Why are you trying to lose weight? What is your weight loss motivation? By understanding the reasons behind this not-so-simple endeavor, you’ll be able to devise a strategy that has a higher probability of working and enduring.

Determine why you want to lose weight and make a commitment

Generally speaking, weight loss motivation begins and ends with, “I want to feel better about myself.” However, this can mean different things to different people. Often, there is a combination of reasons.

For some, feeling better about oneself has to do with self-esteem. You might want to look sexier, fitter, and generally more attractive. Wanting to feel this way is especially relevant in the society we live in, where fitness has taken center stage in health and wellness, alongside diet and nutrition.

Many people are motivated to lose weight to feel healthier and, thus, better overall. Being overweight can lead to any number of serious health problems. Among these are heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, knee and back pain. Even if you aren’t currently suffering from one or several of these health issues, losing weight is a proven preventive measure, especially for those with a family history of problems or diseases.

Take a moment to think about your reasons for losing weight. Are they superficial or deeply rooted? There isn’t necessarily a correct answer, but you should put some thought into it so that, one day, when you’re gasping for breath while doing burpees, you can remind yourself why you’re doing the work and keep pushing. 

Pick a plan that fits your lifestyle

When tackling weight loss, a common mistake is selecting a plan that doesn’t work with your lifestyle. Despite the best weight loss motivation you might have, if your approach clashes with your everyday routine and preferences, chances are you won’t succeed. 

Weight loss can be a frustrating process. Set yourself up for success by carefully selecting a plan that suits your lifestyle. Here are some examples:

Many weight-loss diets require calorie counting or counting macros. Doing so is more challenging if you eat out a lot. Alternatively, if you’re not used to cooking all your food, there’s a steeper learning curve, and the chances of abandoning your plan start to increase. A solution to this could be drinking meal replacement shakes one or more times a day.

What about working out? Some people are very disciplined and can follow a workout program at home. Others need a group workout setting to feel motivated, or even competitive, enough to see it through. It might be a good idea to become a member of a nearby gym.

As a more straightforward example: if you decide you want to follow the keto or ketogenic diet to lose weight but don’t particularly like fatty foods or meat, you may not be motivated to keep with it.

Find social support

People often overlook the fact that social support is crucial when you’re trying to lose weight. Despite having the best weight loss intentions possible, if you don’t prioritize establishing a social support network, your chances of sticking to your weight loss regimen diminish.

You can find social support in a variety of situations. It could be something like CrossFit, where an exercise group meets weekly or biweekly and encourages its members to hold one another accountable. Sometimes it can come as support from your partner or close friend when you’re feeling discouraged. Maybe you need help covering some responsibilities while you head to the gym? All of these things form part of your social support network.

In a time when social interactions are restricted, you might be wondering how to best access social support as you try to lose weight. Research suggests that even online communities help members stay consistent with their weight loss programs–and there are a lot of these groups out there! Search for them on sites like Facebook, ideally in your region, so that, when social distancing measures eventually relax, you can finally meet up with these new friends in person.

Celebrate your success

Big changes begin with little steps. Remember this as you determine your weight loss motivation and program and remind yourself to celebrate your successes–no matter how big or small–throughout your journey. 

Patience is the key to success. With each of your accomplishments, be it an actual drop in weight, an increase in the number of squats you can do, or reaching 12+ hours of intermittent fasting, make sure you acknowledge your work and dedication. After all, you’re doing this for your health.

Think and talk positively

When you struggle with being overweight, negative self-talk is often the norm. If one of your weight loss motivations is to feel better overall, the negative self-talk has to end.

When you catch yourself thinking or saying things like, “I’ll never lose weight, I have no self-discipline,” correct yourself. Revise your thoughts and words. Instead, say something positive yet realistic, like, “Losing weight isn’t easy. Changing unhealthy habits takes time. I’m learning, and if I stay focused, I’ll accomplish my goals.”

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