Hi, I'm a 21 year old female, 5'2", feeling chubby (although also strong) at 130 lbs. I've been eating mostly Paleo for about 6 months. However, I have a history of binge eating and general anxiety towards food; dealing with that is a major life goal right now. I've improved but still have a tendency to overeat and crave non-Paleo foods.
My problem: Over the last year I developed patellar maltracking problems, which means my knees hurt all the time. I used to do lots of high-intensity exercise to keep myself feeling and looking good. Now I can't run, walking hurts without braces, and squats or lunges are out. I need to spend most of the time I would ordinarily devote to workouts, doing tedious physical therapy exercises instead.
I am somewhat active now doing aerial arts (silks, trapeze etc), upper-body weightlifting, Pilates, and swimming when I'm desperate for cardio (although I find that pretty boring). I'm frustrated by my limited athletic abilities, though. I want to lean out to improve my self-esteem and take some of the load off of my knees.
HOW DO I LOSE WEIGHT WITHOUT THE CARDIO? I don't want to count calories. I want to find a way to eat instinctively so I get the right amount for my body while losing fat at a steady pace. My basal metabolic rate would be around 1400 kcal, FWIW. I'm eating in a college cafeteria with about two meals a day, and I tend to crave comfort food when I have to study.