As you begin your efforts to lose weight, you must realize that any successful weight loss endeavor is a continuing journey. Although an occasional break may be taken, you must always return to the journey if you intend to maintain the weight loss. It is not something that can be accomplished overnight or in a short amount of time if long-lasting results are expected. As you begin to make plans to get started, consider the journey to lose weight as a lifestyle change that you can live with FOREVER. Below are five stages that should be a part of any journey to lose weight.
1. Decision vs. Indecision --- The first phase is time spent in indecision until you make that final commitment to get started losing weight. You know that you want to lose weight but you never seem to get started. Sometimes you spend way too much time thinking about starting tomorrow and tomorrow never comes. Make a decision and a commitment to make changes in your lifestyle that will change your life and get started today.
2. Planning --- After you have made the commitment to your weight loss journey, the next phase is the planning stage as you make plans to successfully lose the weight. There is such a variety of programs to lose weight available on the market today as well as many options for physical activity. Although there is wide variety of weight loss programs available, most of the plans require a very rigid plan of eating while restricting many of the foods that you enjoy. Most all of these major programs to lose weight will result in a weight loss if the rigid plans are strictly followed. Be sure to consider how long you can continue to abide by such rigid eating plans and/or fitness routines, depending on the plan that you choose.
Another consideration is that once you quit the weight loss plan, how do you plan to maintain your weight? When dieting many people reach their desired weight. However, ultimately, success is measured by maintaining the loss of weight. Does the plan that you have chosen have a maintenance plan for the future years? After choosing a plan to lose weight, it is important to begin to take control of your eating habits as well. Instead of totally denying yourself of the foods that you enjoy, you learn to be in control rather than allowing the foods to control you. You must learn to control your portions and apply other healthy eating principles.
Physical activity is a very important aspect of your health although it is easy to avoid due to lack of time or commitment. Weight loss is still possible without any physical activity although it should be an integral part of your weight loss program. Consider the many types of physical activities such as walking, jogging, lifting weights, aerobic classes, yoga classes, water aerobics, as well as many more. Choose the physical activity that best fits your needs.
Determine your "WHY" and every time you start to waiver, let your "WHY" motivate you to continue. Your "WHY" should be strong enough to keep you going in the tough times.
3. Getting Started --- Once you have made the decision to begin losing weight and you have decided on a plan of action, the third phase is to get started. Don't delay and begin to follow the eating plan and the activity plan that best fits your needs. The first few weeks are the most difficult so it is important to remain true to your commitment during that time. Try to stay focused and keep remembering your "WHY."
4. Persevering --- Persevering as you pursue your goal is considered the fourth phase of the journey. This phase will be filled with many successes and hopefully only a few failures. You will have setbacks and there will be times that you just want to quit, but you must remember your "WHY" and be totally committed to your weight loss endeavor. If you have a setback, don't let that get you down. Remember that here is no condemnation and keep moving forward.
5. Maintaining --- The most overlooked but important aspect of the journey is maintaining the weight loss which is the final phase. Many believe that they have reached their ultimate goal once they have achieved their desired weight loss. They think that they have achieved success. However, they do not realize the significance of continuing on this journey in order to maintain long-lasting results. Your journey is not over, the final and most important phase has just begun. It is important to realize the significance of this phase and make plans in advance to continue persevering in order to maintain your weight loss.