The Devil is in the Details

You know that saying, “The devil is in the details?” Well, in the weight loss world that saying holds a lot of truth – at least it does for me.

We all get the big picture of weight loss. The goal is to shed excess pounds to be healthier, look better, and feel more positive about ourselves. That’s the big picture.

However, the little things in the weight loss process are those things that often determine our rate of weight loss, our success, and how easily we maintain our weight loss.

In thinking about the little things in weight loss that matter, I came up with a list of five things that matter to me.

1.  Set realistic goals. Keep it simple by selecting a weight loss goal that is realistic and attainable. Avoid setting a weight loss goal that limits your time to lose weight such as swearing to yourself that you will lose 50 pounds by a certain date, or drop six dress sizes before July. Instead, set little goals that are attainable and within reach. Keep adjusting those small goals until you reach your big one.

2. Pay attention to all your food choices. Sure people lose weight eating boxed diet meals, but many of you are losing weight by eating meals you prepare yourself or purchase in restaurants. The little calories that add up at home or in restaurants can be a detriment to your weight loss efforts. Be mindful of small foods that pack big calories such as nuts, dried fruits, chocolate chips, or snack foods. When you are cooking, pay attention to how many times you taste what you are preparing and do not finish the food your children leave on their plates!

3. Watch your portions. This goes along with number two and plays a huge role in your success. Portion distortion is real and it often takes you some time to adjust your eyes and tummy to small, weight loss portions of your favorite foods.

4. All movement counts. Of course dedicated cardio and strength training are important and burn calories, but little decisions you make to be more active during the day matter too. If you workout in the morning, still make an effort to walk more than you normally do, stand instead of sit when possible, and be mindful of moving as much as you can.

5. Don’t ignore the emotions you feel. Although emotions are not a little thing, there can be small warning signs that you are struggling emotionally with food. Cravings that come with stress, eating on auto-pilot rather than deliberately, and unhealthy food purchases are all things you should pay attention to.

This kind of post really could be an endless list couldn’t it because so many things that we do throughout the day either negatively or positively affect our weight loss efforts. Paying attention to the little choices can help you with your long-term goals.

What little things do you pay extra attention to? Diane

13 thoughts on “The Devil is in the Details

  1. Andrea@WellnessNotes says:

    Great points!

    I still have to be very mindful when it comes to portion size. I also try to walk as much as possible throughout the day, and it really makes a difference. It’s easy to work out and then move very little the rest of the day. It takes a conscious effort to keep moving.

  2. Marc says:

    Well yesterday was very good until I went to the birthday party. So today and tomorrow I will try and eat extra clean to make up for it.

  3. I ❤ 2 Eat says:

    I think emotional eating is the biggest thing for me when it comes to weight loss, or just in general keeping on a good, healthy track. I have to work really hard to not let stresses derail me into eating the world!

  4. Joe says:

    All great things to keep in mind. I’d say #2 is something I always have to work on. I love almonds and peanut butter but as we all know those foods are calorie dense and add up quickly!

  5. Craig says:

    Don’t eat in front of the computer, you suddenly look down at the empty plate and say I don’t even remember eating that snack 🙁

  6. Kellan Brooklyn says:

    Great tips. The portion control one was paramount for me and one tool that made it that much easier for me was a scale. I eat a lot healthier as a result. An unforeseen benefit of using a scale was the savings on my grocery bill. My food is yielding greater servings because I’m not over eating.

  7. Jody - Fit at 55 says:

    THE TRUTH!! It is always in those little details.. Great post Diane! I could add more but I always like to mention those little nibbles people take during the day & before you know it, 500+++ calories.. eating off others plates, tasting food they cook, Costco/Sams club eats, 😉 YES, it all counts!

  8. Lynn says:

    Yep, trying to be more active throughout the day. I am taking the stairs more. I am looking into converting my desk to a stand up desk. That is one of the details I am working on recently.

    As always, great post.

  9. L says:

    Thank you for including these in one blog, Diane. I need to work on almost all of them, but portion control and calorie density, the most. Hh, wait, maybe exercise is needed the most. No, on second thought, it could be moving away from emotional eating that is my biggest challenge. Well, there you have it–I need help with them all. 🙂 Thanks, again!

  10. Lisa says:

    Thanks for the great list of things to be mindful of. Lately I have gained a couple of extra pounds and realized eating only two mid size meals were the cause. More small healthy meals, every couple of hours were the solution.

  11. Terry P says:

    Thanks Diane – I tend to eat too much when I’m working at home. I need to be wiser in the foods I have around and to make sure i get the exercise to offset the calorie intake.
    Appreciate the tips!
    Terry

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