It’s a good idea to have some specific goal weight in mind once you embark on a diet. Sure you can try things on for size and get your feet wet in one diet or another, before you decide to commit to it, but having an end game in mind is helpful at many levels. So choose your goal weight. Also if you are attempting to lose a lot of weight, stop buying new clothes now. You simply won’t need them!
Once you have your plan of attack for weight loss and you know which foods you will be putting front and center in your diet plan and which foods you will be choosing to avoid, it helps to not only organize your diet plan but to chunk it down into more manageable parts so you can have several smaller victories along the way. Be sure to celebrate as you hit these mini goals and don’t forget to be creative in how you choose to celebrate!
Particularly for those of you that have a large amount of weight to lose, you might want to divide it up somehow into meaningful units that make sense to you. For example, if you have 100 pounds to lose you might break it up into three sets of 33.3 pounds, or possibly four sets of 25 pounds. Alternatively, if you have two hundred pounds to lose, you might have the first 25, the first 50, the second 50, the third 50 and the last 25. In any event, creating a schema for your weight loss is helpful. For our sake here, let’s consider a 100 pound weight loss, which is broken up into the first 20, the first 40 and the second 40.
If you use the later motif, the first 20 is really the setup to the diet. It demonstrates that the diet works. The first forty is where you really dig in and do some work and the second forty is where you complete the job.
Be aware that weight loss is rarely a progressive slope downward toward your goal. There may be plateaus along the way in which your body seems not to respond, but is poising itself for the next downward ascent. Sometimes you may even pick up a few pounds just to lose them again. Be easy with yourself. These things are all to be expected. This is life after all and nothing goes entirely as planned.
During the first 20, you pull away from the pack and start something new. At first, you may choose to isolate yourself from others, as much as possible, to make the development of new ways of eating more possible. As the new patterns take hold, and your body responds with subtle changes, you draw attention to yourself and others begin to notice that a change is underfoot. The greater majority of people will be excited for you and encourage your efforts in making a flight toward health. However, a small select group maybe envious and attempt wittingly or unwittingly to sabotage your efforts. Steal yourself away from this group. Protect yourself and your efforts in any way that you can.
If you have a large amount of weight to lose, there is no way to do it covertly. Others will take notice and will have comments. Few will be able to remain silent throughout your endeavors.
During the first forty, things will still be fairly novel, but a groove will have been set and the diet will be underway. You will have made a change and you will simply be sticking to it. You will already know what works and you will adapt and change, day by day, as you see fit.
At this juncture, you may pull in newer techniques or refine old ones. You’ll try new food combinations in an attempt to vary what is set forth on the table. If you have not yet incorporated exercise to tone and firm your body, you maybe looking to develop that piece of your new regimen.
Exercise while dieting is always a good idea. The development of new muscle, while losing weight, allows your body to shine and show new definition. If you haven’t been moving in a long time, start small. Don’t overdo. Overdoing will simply slow things down. Slow and steady wins the race.
Somewhere in the first forty, you will likely have to invest in some new clothing. Be practical. You only need a skeleton wardrobe. You will not be wearing these clothes long. Less is more.
The last forty, is where you put the final touches on the project. There is still work to be done, but the path is clear. Don’t rock the boat too much, pursue what is known. Here you will hear more remarks from the select few who are out to get you. Even those who have your best interests at heart will suggest, and perhaps insist, that you have lost enough and suggest you stop. Don’t listen. Stick closely to your own plans. Remember it is disquieting to others when you are making a change. It causes them to evaluate themselves.
Once you have reached your goal weight, you are free to re-establish a complete wardrobe. This is the fun part. You may want to pack away many clothes from previous weights in the attic, but you will also want to thin that out a bit and make a true commitment to your new weight.
The hardest part of any diet plan is not reaching the goal, but maintaining the goal, over the long haul. Maintenance will bring up new questions. Can I eat this? Can I eat that? Did I have too much? You will have to protect your new baby like never before. Remain vigilant. Don’t give up. Don’t relax too much. Employ old techniques to regroup quickly, if you lapse.
So take the time at the outset to determine how much you want to lose and establish mini goals along the way. Using a weight loss schema, such as this, will help you. You will know where you are in your journey, just as you do, when you read a book and know you are in chapter 24 of 28. Your schema is your road map.
Weight loss is a marathon and once you are full on in the diet it’s a project, or a focus and needn’t be complete drudgery. Celebrate your victories. Plan for ways to regroup, if you have experienced a relapse. Relapse does not need to be a complete game changer. It is just an upset and an opportunity to learn what went wrong, and what you can do next time to prevent falling down again. Exercise, your body will love you for it! Celebrate your victories! Enjoy! You deserve it!
Lisa J Lafave, PhD, MBA, ACC
The Wellness Coach at Building Better Bodies Rocks
CEO & Founder of Coaching Rocks, LLC
A Single Mom By Choice of Surrogacy Twin Boys
Written in My Little Brick in University Heights, Ohio
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