Weight loss has long been acknowledged as an important way to improve health and reduce the risks associated with obesity. It can help people feel better and have more energy while also helping them look and feel better. Losing weight is a challenging process that requires dedication, commitment, and the right strategy, but you can do it.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that about 35% of adults in the United States are obese. This means they have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of over 30. Being overweight or obese increases a person’s risk factors for chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and some forms of cancer. Additionally, obesity has been linked to reduced life expectancy.
Weight loss isn’t just about physical health either. It can also help people feel better emotionally too. Losing weight can increase self-esteem and make everyday activities more manageable, such as climbing stairs or walking short distances without feeling exhausted. Additionally, studies have found that those who lose weight experience improvements in mood and an overall decrease in stress levels compared to those who remain at the same weight.
However, there will be times when it feels like an uphill battle to reach your weight loss goals. This is why staying engaged in your weight loss journey is crucial by considering the following aspects.
Avoiding Unrealistic Expectations
Many people may expect too much from their weight loss journey, setting unrealistic goals for themselves that can be difficult to reach. The key is to set reasonable expectations and focus on the smaller steps to get there. Start by making small changes in your diet, such as replacing sugary drinks with water or eating more fruits and vegetables instead of processed snacks.
Losing weight typically doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it is a gradual process that requires consistency and dedication. To stay motivated while losing weight, focus on small incremental goals like walking 10 minutes each day or cutting out one unhealthy food item every week. This will help make the goal achievable and reduce the chances of giving up before reaching your goals.
If you notice your goals are impossible to achieve, you might consider quitting before you reach them. This is why it’s essential to set realistic goals and understand that the amount you lose will depend on your circumstances, such as age, lifestyle, and medical history.
Making Exercise a Habit
The key to successful weight loss is making exercise a regular part of your life. Regular physical activity can help you burn more calories than dieting alone and reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases.
The CDC recommends 150 minutes of physical exercise every week. Here are a few tips to help you develop the habit of exercising:
Focus on a Few Exercises You Enjoy
Instead of doing all kinds of exercises, focus on a few you enjoy. This could be walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, or any other physical activity that is enjoyable and sustainable for you.
Find an Exercise Buddy
Having someone to exercise with can help keep you motivated and accountable. Find a friend or family member who shares your interest in physical activity and start exercising together.
Take a Break and Refocus
If your motivation is waning, take a break and refocus. Please take a few days off from physical activity and reset your goals to make them more achievable. This can help reinvigorate your enthusiasm for exercise.
Maintain a Positive Attitude
Maintaining a positive attitude while on your weight loss journey is essential. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results right away. Instead, focus on the long-term benefits of any physical activity and how it will improve your health overall.
Staying on a Calorie Deficit
To lose weight, you must consume fewer calories than you burn. This means creating and maintaining a calorie deficit by eating healthy foods in moderation and avoiding processed and sugary snacks. A good rule of thumb is to track your caloric intake for several weeks until you find the right balance between your energy expenditure and consumption.
A calorie deficit will require you to make sacrifices and changes to your diet, but it’s not all doom and gloom. Plenty of delicious, healthy recipes can help you stay on track and reach your weight loss goals.
However, a calorie deficit is different from being in a restrictive diet plan to help with weight loss. A restrictive diet plan can be unsustainable long-term and lead to unhealthy habits such as binging or yo-yo dieting. Unfortunately, anorexia can also become a real issue. You should consider entering an anorexia center if this is the case.
By staying engaged in your weight loss journey, you can manage your expectations and stay accountable while developing healthy habits that will last a lifetime. You can reach your weight loss goals and reap the health benefits with adequate physical exercise, a balanced diet, and a positive attitude.