“Ugh, I really want to lose some weight”- Everyone… and their moms. But seriously.
Most people have a weight loss idea/want/goal/desire and hopefully, inevitably… plan. It’s along the same lines as marrying their ❤ crush ❤. It’s easy to understand that in order to win over your ❤ crush ❤, you’ll probably have to put in some effort (everyday). Weight loss is no different, and there’s definitely no “magical love potion” with weight loss. Even with surgery and quick fix diets, the maintenance work is incredible. So, we need to woo weight loss . But are you really ready? Do you actually have the motivation to achieve your goals? Check out these following steps: Pre-contemplation, Contemplation, Preparation, Action and Maintenance.
So let’s find out.
Precomtemplation: We get it, you want to lose weight. A good start is to follow one of your favorite fitness people on twitter/snapchat/instagram (shameless plug… follow me on insta) or actually click on those healthy recipe ads on facebook as you’re killing time. At this point, you’re essentially weight loss stalking. It’s progress, right? Well, it’s moving in the right direction. Progress is still another 6 months away at this rate.
- Following inspirational health/fitness/nutrition social media
- Looking up healthy recipes
- Googling local gyms or other activities
Contemplation: You’re done just stalking weight loss and are officially ready to openly follow them. A concrete action, nothing big… but it’s something. And now you get to oogle all of their pics. Small steps can start yielding rewards. You join a gym (and get a complimentary massage), accountability group (and get a new group of friends), or buy a workout videos/equipment. Check you out! Progress is within 6 months at this rate.
- Joining a gym/box/studio/accountability group
- Buying workout clothes you actually want to wear… like a slice of pizza wearing shades reflecting a cheeseburger t-shirt, or lululemon anything… whatever makes you happy
- Buying a rice cooker, mixer or really anything besides a microwave
- You buy yourself the fancy candles for a week of stairs vs elevators
Preparation: Now that you’re Friends, you have typed out the perfect thing to post on their wall… you just need to hit the button. Ya know, at some point. You’re getting there. You know exactly what you want… get their number, get the date, make it official, and pop the question… bing, bang, boom. Sure you will have to sacrifice some independence and shave your legs in the winter, but it will be worth it. There are some obvious fears (like how you can’t seem to eat without getting food on your face), but you’ll make plans to overcome them (selfie check!).
- Make 3 SMART goals (if you don’t know what those are, I will cover them in the future) that you could start tomorrow
- Understand what sacrifices will need to be made and how/when to say NO to keep your goals. “I loved dinner Grandma, but NO… I don’t need cheese on my Chicken Parm”. Assure her that you still love her.
- Obstacles are bound to happen. Come up with a game plan: bring a veggie dish to the Super Bowl party, pack your own lunches, focus on lean proteins and veggies when out for meals.
Progress is within 1 month at this rate.
Action: Awesome post is on the wall. Witty exchange lead to digits. Date is scheduled for Friday night. We are on a roll! It’s time to put rubber to the road. You have your game plan, you know what to do when you hit road blocks and you have the vision of where you want to be.
- With clear SMART goals, you know exactly what to expect and follow the game plan
- Your candle system has been upgraded to a new piece of workout gear for every success marker
- Healthy habits, like drinking more water and parking at the far end of a lot slip more into everyday life
- Hopefully you’ve tried a few things now: weight lifting, dance classes, barre, or Pokemon Go… and something really feels good. Stick with it. Or mix it up, whatever keeps you excited to keep moving. For food, swapping out some processed junk, heat up meals for chicken and veggies. Even making that turkey chili your friend posted the other day. Eating healthy doesn’t need to be boring, just balanced and whole. YOU DON’T NEED TO BE PERFECT.
Progress is NOW
Maintenance: Crushing it!! But is something still holding you back? Face it. Just like any good relationship… there will be up’s and down’s. Focus on what’s working and mix it up whenever things get stale. Everyone likes a date night and monkey bars just seems so cool right? All those ninjas warriors seem to like it. Make new goals, sign up for a race or host a healthy recipe party. Be thankful for the progress you’ve made and have fun with it.
You’ve been killing it for 6 months now, keep it up! But how? Check out my post on the subject in the next coming weeks
— Brought to you by your friendly Ithaca Trainer–
Source: Behavioral Therapy Techniques. National Academy of Sports Medicines: Behavior Change Specialist. 2015. p.131-132