Monday, February 4, 2013
Be “SMART” about your New Year’s weight-loss resolution
Follow this five-step guide to success.
It’s February now. How are your New Year’s Resolutions holding up? Maybe you are one of the few who made a meaningful resolution and are sticking to it. But if not, there’s still hope.
You can opt for a fresh start or a jump-start any day of the year. In fact, setting your sights on a goal is a valuable tool for making progress and getting where you want to go.
Achieving weight loss is one of the most common resolutions every year. It is also one that is often and easily broken. So how do we set goals that actually motivate us to achieve them? According to MindTools.com, good goals must be “SMART.”
“S” stands for specific. No more “I’m going to get healthier this year” or “I want to have a 6-pack one day.” Your goals must be much more specific than that if you actually plan on achieving them.
Focus on performance, not outcome, goals. Specify what behaviors lead to a particular outcome rather than setting the outcome as the goal. Break down a long-term objective into smaller, more precise steps.
“M” means measurable. If your goals are not measurable, how are you to know when you achieve them? When to reward yourself? “Better” or “healthier” is not a measurement.
Good goals must be quantitative as in “I will do cardio for 30 minutes three days a week for the next two weeks” or “I will reduce my daily calorie intake by 200 calories by substituting fruits and vegetables for unhealthy snacks for the next two weeks.”
As you meet your small, incremental goals, celebrate and set revised, measurable objectives that will move you towards your long-term goal.
“A” stands for attainable. Make your goals challenging, but realistic. Set goals based on personal performance so you can be in control of whether or not you achieve your goals.
“R” stands for relevant. Set goals that get you to where you want to go! Achieving your goal is only rewarding if it’s something you personally care about.
“T” stands for timely. This is a big one! According to the famous psychologist and TV personality Dr. Phil, “The only difference between a dream and a goal is a timeline.” What are you waiting for?
Make a timeline and fill it with events you want to see become a reality. Giving yourself a strict deadline will motivate you to stick with your goals.
Goals are central to making process and achieving the results you want in life. I encourage you to think about who you want to be in two weeks, one year, five years, and so on.
Use these “SMART” tips to write down a few of your short-term and long-term goals. Phrase your objectives in a positive way. You can get there! Just remember to be patient with yourself. In spite of up and downs, you can always get back up and try again.
Tips for weight loss success
1. Make a specific goal.
Instead of just saying “I want to lose weight,” be more specific by saying, “I want to lose 10 pounds.” This creates more of a motivation as you are working towards a decided goal and can track your success along the way.
2.Create a weekly diet menu.
Having a pre-set menu will help with those unexpected temptations and will help keep you focused and on track with your eating habits.
3. Track your success.
It is important to monitor your progress in order to focus on the difference between where you want to go and where you are now. Tricks for tracking your success can include weighing yourself on the scale every week and counting how many days of exercise you preform each week.
A key thing to think about when attempting to lose weight is not the progress you’ve made, but how far you have to go. Sometimes when you think too much on how far you’ve come, it’s easy to feel already accomplished and lose motivation to achieve your initial goal.
4. Be optimistic.
Have confidence that you will succeed, but don’t get a false sense of hope that your weight loss process is going to be easy. Being positive will make you work harder and be more determined to get through the hard parts in order to see your desired results.
5.Strengthen your willpower.
Build-up your capability to say “no” so that when you are faced with a temptation, it will be easier for you to resist. In order to strengthen your willpower, start with things that you know will be easier for you to resist and then slowly work your way up to the more difficult challenges.
Pegasus News Content partner - The Daily Campus