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I Lost 45 Pounds and Kept It Off With These Simple Changes

Katie Dunlap reveals what she did to lose weight sustainably.
FACT CHECKED BY Christopher Roback

Do you want to lose weight by making a few simple changes to your diet? Katie Dunlop (@LoveSweatFitness) is an influencer who lost 45 pounds and went on to become a certified personal trainer, helping others achieve their weight loss goals. In a viral YouTube video, she "really racked her brain" and revealed everything she did – and stopped doing – to lose 45 pounds "and keep it off for like eight-plus years now," she says.

I Stopped Over Exercising

Citizen in grey sport trousers holding the kettlebell between her legs by the handle with both hands

"Number one thing I stopped doing that helped me lose all of that weight was over-exercising," says Katie, explaining that what she did for years caused her "to fail" because she would go like full throttle crazy thinking I needed to work out for an hour or two hours every single day." However, after a few weeks, she would "crash and burn so hard and end up doing nothing for probably a month or two."

Why? Because It Leads to Burn Out

"So it's like these big highs and lows, right? You like to go full craziness, and you just get burnt out.," she says, adding that your body "can't handle that mentally" and "you get tired and exhausted." And "if you're not setting up goals in a strategic way and giving yourself micro-goals, you're gonna end up failing because you don't have that constant motivation. You're not seeing results right away, and all you're feeling is exhausted and tired, and that does not work for anyone. So I had to give up over-exercising and find a way to move my body every day and start healthy habits and really just start to build."

Commit to 10 Minutes of Exercise Daily

Attractive sport woman in sportswear use smart watch outdoors at urban environment

"I just committed to 10 minutes every single day, and that usually turned into more than 10 minutes. But 10 minutes was super manageable, and it made sure I wasn't overdoing it so that I could be consistent over time," says Katie.

I Stopped Weighing Myself Daily

Check your body shape with white weight scales, top view.

"Number two thing I stopped doing every single day, and this is one that if you take nothing else away from this, this is the one you need to make sure you do. I stopped weighing myself every day," says Katie. "I literally went through a period of time where I would weigh myself every single day."

Why? Body Weight Fluctuates Daily

Female leg is stepping on white scales at home

"And here's the thing, you guys: Your body weight fluctuates every single day," she points out. "It can depend on how much food you've had, if you've gone to the bathroom if you've been drinking a ton of water if you're on your period. All of those things and more can impact your body a couple of pounds here and there. So, if you're weighing yourself every day, it is going to be devastating and discouraging when you're trying to reach goals and make changes. If you're seeing the scale go up and down and up and down, you gotta stop doing it."

Instead, I Weighed Myself Every Four Weeks and Took Photos and Measurements

A woman at the gym takes a picture to send to friends or put on social networks and takes the picture while smiling. Concept of: network, friendship, gym, fitness

"What I started doing was setting a goal for myself to weigh myself every four weeks, but I also started taking photos and measurements. And those two things are really important because there's more than just this number on the scale, right?" says Katie. "If you have a standard scale, all you're gonna get is a number. And what does that mean? Like there's so much more to it than your actual weight, and things change as you start to live a healthy lifestyle."

I Also Invested in a Comprehensive Scale

"The other thing I did was I started to use a better scale, like one that actually gives you more information," she says, revealing that she splurged on the Body Analyzer from Vanity Planet. "You guys, this is the best at-home scale you can get because it not only tells you your overall weight, but it breaks down your water weight, your bone density, your muscle mass," she continues, "so you can get more information and understand as you're making change, if you're gaining fat, if you're gaining muscle, like how much water weight is in there." She recommends using it once a month.

RELATED: Lose 30 Pounds in 3 Months Without Starving Yourself

I Stopped Comparing Myself to Others

Young happy beautiful woman looking in the mirror satisfied with the results of her training.

"The third thing I stopped doing, and this one is tricky, I stopped scrolling so much," she says. "I literally used to get trapped on Facebook and Instagram when it first started coming around and just scrolling and scrolling and looking at people and comparing myself and scrolling through magazines."

It Was "So Unhealthy"


"We're constantly bombarded by images of people that we think we're supposed to look like. I compared myself to my friends. I compared myself to other women I saw in real life and on TV, and on the internet everywhere. And it's so unhealthy. Like it was probably one of the most emotionally draining things that I was doing for myself," she explains. It "was really causing me to get back into these depressed moods that wouldn't allow me to have the motivation to keep going because I'd be like, 'I can never get there. I'm never gonna look like that.' But the thing is, you're not supposed to look like that," she points out. "You're supposed to look like you like the healthiest version of you that you can possibly be."

If I Scroll and Think Negatively, I Stop and Say Something Positive

Insomnia and social media addiction concept. Young woman uses smartphone while lying in bed at night, toned

"What I started doing is I gave myself a little bit of a rule. I would say I could scroll all day long, but the second that my brain started either thinking negatively about someone I was looking at or thinking negatively about myself, I had to stop, and I had to say something positive. And I think that's good because depending on your mood, it can really dictate and impact how you feel and how you perceive information and like how you see things," she points out. "So just flip the script, be positive, and you'll feel so much better."

RELATED: What Happens to Your Body When You Stop Eating Processed Meats

I Stopped Netflix Binging

Woman holding popcorn and watching TV at home with Netflix logo on the screen.

"The fourth thing I stopped doing was binging so much on Netflix. And this one's hard 'cause I really love shows and movies. I just always have. But it's so easy to get sucked into like the Netflix or whatever, TV, YouTube, vortex when you're like off work, and you're tired, and you just wanna sit on the couch, and you then go into like watching land and then you don't get your workouts in, or you're like more likely to snack mindlessly, right?"

Instead, I Did Productive Things

Cheerful diverse young girls sitting together in sports studio before starts training giving high five feel happy and healthy, close up focus on hands. Respect and trust, celebration and amity concept

"So I stopped binging, but sort of, I just flipped it. So I was like, okay, well, I'm not gonna just like sit here for three hours and watch a bunch of TV 'cause now I'm not being productive. I'm getting more tired and not wanting to go do things even more," she says.

My Rule Is, I Can Watch My Shows While Doing Cardio

Rear view of young woman walking on treadmill

"So now my rule is I either have to be on the treadmill doing cardio to watch my Netflix shows, or I have to have already worked out," she explains. "So if it didn't already work out, then I'm not gonna watch it. Or if I really, really wanna watch it, then I like to go to the gym and go on the treadmill."

I Gave Up Diets

Ketogenic low carbs diet concept. Healthy eating and dieting with salmon fish, avocado, eggs and nuts. Top view

And the final but most important sacrifice she made? "You gotta give up diets," she says. "So we all have a diet, but you need to stop being on diets. The difference is that a healthy diet is just like how you fuel your body and nourish yourself every single day, right? Your diet is your nutrition, how you're feeding yourself." She says that she tried every diet under the sun, "and I ended up sick after most of 'em. If I ever lost weight on them, I gained it all right back, which is like fluctuating up and down, jacked up my metabolism."

RELATED: Irresistible Smoothie Recipes to Kickstart Your Weight Loss Journey in 30 Days

I Added Healthier Things Instead of Being Overly Restrictive

Eggplants and other vegatables on display at farmer's market

"You have to find something that works in your life that you can maintain long term all the time," she continues. "So I focused on adding healthier things into my diet all the time. Instead of cutting stuff out and restricting, I would add things in, add more veggies, add more water, like add more of the good stuff so you have less room for the bad stuff. And then I would start eliminating certain things where I'm like, okay, well, I know these really, really bad processed carbohydrates aren't good for my body. And so, what can I swap those for? That's a healthier option without giving up carbs because we need them."

💪🔥Body Booster: Start with just 10 minutes of exercise each day. Keeping it short and simple makes it easier to stay consistent over time.

Leah Groth
Leah Groth has decades of experience covering all things health, wellness and fitness related. Read more