If you are on your weight loss journey and have a fair few pounds of weight to shed, then don’t lose heart. The most effective way of losing a lot of weight, is to be clear about the end result that you want and then set milestones along the way. These milestones must be realistic and achievable. There is absolutely no point in saying “I want to lose 2 stone in a month!” as this is neither realistic or a healthy weight loss. Set small achievable goals: usually a weight loss of between 1 – 3 pounds a week is a healthy target. Follow the steps below to help you plan these stepping stones to success:
1) Where are you right now? How much do you weigh? Look in the mirror and really take a look at what you look like, write down what you see. How do you feel about your weight currently? How does your body feel?
2) Now think about how much you would like to shed in terms of weight. Do you want to be guided by the number you see on the scales? If yes, what weight do you wish to be? Is it about the size of clothes that you want to fit in to?If yes, what size do you wish to be? Is it more about how you feel? If yes, how would you like to feel about yourself and your weight? Write it down.
3) Now work out when you would like to realistically achieve your final goal by? Christmas? A special occasion such as a wedding or big birthday? For a holiday perhaps? Again write it down and the date that you want to have achieved this by.
4) Now set a milestone, half way between now and then and write that date down. What do you want to have achieved in terms of your weight by then? Is this realistic? If no, then apply some realism to this goal, what can you really achieve, taking regard of your lifestyle, resources etc? Write this down.
5) Now choose a date between the half way point and now and repeat step 4.You could choose another point between these two and make this your first short term goal.
6) Now think about and write down, exactly what you are willing to do in order to achieve this first goal? What will be your markers on the way that you are on track? (You may for example weigh yourself weekly and have a target in mind for each week, or you may want to fit in to a pair of jeans in a smaller size after 4 weeks, or you may want to see that you are eating less after 2 weeks etc – you decide what is right for you and what will be your evidence that you are on track. This is important, as it will continue to motivate you and will be your guide as to whether you need to do something more or something less to get you to complete your mid and long term goals.
Now the important thing is to “ENJOY THE WEIGHT LOSS AS IT HAPPENS!” Feel it as you go along; enjoy the feeling of being lighter, slimmer, having more energy etc. Keep focused and note how you feel as you tick off each milestone along the way. Note down what others are saying to you, how you are looking, what you are able to wear. If you feel demoralised at any point, then return to your notes and read them as they will remind you of how fabulously well you are doing and of the positive feelings and reactions you are having. Keep heart and enjoy your success along the way.
Remember the story of the tortoise and the hare: where the hare was fast and impatient and the tortoise was slow and took consistent action and with each small step he gained distance until he finally won the race against the hare, who had burnt himself out and fallen asleep!