It is the same old story when it comes to trying to lose weight – we all have tried diets looking for quick results that we stick to for a few days and then we end up feeling hungry, deprived and miserable. If you are trying to drop the pounds from the weighing scales and feel healthier you need to look at changing your habits and create a new healthier lifestyle. Losing weight is a lifestyle change, not something you should only do until you have reached your goal or target weight. If you revert back to your old ways the weight will come back on. Obviously, you are allowed a treat or a day of indulgence but make sure it’s all in moderation.
1. Change Your Lifestyle
Most people begin a weight-loss diet with short-term goals or unrealistic expectations and think “I’ll be good for the month of January” or ” I’ll join a gym a go every day”. But this does not work, you won’t have time to go every day and then when you can’t go you beat yourself up and just stop altogether. People fail to understand that in order to lose weight and keep it off it is a lifelong commitment to your health. It shouldn’t be an all or nothing approach you don’t have to starve yourself or cut out all of your favorite foods in order to lose weight. It’s easier to stick to a healthy eating plan if you allow yourself a little flexibility. It is ok to occasionally indulge. It’s about learning how to enjoy food in moderation and in a controlled way.
2. Write Down Your Reasons
One way to keep you focused and motivated is to make a list of the reasons why you want to lose weight. Goal settinghelps to stay focused. Put the list where you can see it daily such as on your fridge. Your reasons may be ‘I want to look or feel good’, ‘I want to fit into my jeans’, or ‘I want to live longer’.
Being reminded daily of why you wanted to make the changes to your lifestyle will help give you the motivation to keep going and to succeed.
Figure out what it is you want to achieve with your nutrition, is it weight loss, weight gain or maintenance. And use that as your goal
When you figure out your goal you can use something like ‘Shape My Plan’ to help you figure out how many calories you should be consuming daily, and we will give you a breakdown of lots of different and very simple meal/snack suggestions.
Don’t stress if you go off track slightly, one bar of chocolate never made anyone overweight, likewise, one salad never made anyone healthy. It is what you do consistently over a long period of time that is crucial.
3. Get Shopping Savy
For most of us, grocery shopping is a chore we would rather not have to do But one quick trip is less stressful and time-consuming than attempting to navigate the isles multiple times a week or after work. And if you go with an organised grocery list and meal plan, you never have to stare into your fridge wondering, “What’s for dinner?” or resort to take-out. You also need to have a game plan when shopping so you can resist the temptations –supermarket-tips
4. Don’t Skip Breakfast
As we all heard growing up – breakfast is the most important part of the day this is especially true when you are trying to maintain a healthy weight, or lose weight and keep it off. Eating breakfast can jumpstart the metabolism and regulate blood sugar.
5. Avoid Processed Food
Processed foods have barely any nutrients or fiber. They don’t fill you up and we don’t burn as many calories digesting processed food as we do whole foods. Processed food is loaded with sugar, salt, fat, and carbs which increases serotonin – the “feel good” hormone that awakens the reward center of the brain. The food temporarily makes you feel better, so you keep eating. This can lead to food addiction or emotional eating dependency. You also need to learn how to read ingredient and nutrition labels many foods are labeled with healthy food claims on the front of the package. The rule of thumb is the fewer ingredients on the label the better it is for you. Find healthy alternatives it’s hard to give up your favorite foods, so try to find some substitutions that will fulfill the craving.
6. Eat Enough of the Right Food.
An area people get caught up with and confused about is that of nutrition and diet, quite often we are asked things like, “what is the best diet for weight loss”, “what is the best diet for my gym workout”, “what are the best healthy recipe dinners”. The list of questions goes on and on, but truth be told you don’t need to get too stressed about these things just follow a few simple rules – we all need a balance of carbohydrates, protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, and minerals to sustain a healthy body. Our recipes are packed with all the nutrients you will need such as fresh fruit and vegetables, healthy carbs and wholegrain, healthy fats and Protein. The list of foods you should be eating is all available in our blog The Shopping List for Shape My Plan Beginners.
7. Drink Water
These days we are just too busy to prioritise such a simple thing. Your body is largely made up of water and requires adequate water intake to allow it to function properly. If you get into the habit of drinking more water you will have more energy, weight loss will be easier, and your body will just work better in general.
8. Exercise More
We all know this one, we have heard it since we were old enough that exercise is beneficial. But these days people seem to complicate that too much, being more active doesn’t necessarily mean you have to go run for 45 mins every day or hit the gym for an hour. Being more active can mean committing to doing a 20 mins walk every day, using the stairs instead of the elevator, walking to the shop instead of taking the car etc. It can be a lot simpler than you think, and once you get into the habit of being more active more strenuous things like running and weight training in the gym will not seem as daunting.
9. Meal Plan
“Does meal planning lead you to weight loss?” The answer is “Yes”. When you know what you are going to eat every day, you are less likely to eat for your taste buds or give in to cravings that will derail your diet.
10. Monitor Progress
Monitoring progress with increase your self-awareness of your behavior and your results. This can be weighing yourself weekly or measuring yourself. It can also be feeling better in your clothes
With this all being important on keeping you focused you should also be aware as to how you feel and how this new way of eating is having an impact on your life and how you feel. I can guarantee from personal experience you will feel, day after day, good about yourself, more energy, improved moods. If nothing else this should inspire you to stay on track.