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Lifestyle Changes That Motivate Weight Loss

September 23, 2010

(Article first published as How to Motivate Your Weight Loss Lifestyle on Technorati.)

It’s a fact that nearly three-quarters of adults and an alarming number of children fall into the overweight or obese category with potentially devastating effects to their health and psychological well being. The vast majority of these people have tried valiantly to lose weight but have failed despite their best efforts. A big part of the problem is that sustainable weight loss must become a seamless part of your lifestyle, with proper planning and food portion control central to your success.

Planning to Lose Weight
You’ve tried to lose weight before and came close to hitting your ideal weight, but just couldn’t seem to maintain your diet and exercise routine for long term results. This happens because you haven’t properly planned to lose weight, and your powerful survival instinct takes charge causing you to eat all the bad foods that caused your weight gain initially. The only way you can overcome this is to develop a plan you can live with for the remainder of your life and incorporate it into your permanent lifestyle.
Don’t Estimate Serving Sizes

When we’re hungry, we tend to make very poor decisions on the proper foods to eat as well as the serving sizes we consume. According to a study published in the Journal of Consumer Research, participants were less likely to correctly identify the number of calories in a food item if they were presented with a high calorie choice before a lower calorie option. The results show that estimated calories were 38% lower, a significant discrepancy which can sabotage your weight loss plans.

Make Healthy Weight Loss a Lifestyle Priority
Making even the smallest lifestyle change will be a difficult task and require much discipline and effort. Altering your diet to promote weight loss may be one of the most difficult tasks you will undertake, but the results are so rewarding and worthwhile. 
Before beginning, you must make a commitment to yourself to see your actions through to the end. Before completing your goal, you’ll need to incorporate these changes as part of a new lifestyle and never look back. You’re in this for the long term, so speed is not an issue, and an occasional dietary slip is inevitable and won’t knock you off course.
Get a Food Scale, Accurate Measuring Cup and Progress Journal

You should attack weight loss in the same way you would take on any critical project – assemble all the right tools to ensure your success. Purchase an accurate food scale and assemble all your measuring cups, tablespoons and teaspoons. These will be your keys to success, as you cannot accurately estimate food portions and weights. 

Start a food journal where you chart every food item eaten, portion size and calories. Be sure to include any between meal snacks, as these can really drive up your daily calorie totals. Also keep track of your weight, exercise and any other pertinent activities.
The sobering fact is that only 1 out of 20 people is able to lose more than 10% of their body weight and keep it off for at least a year. This is because many people don’t begin their weight loss journey with the commitment to make permanent lifestyle changes. Once you have made the decision to drop those excess pounds for good, incorporate the proper tools which will lead to sustainable weight loss.
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