Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Paige Weber.
Have you ever been frustrated with watching the scale go up and down? And, tired of feeling like your weight is out of your control. I used to feel this way.
Now, I’m excited to share how I designed my own program to improve my health, with the bonus of being 70 lbs. lighter. And, you can too!
5 Individualized Steps for Weight Loss Success:
1. The Game Plan – Develop a plan that incorporates diet and exercise.
When I started losing weight, my trainer told me it is 80 % diet and 20 % exercise. I had worked hard on both nutrition and exercise, but not at the same time. Combining both of these ingredients is what has brought me success.
Weight loss starts with planning. I eat 5 small meals a day, each meal consisting of carbs, protein and vegetables (with a calorie range of 150 to 400 calories per meal). Find a meal plan that works with your lifestyle and for you.
For me, bulk cooking for the week makes it easier to stick to my plan. For example, I will cook 2-3 pans of chicken, and put them in several different recipes. If you need help creating your own meal plan, try www.sparkpeople.com.
2. The Real Issues – Replace emotional eating with non-food coping skills.
Everyone has positive and negative coping skills for life’s challenges. How else do you comfort yourself without eating? For me, having a good support system has aided successful weight loss. Whether you talk with a friend, family member or a counselor, it’s important to discover what contributes to emotional eating.
Never feel shame when you eat something off your diet, but do learn to eat in moderation. Eating smaller meals helps me to curb overeating. I also cut down on cravings, by spreading out my carbs. Overeating has become harder, because my stomach gets full faster with these changes.
3. Sweat It Out – Find an exercise plan that works for you.
Learn to use exercise as a positive coping skill. Make exercise a habit. Don’t workout based on how you feel today, but on how you would like to feel some day. I took me about 6 months of exercising almost every day before I started to like working out!
My ideal workout is to break up weight lifting and cardio exercises. Start by simply walking regularly, and work your way up to your ideal workout. It’s not what exercise plan you choose, it’s that you choose a plan and stick with it.
4. The Real Goal – Identify the real reasons you want to lose weight.
Find motivation to lose weight by getting to the real reason behind your goal. Do you want to lose weight to improve your health or for a special event? And, if you think that losing weight alone will improve your self esteem, think again.
5. One Pound At A Time – Be open to learning instead of self-criticism.
When it comes to weight loss, most people want to start by doing the math. For example, my self-talk math looks like this: “If I lose 2 lbs. a week and want to lose 60 lbs. total, then that will take 30 weeks…that’s most of the the year…ah! I don’t want this to take so long!” Then, five minutes after doing the math, I would reach for a bag of chips.
I have learned to not over focus on the numbers, but instead learn from my weight changes. I focus on learning what’s helping or hindering my weight loss. It’s not a failure if I don’t lose weight in a week, it’s a learning opportunity.
Weight loss success is individualized, so make it your own. It starts with a choice to change your lifestyle. Do it for yourself, not to just fit into those skinny jeans!
What’s working for you? Does healthy weight loss start with emotional or physical changes?
Paige Weber has lived in the Kansas City (Missouri) metro area for over 12 years. Paige believes that with hard work and determination, any goal can be accomplished. Now, she’s rocking her own weight loss goals with the Kansas City Fitness Challenge.
Related Post: Embrace the Body You Have
Photo Credit: “Two Runners Smiling” by Mike Baird