Obesity kills. Obesity puts too much strain on the body’s internal workings and appearance and lowers one’s self esteem. It is linked with many diseases that often lead to untimely deaths. Part of the solution to obesity is not a fad diet or magic pill but learning how to maintain motivation for effective weight loss. One of the causes why weight loss programs fail is because people lose their motivation along the way, after finding it too difficult to lose weight or for other personal reasons. Here are a few tips you can follow to maintain your motivation:
- Write down the reasons why you want to lose weight. Depressed after a bad break-up? Use this as motivation to lose weight and regain your self esteem, instead of sulking and gaining pounds.
- Face the facts and write them down. How much do you weigh? How do you measure? What is your ideal weight for your age and height? What foods do you take and how much calories do you consume? Write all of these down. Jot down everything you eat and drink from the moment you wake up till you sleep. How much sugar and fat do you take in every day, every month and every year? If you over eat, imagine how many people could have consumed what you did and how much resources were spent on just one person. The truth could hurt but you have to face it.
- Take a picture of yourself wearing your “fat clothes”. Keep the picture in plain sight and the clothes in your closet. You will be taking more pictures of yourself in them to record your progress.
- Plan the big picture and the small picture. Say, for example, that you want to lose a grand total of 100 pounds. This cannot happen overnight, precisely because you have packed on the pounds over time. Opt for smaller targets over a span of time, like one pound per week.
- Get help from friends and loved ones. Let’s face it, eating healthy and exercising regularly can be a chore. But if you have a dedicated support group encouraging you or even joining you, your chances of success can improve. They will be a source of motivation and they will also be there to celebrate your small successes.
- Reward yourself. After a week of dieting, treat yourself to a small serving of healthy “cheat” food. Instead of having ice cream, go for a natural fruit sorbet. Instead of food items, you can also go for non-food treats like going to a spa or a movie. After you have lost 10 pounds, treat yourself to a new pair of jeans. You will feel great wearing a smaller size and feel motivated to lose even more weight.
- When things get tough, focus on the positive side. The power of positive thinking is tremendous. Downplay today’s failure, because there is room for improvement tomorrow. Focus on your goals and go back to the reasons why you are doing this in the first place.
- Make exercising and eating healthy fun to do. Ask your friends to join you or make friends with people in the gym. If you love your dog, take him out jogging with you.
You owe it to yourself and to your loved ones to stay healthy and not be overweight. Learning how to maintain motivation for effective weight loss when coupled with the proper diet, exercise and lifestyle changes will help you stay on course to a better life and a healthier you.