When I started the blog, one of the most frequent requests I got from my dear friends is guidance about weight loss.
Some are depressed about how much they weigh. Others are frustrated because they drop a few pounds, only to put them right back on. Some want my help because they feel defeated or their weight loss has plateaued.
I, personally, have gone two successful phases of weight loss and I still maintain it!
The first one was losing more than 10 kilograms (about 22 pounds) after a sudden ballooning up, thanks to the post marriage lifestyle changes of frequent eat outs, parties, too many vacations.
The second was the phase of losing the 16 kilograms (around 35 pounds) of unavoidable post pregnancy weight (yep! I did put on a bit too much in the nursing phase, munching liberally on high-calorie goodies)
Both the times, I did it without any fad diet, any fasting, any gym, any instructor or trainer! I just, ate healthy, walked and yoga-ed!!
But why others are facing problems?? It really baffled me!
To have an insight, I talked to a number of certified fitness trainers and health coaches, who work all the time with people who want to lose weight. They helped me to understand it and now, am more than happy to share it with you!
Mistake 1: Lack of proper nutrition plan
Most of us think eating less or fasting is a good way!
Ask almost any personal trainer and they’ll tell you that regardless of your weight-loss goals, healthy eating is the backbone. Food is what fuels your body to reach your goals and without proper nutrition through quality foods, you’re likely to stall. Maintain a balanced diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, complex carbohydrates, complete proteins, and fats including such things as fish oils and flaxseeds.
- Avoid processed food.
- Don’t binge on sugary and oily food. It is not suggested to cut off all these food items as, suppressed urges can lead to further binging. Occasionally, give yourself a treat of a small portion of healthy sweet food, may be a walnut and raisin cookie or cake. Small portion and less frequency is the key.
Mistake 2: We are not well prepared or planned
How many times do we reach for a bag of crispies or a bar of chocolate when we are hungry and just don’t have time to rustle up something healthy?
Regardless of what you’re doing, preparing yourself in advance gives you the best chance to accomplish your goals. Your approach to nutrition should be no different. It’s best to prepare for your upcoming day by prepping all your food in advance. This will ensure you do not eat bad foods or skip meals.
- Make big batches of roasted/sauté veggies and brown rice or baked fish or chicken stew at the beginning of the day so that you have healthy foods in the fridge ready for any hunger pang.
- Next time you are out to stock grocery buy healthy natural food only. If there is no junk or processed food in your kitchen or refrigerator chances are high that you will end up eating healthy most of the times.
For the best tips, read,
“Stay motivated to eat healthy!”
Mistake 3: Not Implementing Lifestyle Changes
Many of us view a the diet plans as a temporary plan to get to their goal weight, but then they return to their old eating habits after hitting their target. Exercise is another factor that is frequently excluded from a weight loss plan, but physical activity is an important part of losing weight and keeping it off. To be truly successful and reduce the rate of failure, a diet needs to promote a lifestyle change that addresses long-term nutrition and physical fitness.
- Most commercial weight-loss programs are temporary in nature and long-term plans for maintaining a healthy weight are vague or not emphasized enough.
- Just eating less or exercising a bit will not help in t help in the long run. Only a combination of healthy and sustainable diet plan along with a good exercise regime works.
Mistake 4: Impractical goals
The impracticality of many weight loss programs makes them impossible for many people to keep up with.
“I want to lose 10 kilograms (22 pounds) in two months before my cousin’s wedding to fit into the lovely dresses the size-2 screen diva wears.”…. So unfortunate, this won’t work.
Some plans call for specialized foods. Others call for a restriction of common foods or entire food groups, which is also not feasible for most people long term. Diets can also be tedious and time consuming if people have to track calories or weigh foods. Many weight loss programs simply don’t fit within the lives of the people trying to drop the weight, so they return to their old habits in search of something easier and more comfortable.
Then comes, the health hazards of fad diets! If you don’t want to be in a greater trouble, stay clear of all impractical and hyped “magic” plans to lose weight. As goes the same old golden rule, “combination of healthy and sustainable diet plan along with a good exercise regime is the mantra”.
Mistake 5: Lack of Dedication
Weight loss plans need a lot of dedication from the individual and consistency. People tend to think of weight loss as something temporary and go with our natural instincts and eat or do what we like than what is good for us. Losing weight and getting in great shape requires a high degree of commitment to follow the weight loss regime like daily exercise sessions, healthy diet, leaving unhealthy habits etc. One who wants to succeed in his efforts should give priority to his weight loss regime.
Does simply thinking of exercise makes you demotivated? Read this,
“You will love to exercise, after you read this!”
Mistake 5: Social Obligations and temptations
Many of our social obligations include food and when we go for a function or a party we tend to indulge in it rather than restrain and as a result end up gaining weight. Your social circle might tempt you to disrupt your new lifestyle but.. it’s your goal and your mission! Keep it clear!
Mistake 6: Lack of Patience
‘Rome is not built in a single day’. Many expect miracles within days of starting the plan and jump into the weighing scale often. When they do not see a significant change they get disappointed and lose hope. What they fail to get into their mind is that they have not put on the weight overnight and it is unrealistic to expect a weight loss overnight.
It takes about 21 days to successfully develop or break just ONE habit. Anyone who’s tried to implement just one thing into their life with consistency can tell you that it’s not an easy task. It takes a high level of persistence, commitment and support.
We need to have a realistic goal and a good plan of action on how to achieve those goals. It is also pretty helpful to write it down and record the progress.
Mistake 7: Trying on our Own
Yes, I started this article with a note that I have reduced weight and maintained it healthily without a trainer. But this might be difficult for most of the people. Yes, you might have some know-it-all friend or a dubious small-time fitness center in the neighborhood promising magical result but if you really find difficult to understand the right approach to plan your diet, ideal goal and fitness regime, to hire an expert to plan your weight loss program and supervise you into doing it right.
Do you find this article useful? Let us know. Please feel free to add any point I might have missed!