No one likes to start over. It feels like defeat. You strived to get the job done, but are now faced with a new job, plus some. That would be the story of people who manage to lose weight, only for it to come back — with a vengeance.
We have to keep our goals simple and focus on them daily, or else, we can easily lose our way.
Here are 10 ideas to help regroup:
You snooze, you win. Studies have shown that lack of sleep increases hormones that ramp up appetite and slow metabolism. Try to get seven or more hours daily.
Ditch the scale and forget about BMI. It’s OK to make an assessment of where you are but don’t depend on these numbers to give you a picture of your health. It also can be discouraging. See your doctor for screenings and map out a weight loss plan, and then stick to it.
Have a real goal. Don’t just say you want to lose weight. Create a plan, even if it’s baby steps. If it’s just walking 30 minutes a day and losing one pound each week, you have to start somewhere.
Check the stress. Stress literally hurts you. It can make you eat more or poorly. Get to the source of your stress. A simple walk may be a solution. For tougher issues, look for relief from family and friends, meditation, prayer, or whatever it takes to decompress.
Eat, for goodness sake. There is no negotiating on eating. You have to do it. Just eat real food. Real, meaning it wasn’t concocted in a lab or sat on a shelf for a long time. We all like our treats, but make sure the majority of food comes naturally from Earth.
Eat mindfully. Notice when you’re eating and how much. Sometimes we don’t realize that we’ve grabbed a snack and ate the whole thing until we get to the bottom of a package because we were in front of a TV or computer screen. Be present in your actions.
Drink more water. This is by far one of the easiest things in the world you can do. Just like food, your body needs it. Reaching for water instead of juice and soda saves you plenty of calories. And if you’re exercising like you should, it’ll come natural to you anyway.
Don’t undo your exercise in one meal. How many times have you completed a workout or took a walk only to come back and “reward” yourself with an ice cream cone or a gooey dessert? Cut it out. You can’t out-exercise a bad diet.
Rethink breakfast. When you think about it, there aren’t that many healthy options in America’s typical breakfast fare. It’s heavy on fat and simple carbohydrates. Cereals are almost always high in added sugar and breakfast meats are high in saturated fat. Who says we have to have pork sausage and pancakes with syrup or a bowl of Fruit Loops? What would happen if you ate kale in the morning? Don’t let the commercials fool you. If it’s healthy, just eat it, even if it’s not something you normally wouldn’t eat in the morning.
Just do it. If you avoid exercise like the plague, now’s the time to change your thinking. Maybe you can lose a little weight with diet alone, but it’s nothing compared to adding exercise. Plus, it’ll yield great benefits for your heart, mood and blood chemistry.