“This time I’ll really try”, “I’ll start tomorrow… on Monday… when the New Year comes…” – how many times have you tried to lose that extra weight, eat healthy, and exercise regularly? Have you failed miserably in all of your attempts so far? Do you want it to be different this time?
Learn five ways to motivate yourself and make it easier to stick to your resolutions.
But this time don’t wait to do it – act now!
One: Strength in numbers
Do you want to start but don’t know if you’ll be determined enough? It’s much harder to stick to your resolutions on your own than it is in a group. Find at least one ally to share your weaknesses, advice, and achieved results with, and motivate each other to keep going. Even if you don’t have anyone nearby, don’t worry, modern technology can be a great aid. Just create a discussion group on a social network – it’s the perfect place to exchange photos, training plans, and exercise routine, even with your friends who live around the globe.
Two: Ask for help
So, you’ve decided that you want to lose weight and live healthily. That’s great, because it means that you have taken the most important first step. It’s time to take the second one, which is not that easy when you do it on your own because you can easily do yourself more harm than good. “There are numerous reasons for obesity, recurring overweightness, or feeling unwell, so in order to fight them effectively you first need to identify the source of the problem, and then find the solution that is right for you,” says Patrycja Wachowska-Kelly, MD, a doctor treating obese patients at the Medicover Hospital. Doctors emphasise that the reduction of excessive body weight is a complex and long-term process that needs to be handled comprehensively, taking into account both the physical as well as mental state of the patient and their genetic predispositions. “That is why the treatment for obesity is currently not only based on consultations with a nutritionist. Our patients also have other specialists at their disposal – a nutritional psychologist, a bariatrician, and even a private coach. Their support helps patients to effectively and safely lose excess weight and minimise the risk of the yo-yo effect”, adds Patrycja Wachowska-Kelly, MD.
Three: Get ready
If you don’t want your enthusiasm to burn out after a few days, you should be well-prepared for the change. First, plan to start when there aren’t any major celebrations or holidays coming up in at least the next three weeks, which would make it hard for you to say no to sweets or unhealthy food. On top of that, give yourself about one week to rid your fridge and kitchen cabinets of all the products that you will cut out of your diet. We don’t advise you to throw them away or to binge eat them – it’s best to give them away. Next, go shopping and buy only the products that you’ll need to prepare your meals for the next few days based on your new diet plan. Preparations like these will make it much easier for you to abandon unhealthy snacks, because you will simply not have them at hand.
Four: Combine business with pleasure
Changing to a healthier lifestyle is not only about following a strict diet and exercising until you drop. Plan your makeover and make sure you also enjoy the little pleasures, such as visiting a beauty salon where you can have a relaxing and firming massage, attend a healthy barbecue with your friends with lots of veggies and healthy cocktails, or going out to shop for attractive sports outfits or new sports shoes. Try to have as much fun as possible with your makeover while you’re doing it, instead of obsessively waiting for the first visible effects. This attitude will make you twice as determined to tackle your challenges and the entire process will have a positive effect on both your physical as well as mental condition.
Five: Jot things down
The human memory is sometimes selective. Especially when it comes to “small sins”. It’s often the case that when you are dieting, you still take a bite of cake or have just one little cube of chocolate. Research shows that it’s enough to have that extra 100 kcal a day to gain 5 kg in a year! Whether you eat an apple or a chocolate bar, write everything down. Only a systematically kept journal will allow you to know and control your eating habits and change the ones that don’t do you any good. “A diet journal is also a valuable source of information about the patient for the dietician and doctors. It allows us to determine what mistakes are made and also to prepare an individual meal plan that considers what the persons likes are and what fits their body’s needs and their lifestyle. This also increases the chances of sticking to the diet,” says Patrycja Wachowska-Kelly, MD.