This week we continue with practical suggestions to motivate you to lose weight, and to stick to your plan.
Chart It – Publically!
Get together with friends from work and agree to work towards your fitness goals together. Find someone who’s good with a graphics program such as Adobe Illustrator or MS PowerPoint and have them make a chart that shows each person’s goal weight and current weight. Update the chart each week. If you’re the competitive type this will work well for you! Don’t work in an office environment? Do this at home. Even if you’re the only one who ever sees the chart, we find it much easier to stick to our goals when we can see the progress. The writing is on the wall!
Get A Dog – Really!
Studies show that dog owners weigh less than their canine challenged counterparts. Your dog will need exercise. Even low energy breeds need to be walked regularly and some high energy breeds such as Border Collies or Labrador Retrievers need large doses of exercise every day to stay sane. Walk (or run) with your new friend. Throw the ball. Over, and over, and over. Play tug of war. Your dog will love you and you’ll hardly even notice you’re exercising too. But please, don’t do this if your only reason for getting a dog is to lose weight. If you’re not a pet person, this one’s not for you.
Get a Calorie App for Your Phone
There are lots of great calorie tracker apps you can install to your phone. While most of us tire of recording everything we eat after a few weeks, if you’re just starting out this can be a great motivator as well as an educator. You’ll quickly learn to accurately estimate how many calories you’ve consumed today and how many calories your body needs to lose weight. Remember that there are 3500 calories in one pound of body fat, so if you know how much you’re shorting yourself each day, you can literally count the pounds over time.
Come Up with Your Own
Practical, visible and measurable goals are the best ones. Look for ways that you (and others around you) can see your progress, and where you’re accountable in some way to others, even if it’s just the embarrassment of everyone knowing you’ve fallen off the wagon. Not surprisingly, I was always in my best shape when I had a fitness shoot coming up. I was not going to embarrass myself in front of that camera!
Alternatively, set a reward for yourself that you can only have once you achieve your goal. This one’s not quite as effective as it requires more self-control, but if you’re the sort who can hold to your diet and exercise schedule for two weeks just so you can have dinner at your favorite restaurant at the end, then go for it. Do whatever works for you.