Some strategies to help you stick with it?
The New Year starts and those with a plan to make this the year they reach their goal weight start off highly motivated with great ambition. Eventually, though, the stick-with-it part can become a struggle. As enthusiasm wanes and social life’s start to get in the way, it’s easy to stray from your diet feel less motivated and, in due course, end up back at square one.
But this is the year, right? The year you’re determined. So don’t give up even if you have had a setback get re-motivated with these 10 strategies, focus on building new habits rather than fighting the old.
- Plan ahead
Not being organised is a fool proof way to sabotage your diet. If you come home from work, tired and hungry, to an empty fridge, chances are you’ll order in, or graze your way through the evening. To stay on track during a busy week, plan your meals in advance. Batch cook on the weekend for easy lunches and dinners. Have some go to recipes that can be made with store cupboard ingredients for those days when things don’t go to plan (eggs are great for this). To eat sensibly at restaurants, scan the menu in advance to determine what you’ll order.
- Avert hunger
Letting yourself get overly hungry makes it all too easy to grab whatever food is nearby. Eat three well-balanced meals each day the basis of Metabolic Balance, starting with breakfast. Skipping breakfast or lunch – or eating too little early in the day – can trigger hunger and cravings later on.
Drink water to manage hunger. Don’t be scared of feeling hungry if you are eating 3 meals a day your next meal isn’t far away
- Stay accountable
To help you stay focused, especially when progress is difficult, having accountability systems in place will help you move forward instead of giving up. Join a supportive weight loss group to find likeminded people with similar goals.
Keep a food diary and list everything you eat and drink each day if this helps.
Weigh in weekly. Seeing progress on the scale motivates you to keep on going. Make sure you weigh yourself at the same time each day weight can vary a great deal during the day.
- Ask am I really hungry?
It is time to work out the difference between being hungry and being satisfied. It is common to think after finishing a meal you still feel hungry. The truth is, feeling satisfied after eating (e.g. you’re no longer hungry, but you don’t feel full) is foreign to many people. Too often, the signal we’ve had enough to eat is feeling full – and sometimes stuffed.
The next time you think you’re hungry, ask yourself if your stomach feels empty or you simply don’t feel full. Assess how you feel before you eat, halfway through your meal and after you finish eating. Harder said than done but try and stop eating when you feel satisfied, it takes practise.
- Take it day by day
To keep your head in the game, think one meal and one day at a time. Ask yourself, “What can I do today to help reach my goal?” Focus on the journey, look for progress not perfection.
- Reassess portion sizes
Cutting portions is vital to weight loss. And surprisingly, your appetite adjusts to smaller amounts of food. It is easy to get portion sizes right with Metabolic Balance as at the start of the programme you need to weigh food. You soon get the hang of portion sizes going forward.
- Manage Stress Levels
Excessive stress has a negative impact on many aspects of life it can also hinder weight loss. Stress makes you hungry making any diet much harder it also inhibits the body’s fat burning potential. Plus being stressed makes it more difficult to plan ahead and prepare food. If stress is problematic plan some stress relieving activities into your weight loss regime, trying to get an early night, 10 minutes meditation or a 30 minute walk in the fresh air, whatever works for you.
- Motivate yourself daily
To keep your eye on your goal, make a list of all the reasons why you want to lose weight and how you’ll feel once you get there. Read this list every morning. Use photographs as well to focus on the goal. Music can be very motivating great if you are wavering around exercise should I or shouldn’t, stick on your favourite upbeat tunes and you are more likely to go.
- Pat yourself on the back
Rewarding yourself as you meet mini goals is a way of reminding yourself you can achieve your goal. Determine which achievements you will reward, and then plan what your incentives will be. Have rewards planned for each step you achieve.
- Forget ‘all-or-nothing’ – but never give up
It’s not possible to be perfect, so don’t expect it. If you fall off plan – and you will, you’re human – don’t think it’s a major setback. It’s not. If you tell yourself it’s okay to have slipped a little, you’ll be amazed how easy it is to get back on track. Focus on progress not perfection, and never give up.