I have dedicated myself to the weight loss and health industry for almost 10 years now and if there is anything that I am certain of is that it is too common to see so many people struggle to achieve long term success with their weight loss!
Recently I did a survey on our new clients. What I wanted to know was how many had previously lost weight at least one time in their life only to regain the same weight or more. The astonishing result was 95% of people were forever losing weight and putting it back on!!! This was incredibly alarming to see, especially when Australia is now reaching epidemic proportion with 63% with our adult population suffering from a weight problem as well as almost a quarter of our kids!! At this rate, by 2020 predictions to have those stats rise to 80% in adults.
This begs the question: how do the 5% of people that lose weight achieve long term success?
Rather than assume the answer I decided to go and interview 15 past clients of mine to see if I could find common trends. To my amazement the answers they used were almost identical and what was even more surprising they actually use very similar language when speaking on behalf of their experience of achieving their goals and I feel that it is my responsibility to share my findings.
5 tips to achieve long term weight loss success;
1) Your goals need to be focused around your lifestyle habits - Although to have goals that you need to measure are very important what was very interesting in this area was that these clients achieved great success for years by focusing on committing to small lifestyle changes. For example, making a commitment to preparing their daily food the night before or carrying around a water bottle with them.
2) Change your perception of food - We have all fallen victim to the brain washing power of T.V. commercials; understand that these ads have conditioned our perceptions to believe what we perceive to be tasty food! Take the Coca Cola ads for example, these images portray beautiful, fit and healthy people having an absolute blast, and let's face it who hasn't watched these and thought; "Man I want to experience that too"? What these pictures do is motivate our pleasure sensors and draw us to the experience of 'fun'. However, once you consume the drink, the sugar instantly increases your dopamine levels and do we ever LOVE dopamine. It is highly addictive and we would do anything to get another hit. Think about it: This is just one ad. Understanding this concept can really help you to be able to change your perception about certain foods and what actually tastes good!
3) Be prepared for after your weight loss - Too many people move into the "maintenance" phase after their weight loss journey. If you find that you are choosing those words with your trainer, understand that you are in a high risk category to falling off the wagon and, at some point in time, will move backwards. Let's face it, you are either moving towards something or away, there is no standing still, time does not stop for anybody therefore you are either moving towards a healthier, happier you or you are moving away. Remember you don't have to focus on BIG, scary goals all the time, just subtle lifestyle changes. Focus on something that is going to better your health; imagine you were 100 years old, how would you want to be living your life? Would you want to be a strong 100 year old? Would you want to be self-sufficient or looked after? What you focus on will get bigger so to even focus on something as small as - being able to do an extra push up a week over a lifetime will have massive long term gains for your strength.
4) Education takes a lifetime - One of the most common sayings I hear from very educated people is "the more you learn, the more you realise you don't know". This is very true. Accept that it takes a lifetime to learn how to live and once you do, you will feel free of any stress about thinking of all the things you don't know. It will make it so much easier to make a commitment to educating yourself on living a healthier life.
5) Make an Investment into yourself - Let's take a quick look at the letters that make up the word "Investment"; I, INVEST, IN ME!! Make one thing very clear on your journey to a lifelong commitment to a healthier life. You are going to have to invest something, TIME first and foremost. It takes time to be healthy, it takes time to exercise, it takes time to learn and to educate yourself on what works for you, it takes time to shop and prepare foods - you are going to have to MAKE the time!!!! Secondly a very common question is; "well how much do I need to spend financially? The most successful clients I have seen have invested on average 5% of their yearly earnings towards their health and fitness goals, they believe this helps them to be committed. Commitment is crucial to succeeding in any of your goals, they also all said that the results they have achieved is PRICELESS, you cannot put a dollar value on the way that they feel.
I hope this article can bring a sense of reality to what it takes to be able to achieve the big dream goals of what we are all really after - a lifetime of great health, happiness and love. It doesn't have to be as difficult as we have been made to believe and I guarantee that once you take the time and make the commitment to your life becoming healthier you will also notice how much happier and confident you are! Your belief in all the things that you felt well impossible become very possible!!
*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.