Monday, December 12, 2011

Successful weight-loss tips to keep the weight off

If you are one of the many people trying to lose weight, have already lost weight, or just want to stay on track with your goals, consider the 6 successful weight-loss tips I have listed below to keep the weight off.

If you are trying to lose weight, then you will want to keep this post near by and refer to it periodically as you start your journey towards a healthy lifestyle.  For those who have already lost weight and want to keep the weight off you should be congratulating yourself.  This is/was a huge accomplishment and one you should be very proud of.  There are many others in your shoes who want to lost weight but for some reason or another are not as fortunate.

Hopefully by now you have learned some valuable lessons along the way and understand that more calories  burned than consumed will result in a loss of either fat or overall weight.  Proper nutrition combined with exercise is not rocket science but all too often we forget to reinforce one or the other.

The biggest mistake I have seen people make is that once they reach their weight-loss goal, there is a sense of relief and most people begin to go back to old habits.  It's easier to go back to old habits than it is to stay on track with the new, healthy habits.

So now that you have reached you goal, or are getting close to it, how do you keep that weight off?

6 Weight-Loss Tips

1.  Continue Exercising - I like to think of this as the "maintenance phase".  Maybe you used to go to the gym 3-5 days a week, for an hour each session, and run 2-3 days as well.  You can continue to do this (especially if you are training for a specific event), but you can also cut back to only 3 days a week and reduce the duration of each session (at least 30 minutes per day).  Be creative wit your workouts, you may be bored or burned out of going to the gym.  Instead do your workouts outside, at a park, or at a nearby mountain.  The most important thing to remember is to just stay active.   Wearing a pedometer might be one  idea so that you can aim to reach a certain amount of steps per day.  Try increasing the number of steps every other week, and mix in some hills if possible.

2.  Continue Eating Healthy - This may be the hardest for some people.  Having given up certain foods (pizza, ice cream, chips, etc.) while you were losing weight does not mean that you can go back to eating those foods now that you reached your goal.  Sure it's ok to have a slice of pizza or a bowl of ice cream every now and then, just keep the portion size moderate.   Try to find alternatives to those junk foods.  For instance, instead of eating chips and salsa opt for pretzels; and instead of ice cream try frozen yogurt.  There is no need to eat a strict diet, just be conscious of the foods you do eat.

3.  Get a Health Partner - Most of us find exercising with a friend more enjoyable than doing it alone.  Find someone who you know who also lost some weight and share your experiences.  Getting together weekly with this person will help keep you accountable.  A fun thing to do might be to invite each other over once a week and experiment making new, healthy meals.

4.  Be a Role Model - This is a good way to remind yourself why you chose to lose the weight in the first place, and reinforce good behaviors.  Find someone who is just beginning their journey towards weight-loss and be their mentor.  Share with them the things you did to be successful, and how you managed to get through the tough times and emotions to stay on track with what you wanted to achieve.

5.  Manage Stress Successfully - "Stress can be one of our greatest sources of undoing when we least expect it.  Set aside 15 minutes a day for relaxation and giving yourself a chance to enjoy calmness and quietness and reflect on your personal well-being". - Dr. Weaver, 2011

6.  Weight Yourself Regularly - Weigh yourself weekly and keep track of it on a sheet of paper or in your journal.  By regularly weighing yourself you will be conscious of your weight and will be better able to adjust your caloric intake if needed.  For those who prefer or enjoy using the computer as an aid I would suggest  becoming a member of Anytime Health or Fit Day...both are free to join.  They are great resources for keeping track of your weight, calories consumed/burned each day or each week, as well as the tracking the exercise you do regularly, plus much more. 

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