Following the tips on the next pages will help you lose weight. Whereas the tips on this page will help to keep it off.
The right habits are like money in the bank at a high interest rate. They pay over time. Get a few key habits right, and time will make you achieve your goals without even thinking about it.
“Make time your ally and time will make you” – Thomas Watson.
~~~ (1) Control your intake ~~~
Six out of seven days a week plan what you eat. Losing control of what you eat is easy, especially in the hectic workday. Go to canteens/cafes and you are already in an uphill battle. The healthy option doesn’t look like it will fill you. The next best option looks dry and boring. So, you go for the high calorie option.
Find a variation of 10-15 healthy meals that you like, prepare them at home and take them to work. A lack of planning makes it much more tempting to follow impulses. At the very least bring fruit or small healthy snacks from home to avoid that spontaneous chocolate bar or candy which ruins all your other efforts.
~~~ (2) Control your hunger ~~~
Hunger is like a lion – sooth it before it roars or it will eat you. Defy hunger and you will lose! Goals will go out the window. A small and healthy snack before a main meal will help you not gorge yourself. To keep portion sizes reasonable have your main meal before you get really hungry. To keep your grocery trolley free of junk don’t go shopping hungry.
Monitor your hunger over a week and find out when you normally get hungry. In future, have an apple or something healthy 30 minutes before you get hungry. And please don’t take this tip as encouragement to constantly eat.
~~~ (3) Control your plan ~~~
How do you know that your diet plan is good? Having one is a great start. Checking that it’s a good one is the second part. Two good ways to do that are: a) tracking your weight b) tracking calories.
- Weight tracking is easy and objective but it’s backward-looking. It may take 2-4 weeks until you know your plan was good or bad.
- Tracking calories / food journal is more involved but accurate and forward-looking. A food journal is one of the most powerful ways to change your diet. It raises awareness and enables you to work things out for yourself. The key factors are to maintain it accurately and not give up on it. Studies show it is one of the best ways to change your diet.
If you don’t mind the effort of calorie counting, and if you do it accurately, it is a very powerful companion to weighing. Weighing, however, should be the final and objective check.
You can’t control if you don’t measure. The key to controlling your intake is to have a good diet plan. The key to controlling your plan is to measure its success. If you don’t achieve your goals, you need to change your plan. Try different things until you find a plan that works. Then continuously incorporate some changes so it doesn’t get boring.
Learn more about this….
Steady Energy Diet
A few common knowledge tips can helps you improve your energy levels throughout the day, and in particular avoid the energy dips. Learn more
2 Key Habits for Losing Weight
In my opinion losing weight boils down to two key habits, one of which is to never try to lose weight(!) How this is the only way it works? Learn more
Half-year diet change program
Stretching a diet program over half a year requires very little change at any given time plus makes sustainable change much more likely. Learn more
By Murat Uenlue, PhD, PMP, 2013.