When you start a new weight loss plan, you feel full of enthusiasm and motivation, determined to succeed!
However, after a short time it can be easy for old habits to start creeping back in and excuses to stop you from exercising conveniently turn up. So what can you do to help your motivation see you through your weight loss journey?
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The first step in starting on your new healthy lifestyle is identifying your motivation.
Are you losing weight to prevent a serious health problem, such as diabetes or heart disease? Are you determined to look and feel great by next summer?
Whatever your reason, you need to believe strongly in this and use it to keep your motivation firing. Remember that you need to do this for yourself - if you're losing weight to make someone else happy, it's going to be a very difficult journey.
Tips for keeping motivated
Ask for your family's support in reaching your goals
Set realistic and achievable long term and short term goals.
Compare these goals: "I want to lose 30 kg." and "I want to lose 5 kg in 6 weeks." Although your long term goal might be to lose 30 kg, the second goal sounds much more achievable, right? The first goal could make you feel deflated before you even begin! Yet, it will only take six times of setting mini "5 kg goals" to reach your final goal of losing 30 kg. Focus on each step of the way; set mini goals and reward yourself along the way.
Identify your triggers - once you work out what they are, develop ways to deal with those situations.
Get support and use it! The CalorieKing.com.au online community is a caring, helpful place full of people going through the same experiences as you - share your feelings and questions, you'll find the support invaluable. Include your family in your new lifestyle and ask them to help you reach your goals.
Plan non-food rewards for reaching goals along the way - it can certainly inspire your motivation to know that when you lose that next kilogram or complete your planned exercise program you can treat yourself to a relaxing facial, a new hair cut, a magazine, or a new item of clothing.
Don't let self-sabotage set you back. When things are going well, do you for no apparent reason start buying junk food and finding excuses not to exercise? Recognise these sabotage traits and get support to help you overcome them. Remember that you are in control of your life, you have choices and you can make the right ones.
Keep a 'before' photo to look at - this can be handy at times when you feel like giving up. Remember your motivation and visualise yourself as the 'new you' - healthy, slim and fit. Think about how good you will feel, and use this feeling to make better choices.
Read the articles in the CalorieKing.com.au University and Library to gain information and to help you understand feelings that you have.
Learn how to cope in social situations - just because you're losing weight, doesn't mean you have to become a hermit! Find out how restaurant and takeaways meals are prepared and learn to make better choices.
Prepare a plan of attack - in advance - to remind you of alternative activities that you can enjoy when you feel like raiding the fridge. Write your plan out and keep it within easy access. This will give you something concrete to turn to if your motivation is waning.
'Diet' or lifestyle?
Throw away the 'I'm on a diet' mindset. You are embarking on a healthy lifestyle that you can maintain for life, not a temporary deprivation diet. If you eat a whole packet of chocolate biscuits one day or skip a few exercise workouts, it doesn't signal the end of your new lifestyle. Just pick yourself up and start right back where you left off! Don't let a slip up become an excuse to quit.
And as one clever CalorieKing.com.au member said, "Start thinking like a 'slim person'. Even they eat and drink too much sometimes, the difference is that they eat well for the majority of the time."
Live your new lifestyle and enjoy it!
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Last updated: October 8th, 2004