5 Rules to Keep that Weight From Coming BackPosted: September 30, 2014
You’ve put in the hard work. You’ve sweated it out. And likely it was all tough at first. Now that you’ve lost weight, the last thing you’d want to do is pack it back on. So instead, let’s talk about how to keep it off.
80% of those who lose weight gain it right back. We want youto be a part of that other 20%, and we’ve got some tips to make that lifelong goal a little easier.
Follow these 5 rules to help keep that energy going up, and that weight off, forever!
#1: The 80/20 Rule
Keep 80% of the food you eat daily within the clean, good-for-you category. As for the other 20%, let it be fun. This will help you build a positive relationship with food, and prevent you from feeling deprived, which will also help to eliminate your desire to binge on junk food. Balance and moderation are the keys to long term success.
#2: Seven-Day Sleep Schedule Rule
Sleep should never go understated. It is crucial to your health, and studies show, also crucial for controlling your food cravings and keeping you well-rested enough to stick to your fitness routine. To perform at your best, you’ll need to obtain 7-8 hours per night, and establishing a regular schedule will ensure this. For the best shuteye, sleep experts recommend you go to bed at the same time every night – that means weekends and holidays, too! A set schedule will enable you to reinforce your body’s sleep-wake cycle, so you can fall asleep quicker, and fall into a deeper, better-for-you sleep. Maximize your pillow time by choosing a bedtime that’s eight hours before you need to wakeup. Stick with it, and eventually you should find yourself waking up around the same time every morning, no alarm clock needed, feeling recharged and ready to go.
#3: No Breakfast Left Behind Rule
Researchers with the National Weight Control Registry are tracking over 10,000 dieters who have maintained a weight loss of 30+ pounds for at least a year. Of those individuals, nearly 90% report eating breakfast at least four days a week. Fuel up in the morning so you can use the energy (calories) throughout the day, and also burn it off, too. Starting off with a healthy choice will help keep you from binging later in the day.
#4: Struggle Day Strategy Rule
There’s no denying, there will be days when staying on the right track will feel challenging. Triggers like stress, lack of sleep, alcohol, and social situations, can all lead you back to old, not-always-healthy habits. This is especially true within the first year following your weight loss, when your new habits are still cementing. Knowing this, it’s important to plan ahead for when these days occur. As our own LifeVester and pound-dropping champ Rene Worthey says, “The more people who know what you’re trying to do when you want to fall off track – and likely you still will sometimes – the bigger the support system you’ll have to fall back on and to say, ‘Hey, I know it’s hard but you can do it’.” For Worthey, her Struggle Day Strategy is to call on her team of social support. Take a few moments to plan and write down your own strategy, whether it be to call a friend, go out for a walk, treat yourself to a yoga class, or take a 10-minute breather with your favorite music album. Then, the next time you feel a Struggle Day coming on, read back over your game plan, and execute it.
#5: Equal Parts Consistency and Variety Rule
Those who keep a consistent diet and fitness schedule are shown to have better longterm weight loss success. This means you should form a healthy routine that works for you. Then, be sure to stick with it throughout workdays, weekends and holidays. However, that certainly doesn’t mean you need to eliminate all variety! In fact, when it comes to eating, the best diet is one that draws upon an array of food groups and ingredients, so while you’ll want to keep the number of calories you take in each day fairly consistent, we’d encourage you to experiment with new foods. Give a new vegetable a try or test-out a new healthy recipe, and make your diet as exciting as you wish it to be. Just keep the amounts you consume each day consistent so you don’t end up yo-yoing back and forth, a recipe for weight gain. Then, apply this same concept to your workout routine. Try to maintain a system where you meet a minimum number of workout sessions per week, but feel free to add variety as to what they entail. If you’re getting bored with your normal routine, tryout a new class, add a buddy into the mix, create a new playlist, and don’t be afraid to spice things up!