Weight loss success looks different to everyone. What may work for one person may not necessarily work for another. With that being said, you can’t just WISH for it, you have to WORK for it, and as with most things in life, you get out what you put in. If you’re reading this now, you’re looking to learn my best-kept secrets for weight loss success. The tips that I’m about to tell you will put YOU in the driver’s seat. You will have two options – fully commit or glaze over the content and not put anything in action. I want to encourage you to FULLY commit because your healthy lifestyle begins at the end of this article!
So, without further ado, here are eight of my BEST kept secrets for weight loss success.
1) Determine your goals and develop a plan.
I cannot tell you how common it is for people to decide on things that they truly want to accomplish in life, to set a goal to work towards that thing and ultimately come up short, leaving them frustrated and discouraged.
This is exactly why I always start with goal setting with my clients and why they can be successful because we will go through PROPERLY setting goals. I help them gain clarity and direction for where they want to go with their weight loss and more. Once you have that clarity and direction, it is MUCH easier to know the steps needed to achieve that goal. Otherwise, we drift along without any real progress. Setting clear and measurable goals with planned action steps is the best way to promote success when it comes to your goals.
Having a strategy for how you will address obstacles is also a part of that plan. Don’t be your own obstacle! Stick to your plan the best you can and adjust your plan as needed!
2) Find the activities and exercises that you enjoy.
Even if you don’t necessarily enjoy the activity at the highest point of exertion, you should at least enjoy what you are doing enough not to dread it or dislike it. If you dread something or dislike something, the likelihood of you continuing with that activity is slim to none. With that in mind, working towards a healthy lifestyle should not feel like a chore. It should feel enjoyable! Try different things to see what you enjoy, whether preparing for a 5k, trying new workout classes, or even playing sports with the kids or friends regularly.
Even commit to walking a few times a week. Wake up early, walk on your lunch break, walk to the supermarket, etc. Find ways to squeeze in movement so that it becomes a habit that would be difficult to break. Research shows that just 2 1/2 hours of brisk walking a week, approximately 20 minutes a day, can help to reduce your stomach by about 1 inch in about 1 month.
3) Get comfortable with being uncomfortable
Discomfort will move you forward. Comfort keeps you the same. The more you put yourself out there and embrace discomfort, the further along in life you will be. Discomfort is part of the process of change.
Instead of selling yourself short, next time you’re on the treadmill, see if you can add a little bit more, even if it’s 0.1mph. When you’re doing cardio, see if you can do another five minutes. When you’re weightlifting, see if you can go up in weight (psst ladies… heavier weights won’t make you bulky, but that’s for a different time). It doesn’t have to be much. Even a little bit more can make all the difference.
4) Start small and give yourself time.
Becoming fit and healthy doesn’t happen by accident. We must develop a plan that makes sense for your abilities, challenges your body healthily and safely, and introduces a change in increments.
To avoid injury and burnout, start slow and be realistic about how much time you can commit at first. Committing to start a new journey is hard enough, and if you’re not honest about your physical fitness level and go too hard, you’re setting yourself up for potential burnout and discouragement. Don’t make too many changes too quickly, or try to complete workouts that are too hard for you. But also, don’t stay stagnant. Your workouts should grow with you.
So, start where you are and set ONE daily habit today. Whatever the habit is, plan for it, prioritize it, and schedule it. Example: I will schedule three 10-min walks or movement breaks today – one in the morning, one at lunch, and one after dinner. When you feel confident in your ability to complete the habit regularly, set another. It’s all about that compound effect!
5) Choose balanced meals.
The diet industry wants us to think that if we just cut carbs and eat less of this or more of that, then we will lose weight easily. Everybody wants a quick fix – and the diet industry’s marketing campaigns do a good job at making us believe that it is possible, but quick fixes are not sustainable. Instead of quick fixes, opt for lean protein, wholesome carbs, and healthy fats in every meal.
If you are working out a lot but aren’t making healthy diet choices, you will most likely not see the results you want. I always tell my clients, “you cannot out-train a bad diet.”
Understanding healthy portion control plays an important part in weight loss. It’s super easy to remember because all you need is your hand!
A serving of protein = 1 palm
A serving of vegetables = 1 fist
A serving of carbs = 1 cupped hand
A serving of fats = 1 thumb
6) Learn to manage your mind and “tune into your body.”
People who develop a healthy relationship with their bodies, food, and fitness have built the skills – through practice – that allow them to be mindful, pay attention to their emotions, and tune into their body’s signals. Body awareness involves being constantly AWARE of your decisions, what you are doing, and how you feel.
Because food is centered around many of our social situations, we are often eating so frequently that we don’t even know what hunger feels like.
Questions to ask yourself to navigate hunger:
- Why am I craving something right now?
- How hungry am I?
- Could I wait 20 minutes to eat to give myself time to make a healthier choice?
- Am I 80% full?
- Am I satisfied?
- Do I want to finish this, or could I save it for later?
EX: “I’m about 80% full – could eat more but am good for now” or “I’m hungry, but I could go another 30 minutes.”
The skill of being “body aware” and understanding hunger cues — is just that, a skill. And with practice, this can be developed and improved upon over time.
7) Be consistent.
There are many reasonable diets and exercise programs out there. The key is to pick one and follow it consistently. You can’t set a goal to lose 30 pounds and expect to lose 5 within the first day.
Regardless of which nutrition or fitness plan that you follow, you need to make your plan a priority, do the hard work (yes, this is not easy!), and stay consistent. Many people give up too soon because they don’t see the fruits of their work quickly enough. Trust me, as a coach, I see this all the time! You have to show up again and again and again… even when you want to quit. Accept that you will have setbacks, and results don’t happen right away, and that’s ok. Be patient with yourself and your progress! There will be days that you aren’t 100% on your game, and THAT IS OK! The key is to be persistent and keep moving forward. Remember, stopping progress will not get you to your goals any faster.
Lastly, 8) enjoy the journey!
Don’t compare your journey to someone else’s! Everyone’s journey is different. Don’t focus on what others are doing. The goal is progress, not perfection! Be grateful for where you are right now. Get out of the mindset of “I’ll be happy when…” because getting too caught up in where you want to be can rob you of your happiness today!
Love Who You Are, Where You Are Now:
I would LOVE to continue this journey with you, so come check out my “Top Three Tips Towards Body Confidence” guide for FREE!! www.brittiniewick.com/body-confidence