BY MONIQUE BARTLETT
You try to lose weight but you always seem to keep struggling. You want to make weight loss a little easier but you just don’t know how. There are things that have been shown to help peel off the pounds. To begin, start with a food journal. A food journal keeps you accountable but will only help you if you are honest. If you write down everything and when I say everything that means the candy that you snuck at lunch and the glass of wine that you had at dinner you can see where all the calories are adding up. You can use your food journal to help you figure out problem eating patterns. It can help you can figure out times when you turn to food for emotional reasons as opposed to physical hunger. Whether it’s because of stress, depression, wanting to eat what your friends eat or even just because you’re bored.
You also need to plan for success. You wouldn’t leave for a big trip without putting it in your GPS first, so do the same for your exercise. Plan when you’re going to workout and what type of exercise you are going to do. When you write it down like an appointment in your calendar you will be more likely to show up and actually do the work. Decide if you are more comfortable making working out on your own or if you would prefer to workout with a friend or family member who can help keep you motivated. If you choose to workout with a friend, make sure you don’t compare your efforts to theirs. Workout at your own pace but workout at an intensity that will make you sweat and feel as if you actually exercised. If your friend can lift heavier weights than you or can do more sit ups than you, that’s ok. You will eventually get there, don’t rush the process. If you push yourself too hard you may injure yourself and derail your workout efforts.
If you find that you slip up a bit, don’t throw in the towel. Do you find yourself thinking, “I’ve already blown it this weekend, what’s the point of watching what I eat now? I’ll just start fresh on Monday morning.” Postponing your weight loss efforts for a later date can cause a small slip to turn into a big backslide. If you cheat, don’t beat yourself up. Get back to your good habits immediately. Each day is a new day and looking backwards will not keep you motivated. Put it in the past and remember that it’s the small steps that lead to long term success.