Daily Weight Loss Tips and How to Stay Motivated
The secret to successful weight loss – where you lose it and keep it off – is planning.
Once you accept that there isn’t a secret formula or a magic pill, you are more likely to reach your goal. Following these guidelines will help:
- Be realistic. It likely took you a long time to get to where you are now, and it is going to take some time to get your body to look the way you want it to
- Know that weight loss is not a straight line. If you were to chart it on a graph, it would look like an EKG reading
- Understand that diets, even if they are promoted by a celebrity, are not the answer. Leading a healthy lifestyle is what will give you long-term success and happiness
- Ask for professional guidance if needed. You can’t be an expert in everything so let someone else help you
Healthy Habits to Adopt for Long-Term Weight Loss Success
- Plan your meals ahead of time. Make a grocery list and only buy what is on the list
- Set aside an hour or two each week to prep your meals. Invest in enough storage containers to separate your meals in your freezer and refrigerator. Containers that can be used in the dishwasher, microwave, and freezer will save you money and time
- Don’t lower your calories below 1200 per day
- Follow your meal plan exactly and as part of it, schedule an off-plan meal each week. You will look forward to this, and it will help you stave off temptation at other times during the week. This is not a cheat day
Simple Strategies for Long-Term Weight Loss
- Measure all of your food. Do not assume the labeling is correct
- Drink water. Take your bodyweight in pounds, and divide it in half. This is the minimum number of ounces of water you should drink daily. You may need to adjust this, depending on the weather – very hot weather will require more water, your exercise program, high altitudes, medication you are taking, and potentially other variables. This is just a starting point
- Stop drinking soda
The Bigger Picture
- Have an exit plan. When you reach your goal, how are you going to eat and drink afterward? You don’t want to rebound, and you don’t want to go back to eating how you were before you started on this path because it is what led you to this point in the first place. Again, this is where a professional can help. How many times are you going to lose and gain the same weight?
- Consistency is key to reaching your goal. Don’t take the weekends off from following your plan
Now that you have the building blocks to lose weight and keep it off, it is important to stay motivated and not give up. After you set your long-term goal, identify mini-milestones that you will accomplish along the way. For instance, one could be the first 10 lbs. lost, another could be when you fit into your favorite pair of jeans that you haven’t been able to wear in years. When you celebrate these successes, do not use food or drink as a reward. Instead, schedule a massage, buy a new pair of shoes, or get a new hairstyle.
Write down potential obstacles and how you will handle or mitigate them when they present themselves. Examples could be upcoming holidays, vacation, work events, or even people. Surround yourself with those who are truly supportive of your efforts to improve your health and to feel better about yourself. This may alienate some long-time friends or even family. As you change your lifestyle, they may be jealous of your strength in making a change, or they may not understand what you are doing and either intentionally or subconsciously sabotage your efforts such as saying, “Hey, let’s go get some ice cream.” Keep your goal in mind and say “no”.
Ask yourself if you are internally motivated, or if you do better with external support. If it is the latter, enlist the help of a trusted friend to stay on plan. Explain what you are doing, why are you doing it, and what you need her/him to help you with.
With the right attitude, the right plan, and the right people, you will be successful!