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6 Secrets People Who Maintain Weight Loss Know But You Don’t

6 Secrets People Who Maintain Weight Loss Know But You Don’t

Losing weight is not all that difficult, it’s losing weight consistently and keeping it off that’s tricky. Have you ever experienced the frustration of piling back on the weight you worked so hard to shift?

The weight loss industry is flooded with quick fixes and unrealistic expectations, this is why our weight loss efforts often fall short. We are lured into numerous diets, detoxes, juices, shakes, fasts and “special” exercise routines for their promises. They sometimes work, but only as long as you use them.

The problem with gimmicks is, you’re excited to give these methods a go in the beginning, but as motivation fades, it’s impossible to maintain weight loss.

The only way to consistently lose weight is adopting new habits and building a lifestyle to support them. The key is making small, sustainable changes instead of short bursts of radical changes.

To help you achieve this, here are the six secrets of people who can maintain weight loss, along with their sanity!

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1. They Don’t Go on Diets

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    Never “go on a diet” again. Crash-course diets are the most unpleasant way to shed pounds and are often unsustainable. As soon as you relapse the weight will come straight back on. It’s totally demoralizing!

    Instead, gradually clean up your eating habits to build a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. Don’t fall for all unrealistic weight loss expectations. Focus on gradual consistent weight loss which can be none without feeling deprived.

    Make small changes, introduce healthy alternatives, then taper down portion sizes slowly. Keep an eye on the scale week by week and adjust your caloric intake accordingly.

    2. They Don’t Eat Based on Emotions

    Many of us fall victim to comfort eating from stress, upset or even boredom. We find ourselves snacking on unhealthy foods (typically high calorie, carbohydrate, and sugar dense) to fulfill us. Yet it never works and the sugar rush only feeds emotions, then guilt worsens it further.

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    The answer is not to become emotionless, but to change your emotional connection to food. Instead of using it to seek comfort, see it as a source of nourishment, vitality and good health. You’ll even get an emotional kick out from eating healthier choices!

    3. They Manage Their Stress in Healthy Ways

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      Apart from comfort eating, stress has many other negative effects on general health and wellbeing. Since modern living comes with a fair amount of stress, it’s essential to manage it healthily. Even with your diet on point and regular exercise, stress may still hinder your weight loss efforts.

      First, make sure you are getting enough rest, typically between  7-9 hours sleep. Next, introduce a stress-relieving activity into your life. It needs to be one that relaxes you and allows you to clear your mind. Consider yoga, meditation, learning new skills or even playing a music instrument.

      4. They Don’t Have “Cheat Days”

      Having a cheat day is not the right approach if you truly want to maintain weight loss. It easily turns into an over-the-top indulgence that stalls your progress. Remember, slow and steady not rash and sporadic.

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      A critical aspect of a sustainable healthy lifestyle is using the 80/20 rule. Stick to your healthy habits most of the time, but allow yourself to indulge when the moment arises.

      Having a “cheat meal” is acceptable, but don’t plan them. Say your friend invites you out to dinner, you can jump on the offer without guilt or derailing your weight loss efforts.

      5. They Don’t Force Themselves to go to the Gym

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        Once your diet is on track, you’ll certainly need regular exercise to maintain weight loss. However, there’s no need to force yourself into activities if they bore you to tears. You can choose any activity that works your body and gets you sweating!

        If the gym is convenient for you, then go for it. Otherwise, you may consider bodyweight exercises at home or a jog around your neighborhood.

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        Participating in a sports activities can be an enjoyable way to get exercise, consider football, badminton, basketball, swimming or even martial arts!

        6. They Have a Plan and Routine

        A healthy lifestyle should not be based on strict rules and depressing restrictions, yet guidelines are critical for staying on track. Having a regular routine and meal plan can be a mental liberation that keeps you moving in the right direct.

        Plan enjoyable healthy meals ahead of time and you won’t make poor choices out of convenience or feel guilty later. Better yet, preparing food ahead of time may make your life easier! Similarly, having a weekly routine will help you manage time and ensure you make continual progress.

        When your motivation dips, which it will, your routine and meal plan will keep you on track and ensure you still maintain weight loss regardless.

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        Last Updated on July 23, 2019

        5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

        5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

        In the journey of growth, there are times when we grow and excel. We are endlessly driven and hyped up, motivated to get our goals.

        Then there are times when we stagnate. We feel uninspired and unmotivated. We keep procrastinating on our plans. More often than not, we get out of a rut, only to get back into another one.

        How do you know if you are stagnating? Here are some tell-tale signs:

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        • If you have been experiencing chronic procrastination on your goals
        • If you don’t ever feel like doing anything
        • If you keep turning to sleep, eating, games, mindless activities and entertainment for comfort
        • If you know you should be doing something, but yet you keep avoiding it
        • If you have not achieved anything new or significant now relative to 1 month, 2 months or 3 months ago
        • If you have a deep sense of feeling that you are living under your potential

        When we face stagnation in life, it’s a sign of deeper issues. Stagnation, just like procrastination, is a symptom of a problem. It’s easy to beat ourselves over it, but this approach is not going to help. Here, I will share 5 steps to help you move out of this stagnation. They won’t magically transform your life in 1 night (such changes are never permanent because the foundations are not built), but they will help you get the momentum going and help you get back on track.

        1. Realize You’re Not Alone

        Everyone stagnates at some point or another. You are not alone in this and more importantly, it’s normal. In fact, it’s amazing how many of my clients actually face the same predicament, even though all of them come from different walks of life, are of different ages, and have never crossed paths. Realizing you are not alone in this will make it much easier to deal with this period. By trying to “fight it”, you’re only fighting yourself. Accept this situation, acknowledge it, and tell yourself it’s okay. That way, you can then focus on the constructive steps that will really help you.

        2. Find What Inspires You

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        Stagnation comes because there isn’t anything that excites you enough to take action. If you don’t have a habit of setting goals, and instead just leave yourself to daily mundanes, it’s not surprising you are experiencing stagnation. What do you want to do if there are no limitations? If you can have whatever you want, what will it be? The answers to these questions will provide the fuel that will drive you forward.

        On the other hand, even if you are an experienced goal setter, there are times when the goals you set in the past lose their appeal now. It’s normal and it happens to me too. Sometimes we lose touch with our goals, since we are in a different emotional state compared to when we first set them. Sometimes our priorities change and we no longer want to work on those goals anymore. However, we don’t consciously realize this, and what happens is we procrastinate on our goals until it compounds into a serious problem. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to relook into your goals. There’s no point in pursuing goals that no longer inspire you. Trash away your old goals (or just put them aside) and ask yourself what you really want now. Then go for them.

        3. Give Yourself a Break

        When’s the last time you took a real break for yourself? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year? Never? Perhaps it’s time to take a time-out. Prolonged working can cause someone to become disillusioned as they lose sight of who they are and what they want.

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        Go take some extended leave from work. A few days at bare minimum; a few weeks or months will be great. Some of my ex-colleagues have quit their jobs and took months out to do some self-reflection. Of course, some of us might not have that luxury, so we can stick to a few weeks of leave. Go on a trip elsewhere and get away from your work and your life. Use this chance to get a renewed perspective of life. Think about your life purpose, what you want and what you want to create for your life in the future. These are big questions that require deep thinking over them. It’s not about finding the answers at one go, but about taking the first step to finding the answers.

        4. Shake up Your Routines

        Being in the same environment, doing the same things over and over again and meeting the same people can make us stagnant. This is especially if the people you spend the most time with are stagnant themselves.

        Change things around. Start with simple things, like taking a different route to work and eating something different for breakfast. Have your lunch with different colleagues, colleagues you never talked much with. Work in a different cubicle if your work has free and easy seating. Do something different than your usual for weekday evenings and weekends. Cultivate different habits, like exercising every day, listening to a new series of podcasts every morning to work, reading a book, etc (here’s 6 Proven Ways To Make New Habits Stick). The different contexts will give you different stimulus, which will trigger off different thoughts and actions in you.

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        When I’m in a state of stagnancy, I’ll get a sense of what’s making me stagnate. Sometimes it’s the environment I’m in, sometimes it’s the people I’ve been hanging out with, sometimes it’s my lifestyle. Most of the times it’s a combination of all these. Changing them up helps to stir myself out of the stagnant mode.

        5. Start with a Small Step

        Stagnation also comes from being frozen in fear. Maybe you do want this certain goal, but you aren’t taking action. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work needed? Are you afraid you will make mistakes? Is the perfectionist in you taking over and paralyzing you?

        Let go of the belief that it has to be perfect. Such a belief is a bane, not a boon. It’s precisely from being open to mistakes and errors that you move forward. Break down what’s before you into very very small steps, then take those small steps, a little step at a time. I had a client who had been stagnating for a long period because he was afraid of failing. He didn’t want to make another move where he would make a mistake. However, not wanting to make a mistake has led him to do absolutely nothing for 2-3 years. On the other hand, by doing just something, you would already be making progress, whether it’s a mistake or not. Even if you make a supposed “mistake”,  you get feedback to do things differently in the next step. That’s something you would never have known if you never made a move.

        More to Help You Stay Motivated

        Here are some resources that will help you break out of your current phase:

        Featured photo credit: Anubhav Saxena via unsplash.com

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