Working with so many people to help them lose weight, having many successes and having many who give up, I ask myself, how is it that I made the commitment to make better choices? How is that many people I helped 10 or more years ago to lose weight, have kept it off? Because truly that’s the real answer. Anyone and any diet can help someone lose weight, but which methods and behaviors actually keep it off? And for that matter, which methods and behaviors actually make you healthier during the process? For today, we will discuss how to be successful at weight loss for life, but it’s a whole other story as to whether your weight loss is healthy or not.
In recent years, weight loss has become very complicated, gimmicky and obsessive. We seem to be drawn to these characteristics, but of course we’re being marketed daily to think we should eat less, move more and if we screw up, we might as well give up. This is why 95% of dieters fail and most attempt at least 8 times before they actually succeed. If you want to break this statistic, read on. If you want to stay on the hamster wheel, close now.
GET OFF THE WHEEL!!! YOU CAN BE SUCCESSFUL FOR LIFE!
I believe it’s time to make a change and I believe I am tired of seeing people get caught up in the whirlwind of the dieting industry. Each person deserves to feel their best and it’s time I share the simple, yet priceless secrets with you.
1. Successful people make small changes over time.
No one can be perfect in a week. We do not become a perfect student, a perfect parent or a perfect spouse over night (if ever). So how do we think we could live completely “good” when it comes to diet and exercise? It’s just not possible to turn your world upside down and keep it that way just because the diet book or the trainer told you to. It’s also not smart to just change everything in your body over night. Going from no exercise and no awareness of diet, to daily cardio sessions and food restriction makes your body feel like it’s under attack. Many foods we are addicted to can also cause horrible feelings or severe cravings as we try to wean off of them. It’s important that we make small changes each day, each week to move us toward our goals of living healthier. I personally started drinking water versus soda or tea. Then I started to exercise. Next I started to make sure my snacks offered nutrition versus just something to put into my mouth. Small adjustments lead to long-term success.
2.Successful people do not feel guilty.
This is kind of misleading. In the beginning when I started seeing great success with my small changes, I did start to enjoy the results of my choices and started to become obsessed. If I missed a workout, I would feel severely guilty and then over do it the next day or not eat to make up for it. I thought that was the best way to balance it out. That method soon created many health problems for me and I realized I was doing something wrong. I also realized I was putting too much pressure on myself and not allowing myself to be HUMAN. As you begin your health journey, you are going to eat a cookie again, you are going to miss a workout and you are going to fluctuate in weight. It’s just a given. What you can do to save yourself much mental anguish, is to eliminate the guilt. Feeling guilty is poison and it adds no value to your program. The more we obsess over the mistake, the more we tend to make poor choices for our body. We tend to either over eat, under eat, over exercise or GIVE UP. If you make a mistake at work, do you just quit? If you make a mistake as a parent, do you give your kids up for adoption? No, we apologize for the mistake and we generally work to do better the next time. If you can carry this behavior over into your health journey, you will never GIVE UP again. You may have a stall, but when you over eat one day, you can get up, apologize to yourself and determine how to prevent the same mistake in the future. Or you can say, I only over eat one or two days per year, no big deal and let it go. Learning to work around your mistakes and how to prevent them, will lead to long-term success.
3. Successful people commit for life.
Do you know how long ago it was that I switched to water from soda and tea? 17 years ago! I didn’t just say let me drink this water to get the weight off and then I will give it all up to go back to my old habits. Once I learned how important water was and how many empty calories were in many drinks we choose to consume, I used my logic and said it’s just not worth it to me. I was not so logical when it came to exercise though. I started exercising about 16 years ago and became really fit the first year. Of course I was 19 or so and it was not too hard to shape up. Once I got in shape, I said ok, I am fit now. I should be able to maintain this. Then I stopped exercising all together. About a year went by and I had not gained any weight. Yet, while riding as a passenger in the car one day, I propped my leg up by the window, looked down and saw someone elses leg. I thought is that my 20 year old leg covered in cellulite? But how? I have not gained any weight according to the scale. This is when I realized the scale does not always tell the truth. It may tell me good or not so good numbers, but they truly do not matter if my health is failing or my body fat is rising! This is when I realized, just like the water, exercise was going to be a part of my life in some fashion if I wanted to maintain a healthy looking body and not just a number on the scale. If you want to be successful with weight loss for life, you have to realize there are no time frames. Think about what you want to feel like five years from now, not just five weeks from now and start to make small changes you will commit to for life.
The successful weight loss people you see at work, at the gym, throughout life are the ones incorporating these behaviors. Most are not genetically fit. They have just committed to apply logic to their daily choices and find ways to deal with their emotions. They have made the commitment to value their body and how it feels, just as some have made the commitment to not pay attention to their body. Our daily choices and perseverance is what equates to our short and long-term results. I hope these priceless secrets to success can help you improve your results today and on going! The power is within you to be successful. You may need guidance and support, but there are no magic pills, no magic surgeries and no magic diets, just simple secrets of success.