Get And Stay Motivated For Weight Loss Success
When the ball dropped in Times Square for New Year’s, were you one of those people with a finely crafted and detailed weight loss plan, only to watch that plan fail a few weeks later? You’re certainly not alone, as the majority of people who make New Year’s resolutions fail them within a month or so. However, it’s not impossible to stay dedicated to a healthy diet and a healthy lifestyle to enable you to achieve long-term weight loss success. You just have to acquire the right tools and techniques to set yourself up on a weight loss journey that is protected from the sabotage from poor motivation. Read on to learn more about how you can get and stay motivated for healthy eating.
Although it may seem counter-intuitive, the best way to begin a weight loss program is to accept yourself the way you are now. This doesn’t mean that you’re going to accept the weight you’re currently at, but that you’re going to value yourself as a person no matter what the scale says. Feeling bad about yourself will only lead you down a path of negative and defeatist thinking, creating another obstacle between you and your desired weight. Try to focus more on taking care of your body by nourishing it with good, wholesome food and lessening the weight on your bones, joints and internal organs. When exercising, concentrate on how strong and flexible your body is becoming. By focusing on the utility of your body and what it can do, you can focus less on its appearance.
Define Your Goals
Before you begin your weight loss program, it’s important to define your goals. You may not believe how many people start a diet without any clear goals or yardsticks to measure their progress. Even more common, people tend to set unrealistic goals that are at best difficult and unhealthy to achieve, and at worst, completely impossible. This is why weight loss diets tend to have a high failure rate; because dieters become discouraged when they are unable to achieve their unrealistic goals.
Health experts recommend weight loss of only one to two pounds per week to ensure optimal health and prevent weight gain down the road. “The faster you lose weight, the quicker you put it back on,” is a common adage that is all true for many people. Instead of focusing on the numbers on the scale, pay attention to the way your body feels with your new diet and exercise program.
Take Baby Steps
Most health experts recommend that when dieting, or making any type of habitual change in your life, you should start out by taking baby steps. Developing small, realistic benchmarks on your way to your desired weight can go a long way in boosting your self-esteem and providing the encouragement you need to keep going. Begin your new healthy lifestyle change by incorporating a minor change each day, or each week if necessary. You can begin by simply adding more walking to your daily routine, such as parking farther from your office or the grocery store, or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. As for your diet, you could try adding a few more glasses of water each day while cutting back on sugary drinks, or replacing your white bread with whole wheat bread for your sandwiches. These small changes will add up over time.
When trying to achieve any weight loss success, you need to have a firm knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses. Do you have a weakness for salty food? A sweet tooth? Try to eliminate those foods from your home. It’s impossible to give into your urges when the objects of them aren’t available. Are you an emotional eater? Pay attention to how you’re feeling to determine if you’re truly hungry, or if you’re merely eating to comfort yourself or ease your boredom. If necessary, you can visit a therapist to help you get a handle on your emotions so they won’t be a detriment to your new healthy lifestyle.
Beating yourself up over your mistakes is never a helpful dieting technique. If you make a mistake, just tell yourself that mistakes will happen from time to time, and move on. It’s vital to move on from your mistakes and remember that “tomorrow is another day,” a new opportunity to do the best you can. If you find that you are frequently giving in and bingeing, make sure that your diet isn’t too stringent, and allow yourself a treat every now and then.
Be Patient with Thyself
This is the twin companion to forgiving yourself. Weight loss does not happen overnight, and like any new habit, it can take several weeks to truly become comfortable with your new healthy eating and lifestyle. Make sure that you’re eating enough food to keep you satisfied, and never starve yourself, or you will be setting yourself up for failure. Try to treat yourself to a nice gift, such as a trip to the spa, a new book you’ve been wanting to read, whenever you reach one of your milestones. Your milestones could include losing five pounds or getting to the gym five days last week for the first time.
Simply put, most people do not move nearly enough. Health experts recommend that you incorporate at least thirty minutes of cardiovascular activity five to six days a week for optimal health. Strength training is also beneficial for weight loss success as the more muscle you have, the more calories you will burn, even while sitting. Getting moving can be as simple as taking the stairs instead of the elevator every day at work, or taking a walk on your lunch break. Try to find activities that are interesting for you. If the treadmill isn’t your thing, why not try swimming or cycling? The key is to find an athletic activity that will keep you motivated.
Once you’ve found the key to getting and staying motivated, your desire to stick to healthy eating and regular exercise will grow with you. Remember that the process of losing weight is in many ways, more mental than physical. Weight loss success will be within your reach as soon as you set your mind upon it.