If you’ve ever lost weight, you have probably experienced the rewards that come along with it: The thrill of getting back into your favorite jeans, that feeling of renewed confidence, the fun of receiving a flood of compliments everywhere you go…. it felt great, right?
Then you had a setback. And before you knew it, your weight loss plan fell to the wayside. Perhaps you felt frazzled after a hard day and you dove right into a plate of brownies or the bowl of corn chips you were trying to avoid. Maybe that one indulgence triggered a downward spiral, leading you to ultimately regain the weight you worked so hard to lose. If this is your story, you aren’t alone! And all is certainly not lost.
Many people can lose weight, but living a healthier lifestyle thereafter isn’t always easy. The good news? It’s very doable. People who successfully maintain their weight loss for a year or more know that it takes real work and commitment to staying healthy. It requires big-picture focus and a long-term plan.
Here are some strategies to help you successfully keep living a healthier life after losing the weight.
Pay attention to what you eat. Just as importantly keep tabs on how much you’re eating. What worked when you started your weight loss journey will certainly work for you now.
Have a solid support system. Knowing you have meaningful support can be a powerful motivator. So surround yourself with a solid, ongoing support system, people you can count on anytime your motivation fades away.
Don’t let a “slip” become a complete freefall. None of us are perfect. To successfully keep your hard won weight loss off, acknowledge the slip-up and then get back on track. Use the knowledge you’ve acquired about nutrition and how your body gains and loses weight to reinforce positive choices. After all, you wouldn’t throw out an entire cartoon of eggs just because you dropped one egg on the floor!
Don’t subscribe to an “all or nothing” mentality. Scrimping and deprivation doesn’t work in the long-term. Occasional, planned indulgences have a rightful place in successful long-term weight maintenance.
Make healthy choices. Lean proteins, and fresh vegetables are important. But don’t fall into the trap of always eating the same things. Because then your meals will start to bore you. And boredom can lead to loss of control and/or making poor food choices. Adding a variety of foods to your meals can make mealtimes something to look forward to.
Take every opportunity to move and be active. You don’t have to go to the gym to be physically active. Dancing, playing with your kids, walking the dog—any kind of activity that gets you up and moving counts. So keep moving!
Successfully losing weight can be a challenge. However, the rewards of a healthier life are well worth it. But keeping the weight off is just as important as losing it. By sticking to your healthy lifestyle, practicing the smarter eating habits you’ve already learned and making smart decisions, including using these secrets, you will be empowered and motivated to sustain the results you’ve achieved.