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Long-Term Weight Loss – What Does It Take

Most people who want to lose weight want to do it right now. OK, they’re willing to give it a week or a month tops. Six weeks, but that’s it. No more. Even people in their 20s with 70 years of life ahead of them have this mindset. If you ask them, though, for how long they wish to remain thin after they lose weight, the answer would be: forever.

So, while people want to lose weight fast, their real goal is to achieve a long-term weight loss, the kind that’s easy to maintain and remains with you for years. Often, these two goals, the immediate desire and the long-term wish, run counter to each other. The first may involve methods and tactics which interfere with your desire of achieving the second.

As I believe in creating a lasting change in your body, the kind of change which will draw you out of the vicious cycle of diet-weight gain-diet, I want to dedicate this post to what it takes to achieve a long-term weight loss.

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1. Calm

Why is being calm important? Because when you’re stressed out and anxious you can’t think straight, you can’t see the big picture, and you become vulnerable to all sorts of “solutions” which may not solve anything. This is when people buy expensive fitness gear, order supplements they know nothing about, or start a crash diet. While I’m all in favor of beginning the road to a new weight right this minute, you don’t need to get crazy. There is time. Be calm, plan your course, take the first step, but don’t rush into anything.

2. A Goal (a set of them)

Make sure you know what it is you want to achieve. You goal should be definite and measurable. For instance, I wish to lose 10 pounds is a measurable goal. I wish to get stronger isn’t. To judge your progress, you need to have measurable goals.

Why do I say you may need a set of goals? Because your end goal may be hard to achieve and require some time. You don’t want to wait that long to know that you’re doing well. Break down your end goal to a few milestone, easier to achieve. However, keep your eyes on the end goal.

3. Willingness To Change For Good

People who lose weight only to regain it often allow themselves to drift back to their former bad habits. For long term weight loss, you must be willing to change for good. This is not easy. Some view it as a jail sentence with no reprieve. However, this is what you must do in order to make a lasting transformation.

4. Some Knowledge

You don’t need a degree in nutrition or fitness to lose weight and keep it off. You do need to have some knowledge, though. You need to learn how to train properly and what constitutes good food. Invest in some books and programs. Learn from a number of sources. Do your own research. Ask trainers to assist you. Be open to new ideas but don’t accept anything you hear. Learn and then learn some more.

5. A Doable Plan

Some diets and fitness plans are not suitable for everyone. They require too much time, or too much effort, or specific conditions that may not apply to you. You need to find a doable plan that you can follow and a post-plan that will become your routine for years to come. When you consider which plan or routine to follow, ask yourself this: is this something I can do for a long time? If the answer is no, simply don’t do it.

These 5 steps are all you really need to achieve a long term weight loss. It’s not that hard or complicated. The specific steps may vary from one person to the next, but this is all that’s required. Now, get started.

Date published: January 18, 2013. Last modified: January 18, 2013

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