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A Plan to Lose Weight.
How to Lose Weight...
Most important things in life need planning to make success likely. Losing weight is no different, specially if there is a lot of it to be lost. A plan will increase the chances of starting on a programme and then keeping it up. Otherwise, it is so easy to launch into losing weight with enthusiasm and then find after a week that one has drifted back to old habits. The habits that caused the problems originally.
The first thing to realise is that if you are overweight, it is important to do something about it now! A little overweight now can so easily turn into severely overweight tomorrow. Perhaps, followed by obesity a while later.
Being overweight or obese usually has an impact on physical health and, often, on mental health as well.
...Then Keep It Off!
A plan must be made that covers not only losing the weight in the first place, but then keeping it off for ever! “After the diet” is often the hardest part, as about 90% of people who have successfully lost weight put it all back on again.
You need a plan to decide how much weight to lose and over what period. To set realistic goals for along the way. Then, how is all this to be done?
The very process of planning helps in losing weight. In sticking with the plan and keeping the weight off permanently.
Check Your Present Weight.
If you haven´t got a weighing machine, you should get one! A vital piece of equipment.
Write your starting weight down somewhere safe. You will need it as one of the first items in a weight loss journal. It is the starting point for establishing a weight target.
Why Are You Overweight?
Think about it a while.. Just why are you overweight? Probably it´s either due to food or lack of exercise or both. Has your weight been steadily increasing for a long time – or did it increase quite suddenly at some point? If so, why? What happened?
Some thought will soon make most people realise what are some contributing factors to why they are overweight. A standard-sized can of Coke a day, say, adds up to 4,200 calories in a month. A bit over a pound in weight – 12 pounds in a year. Just one Coke a day will do that. A pint of beer? Even worse. About 180 calories or 5,400 a month.
On our plan for losing weight, you don´t necessarily have to give up anyfood or drink. You just have to be aware of what you are consuming and cut down on the things you know are not good. More information on this here.
Make a Plan For Reducing Your Weight
This is a fun bit! The part that will take you to your goal – and then keep you there. A thought-out plan also makes success far more likely – something you can stick to, or come back to if you you´ve strayed.
Your plan should include the following:
WEIGHT YOU WANT TO LOSE: You can work this out here.
You should not aim for a weight loss of more than 1 to 2 pounds a week. This is comfortably sustainable and will also make maintaining your new weight after the diet easier.
The weight you want to lose will give you your target – and from this intermediate targets can be established. Six pounds a month, for example.
Which Diet to Follow?
There are hundreds of diets – but most of them can be ignored. They are often just gimmicks, invented to make someone a lot of money. they may help you to reach the weight you want to be, but they won´t help you after, when you start putting the weight back on again.
A very important aspect is what happens when the target has been reached and the diet is finished. Studies have shown that weight successfully lost on a diet has been put on again after the diet in over 90% of cases. Usually, more weight is put on than was lost on the diet. What usually happens is that after the diet, people go back to the consumption patterns that made them overweight in the first place.
What is needed is a new pattern of eating, that enables weight to be lost and then for the new weight to be maintained after. A new life-style, perhaps. There are a few diets that do exactly this! One of the favorites is the so-called Mediterranean diet.
Mediterranean Diet and Losing Weight
A Mediterranean Diet does not necessarily lead to weight loss. It does, though, make it much easier to lose weight. The principal ingredients of this diet – vegetables, fruit and beans – are very filling. You are less likely to look around for a snack soon after a meal, as you probably won´t be hungry. Nothing is banned with this diet, but some fattening or unhealthy foods, like red meat or sweet things, are minimised.
For much the same reasons, a Mediterranean diet makes it far easier to maintain your new reduced weight later. It is now an important element in a modified life-style. It is a life-style that incorporates healthy and also delicious food. Food that is generally cheap and easy to prepare.
The only thing that will lead to weight loss is consuming less calories over a period than you expend in activities. A Mediterranean diet will not of itself achieve this. You can overfill on Mediterranean foods, so your weight keeps on going up. The Med diet does not ban anything and you may still, for example, gorge on sugar-laden foods.
The Mediterranean diet does, however, make far easier the period when you are cutting back on calories to lose weight. The foods in this diet, as well as being great to eat, are also very filling. They also leave you feeling full up for longer and less likely to sneak fattening snacks.
During the Weight Loss Phase
Some or all of the following can help
- Take photos of yourself before you start the diet, then weekly during the diet.
- Keep a journal, in which you record everything consumed – food and drink – track calories
- Record progress – note results in the journal.
- Plan meals, so that they incorporate varied dishes using typical Med diet foods
- Eliminate manufactured foods as far as possible. They nearly always contain some form of sugar.
- Use smaller plates. This is a really helpful psychological trick.
Much more here.
Most Important of All
There are bound to be slip-ups. Bad days when for one reason or another the diet was blown. A day full of greasy fattening food and sugar. Even if you slip for several days or even weeks, come back to the diet. It´s a question of establishing new habits, new ways of doing things. That takes time, persistence – some effort.