I’m super excited because I have finally reached a pretty exciting milestone! I lost 20 pounds! In honor of my recent weight loss, I wanted to talk about how I got here. It’s a little different than my usual posts, but I wish someone had told me what I had to find out the hard way. I’m so excited about this, and excited to share it with you!
No crazy secrets, just healthy life style changes!
Please note that that I am not a medical professional, and this post does contain some affiliate links! This means that if you click the link and purchase something, I get a small commission at no cost to you. Thanks for supporting my blog and allowing me to continue to provide FREE content!
Define your goals
We all know how to lose weight. Eat healthy, practice portion control, exercise…blah blah blah. How many times have we heard that stale advice? Knowing how to lose weight and actually succeeding are very different things. The important aspect of goal setting to lose weight is to be as specific as possible.
What are your fitness goals? Be specific about what you want, and how you are going to get there. “I want to be healthier” or “I’m going to go the gym more” are not specific enough. Think more in the neighborhood of “I’m going to track my food intake and limit my calories to X amount daily”, and your specific plan for exactly what you will do for exercise and for how long. Write them down, because a very wise anonymous individual said, “Goals that are not written down are just wishes.”
Find some sort of program
You know yourself. You know what will automatically spell failure for you. If you hate the gym, and know it won’t work for you then don’t sign up for a membership. If you need the structure of the gym, then go ahead and sign up. But there are tons of options other than the gym! We live in an amazing world of technology, and there are tons of apps available to give you structure. There are also YouTube fitness channels, and fitness DVDs…the options are endless. Find one that works for you (and that you enjoy as much as possible for exercise) and stick with it!
Work out at the same time everyday
It’s way easier to maintain a habit than it is to have a mental struggle with yourself every day to go exercise. Pick a time, and stick with it. And after a little while, you won’t even think twice about exercising. I am definitely not an early bird, but I exercise before work every morning. I’m not in the mood to go after work, and any later than that I’m not going to have energy, plus I want to spend time with my family in the evening. It works for me, and it’s part of my daily routine.
Buy a Fitbit
I love my Fitbit. It helps me to be aware of how active I am, and gives me reminders to move throughout the day. I have a Fitbit Alta and it’s awesome. Before that I had the charge HR, and I loved it too. Getting 10,000 steps a day is a great guideline for physical activity, and a great way to work towards weight loss. Get your own below!
Fitbit Alta Fitness Tracker, Silver/Black, Small (US Version)
Track your food intake
Even more important than exercising is diet. You absolutely cannot exercise away a bad diet. Think of your eating habits as a life style instead of a quick fix. Choose sustainable habits. There are tons of apps of that’s your thing, and I use a free app called “Lose it!” (Not an affiliate, just really like it!).
Work out clothes
I’m generally more motivated to work out knowing that I have cute work out clothes waiting for me. I live in yoga pants and leggings generally, and here are some affordable ones! Baleaf Women’s Tummy Control Workout Printed Yoga Capri Pants Hidden Pocket Ink Purple Size M
Laying out your work out clothes the night before, or packing your gym bag the night before can make it easier to get up and go in the morning, or go after work. I won’t blow off the gym if I have a bag packed, because I hate for it to sit packed for a whole day.
You need to give yourself breaks. However, there need to be limits. I love sugary treats, and that’s where I get into trouble with healthy eating, and a big part of why I gained so much weight in the first place. I let myself have two treats a week that I don’t have to count toward my daily calorie allotment. I also let myself have one cheat meal a week.
Do it your own way. Maybe you need to cut out almost all of your sugar intake? Maybe you just need to say goodbye to soda? Find what works for you so you don’t find yourself deprived or starving and totally binge on junk food.
Find healthy ways to deal with stress
I am a major emotion eater. Big time. My picture could be next to the definition of stress eating in the dictionary. Eating was one the main ways I coped with my depression, and it resulted in me gaining 30 pounds in 6 months. Even with my education and experience with helping other people find healthy ways to deal with stress, I absolutely sucked at dealing with my own.
Writing, yoga, and running are how I currently deal with stress. Think of an activity that makes you feel AWESOME. Implement it into your daily routine.
We are always more successful when we trade out a bad habit for a good one instead of just kicking a bad habit to the curb with no replacement. Do always you have an afternoon candy bar? Trade up for an apple or granola bar, instead of skipping the snack. Think of your own bad habits, and what you can trade them out for.
Some low calorie treats can be helpful too, to give you what you crave with out derailing your progress.
And I LOVE this stuff. So good and super low calorie!
Find someone to be accountable to
Choose someone to stay accountable to. Pick someone who is in your corner, who wants you to succeed, but isn’t afraid to nag you if you start sliding away from your goal. Some possible choices are your spouse, a friend, or a coworker.
Don’t be hard on yourself
You might mess up. You probably will mess up. But tomorrow is a new day, your next meal is an opportunity to try again, and unless you are reading this at 10:00 at night you have time to hit the gym and try again today! Even though I probably don’t know you I’m rooting for you to succeed. It gets easier as you start to get into better shape, once you aren’t eating junk all the time you won’t crave it constantly. I am so excited to have lost 20 pounds, and if this is something that you want to do, I’m excited for your personal journey!
How have you been successful at losing weight? Let me know in the comments below!