There is one thing my clients want more than to lose weight, and that is to keep it off!
The truth is most people will lose weight when they are in a calorie deficit but over 95% of those people will regain their weight once they stop dieting.
Today I want to share what I believe to be the 5 most significant things you need to do to have long-term weight loss success!
Before I share these, I would love to call out diets and the promises they make!
All diets promise to fix your problems, promise you weight loss, and a slim body; they sell you the dream. Now I am okay with being sold a dream if it is delivered!
However, they are not offering sustainable weight loss!
Because they do not teach you:
How to listen to your body
How to eat a healthy balance of food
How to tackle emotional, secret or binge eating.
They only teach you how to
Become obsessive about food
Food is good or bad
To have “cheat days”
I like to use the five W’s.
What, when, why, where, and who!
Think about WHAT you are eating.
Dieting makes us think it is all about calories – and if you stay under those calories, then you will lose weight. But more and more evidence shows that calories are less important than we think. And the thing is, when we obsess over calories, we usually focus on something other than the quality of our food.
Aim to eat whole foods over processed foods, and prepare your meals from fresh ingredients wherever possible. Leave breakfast bars and ready meals as an emergency rather than a staple meal.
Think about WHEN you are eating.
Do you eat because it is time to eat? Is it breakfast time, lunchtime, or dinner time?
Do you eat because it is someone’s birthday and they have brought a cake in?
Or because someone cooked it?
What if you started eating WHEN you were hungry rather than when the clock said so or someone else said so?
I invite you to start to work on listening to your body’s hunger cues and tune into your physical hunger.
Think about WHY you are eating.
Do you eat because you are feeling low, bored, lonely, anxious, frustrated, stressed, or even happy?
Start asking yourself, why do I want to eat? It may be physical hunger, or it may be that you are eating to fill an emotional need, or it may just be a habit. As you become more aware of why you are eating you can start to work on the reasons that are not physical hunger.
Think about WHERE you are eating.
Do you eat in front of the TV or while scrolling on the phone? Maybe you eat when you are driving or whilst you are preparing the children’s dinner?
You are not fully present when you do something else while eating! This means you will not feel the same level of satisfaction as your brain hasn’t fully engaged with the fact you have eaten.
Have you ever eaten a packet of crisps and put your hand in the bag and thought, “Oh, how have I eaten all of those?!”
It is so important to eat consciously!
The only place you should eat is sitting down (ideally at a table) without distraction.
Ensure your focus is on the food you are eating. Savour the flavours, recognise how much you have eaten, and notice when you feel satisfied and need to stop eating.
Think about WHO you are being when you are eating.
Who are you when you think about food – are you being the person who will constantly be dieting, the person who eats fast because she feels she shouldn’t be eating it, or the person who tells herself she is greedy and will never lose weight?
What if you become the person who is developing her relationship with food?
What if you started living in the energy of, “How can it be easy to nourish my body”, rather than, “How can I lose weight?”
I would love you to think about who you are being around food and who you want to be. What beliefs do you hold about yourself and food that are unhelpful? And what beliefs would you like to hold?
So to round up…..
Weight loss is about working on your relationship with food and with yourself.
Rather than focusing on weight loss, focus on nourishing your body.
Instead of counting calories, work on your mindset.
And ditch the diets and work on letting go of unhelpful beliefs.
I would love to know if this article resonated with you and if you would add anything to my 5 Golden Rules.