I know I’ve talked about this before, but I have a new people popping in every day and wanted to touch on this really important concept once more.
In the weight loss world, we talk a lot about reaching our goal weight, finishing our weight loss journey, and getting back to “real life.”
A goal weight reached should be celebrated but you cannot rest on your accomplishments once you have reached your goal weight or you may be in danger of gaining weight back.
This happened to me the one time I successfully lost 22 pounds before I even became morbidly obese. I joined Weight Watchers and lost the weight over a period of a couple of months. I was ecstatic, I was thrilled, I was totally unprepared for the next step.
I went into the weight loss process with the express goal of reaching my goal weight. That was it. And that’s it for an awful lot of people who are struggling to lose weight right this minute.
It was a huge mistake on my part and I know that lack of foresight negatively affected my ability to maintain my weight loss then and in the future.
Reaching your goal weight is not the end of your journey. It is the beginning of your journey into a life lived at a healthy weight.
Yes, once you reach your goal weight you are finished losing weight, but instead of exhaling a sigh of relief, instead inhale and get ready to face the challenges of lifelong weight maintenance.
Because I promise you – lifelong weight maintenance is challenging, but worth every effort.
If you are not prepared for the end of your weight loss efforts and the beginning of your weight maintenance efforts, you may be surprised at how difficult it can be to keep those hard fought pounds gone for good.
Here are some reasons why it can be hard to maintain your weight loss.
1. You look at your diet as a temporary means to an end instead of a permanent lifestyle change.
2. You have not dealt with the emotional aspects of what got you overweight/obese in the first place.
3. You have not developed new food habits to replace the bad ones.
4. You fall back into old eating patterns because of stress, tragedy, holidays, or habit.
5. You quit your exercise plan as soon as you get to your goal weight and do not adjust your caloric intake appropriately.
6. Your weight loss diet was so restrictive that you are unable to continue eating like that for the long haul.
There are lots more reasons for weight regain, but these six are the ones I see most commonly.
When it comes down to it, remembering that your goal is not only to get to a healthy weight but also to maintain that weight is a key to long term weight maintenance.
To that end, I’d encourage you to ditch fad diets, examine any diet center claim very carefully, and lose weight by eating a wide variety of healthy foods and exercising.
When you lose weight the simple way, getting to your goal weight truly is the beginning of continuing to live your life at a healthy weight because you have already taught yourself what that lifestyle looks like and don’t need to change it drastically once you begin the process of lifelong weight maintenance.
How do you look at reaching your goal weight? Are you confident that you can maintain your weight loss? Anything you need to tweak now to make that process easier? Diane
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