9 Simple Steps to Lose Weight
When working with clients I don’t just look at what food they’re eating and how much. There can be many other things that can have a big impact on their success.
With so much information out there, it can be so confusing to know what you should and shouldn’t be doing, but it’s important not to overcomplicate things.
Here I cover 9 ways in which some simple tweaks can make a big impact.
If you crave sweet food get into the habit of having a piece of fruit or some veggie sticks. If you have some nut butter or houmous at the same time, this can help to keep your blood sugar levels more even, which in turn will help your cravings.
And someone who will hold you accountable!
This can make all the difference. So many people I have worked with have said they knew what to do but just didn’t do it, or not for any length of time for it to make a difference in the long term.
Stop thinking about what you’re doing as a ‘diet’
You need to think about your food choices and habit changes as a change of lifestyle, for now and in the future. If you think about dieting and the foods you should and shouldn’t eat it’s easy to start obsessing. An example of this is if I tell you to not think about pink elephants how many of you can really not think about pink elephants? The same goes for if you’re told you can no longer eat cake – your favourite food. So, it’s not about ‘good’ and ‘bad’ foods and it’s not about never having certain foods again but about focusing on real whole plant foods the majority of the time. If you want to go out for coffee and a cake with a friend, then do it! Reaching your healthy weight should be an enjoyable journey and not something that depresses the hell out of you.
Using food to make you feel better
Eating to make yourself feel better when you’re stressed, bored, angry or upset is one of the most common reasons I hear from those struggling to maintain their weight. It’s easier said than done but you can change how you respond to eating triggers when you’re not hungry. Think about why you want to eat and how you’re feeling and take a moment before automatically reaching for food. Ask yourself if you’re really hungry and consider what you can do instead. Distracting yourself can work and the more you do it the easier it will become.
Don’t try to do too much all at once
For some people having a complete overhaul of the food they’re eating, and their activity levels is the right thing for them, but for most people gradual changes and building on healthy habits one at a time is much easier and sustainable to implement. If you have a lot of weight to lose break it down into more achievable shorter-term goals. Rapid weight loss is not a good idea, unless you’re under medical supervision. Most people who lose a lot of weight quickly will invariable put it all back on, and then some. This weight loss is also more likely to be a loss of water and muscle and not fat, which is what you really want to lose. You’re also more likely to miss out on essential nutrients if you’re drastically reducing your calories.
Don’t give up if you have a lapse
It can be all too easy to think you can’t eat healthily because you had a lapse and ‘gave in’ or ‘fell of the wagon’. Try to avoid the all or nothing mentality. If you eat something you weren’t planning to eat or end up eating a whole packet of biscuits when it was just supposed to be just the two, move on and start again.
Keep a food diary
It can also be helpful to track your moods at the same time. You may find you eat certain foods when you’re feeling a certain way. Awareness is the first step in changing your behaviour.
It can be very easy to underestimate how much we eat, especially drinks and the snacks in-between meals.
You can always use one of the many apps available, take photos or old school pen and paper, whatever works for you.
Write down your why
Or find a photo that reminds you why you’re doing what you’re doing and look at it regularly. Having a written or visual reminder can be very powerful.
Plan your meals
I am a big fan of meal planning! It doesn’t mean you have to prep everything in advance, but this may work for you. Planning in advance before you go shopping can help you save time, money and calories. And don’t go shopping when you’re hungry. You’re so much more likely to grab a calorie-laden snack when you’re hungry. Why make things harder for yourself?
Which of these do you think you can start implementing? I would love to know in the comments below.
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