Saturday, January 8, 2011

Are you ready to commit to a healthy lifestyle? Ask yourself these questions.

You say you want to lose weight. You may have found the motivation to go to the gym this week and choose the right foods. But, it’s only the beginning. After a few weeks, your motivation may dwindle and unhealthy habits may find their way back into your life. What seemed fun and easy at first is more difficult. Do you treat unhealthy treats as “rewards” for losing a pound or two? Are you heading to happy hour more than the gym?

Start. Stop. Start. Stop. Many experience “yo-yo dieting” and can’t get past it. If this describes you, there is a way to get past it, starting with losing the word “diet” from your vocabulary. To be successful and stay successful, you must be ready to commit to a healthy lifestyle – forever. Are you ready to commit? Ask yourself these questions and find out.

Do you know why you want to lose weight and live healthier?
Are you trying to improve a health issue such as high blood pressure? Do you want to shop in a boutique rather than a plus-sized store? Whatever your goal may be, hang onto this. This is your motivation that will keep you going on tough days.
Do it now: Write down your goal and keep it where you can see it everyday. Hang a picture of the article of clothing you want to wear in plain view. Keep a reminder of your goals in sight at all times.

Do you compare yourself to others?
If others around you who have lost weight or have a healthy lifestyle make you uneasy, try focusing that energy on yourself! Believe in yourself that you can make positive changes rather than focusing on wishing you had your friend’s faster metabolism.
Do it now: Write down the five most important people in your life. Are you on this list? If not, add yourself and remember that you are worth it!

Do you keep procrastinating?
If you keep putting it off (“I’ll start Monday”, “I’ll start after the holiday/birthday/next month”, etc.), then you are not ready. There is no perfect time to start except for right now. Start TODAY! It doesn’t mean committing to a rigid diet and going to the gym every day. It means taking one step toward good health today. Take a short walk, choose a salad over French fries or cut down to one soda per day. Small habit changes now turn into big results over time.
Do it now: Write down one habit you will change this week and focus on it. When you have it mastered, repeat the process.

Do you give up easily?
If you eat one unhealthy meal, do you give up on your diet? If so, it’s important to recognize that one poor meal – or even one weekend of poor meals – does not ruin everything. Consistent healthy choices over time will help you meet your goals. We all make unhealthy choices, but moving on from them – not making more of them - is the key to success.
Do it now: Forget yesterday and start again today. Every day is a new opportunity for you to make healthy choices. Forgive yourself and learn to make a better choice next time.

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