First Stages of a Weight-Loss Process
Choosing the right objective
When we wish to lose weight, we first have to choose a realistic, measurable, and reachable objective. If your objective is excessive, you run the risk of becoming discouraged along the way. To stay motivated, choose an objective on the short term, such as losing 20 pounds in three months (you can combine with a long term objective). Keep in mind that a healthy weight loss represents a reduction of a maximum of 1 kg (2.2 lb) per week.
Also, question the reasons why you wish to lose weight. Is it for your health? Is it to be able to keep up with your children? Do you have a special event, for example a wedding, for which you need to put on a dress that doesn’t fit anymore? To help you through difficult times, I suggest that once you have identified your reason, you put up something significant (a picture of your grandchildren, or a medical prescription, for example) on the refrigerator or the bathroom mirror, for example.
Identifying potential obstacles
It is important to address the possible hazards that you will face on your way: dining out, social pressure, family meals, end of the day exhaustion, sweet tooth, etc. What will harm your process? What might demotivate you?
Now that you have identified potential issues, you have to identify the solutions to address them. As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! Make a list of the solutions versus the obstacles, in order to remember your good resolutions when a problematic situation occurs.
Making a good clean-up
Clean your pantry thoroughly! There needs to be room for nutritive foods: take the chips, cookies, sweet desserts, and nibbles out of the pantry. Avoid keeping reserves for nibbling; your pantry should contain only foods that will be used for a meal or a snack. Only the foods on your grocery list should enter your house.
You will then have to determine by which means you will lose weight. Weight loss happens when caloric intake (total of calories eaten) is lower than energy expenditure (total calories spent). Which activities will you choose to increase your expenditure (conditioning, dance, sports, etc.)? How will you plan your nutrition so that your caloric intake is reduced in a way that is both balanced and satisfying?
Once you reach these stages of the process, I suggest that you surround yourself with competent people, such as a nutritionist and a personal trainer, in order to give you more tools and get all the odds on your side for your weight loss process!
By Marilyne Petitclerc