In 2007, after my third child was born and I weighed in at 255 to 260 pounds, a friend introduced me to Atkins. She had lost close to 100 pounds on the diet and thought it would be worth a shot. I tried it and immediately lost 20 pounds, but I had difficulty sticking with it. By that summer, I'd gained the weight back.
In early 2008, I recommitted to getting the weight off. I read up on the principles behind Atkins and decided to create my own plan. Ultimately, I discovered my "breakthrough" of meat, eggs, nuts, veggies and in-season fruits could best be described as the "Paleo" diet. On this plan, I dropped from 255 pounds to 215 in a few short months, and was soon expecting my fourth child. I stayed "Paleo" through my pregnancy and gained only, which I lost plus another 30 by the time my son with 6 months old. By his first birthday, I was down to 170 pounds.
Since the first few weeks of the diet, sticking to it and keeping the weight off haven't been problems. I cook most of my meals at home and enjoy experimenting with new combinations. After a few months, it became as natural to cook a Paleo meal as it had been to open a package of spaghetti. The biggest struggle has always been (and will always be) social events. It's often hard to find foods that fit the plan at a catered event or a small restaurant.
I'd still like to lose another 10 to 20 pounds, but, after four children, I count myself lucky to be at nearly the same size I was before pregnancy. Obesity after pregnancy runs rampant in my family, so even if I have a bit more weight to lose by the numbers, I think it's a win to be able to zip up pants I wore a decade ago.
The new Rebecca.
Convincing my children and ex-husband to get on board. Initially, none of them wanted to give up their usual meals.
Find places to buy meat by the animal and join a CSA, especially if you're starting your journey in late Spring. It was absolutely essential that I had a freezer packed with beef, pork, chicken and fish, and a fridge full of farm-fresh veggies. I never once struggled with having "nothing" to make for dinner that fit my plan.