calories? It is the magic of 100. That being 100 calories. Just making a shift of 100 calories a day can turn into 10 or more pounds of weight loss over the course of the year. And the great thing about the 100-calorie plan is all it takes is a couple of conscious decisions to experience results.

Here are some suggestions on how to easily trim 100 calories out of your day:

• Spread your waffle with 2 tablespoons of maple syrup instead of 1 tablespoon of margarine or butter
• Eat ¾ of a cup of oatmeal instead of 1 ½ cups
• Eat a small bagel instead of a medium one
• Have 6 ounces of tortilla chips instead of potato chips
• Replace Swiss cheese with mozzarella on your sandwich
• Have a turkey breast sandwich instead of salami
• Choose thin crust pizza instead of thick crust
• Have vegetable soup instead of broccoli cheddar soup
• Replace a glass of juice with a glass of water
• Use mustard on your sandwich instead of mayonnaise
• Don’t eat the shell from your taco salad
• Remove the skin from roasted chicken
• Replace ice cream with sherbet
• Have a snack size candy bar instead of the full-size
• Replace the pepperoni on your pizza with Canadian bacon
• Skip the fried rice and order steamed rice
• Top your pasta with red sauces instead of cream-based ones
• Substitute no-sugar-added jelly or jam for standard varieties
• Choose water-packed tuna over oil-packed
• Skip the croutons on your salad
• Replace the cheese on your sandwich with lettuce, tomatoes, pickles and onion
• Choose apple, blueberry, or peach pie over pecan or cream pies
• Order small or medium drinks instead of large ones
• Order a vinaigrette dressing instead of a mayonnaise-based one
• Don’t super-size
• Order grilled chicken sandwiches rather than breaded

If you’re one of those over-achievers: a word of caution. While it may be tempting to make four or five of these changes to amp up your weight loss, it will backfire. The “magic” of this 100-calorie strategy is that the shifts are so small they are relatively unnoticeable. But if you’re working on four or five of them at once it’s going to take a lot of focus. It won’t take long before you start to feel like you’re dieting again and you’ll eventually quit.

The best strategy is to work on one or two shifts until they become automatic, and then add another one or two.

The notion of weight loss triggers an array of negative feelings: failure from past attempts, struggle, difficulty, anxiety. But it doesn’t have to be that way. It can feel lighter and more easy-breezy if you allow it to. Let go of the notion of losing 20 pounds in 20 days. It sets you up for failure. Choose to adopt a simpler approach and exercise some patience. Eliminating 100 calories a day will take a little time to produce results but it’s a low-effort plan you’ll be able to stick to long-term.

Author's Bio: 

Lynn Smith, of Health Coach Team, empowers women to elevate their self-care and lose weight, creating a shift in confidence and self-esteem. Through her Weight Loss Blueprint© System she helps women to lose weight and radiate. For articles, tips and resources go to http://www.healthcoachteam.com