Whether you’ve been dedicated to a weight loss program for years or you are just starting out and only a few months into a new diet or weight loss routine, everyone falls behind from time to time. And now that spring is here and winter, which makes it difficult to stay active, is behind you, restart your weight loss program with these tips:
1. Purge Unhealthy Foods – Start with your fridge and cupboards. Clear out any tempting and unhealthy foods that may have collected over time. Be it sugary cookies, starchy or unhealthy snacks, or high-calorie indulgences; reduce your likelihood of derailing your diet by getting rid of the culprits.
Stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables; lean protein sources such as Greek yogurt, eggs, chicken, and fish; and healthy carbohydrates such as quinoa, pilafs, whole-grains and fiber-rich breakfast cereals. If you have a sweet tooth, don’t deprive yourself; that’s a recipe for disaster. Instead, be prepared for cravings with good-for-you chocolates or cookies. Several brands have chocolate bars and nibbles that are high in cacao (look for brands with at least 60% cacao), which is good for your heart. Chocolate can also give you boost of energy, which will help get you moving. There are also several diet-friendly cookies that are made with healthy products such as fiber, oatmeal, chocolate and other yummy ingredients.
2. Don’t Look Back – Instead of feeling guilty for getting off track, forget about your old diet and weight loss goals and set new ones. Perhaps your old plan wasn’t realistic, sustainable or, perhaps, not enough fun. Set a new goal that incorporate realistic steps, time frames, and foods.
Figure out what works best for you. Perhaps set weekly or monthly goals instead of a target weight; thinking smaller may help you feel less overwhelmed. Find new ways to stay motivated that focus less on weight loss and more on being healthy. Take a cooking class with a friend or find a new recipe a week that you want to learn how to cook.
3. Get Moving – Use every opportunity you can to get moving: walk instead of drive, speed walk instead of stroll, carry instead of pushing a cart, take the kids to the park instead of letting them watch TV, etc. Movement is movement, and every little bit counts. If you had an exercise routine and you’ve slacked the past few months, jump back on the treadmill or elliptical. If you find yourself bored at the gym, then take a class or sign up for a boot camp instead.
Don’t be afraid to take your routine outside! Whether walking, running, hiking, climbing or cycling, the outdoors is a great way to get motivated while burning calories. There are plethora apps available that will not only keep you motivated, but also they help track your activities and remind you that it’s time to get moving.
4. Keep a Detailed Record – Keeping a recorded log of your goals, your progress, how you’re feeling, what you ate and loved, your movements, etc., is one of the best ways to not only achieve your goals, but to feel great about what you’re doing. Keeping a log is a great reminder of all your accomplishments and how far you’ve come. It’s a great way to stay organized, on track, and grateful for how invigorated and accomplished you feel. Every bit counts, and a log will remind you of every “bit.”
Everyone falters from time to time with his or her weight loss goals. There’s no reason to beat yourself up. Instead, get back on the horse and use these four tips-start with your fridge and cupboards, don’t look back, get moving and keep a detailed record-to revamp your efforts and get back on track. Technology has wonderful resources and motivational tools to keep you moving, focused, healthy, and having fun. So look up a recipe, download an app, or join a weight loss inspired group for support and encouragement.