It’s easy to start the journey towards weight loss with passion and fire but it often fizzles after the first few weeks. Why? Because it’s hard and it demands reorganization of time and priorities. We like to do what we want, when we want. We eat out of convenience, not out of intentionality. We are busy, often eat out several times a day, and fail to plan ahead before walking into the grocery store or picking up an online order. We feel ill equipped to “prep our food” and find the whole process of eating healthy overwhelming. So how do people do it? How do people make the change from hitting drive-thru lanes and eating on the go to choosing wholesome foods with purpose? How do people lose weight and maintain the loss while improving their overall health?
The past four years I’ve been coaching clients to achieve their weight loss goals and have noticed several key factors that indicate whether they’ll be able to achieve lasting results. Here are a few of the habits and behaviors that tend to help clients maintain momentum when it comes to achieving their goals.
Have clear and realistic goals outside of the number on the scale. You want to lose weight but if your main goal is a number on the scale the journey will be frustrating and you’re more likely to give up when things don’t go your way. Weight loss is not linear. It’s more like a rollercoaster than a straight line. So create goals around improved energy, sleep, attention, mood, making more wholesome food choices and activity rather than the scale. When you focus on what you can control, the scale takes care of itself.
Realize the need to change and own your choices and behaviors. If you tend to make excuses or play the blame game, it’s more difficult to own your choices and make the changes necessary to shift into healthier habits. No one makes you eat cake or down an entire pizza. Your choices are your choices, own them.
Be ready to work. The journey to improved overall health and weight loss isn’t easy. It’s dependent upon habit change and changing habits is tough! You have to be willing and ready to put in the work necessary to achieve your goals.
Have a support network with accountability. This is key! That’s why having a coach that helps to encourage and motivate is a game changer for so many people. When you know that someone is always in your corner and is rooting for you to succeed, it builds in personal accountability and improves the likelihood of long-term success. Seek out and connect with others that have similar goals and are trying to live similar lifestyle choices.
Keep promises to yourself. If you’re always starting and stopping weight loss efforts, setting goals to workout and not following through, then you’re breaking promises to yourself. If you decide at 6am that you’re going to workout today, then workout. Even if it happens at 11:30 pm. If you continually break promises to yourself they lose their power and you begin to believe you’re incapable of change. This is a lie. You are capable of change!
Pick and eat foods you enjoy. Don’t overhaul your food choices from day one. Focus on small changes each day that move you closer to the person you want to be. Every journey starts with the first steps. Enjoying your food is key!
Practice resiliency. Each day is a new day. Each minute is a new minute. We all stumble. So you ate the brownie (or 4). It happened and you can choose to eat everything else and give up for the day or you can own your choice and move forward recognizing that it was simply a bump in the road. Reassess your day and think about moving forward instead of looking back. It only derails you if you give it permission to do so. Resiliency doesn’t just happen - it requires practice.
Are you ready to reach your goals? I’d love to help!