5 Strategies for Weight Loss Success

January 17, 2008 at 3:01 am 2 comments

I’m on two diets at once: fiscal and physical. I read of lot of personal finance blogs to help me with my fiscal diet. It’s striking how many times the posts related to the money side of the house apply to dieting as well.

Case in point: Get Rich Slowly has a post on dealing with gadget envy. In it, GRS lists five ways to cope with the urge to buy new technology.

  1. Avoid advertising
  2. Avoid temptation
  3. Remember it’s not a competition
  4. Make the most of what you have
  5. Remember your larger goals

GRS naturally relates these points to stopping oneself from buying every new tech toy in sight. To me, though, they’re great strategies for achieving ongoing success with my lifestyle change.

AVOID ADVERTISING. If a drool-inducing ad for a restaurant or yummy food product presents itself, change the channel, turn the dial or flip the page. Marketing is powerful stuff. Corporations spend lots of money to develop these ads. They wouldn’t do it if the ads weren’t effective. There’s nothing noble about making yourself sit through a commercial for a juice-dripping burger. Use the power of the clicker – your power – and change the channel.

AVOID TEMPTATION. I particularly use this strategy at home. I just do not have certain foods in the house. I admit their ability to overcome my willpower, and I no longer test myself. If you have trigger foods that you cannot keep from bingeing on, leave ‘em on the grocery store shelves. Also, stay out of stores or venues where you’ll be exposed to trigger foods. This is not a weakness. Recognizing and avoiding these situations is a sign of strength.

REMEMBER IT’S NOT A COMPETITION. This is perhaps the hardest one for me to put into practice on a consistent basis. As far as I’ve come, losing 114 pounds (or more) isn’t going to transform me into a super model. There are also people who have lost more weight than I have in less time. I am sometimes discouraged by this. It has taken me five long, long years to get where I’m at, and I occasionally wish I looked better or had done it faster. That only happens, though, when I compare myself to others. There are times when I limit how many success stories I read because they bring me down rather than inspire me. When I get fixated on wishing I had a certain person’s look or had lost 200 pounds in 6 months, I remind myself of how far I’ve come. I pull out old pictures, read my old food journals. I peruse my “Yay!” book to relive my achievements. Doing this serves to bring the focus back to me and remind me of what I’ve accomplished. In this case, it truly is – and should be – all about you.

MAKE THE MOST OF WHAT YOU HAVE. This one goes hand-in-hand with the previous point. Got great eyes? Play them up. Are you able to run a half marathon? Do it and tell everybody about it. Did you try a new healthy recipe that didn’t come out as well as you’d hoped? Appreciate the fact that you did it, no matter the result. If you want to start clean eating but can’t afford to replace everything in your cupboards, work with what you’ve got on hand. Or, buy one inexpensive unprocessed food that gets you started. Can’t afford the gym? Devise your own TV time workout that you do during commercials. That also helps you avoid advertising!

REMEMBER YOUR LARGER GOALS. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day minutiae of your diet and exercise plan. Every now and then, step back and remind yourself of the reason you began this process. Sure, your weight may be up a couple of pounds this week but in the last six months you may have dropped 10 of your 15-pound excess. You’re two thirds of the way there. Daily discipline is key to achieving your goals, but revisiting the “big picture” is critical, too.

This is such an impressive, foundational list that I am going to print it out and post it at home and at work.


Entry filed under: tips & techniques. Tags: .

I’m Full of That! Expecting the Unexpected

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. sassysexyshapely  |  January 19, 2008 at 4:47 pm

    Thanks for sharing my post!

  • 2. Sally Parrott Ashbrook  |  January 20, 2008 at 3:04 am

    That’s a great list, and I love how they apply to improving both fiscal and physical health. Getting my finances in order definitely made a big difference in me setting myself up for success with health/weight loss.


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