OK, you caught me. I’m a yo-yo dieter. I seriously have a problem. I will do really well for two months. I get all excited. I believe I can do anything (being the extreme optimist that I am) and then suddenly, my will is not strong enough any more. I quit eating healthy. I start drinking a little soda. I stop exercising as much. Then I drink even more soda…. I start having a daily treat or two. And guess what? I gain back the 10 pounds I just lost. Yep, that’s me. Mrs. Yo-Yo herself. This just happened to me… again. Can you relate?
Honestly, I hope you can’t relate, but I have a feeling a lot of you are right alongside of me in this. It’s a common problem. How can we as human beings keep our heads in the game? After all, in order to lose the weight and keep it off, we’re going to have to make a lifestyle change. We know this to be true, but for some reason, we think that we need to hurry up and hit our goal and once we’re there we can say…. “phew…. all done”. But that’s not the case! We cannot say “Phew, all done!”. We must say, “that was a good start, let’s keep going”. We have to embrace the lifestyle change with all of our hearts and minds. It cannot be a maybe. It has to be met with determination. Otherwise, we’ll continue on the yo-yo plan of lose it, gain it.
So how can we as people who need to make healthy habit changes do it and stay motivated to keep going? Why do we keep giving in? For me, one of the main reasons I give up is that I get tired of having to think about it all the time. I much prefer to indulge myself in all the food and drink decisions than have to carefully calculate what it is that I need to be eating. Also, I find it difficult to quit my unhealthy choices, because I find them fun. My mind associates soda with getting to relax and enjoy myself. It’s the same with sweets. If I take them away, I feel like life isn’t nearly as fun. I know that it is just a mind training thing that I have to get through.
I decided that I have to more carefully plan if I’m going to be successful. The problem is, I’ve known this for a while, but I’m still failing to make my plan. You know what they say…. Failing to plan is planning to fail. That’s not good. I don’t want to keep failing! So….here’s my 12 step plan. In it, I’m saying “you”, but I’m talking to myself. You may not need my 12 steps….but maybe you do, too….read on to see.
1. You must find a replacement for drinking soda. It can still be carbonated, but it can’t be diet and it can’t be full of sugar or high fructose corn syrup. You may have to mix your own soda to make it into something healthier, but it will be worth it. Soda is the main reason I am so plump.
2. You must make a meal plan, including breakfast, lunch and snacks to keep you on track. That doesn’t mean only make one meal plan ever. That means, every week, make a meal plan. Or, you can repeat the prior week’s meal plan if that helps, but it has to be planned.
3. You must make a motivation Smash Book. (If you haven’t seen these, check out my Pinterest board here). This will help you when you’re down by giving you motivational quotes, before and after pictures, and things to think about while losing weight. You can include quotes like this:
4. You must decide why you really want to be thin. Not the politically correct answer but deep down, why do you want it? Is it enough to make you get it done? If not, can you find a new reason?
5. You must have a plan on what to do when you’re eating out. Make a list of allowed foods while eating at fast food restaurants.
6. In addition to the Smash book, you must make a travel smash book. One that you can keep in your purse to help you while you’re out and about. A few motivational quotes, your fast food list, etc. Anything that will help you to stay on plan when you’re out with your husband at lunch.
7. You must find replacements for Emotional eating. I know you like to eat when you’re tired, sad, happy and frustrated, but you’re going to have to find something else you can do when you’re feeling these emotions. Emotions are normal. Eating to celebrate them or to make them go away, just complicates life and doesn’t make anything go away.
8. You must set goals. Not just weight loss goals, but exercise goals, maybe even a bucket list!
9. You must stay hydrated. You need at least 64 ounces a day, but since you are overweight 100 ounces would be even better. Strive to get 100 oz of water in a day. Remember how your wrinkles around your eyes tend to go away when you’re drinking enough? You’ll look better for it!
10. You must exercise daily! I realize you have 7 children, but that doesn’t give you an excuse not to exercise. You can always fit 15 minutes in at a time. You can always go outside and jump on the trampoline with the kids. You can take them on a bike ride or a walk. You don’t have to exercise alone.
11. You must eat more vegetables. Your body needs the vegetables to grow stronger and leaner. Your skin looks better with more vegetables, too.
12. You must refer back to this list often, so you don’t forget about all of your plans. You know how forgetful you are!
While I may not have all of these goals accomplished immediately, or even in the next month, this is what I know I have to do in order to finally reach my healthy weight. I’ve debated about even talking about this on my blog any more, as I always just seem to fail and hate to keep talking about my failures, lol, but…I’ve decided to do it as it helps me. If it helps me, it may help someone else as well.
Oh and speaking of eating your vegetables, if you’re interested in growing your own vegetables (or already are!), be sure to check out today’s sponsor, Born to Grow and their free gardening webinar:
What about you? What would you add to this list?