What’s keeping you from losing weight? For most people, the answer is lack of motivation.
It comes in many forms, sometimes before starting the diet or during the diet.
Maybe you just can’t get started because the whole process is too overwhelming. First you have to choose the diet, gather the recipes, buy the proper food, measure it, and prepare it. Maybe the rest of the family won’t eat what’s on your diet, so you need to prepare something else in addition to your diet meals.
Perhaps you get off to a good start, but it becomes too much work and you give up.
Eventually the lack of encouragemnet, lack of time, and lack of energy is just too much and you give up.
Some reasons for diet failure include:
1. Family commitments. Children are extremely busy and that means mom and dad are busy. Sports, extracurricular activities, and church keep families on the run, leaving just enough time to drive through a fast food restaurant.
2. Not enough energy. After a long day of getting kids to school, working a full day, then evening events, most people barely have enough energy to fall into bed, let alone plan and cook a calorie-conscious meal.
3. Habit. Cooking healthy is a relatively new concept, so few of us were trained to cook this way. Thus, new habits need to be formed and that takes time. Developing new habits takes hard work.
4. Self-discipline–the second half of developing a habit. We make mental choices all the time. The battle for right versus wrong wages inside our minds. Which side wins? All too often it’s the easy way, which means fast food, junk food, and not very nutritious food.
5. Sedentary lifestyles. We sit at work for hours on end, sometimes barely moving a muscle, except to pick up the phone. This contributes to fatigue, depression, and lack of motivation.
6. Lower socioeconomic status. People with lower incomes tend to use food as recreation or pleasure, putting them at higher risk for gaining weight. Obesity is epidemic among lower income groups.
This paints a fairly dismal picture. But all is not lost. Try these tips for success:
1. Find a partner or create a small group of like-minded people who all want to lose weight. There really is power in numbers!
2. Create a simple plan based on what you know you can achieve. Start simple and keep it basic, such as no super sizing a fast food meal. Try that for a week, then move on to no fast food meals or just salads.
3. Set up simple, non-food rewards, such as seeing a movie at the end of the week.
4. Get your family involved so that they help rather than hinder you. For instance, the whole family gets to see a movie Friday night if the diet plans have been followed all week.
5. Decide on a new, healthy food to include in your diet for one week. Make it something simple like an apple. Make it a game for your group or your family. Can we all eat an apple every day this week? Set up a chart on the refrigerator. Have the children draw a game board with markers for success.
6. Assess your family schedule. If you are burning out, eliminate some activities so that you have another free night at home. Then go out for a walk around the neighborhood and talk to each other.
These simple steps can empower you to lose that excess weight. You don’t have to be helpless anymore!
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