I talk a lot about the struggle of losing weight. In my last blog I talked about how hard it can be, and the things you can do to make it go a little easier, but what about the obvious question - How do you know when you’re ready? As I talked about last month, losing weight isn’t easy. No one ever gets to me by waking up in the morning and thinking, “I’m going to lose ten pounds” and then just goes and does it. People come to Ideally You after they’ve tried diet after diet to no avail. My dieters come to me exhausted and frustrated feeling like they have no where left to turn, or when a health issue has forced them to take action.
There are obvious ways to know when it’s time to lose weight - Health issues like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, pre-diabetes or diabetes, aching knees and joints, but what I want to talk about is making this important decision BEFORE it permanently affects your health.
Start by making a list of all the reasons losing weight would help you. Do you want your clothes to fit better? Do you want to be able to keep up with your kids or grandkids? Do you have any looming health concerns? Writing these things down can really help you build your motivation and show you what you need to focus on. With your list, you can now start asking yourself a few questions that will help you decide if you’re really ready to start this weight loss journey.
The first question is this: Are you ready for a lifestyle change? Losing weight is about more than just restricting calories for a few months - It’s about changing the way you look at food permanently.
Next, you need to take a look at your life and take stock of all the things that have distracted you from your health. An erratic work schedule, for example, can really affect your ability to control your diet. While many of these distraction in life are unavoidable (you can’t just quit your job after all), acknowledging them and having a plan to manage them can go a long way.
Then you need to ask yourself about the emotional aspects of your diet. Do you have emotional issues that effect how you look at your body and food? The answer to this is usually yes. Conquering these things is a part of the weight loss journey, so pretending they don’t exist is setting yourself up for failure.
If you have a list of reasons, you’ve answered yes to changing your lifestyle, you’ve taken all your distractions into account, and you’re ready to face your emotional eating challenges, you’re ready to take your health and diet seriously, and you can start setting some weight loss goals. To learn a little more about setting goals, visit our previous blog post on the subject here.