The Most Common Habits

08.14.15
Health & Wellness

This may sound like some kind of Tony Robbins seminar, but there are common habits among people who lose weight and keep it off for more than one year. Check them out.

Realize new dietary habits. Some of these things we have talked about in the past, but all are important to your efforts. Controlling portion sizes, eating more lean protein, more and fruits and vegetables, and eating smaller meals more frequently must become the cornerstone of your diet. When you figure out that these strategies work, if something sidetracks you, you know exactly where to return.

Set small, specific, realistic goals. The individual who sets one big, lofty goal, like “lose 50 pounds”, and reaches it, is rare. Goals that are attainable and have a time limit: “lose 15lbs in the next 60 days”, while not as glamorous, are immensely more attainable. And reaching a goal is what most individuals use as a motivational springboard for the next goal.

Self-monitor your diet and weight. Food logs are important for both self-realization and in the event that an outside observer needs the information. Become a label reader, be as accurate as you can, and “log it”, whether it’s old-school on a notepad, or high tech on an app. Additionally, those who monitor their weight regularly notice changes more quickly and can more easily see negative patterns.

Utilize a support network. Find at least one workout buddy. Ideally, that buddy needs to be someone who doesn’t have the same vices as you. If you have trouble controlling your diet, but are an avid exerciser, then you might find more motivation in a partner who has the diet down but isn’t really “into” exercise.

Exercise. Anyone with any hope of losing weight and keeping it off must have a physically active outlet. Individuals who lose weight and keep it off typically engage in 60-90 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity most days of the week. Remember, 80% of individuals who lose weight and keep it off for more than one year exercise!

Sleep. Inadequate sleep leads to weight gain. Most people need about 8 hours a night. And while it’s true there are differences among people, the true test is how you feel when you wake up in the morning. If you usually feel refreshed when you wake in the morning, you’re probably getting enough sleep. If you wake up groggy and grumpy, you probably aren’t. It is also important to respect your bed. It is the place where you should sleep. Reading and Facebooking on your laptop, Ipad, or smartphone should be done elsewhere.

Eat breakfast. Breakfast IS the most important meal of the day. Those who do not eat a regular breakfast are 4 1/2 times more likely to be overweight than those who do! People who eat breakfast regularly also tend to eat fewer calories the rest of the day.

Monitor your screen time. Less screen time not only means more time to exercise, when we are in front of a screen (television, laptop, Ipad, smartphone, etc.) we tend to stuff our faces with things we shouldn’t be eating anyway. Members of the National Weight Control Registry report that they watch 10 hours of television a week or less (about a third of the national average).

So, there you go! The most common habits of people who have done what a lot the public wants to do. Keep this article and reflect back on it time and time again. If you aren’t getting the results you want, it should be easy to recognize the areas where you fall short.

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