It comes as no surprise that losing weight is generally in the top three of your New Years resolutions. Who couldn't afford to lose a few pounds, right? Every year we promise ourselves "this will be the year," but some time between February and March you teeter off (and see all those people at the gym start to dissipate).
It's not going to be an easy journey but, considering the health and mental benefits, losing weight is well worth the commitment.
Here is how you actually stick to the planâ€¦
- Be specific, create milestones, and think short-term
- How much weight do you want to lose?
- When do you want to lose it by?
- What lifestyle changes will you make?
- Why do you really want to lose the weight?
Be specific about why you're on this quest - not just throwing the idea out there - so that you have something to remind yourself each day as to why you’re sticking to the routine.
You also need to create milestones in your activity as far as the routine goes. Perhaps it's purchasing new clothes when you reach a new mark or treating yourself to a gadget you've always wanted. Treat yourself like a child in some ways by rewarding hard work.
Also, don't see the weight loss as this year long journey. Think about the short-term goals because it's easier to stick to the plan if you see it as an achievement of losing a pound this week rather than being disappointed that you're only down five or six after a whole month (or more).
- Track your progress and find support
Don't bother announcing it to all your friends and family on Facebook - just keep it on your mind because it turns out that you're more likely to achieve goals if you keep your intentions private.
With that said it's still important that you find a way to track your progress and find a support network to keep you motivation (which can be done anonymously).
Tools and platforms like:
Are two of my favorites because the first will help you keep track of your food intake and energy expenditure - the latter is a great community that's very supportive, provide awesome tips on weight loss, and there are plenty of opportunities to ask questions and receive great answers on the topic.
- You're going to slip and that's okay
Unless you're being paid to lose weight, your life is on the line, or you're one of those people that have freakishly strong willpower then you're going to slip up from time to time.
It's okay if you do because it's bound to happen.
Nowâ€¦ what you do when you slip up makes all the difference. If you go off the rails for a week or two, not keeping the routine and gaining back weight, and just say "to hell with it" then yeah, you're going to drop the resolution but if you accept the hurdle and restart then you're going to do it.
Keep pursuing the big goal and don't beat yourself up over the minor details.
â€¦ But Why Wait?
New Years is still some time away so if you've already developed the mindset of losing weight and understand the logic behind weight loss, then you should pursue it before you begin to procrastinate.
Starting right now means you'll have more than a month of a head start. When the ball drops on New Years you won't start the first day of January nursing a hangover or feeling like you're already off to a bad start because you pigged out at a party the night before. Your body is already losing it, rearing to go, and so is your motivation because you're already seeing the progress.
Perhaps 2016 will be the year you stick to the plan - are you ready for the challenge?