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The Weight Loss Way: Keeping the Commitment During Tough Times

Updated on August 29, 2014

Freedom to Run

Moving with freedom is a gift we take for granted. Many seriously overweight people mourn the loss of the ability to move freely.
Moving with freedom is a gift we take for granted. Many seriously overweight people mourn the loss of the ability to move freely. | Source

Proceed Smoothly to Your Goal

Graph illustrates weight going down at an even, consistent pace.
Graph illustrates weight going down at an even, consistent pace. | Source

Cottage Cheese is a Weight Loss Staple

Good food doesn't have to taste bad.
Good food doesn't have to taste bad. | Source

Why it is Hard to Stick With Your Weight Loss Goals

Most experienced dieters will tell you that beginning a new diet is easy. Sticking with it is the hard part. First we will look at why it is so hard, and then you can read some of my tips to help you stick with it.

Even when you have chosen the best quality diet out there, it can be very difficult to stay with it long enough to see any significant reduction in weight. In this section I will share with you some of my observations as one who, through a great deal of trial and error, managed to take off 70 pounds and keep it off.

Some of you may have read some of my other hubs about my weight reducing journey, and know that I talk a lot about tips and encouragement for people who, for whatever reason, have become very out of shape, to the point that most beginner fitness programs are simply beyond their capability. If you are at a high fitness level, you may still find that you gain some sort of inspiration so take what you can from this and have a good day.

The title of this section is about the reasons it is so hard to stay with a reducing diet long enough for it to work. Below some of my observations about why it is so hard to keep the commitment we made to ourselves.

  • A change in where our bodies get fuel. After about 18 hours, our bodies begin shifting from using the fuel that is in our system and in our bloodstream, to using up some of the stored fuel in our livers. If we have been overeating, which is likely, our bodies do not have a chance to access the stored fat in our liver very often. When this change begins to take place, we feel some discomfort. Like we are missing something all the sudden. And that is when our body cries out on a cellular level for us to give it more fat and sugar because that is easier than getting fuel from our liver. The funny feeling only lasts for an hour or two, but it can seem like an eternity.
  • The Next Fuel Source Change. After our bodies have used up the extra fuel from the liver for daily needs, if we stick to our diet, our bodies then begin to use up some of the fat stored here and there. This, once again, makes us feel a little funny. It is compounded by stress and fatigue. This can hang around for a day or two, depending on the person and what you are eating for fuel. If you can make it through this, you will most likely have smooth sailing for a few days.
  • Lack of Preparation for Weight Loss and in Your Daily Life. Many people I have spoken with talk about falling off the diet because they were late for work and could not pack a lunch, or because they started the diet but had not cleaned all the junk food out of the house. Or forgot to stock the cupboards and refrigerator with the permitted foods. Another common problem that falls into this category is that many people either do not feel they have the time or inclination to cook. There are ways to eat a sound reducing food plan without a lot of cooking, but at least some grocery shopping and food preparation is an absolute must if you want to accomplish your goal. So plan now to work this into your life on a consistent basis for a long time to come.
  • The Idea That it Should be Easy. While reducing your weight, becoming strong and fit, and looking great can be one of the most rewarding and exciting things you have ever done, it takes consistent effort, a willingness to change, and the level of commitment that enables you to become a bit hard-headed about reaching your goal. It may be easy for long stretches of time, but do not be surprised if all the sudden you find yourself in a very difficult place for a few days. Expect it and have a plan in place for dealing with it. Go to your happy place and wait it out.

Salads and Weight Loss go Hand in Hand

Salads are a favorite summertime staple.
Salads are a favorite summertime staple. | Source

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Exercise is a Staple for Reducing Weight

Find a physical activity you enjoy and do it regularly.
Find a physical activity you enjoy and do it regularly. | Source

Tips for Sticking With Your Weight Loss Diet

The following are tips and thoughts that helped me to get through some of the tough times in no particular order:

  • Make it a goal not to cheat until you are at least halfway to your goal. Why? If you set the bar high, you are likely to do better than if you set the bar low. And you have the added benefit of giving your body time to get rid of the buildup of preservatives and other toxins that make you crave stuff that is bad for you. Besides, why go to the trouble if you are just going to go through the hard part, give up, then go through the hard part, gain more weight, go through the hard part... You get the picture.
  • Use a bad reason if it keeps you on your food plan. We have all heard all the good reasons for achieving our reducing goals. Health, family, blah, blah, blah. Don't get me wrong. These are the most important reasons to stick with it. But sometimes you just need something MORE. When this happens, think about how great you will look in your clothes. Think about that snooty woman who said, "Oh, you're dieting AGAIN?" Think about the fact that you couldn't run from a mugger if your life depended on it. Really. And BADDEST of all, think about how that guy who dumped you is going to feel when he sees you walking down the street looking all sexy and fine! Sometimes you just need a little something more to keep you motivated.
  • Don't tell all your friends and family. There are many people who would tell you just the opposite. Sometimes, though, telling everyone you know can be a bad thing. Imagine my surprise when I first figured out that not everyone was thrilled about my weight loss. It took me a while to figure out that several people were deliberately trying to tempt me in to having burgers and fries, going off the plan, etc. I finally realized they didn't want me to succeed where they could not. When I finally did succeed I told only two or three people, and all were people I could trust to support me in my efforts. Keeping things on the down low took so much pressure off. Plus, it made the victory sweeter once people started noticing I was getting smaller.
  • Make sure you are getting enough protein. My daughter laughs when I say this because she has heard it all her life. Many people do not get enough protein and I think they are more likely to get uncontrollable cravings. Protein helps keep your sugar levels more even and you stay "full" longer.
  • Use Diet Supplements Wisely. I use diet supplements on a regular basis. There are a lot of quality supplements out there, but there are a lot of bad ones, too. Take some time to read up on the minerals and nutrition your body needs and to find a few quality supplements that work for your needs. Don't just take a commercial's word for it. If you are thinking about trying something new, do a little research and make sure it will help you in your efforts.


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© 2014 Nancy Owens

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  • Nancy Owens profile image
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    Nancy Owens 2 years ago from USA

    That is so awesome! It will come. The size 8. It is tough to keep on keeping on. Now that I can walk again (foot injury kept me sidelined for 15 months) I can finish working toward my optima weight. I was able to go for my first short walk the other day, and I can't explain how uplifting that was.

  • teaches12345 profile image

    Dianna Mendez 2 years ago

    This is a very motivating post and I love your advice. I find the commitment is most hard to keep. Some days I just want to eat a whole box of donuts! Over the past three years, I have managed to go from a size 18 to a 10... still working on that size 8.

  • Nancy Owens profile image
    Author

    Nancy Owens 2 years ago from USA

    Thank you for your kind words. I truly do hope that someone out there is inspired to continue on their path to reach their goals of health and fitness.

  • prasetio30 profile image

    prasetio30 2 years ago from malang-indonesia

    Very inspiring hub and I enjoy your tips. Thanks for writing and sharing with us. Voted up!

    Prasetio

  • Nancy Owens profile image
    Author

    Nancy Owens 2 years ago from USA

    Thank you for the very nice compliment. I am not done yet, though. I took a two year break and now have to get the last of it off. Finish what I started.

  • vocalcoach profile image

    Audrey Hunt 2 years ago from Nashville Tn.

    Thank you Nancy for this motivational information. I recently lost 18 pounds (I'm small) and find that the most challenging is to keep it off. Your tips will help me. Voted up and will share.

    Audrey