Weight loss is a struggle for many of us. Things go well for a few months, and then, we either lose motivation or come to a breaking point, gaining all the weight back. In short, most weight loss guides are completely unsustainable.
Here, we’re sharing three important tips for sustainable weight loss to help you not only lose the weight but keep it off.
Find Your Why
It’s so important to know why you want to lose weight. A clear reason to put in the work helps you stay motivated and enables you to maintain the consistency required for sustainable weight loss.
Maybe it’s that you want to live a long time to see your kids and grandkids grow up. Perhaps a disease runs in your family, and you want to be strong to either stave it off or fight it with rigor. Or, maybe you want to feel good in your body or improve your overall confidence.
The trick is to make your “why” transcends time instead of honing in on a specific goal.
Goals are great to get you from A to B. But they’re not the most sustainable. For example, losing weight for your wedding is great and all. But when it’s over, you might struggle to continue.
So, find your overarching why and remind yourself of the reason to show up for yourself each day.
Allow for Cheat Days
Extreme diets and highly regimented eating schedules can be tough on our psyche. No one likes to deprive yourself of something. We often want what we can’t have even more than if we were allowed to have it. Go figure…
If you never allow for a cheat day, you’re far more likely to be too strict before exploding and binging on all the cakes and cookies you can get your hands on. When you allow for planned cheat days, you’re more likely to cheat in moderation versus gorging yourself completely.
The same goes for exercise. It’s important to allow your body to rest and recover. In fact, working out too much can be just as unhealthy as not working out enough.
Remember, when it comes to health and fitness, a little can go a long way. Some swear by the 80/20 rule.
Eat healthy whole foods 80% of the time and allow yourself to have a bit of dessert the other 20%. Push yourself in your workouts 80% of the time, then allow yourself to stretch and chill the other 20%.
Focus on How You Feel
It’s easy to get bogged down by the number on a scale or the size of our jeans. But in reality, these numbers don’t matter nearly as much as we think they do.
Everybody is different. A healthy weight for you could be completely different from someone else, and the size of your hips doesn’t always correlate to optimal health.
For sustainable weight loss, measure your success based on how you feel. It’s the best metric to help you navigate when you need to push a little harder or go less extreme.
Do you have more energy during the day? Are you getting better sleep? Is your skin clearing up? How’s your digestion? Do you feel stronger in your workouts? Has your mood improved?
These checkpoints should be the focal point of your weight loss journey, and it’ll help you stay on track to keep the weight off for good.