Weight-loss scams, crazed fashion diets, and countless pills have promised fast and simple ways to lose weight. In reality, the true foundation for successfully losing weight is developing a realistic and healthy program that fits your body and lifestyle. Here are five simple tips that can help you create practical weight loss goals for yourself.
1. Commit to Your New Lifestyle
In order for you to successfully lose weight, you must be willing to devote your time as well as your effort. Changing your daily habits and sticking to a set plan takes a significant amount of energy, so make sure you are willing to commit yourself. Once you feel prepared and motivated, choose a date to start your program, and then begin!
2. Establish Realistic Goals
One of the most important parts of dieting is to create attainable goals.
First, determine a realistic target weight that you want to reach. “Most clinicians would say goals of losing five to 10 percent [of your start weight] are achievable,” according to Jennifer A. Linde, PhD, assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of Minnesota.
Second, be sensible about the frame of time you have given yourself. “A realistic goal is losing 1 to 2 pounds a week to stay healthy,” says Linde.
By planning to lose weight slowly and healthily, you will develop new lifestyle habits and be more likely to maintain them.
3. Make Healthier Food Choices
Now that you have set realistic goals for yourself, you can begin your weight loss program. Start by evaluating your style of eating and determine what you can change. As you begin to alter your eating habits, keep in mind that you should lower your daily caloric intake, but still eat foods that you find satisfying. One tip is to increase your intake of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and make sure to eat a hearty breakfast every morning.
4. Get Active!
Along with eating right, exercising is another key component to weight loss. In order to effectively shed pounds, you must burn more calories than you consume. While it is possible to lose weight without physical activity, exercising can burn some calories that simply can’t be dissolved by dieting. The amount of calories burned through exercise depends on the intensity, frequency and duration of the physical activity. Try thinking of new ways to be active rather than just hitting the gym. Creativity counts!
5. Stay Motivated
Losing weight can be a long process, but the most important thing is to stick with your new lifestyle. Find different ways to motivate yourself, whether it is through a supportive group of friends or an exciting reward at weight loss checkpoints. Staying positive is essential, and having compassion for yourself is key. Tell yourself you can, and will, obtain your weight loss goals and create a new lifestyle for yourself through hard work and perseverance.
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