Long-term, successful weight loss requires permanent changes in your health habits and lifestyle. This is because at the core of successful weight loss is a healthy, calorie-controlled diet combined with regular (and increased) physical activity.
Making these permanent changes can be easier said than done for most of us. However, implementing these five strategies into your everyday life may help in your efforts to achieve your weight loss success.
- Set realistic weight loss goals – Aim to lose 1 to 2 pounds per week. To achieve this goal, you’ll need to burn 500 to 1,000 calories more than you consume each day by engaging in physical activity and by committing to a lower calorie diet. It’s also a good idea to have progress and outcome goals. A progress goal could be walking for 30 minutes every day, while an outcome goal is to lose 10 pounds. Progress goals are particularly important because they are what will help you to change your habits to keep you on track with weight loss.
- Adopt a new perspective – Long-term weight loss and maintenance is a lifestyle change. This means it’s not enough to simply eat healthy foods and exercise for only a few months. These new healthy habits need to become your new and permanent way of life. Right from the start, you need to take an honest look at your daily routine and eating patterns and assess the personal challenges you will face on your weight loss journey. You have to devise a plan for dealing with these challenges to prevent them from derailing the changes you’re about to make
- Enjoy good-for-you foods – Eating healthier doesn’t have to be a chore. You can still take pleasure and satisfaction in the foods you eat while lowering your calories at the same time. Eat a variety of healthy foods.
- Boost your activity level and remain active – Yes, you can lose weight without exercising. However, exercising can help you to lose weight at a faster rate by helping you to burn off the excess calories you can’t eliminate through diet alone. Exercise is also important for your overall physical and mental health. It is also very beneficial for helping you to maintain weight loss.
- Commitment is key – Long-term weight loss takes time and effort, it isn’t something that happens overnight or even in a week or a month. Once you’ve found your healthy lifestyle and you’ve adopted it, you need to maintain it. Consistency is the only way you’ll turn your goals into reality.