Losing weight is a long, often hard process to go through, especially if you do not choose the right methods do get you to the results that you have been dreaming about. Often, we start off full with motivation and determination, and somewhere along the way, we end up feeling depressed, unhappy, and sick of doing so much work and seeing little to no results. Today we get to share 13 awesome ways that will help you lose weight but also keep you motivated along the way so that you do not have to face those feelings ever again!
13 Ways to stay motivated to lose weight
Don’t try too hard
We see fitness models and celebrities sharing their workout routines with us all the time, claiming to be spending hours and hours in the gym. And we do not say that that is not true – it is just a bit unrealistic to think that you will be able to do that at the very beginning of your weight loss journey. Usually, it is at the beginning when we have the most motivation, making all kinds of commitments in our heads, imaging ourselves spending that much time in the gym as well.
Remember that it is very important to walk this path at your own pace. You cannot possibly be spending hours in the gym all at once, especially not if you have not been to the gym for a long time now. Build yourself a constant and regular workout routine that will go great with some good eating habits and take small, yet meaningful steps. Do not overdo it!
Determine the reason for your weight loss
As with any goal in our life, it is important to take a step back and think about all the reasons for this new goal of yours. If it because you want to look better and feel good in your own skin? Or is it because you want to be eating more healthily? Perhaps it is your doctor that has recommended this radical change of yours?
Whatever the reasons are, make sure that you write them down and go through them every once in a while. This can be your constant source of motivation throughout the journey that you will be taking. After all, even science has proven that goal setting has played an important role in the weight loss process of some overweight and obese individuals who took part in a 2012 study (1).
Reward yourself without using food
Rewarding ourselves is a natural part of life, no matter if we are doing it because we have passed an important exam, cleaned the entire house as we meant to do, or lost those 5 pounds as we have dreamed of doing. But it is essential that we do it without using any food whatsoever.
Instead, try to reward yourself by taking a rest day and spending it with your loved ones. Perhaps getting that book that you wanted or even that new skirt that you have had your eyes on. Maybe it is time to get a new hairstyle or get your nails done – all of which are great examples of how you can reward yourself and stay motivated throughout your weight loss journey (2).
Set realistic expectations
This is probably the most important thing that we are about to say today – Have realistic expectations! As with anything in life, weight loss also requires having some realistic expectations. You cannot possibly imagine becoming a CEO overnight – you have to work for it, and the same goes for weight loss.
Do not rely on any ridiculous diets that promise to help you eliminate 5 pounds in three days by making you starve yourself. Remember that doctors keep reminding us that losing 1-2 pounds per week is a sign of a healthy and effective weight loss (3). Science has also shown that the higher the expectations are, the more likely you are to drop off your weight loss program, according to a study published in Obesity Research (4).
Take your lifestyle choices into consideration
Of course, losing weight is a big commitment, and it will require some great changes, especially if you are to say not used to eating healthy, going to the gym, cooking at home, or even drinking enough water on a daily level. But making too many changes in your life all at once can put a lot of stress on you, and you certainly would not want that, especially since we know that stress is often linked to weight gain which is the opposite effect to the one that you have been looking for (5).
Instead of changing your whole lifestyle at once, make an effort to achieve a reduced calorie intake, reduced frequency of snacking, frequent water drinking, frequent fruits, and veggies intake, etc. which are all proven ways that lead to weight loss (6). Figure what the best time to fit a good workout is and consider taking the stairs or even walking to work if possible. You will discover that it is the small things that matter, and that helps you burn that extra couple of calories.
Rely on a workout routine that will bring you joy
There is no denying the fact that a good workout routine will help you burn more calories than ever, which equals weight loss (7). This is why you need to feel good and comfortable when choosing a workout routine for yourself. It is a process that requires time, especially if you are new to exercising, but soon enough, you will get there.
Perhaps you will be interested in a pilates class or maybe even a spin class. Maybe you will get your friends to sign up for a gym membership together, or perhaps you can take on running and enjoy the sunny weather. The possibilities are truly endless, and in the end, it is only important that you feel good about what you are doing. After all, we are trying to build a new and improved healthy lifestyle for you.
Track your progress using a weight loss journal
It is hard to stay motivated if you do not notice any progress. And it is even harder to notice any progress by simply staring at the mirror, especially when you are doing it every day. So how about trying to track your progress by starting a weight loss journal. In your weight loss journal, you can include a list of foods and calories that you eat every day. This has been a proven method that helps lose weight and maintain the weight loss process (8, 9).
You can also track your emotions and discover the certain triggers that cause you to reach for your favorite chocolate bar. And do include your weekly measurements in there as well. Use a tape measure and measure your waist, arms, legs, etc. that will help you keep track of your weight loss.
Develop effective stress-management methods
Every day we are faced with certain stressors that usually cause us to end up in tears, with our hand deep into a bag of chips in front of the TV. We do not have to tell you that this certainly is not the best coping mechanism. But there are also challenges that you will be facing, such as birthdays and social events in general, where there will be alcohol and food all around you, and you are trying to keep reminding yourself as to why you are doing this.
This is why it is important to find the best stress-managing methods for you. They can include exercise, meditation, practicing mindfulness, going for a walk, asking for help, or calling a loved one. It is all about getting your attention away from these stressors and reminding yourself of the reasons that led you to the path of weight loss in the first place (10).
Rely on your close ones for support
Weight loss is not an easy path, and you will need all of the support that you can get. It is no secret that we all need a bit of support and motivation from those who are closest to us in this process.
So go ahead, tell your friends and family about the changes that you will be making. Ask for tips and experiences, and maybe you will end up with a weight loss buddy with whom you can celebrate all of your small yet meaningful successes with (11). That way, every time that you feel as you lack the motivation that you need, you can discuss it with your weight loss buddy, and they can remind you why you started doing all of these changes in the first place.
Get professional help if needed
Making so many changes in your life that include giving up your time spent in front of the TV or your favorite unhealthy snacks, even getting up early to go to the gym, can be a lot of overwhelming for many of us. And the last thing that we would like to do is give up because of all the stress that we have been dealing with. If you are worried that you are not seeing any progress or simply do not have the slightest idea of how your weight loss journey needs to look, why not consult a professional about it?
You can start by finding a registered dietitian that can teach you all about the required calorie deficit and healthy eating habits. You can even talk to your doctor about it, which is especially recommended when you are dealing with a certain health issue. There is the option of joining a class where you can work out with a professional trainer that can help you figure out which exercises are the best for you, according to what you are looking to get out of each training session (12).
Make a public commitment
According to a 1985 study, making a public commitment as a part of the weight loss process has helped the participants to follow through with their goals (13). The reasons for that are unknown, but perhaps it has something to do with feeling ashamed, not that you have anything to be ashamed for since we are all humans and bound to make a mistake or face failure at some point in our lives, or even a couple of times during our lives.
It seems that telling your friends and family can get you a lot more than the good old motivation and support that we discussed earlier. It can also help you stay accountable in the process as well. Some people go as far as sharing their fitness journey on social media. But you can also make a commitment in terms of paying in advance for your gym membership, which will surely keep you motivated enough to want to get the most for your money, right?
Start loving yourself and your body
Unfortunately, if you do not figure a way to start loving yourself and your body, you will not lose weight efficiently. No weight loss result will ever be enough, and this will only add to the dissatisfaction that you have been feeling about the way that you look. Researchers have shown that women who dislike their bodies are less likely to lose weight (14).
Think about getting a dog
It has been scientifically proven that getting yourself a dog will be helping you lose weight (15). If you ever wanted to get a dog but have been unsure about it, then this is the best time to do so! By having a dog, you will be required to go out at least two times a day for a brisk walk, which we are guessing is more than what you are getting every day. In addition, owning a dog can help you lower your cholesterol, blood pressure, and even help you fight the feelings of depression and loneliness (16).
The secret of an effective weight loss is hiding away behind some small yet meaningful things such as keeping a weight loss journal, talking to your friends about your weight loss journey, or even getting yourself a cute little dog that will keep you active all day around. Use these 13 tips that we had to share with you today to get you to the finish line fast and efficiently without having to feel in any negative way along the way.