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Weight Loss: 6 Things to Do Before You Get Started

Updated on August 2, 2009

From Obese to Fit and Trim is More than Weight Loss

For those people who are fifty, sixty, a hundred or more pounds overweight, the journey from obesity to healthy and fit is about more than weight loss.

Most of us look at losing a few pounds as a challenge. We begin one fad diet after another, losing a few pounds, gaining a few pounds, losing more pounds and so on. But, for the clinically obese weight loss is about more than losing the excess pounds.

There is a safe way to lose weight if you are obese. It begins with a doctor's appointment.  It can not be stated often enough or with enough emphasis.  If you are fifty, sixty, or more pounds overweight, see a doctor before you begin the weight loss program.

Before and After Pictures

Consult Your Doctor Before You Begin a Weight Loss Program

If you are obese, and more and more of us are, see a doctor for a physical examination before you go on the diet or begin a weight loss program.

Tell your doctor that you plan to begin a weight loss program. Tell him the steps you intend to take to lose weight, such as reduction in food intake, exercise, possible surgery. Get his opinion. Request a complete physical exam or a referral to a weight loss specialist.

Get a second opinion. You would get a second opinion if you were diagnosed with cancer or another disease. Get a second opinion before you get started on a weight loss program, too.

Consult a Nutritionist

Consult a nutritionist who specializes in weight loss for the obese

One of the most common mistakes made by those who decide to lose weight is they think they can just cut back on eating.  In some cases, especially for those who are not clinically obese, that may work. 

However, for the person who is obese, a nutritionist is a must.  Most obese people have poor eating habits.  Not only do they eat more than necessary, they eat the wrong foods.  A nutritionist can assist in getting the person on a healthy diet.  That means not only changing eating habits.  It also means substituting healthy foods for junk foods. 

Most nutritionists will encourage the obese person to eat more, smaller healthier meals during the course of the day.  Eating more often can help speed up the metabolism.

Find a nutritionist that is a specialist and has experience (and results) when working with obesity.

Find a Fitness Trainer

Exercise is a key ingredient in the weight loss program.  Find a fitness trainer or a group of people who workout together to join.

Exercise will assist in increasing metabolism.  You will want to begin to increase muscle mass as you lose fat.  It is important that you find a group or a trainer who understands obesity and your weight loss program.

Depending on your condition, you may begin with walking a block or two a day, or more or less.  The important factor is that you engage a trainer or weight loss exercise therapist who can create an exercise plan that fits your present physical condition.

Talk to Your Enablers

Unless you live in a vaccuum, and no one does, there are people in your life who are helping you stay overweight. In other words, you have enablers. While not going into their motivation to keep you overweight, be aware that while you are the one doing the eating there are people around you who are helping you stay heavy. These people are enablers. You know who they are.

Tell your enablers that you are ready to begin losing the excess weight and get healthy and fit. You can invite them to join you if they are also overweight. But, most importantly you must state your case and tell them your intentions.

There is a fine line here. Some of your enablers may not be aware of what they are doing. Others may have ulterior motives. One wife told me that she hated it when her husband decided to lose weight. She was either going to have to change her diet and lose weight with him or she was afraid he would leave her if he got back to his wedding day weight.

Watch out for those enablers who may try to sabotage your plan for good health and fitness.

Find a Mastermind Group

A mastermind group is a key to success. There are groups of people who enjoy success when losing weight, such as Weight Watchers and similar progams. It is not by chance that these groups have meetings.

Getting together with others who have similar goals is a way to keep you motivated and on track. When you talk to your doctor or the nutritionist ask if they know of any other people who share your goals. Tell them you would like to contact them to form a group. We all need support. Find people with whom you can create a mastermind alliance.

The mastermind alliance is one of the reasons Alcoholics Anonymous and other programs are so successful. They support those who are like minded and aiming for similar goals. Your nutritionist, doctor or exercise trainer can probably put you in touch with a group of like minded people.

Be Realistic and Determined

Your will power and your motivation is the key to your success.  You gained the weight and you are the one who will have to lose it.  However. just as you had enablers who assisted you in the weight gain process, you will need to create a group of enablers to help you lose the weight.

One thing to remember:  You did not become obese overnight and you will not lose the weight overnight.  Do not create unrealistic expectations.

Things to do:

  • Consult a doctor.
  • Consult a nutritionist
  • Consult an exercise therapist
  • Talk to your family and friends (the enablers)
  • Make the decision.
  • Get started.

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