Have you made a New Year’s resolution to start a weight loss program on January 1 (Take a look at my weight loss plan)? You are probably full of determination, but that little voice in your head might be just a little bit worried about how you’re going to keep that resolution.
There are people who don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions. I’m not one of them. I cannot think of a more perfect time to start “a new life” than on January 1.
Are you with me on this one?
The thing is though that we don’t want to fall to the category of those New Year Resolution People who start so enthusiastically but end up ordering pizza and drowning sodas by week 2. Because this time, this year:
We’ll lose weight for good!
Now, I want this post to be more than just a pep talk so I’ve made a list for you. Here’s a list of 15 tips on how to make sure that you stick to your New Year’s resolution plan to lose weight. We shall not fail!
Ready? Here we go:
Tips on how to keep a New Year’s resolution to lose weight
1. Make a proper commitment to losing weight
Don’t start anything halfheartedly. You need to be passionate about this! That’s the only way that you’ll keep the promise to yourself. Think of the reasons why you’re making this resolution – whenever you face obstacles you can come back to these reasons. Be more determined than ever.
2. Set goals for weight loss
Oh you’ll hate me for talking about planning once again but in order to succeed you need to plan well. I believe, that when it comes to any weight loss plan – including a New Year’s resolution – you need to set goals. If your resolution is that “you’ll make healthier food choices” then my guess is you won’t make any progress.
Instead, be more specific and set time frames, for example: decide that you will have at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day or you will not have any sugar for four weeks etc.
Choose something that you will be able to measure.
I will start Whole30 on January 1, 2016. That’s a good goal because it is specific and has a set time frame: I will follow Whole30 program and its rules for the next 30 days.
You can read more about goal setting on Mayo Clinic’s article on weight loss goals.
3. Write your resolutions and goals down
One of the best ways to stick to a plan is to write it down. You can even sign the plan as a sign of commitment if you feel like it! Put the plan somewhere where you can take a look at it daily: in the morning when you wake up and at night before going to bed.
4. Share them with your friends and family
Let people around you know about your plans. They will support you and will not let you stray. You don’t want to disappoint yourself or the people around you so you’ll have the right support system and you’ll feel like you’re accountable to somebody else as well.
Eating Well has an article on how different types of support can help you lose weight.
5. Do not try to change your whole life
Ah, I should tell this to myself 🙂 The thing is that it’s much better to choose just 1 – 3 goals and stick to them. You have a much better chance of keeping your focus and reaching your goals.
6. Make it easy for yourself
How you prepare for your weight loss plan has a huge impact on how well you will succeed. If you decide to start a 3 month weight loss plan that doesn’t allow any sugar then you should make sure that you do not have any sodas in your fridge or ice cream in the freezer. Stock your fridge with lots of fruits and vegetables so that whenever you have an urge to snack you’ll have plenty of healthy options.
If you plan to start exercising a lot more then schedule the workout sessions to your calendar in advance and pack your gym bag the day before.
7. Try to find a weight loss buddy
It will make your journey so much easier if you’ll find a friend who shares your plan to lose weight with you. Speak with your spouse or best friend about it! It will make everything twice as much fun and not so difficult at all as you’ll be sharing struggles and cheering each other to succeed.
8. Track your progress
If you plan to lose weight it is very important to track your weight loss progress. Write down all the measurements and take before pictures on day one. I know you might feel like you don’t want to right now but trust me you’ll be so happy you did later on. Seeing results on paper, not just guessing if you’ve made progress or not, will be very motivating.
9. Take one day at a time
This is important: Don’t rush things. Your goals might be weeks or months ahead but if you want to reach those goals you have to take one day at a time. If you constantly think about those months ahead of you, you will get frustrated because things happen so slowly. So focus on making right choices day after day, you can use a daily planner for example to help you out. It will feel slow but when you make it and reach those goals you can’t believe how quickly time went by.
10. Plan ahead how you’ll face obstacles
There will be temptations and your determination will be tested so it’s a good idea to prepare yourself. Take a moment and go through what weight loss obstacles you might face and think of ways to get past them.
11. Stay positive!
There will be times when you’ll feel low and those are the moments when you might slip. Give yourself 2 – 3 weeks to see first results, don’t expect them overnight. It might be a good idea to not step on the scale for the first couple of weeks – you definitely should not weigh yourself every day. It’s OK to create your own positive mantra that you keep telling yourself 🙂
12. Praise yourself
This is important especially in the beginning:
Feel pride about every single day that you are sticking to your plan. Honestly, you can say it out loud to yourself: “You’ve done such an amazing job my dear. This is day 4 already. I’m so proud of you.” You might be rolling your eyes as you are reading this, but I’m telling you: Be good to yourself.
13. Reward yourself
Now I already mentioned that you should set goals for your weight loss project. A part of setting goals is also rewarding yourself when you do reach those goals. As this is a weight loss project, your rewards should not have anything to do with food – we should try to get rid of the habit of using food as a reward or a punishment. Instead, plan small rewards for mini goals and bigger rewards such as a pampering session, nice new clothes or a holiday for achieving bigger goals.
14. Make it fun
Try to find ways to make your weight loss plan fun/interesting/enjoyable. A lot of weight loss plans have forums where you can share your experiences with other people, go ahead and join them! Pamper yourself by buying exotic fruit that you haven’t tried before or better cuts of steak for celebratory dinners with your spouse. Make your food as interesting and tasty as you can by seasoning it well and try new recipes.
Do something that you haven’t done for a while, like go to a theater or spa. Or try new ways to exercise, Shape magazine has some great ideas.
15. And finally: Don’t punish yourself – get back up
If you slip, do not give up. You’re doing so well, there’s no need to ruin everything just because you’ve skipped a workout you had planned or ate something you shouldn’t have eaten. Old habits die hard. Just stop, refocus, remind yourself why you’re doing this and what your goals are. Progress, not perfection. Continue with the plan.
Now if you want, you can read about my New Year’s resolutions. We can do this – let’s make this the Best Year Ever!
Happy New Year, my dear readers!