How to kickstart your New Years weight loss resolution
Assess your goals
Take a deep breath in. Whether you have struggled to lose weight in the past or are overwhelmed with where to begin now, realize this is not something that has to be done overnight. Identifying the problem and working out a realistic solution to meet your goals will keep you on the right track.
The long term goal should be to gradually shift to a healthier diet, incorporate physical activity and have consistent weight loss of small amounts, such as a pound or two a week. It may not sound like much up front, but over the course of the year can dramatically change your lifestyle!
Diet and exercise are largely habits. Many people are unaware to the calories, content and even how much food they eat throughout the day. Not being cognizant of our eating habits can easily lead to overeating. To combat mindless eating it is wise to create a schedule.
Plan for three to four small meals per day that each contain a source of protein, such as salmon or nuts, as well as whole grains, vegetables and fruit. Do your shopping for the week ahead of time to avoid any unhealthy impulsive purchases.
Apps can be a useful tool to reinforce positive habits and learn about the do’s and dont’s of a healthy diet. Tracker apps, such as myfitnesspal, can log what you are eating, number of calories and even macronutrients.
Any calorie tracker can work, but it needs to be able track your calorie budget in real time so you know how many calories you’ve consumed in the day. Logging your daily food consumption over the span of several months will give you a great idea reference point moving forward, as well as keeping you accountable through the hectic times of the year.
Cut the Sugar
Sadly, a universal diet to lose weight that will work for everyone does not exist. However, there is a universal enemy. Added sugars and processed foods are calorically dense, void of nutrients and will not keep you sated.
Always look at nutrition labels. Some foods that are marketed as “healthy” can actually be high in calories and loaded with added sugars. Be sure to inspect the back, sides and bottom of every item of food to find the nutrition information. Examine the label carefully. If the majority of the ingredients look like something out of chemistry class it may be best to move on!
Try to eat whole grains over processed foods whenever possible. Eating fewer carbs and consuming more protein from lean meats, nuts, fish or eggs will also be more satiating throughout the day.
Exercise and Sleep
Giving the body sufficient activity while also getting enough rest will ensure our internal processes are at their peak! These contribute to a real impact on our weight. Weight-resistance exercise, as well as cardio activities, will improve our metabolism, while also lowering our chances for stroke and heart disease.
Sleep is essential to being at our healthiest. Adults should get a minimum of 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Inconsistent sleep cycles, or extended periods of losing sleep, can lead to burnout, low metabolism and over-eating.
Sufficient exercise and sleep also contribute to reduce stress levels. There is a high correlation between stress and weight gain, so make sure to get those 7 hours!!
There is no magic recipe to weight loss, and few people reach their goal in a straight line.Typically, it’s the start of a multi-year journey that requires a disciplined approach and major lifestyle changes. No need to go at it alone, though.
Many people at all stages of their weight loss journey take advantage in being able to discuss what has worked for them, as well as what they struggle with. A support network of encouragement can really give you the extra boost you need. After all, we are all working towards the same goal!
Consider weight loss surgery
If over the course of the year you still cannot find success in losing weight you may be a candidate for weight loss surgery.
Weight loss surgery has been proven to be an effective weight loss option for many people. The vast majority of patients lose a third of their weight in the first year alone. But simply losing the weight is not the impressive part. It’s keeping the weight off for years to come that matters.
If you are interested in learning more about weight loss surgery please sign up for our free weight loss surgery seminar!