As the summer has come to an end, its less noticeable if I gain a little weight. I’m not going to the beach anymore, and I’m wearing a light jacket and more layers, so my body isn’t showing as much.
In past years, this time marked indulging 3-4 times a week because I didn’t have a near-term goal or reason to look healthy. One year I even skipped the gym and totally let myself go for 5 months!
When I didn’t live a healthy lifestyle my weight would come back on QUICKLY, like a yo-yo. My pants would start getting tighter. I would feel more tired, and I would get disappointed when I looked in the mirror. I felt if I wasn’t 100% focused on my weight, it would come right back on. It was such a burden to keep my unwanted weight off!
In the past, I was ALWAYS consumed with motivating myself to be healthy on a day-to-day basis. I felt disappointed in myself when I didn’t have the willpower to eat a salad after a long day, resist chocolates at work or get to the gym at 6am before going to work.
This year, things are a little different for me.
Its been almost 4 years since my daughter was born, which triggered my husband and I to start on a weight-loss journey together. Over the past 3 ½ years, I have slowly built healthy habits into my life that work for me. Ive lost 40 pounds, and its stayed off.
I love the foods I eat, and I love the energy they give me. I thrive off of getting exercise and fit it into my life as one of my top priorities.
It feels so much easier to stay healthy now. I can more effortlessly live at the weight of my dreams. Now, I look in the mirror and my stomach is still flat. I can wear jeans that are 3 sizes below my previous lowest size ever.
Best of all, I don’t have to force myself to be healthy anymore. Why? How did this happen?
I built healthy behaviors into my life.
These behaviors make it as systematic to stay healthy as brushing my teeth – which means I barely think about doing it anymore – it’s a part of my everyday life. For example:
– I shop for similar ingredients every week so it’s simpler to eat healthy
– I cook a few recipes over and over that I love and keep me full
– I eat at the same times every day so I am not hungry and less likely to give in to temptations
None of these happened overnight. Each of these habits took several trials to get right and fit smoothly into my life.
Think about your “you” in 1 year from now – and how much easier it will be for you to stay healthy if you put in the mental work to create a new habit now.
Think about where you will be in 10 years if you build healthy habits into your lifestyle now. Where you will be in 10 years if you DONT.
I gave you a step-by-step method to create your own Sticky Weight-Loss plan and build 1 new weight-loss habit. Once you create your first weight-loss habit, it will be so much easier to create another, and another.
Today, I’m going to tell you about the final and most important part of how to change your life and make being healthy — and losing weight — totally realistic for you.
I’m living proof so I ask you to trust me on this.
You must Partner with a Partner
My husband, Ibrahim, and I were extremely supportive to each other to lose weight. We both decided to do it together. We cooked healthy recipes we loved and we ate dinner together. Throughout the day, we connected and talked about what we were eating and how we were feeling.
When we would wake up on the weekends, wanting to feel “free” and as a natural extension, indulge, one of us would make a veggie omelet for both of us. Instead of resorting to typical weekend food like chocolate chip pancakes or buttery French toast.
We had accountability to each other, and someone to share with when it became challenging. On those evenings where I was feeling a little weak, and was seriously considering making nachos or eating Ben & Jerrys Peanut Butter Cup ice cream, it really helped me when he said he didn’t want to go off-track.
We shared our excitement with each other when the pounds started shedding.
It is so much easier to stay on track when I had a partner to do it with. In fact, its the most important thing that helped me lose weight and keep it off until today.
Having a friend, co-worker, family member or a roommate as a partner is also a good option to have.
When you don’t have someone to give you accountability, it’s really tough to manage cravings for sweets, stay motivated in our busy lives, and remain optimistic that we will lose weight.
Sometimes we also just need someone to tell us exactly what to do.
Having accountability from someone else is the final and most important aspect of more effortlessly losing weight and keeping it off.
When you don’t have a partner that has a mutual weight-loss desire – or if you do but its not giving the support that is making a difference — then a smart and efficient way to get the support you need is to invest in someone to provide you advice, a plan, and keep you accountable.
Investing in a coach or trainer can be the difference between wanting to lose weight and actually losing it. Nutritional coaches, personal trainers, and weight-loss programs are all forms of accountability that can keep you on track.
Maybe you think, “I can do that myself. I can save myself money and keep myself on track.”
If you think you can do it on your own — I ask, have you? Have you lost the weight you wanted? Have you changed your eating habits, or got to the gym as often as you want?
If you had someone to talk to on a regular basis, a plan to follow, and someone that was checking in with you — how much more likely will you be to lose weight?
Some of us continue to feel guilty and bad about not having “enough” willpower to lose weight. You’re playing a game you will never win if you think like this!
We need to accept and reach out for the support we need to lose weight. If you’ve tried, over and over again, to lose it on your own, and you keep going in a circle – you know it’s time to bring in external help to support you in reaching your weight-loss goals.
You can make willpower irrelevant by setting up a system of accountability. It may mean that you have to pay for it if you dont have a partner already built into your life.
If you desire losing weight — and want to feel the benefits weight loss WILL bring for your inner and outer self — an investment in yourself and your future is something you should consider.
Leave me a comment below to tell me what support you have in your life to lose weight and/or what support you need.