Beginning and committing to a healthy weight loss plan can sometimes seem like an insurmountable mountain, and the major obstacle to this commitment is that we often lack the motivation to keep going.
When you’d rather sink your teeth into that extra cheesy piece of pizza or when you’d rather curl up in bed for another hour of snooze rather than hit the exercise route, don’t. You will do well at those times of temptation to remind yourself of the reasons why you are on your weight loss journey.
Here are simple tips to keep motivated to continue to lose the weight:
In clear written terms, make sure to define the reasons why you want to lose weight. Is it so that you can attend that class reunion looking your best? Is it so that you can fit into your wedding dress for your 15th wedding anniversary? Is it to get your diabetes under control? Whatever your motive, writing it down will keep you motivated when you feel like quitting.
Be realistic in your expectations and set attainable weight loss goals. When your goal is unreachable, you are more likely to get frustrated and quit. But when you set achievable goals and see yourself move steadily towards that goal post, you are more likely to stay committed to the course.
Break your weight loss goal into small achievable steps. Because the end goal may look so far away and somewhat unattainable, breaking your overall goal down into five or more steps helps you feel accomplished each time you complete a step, motivating you to complete another.
Choose a diet plan/exercise plan that suits your lifestyle. This is because you are most likely to stick to a diet plan or an exercise plan that doesn’t require you to change your lifestyle completely.
Keep a weight loss diary/journal. This will remind you of where you began and of where you hope to be. A weight loss diary will help you track your food intake, monitor your emotions when you eat, and can thus help you identify your triggers for overeating.
Surround yourself with people who support you. Let your family and close friends be aware of your weight loss plans and healthy diet, so that they can support you and keep you motivated when you are lacking in self-motivation. And if you can, join a social support group that keeps you accountable and committed to your weight loss goals.
Celebrate your successes. When you reach one of the steps on your weight loss journey, celebrate yourself. Whether with a good movie, a good book, a massage, do whatever makes you happy to celebrate your success thus far.
Don’t be taken aback by setbacks. Instead, be prepared for challenges and setbacks on your weight loss journey and don’t allow these to deter you. Instead of giving in to your previous stress coping mechanisms, develop new coping skills rather than emotional eating. Try exercising instead, taking long walks, doing yoga or taking a bath.
Finally, don’t aim for perfection and learn to forgive yourself when you falter. Get back up, get back in line and continue on.