This article is a part of an ongoing series featuring tips and ideas I have found that have inspired me on my personal weight loss journey. I hope they do the same for you ~Meir Liraz.
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If you've recently lost excess weight, congratulations! It's an accomplishment that will likely benefit your health now and in the future. Now that you've lost weight, let's talk about some ways to maintain that success.
When you lose weight, especially a significant amount, it’s cause for celebration. But if those pounds gradually reappear, you’ve achieved only a hollow victory.
The following tips are some of the common characteristics among people who have successfully lost weight and maintained that loss over time.
Follow a healthy and realistic eating pattern. You have embarked on a healthier lifestyle, now the challenge is maintaining the positive eating habits you've developed along the way. In studies of people who have lost weight and kept it off for at least a year, most continued to eat a diet lower in calories as compared to their pre-weight loss diet.
Keep your eating patterns consistent. Follow a healthy eating pattern regardless of changes in your routine. Plan ahead for weekends, vacations, and special occasions. By making a plan, it is more likely you'll have healthy foods on hand for when your routine changes.
Eat breakfast every day. Eating breakfast is a common trait among people who have lost weight and kept it off. Eating a healthful breakfast may help you avoid getting "over-hungry" and then overeating later in the day.
Get daily physical activity. People who have lost weight and kept it off typically engage in 20—60 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity most days of the week while not exceeding calorie needs. This doesn't necessarily mean 60 minutes at one time. It might mean 20 minutes of physical activity three times a day. For example, a brisk walk in the morning, at lunch time, and in the evening. Some people may need to talk to their healthcare provider before participating in this level of physical activity.
Monitor your diet and activity. Keeping a food and physical activity journal can help you track your progress and spot trends. For example, you might notice that your weight creeps up during periods when you have a lot of business travel or when you have to work overtime. Recognizing this tendency can be a signal to try different behaviors, such as packing your own healthful food for the plane and making time to use your hotel's exercise facility when you are traveling. Or if working overtime, maybe you can use your breaks for quick walks around the building.
Monitor your weight. Check your weight regularly. When managing your weight loss, it's a good idea to keep track of your weight so you can plan accordingly and adjust your diet and exercise plan as necessary. If you have gained a few pounds, get back on track quickly.
Get support from family, friends, and others. People who have successfully lost weight and kept it off often rely on support from others to help them stay on course and get over any "bumps." Sometimes having a friend or partner who is also losing weight or maintaining a weight loss can help you stay motivated.
My personal story...
Here's the simple weight loss method that works best for me:
As we all know, In order to lose weight we need to create a “calorie deficit”. What that means is, we must eat less calories than our body burns in a day. There's no way around it.
To utilize this method I use a free app called: "Healthy Weight Loss Planner", you can install it to your android phone or tablet from here.
Now here's how this simple system works:
After installing or accessing the app online follow these three steps:
First: Use the 'BMI Calculator' to check your Body Mass Index (an indicator of body fat), and see where it fits within the BMI categories.
Second: use the 'Daily Calorie Needs Calculator' to determine the number of calories needed each day to maintain your current weight.
Third: use the 'Daily Diet Planner tool' to set a daily calorie target and construct a daily food plan to fit your target (and your diet's food discipline). Now obviously you need your target calorie intake to be less than your daily calories needs. How much less? Aim to subtract 500 to 1000 calories daily, this translates into losing about 1 to 2 pounds a week respectively (about 0.5kg to 1kg).
For example: if your daily caloric needs are 2200, and you want to lose 2 pounds (1kg) per week, your daily calorie target should be 1200. Once you achieve your goal, you can revert to a target of 2200 to maintain your desired weight.
A pace of 1 to 2 pounds a week will allow you to lose weight in a healthy, sustainable way. Keep in mind that setting realistic goals and tracking your progress are key to your success. Research has shown that those who keep track of their behaviors are more likely to take off weight. As a matter of fact, setting unrealistic diet goals is the main reason most diets fail. You want to develop lifestyle habits that will help you maintain your weight in a healthy range. A short-term "diet" that you "go on" and then "go off" is not the answer to long-term weight management.
Note that the app sports a database featuring more than 400, mostly non-processed foods. The variety of foods allows you to construct food plans that adhere to any diet rout you decide to take. With this app you will be able to construct a food plan that fits perfectly with your specific diet discipline. Enjoy!
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