Weight loss is one of the most common resolutions people make in the New Year. While calling a registered dietitian is one way to stick to your goal, others opt for quick fixes or unattainable weight loss methods that simply don’t work. If this sounds like your January experience, here are the 5 main mistakes I see when setting health and weight goals along with easy solutions to recommit this February for lasting healthy habits.
Mistake #1: Vague Goals
Examples of vague goals include, I’ll work out more, I’ll eat better, or I’ll cut back on alcohol. If your goal is vague, your results will be too.
Solution: All resolutions need to have a clear, attainable target goal. Realistic, specific steps not only make a resolution do-able but also a lot less overwhelming to begin working toward and sticking with. Start by asking yourself, what are some daily or weekly action steps in line with your goals?
Mistake #2: Too Much, Too Soon
Making huge, specific goals such as resolving to lose 50 pounds this year. This isn’t the time to go big or go home. Too big of a resolution upfront can backfire, stalling commencement or inciting preemptive feelings of failure.
Solution: Aim to lose 5 pounds a month. Starting with a limited but achievable weight loss goal sets your entire year up for success. Losing 1-2 pounds per week is a healthy weight loss plan and by saying 5 pounds a month, you can set your goal and know you’ll hit it each month. That’s majorly motivating!
Mistake #3: Overcommitting
Resolving to workout every day. Let’s be honest, most people can’t workout everyday – even professional athletes take a rest day! Don’t over commit to a goal, especially one that’s unrealistic.
Solution: Small, achievable goals are most likely to become permanent lifestyle changes. My favorite workout goal for my clients is to never let more than two days go between workouts. With this goal, you’ll end up working out around 3 days a week but keep enough structure and flexibility to make it work for your lifestyle.
Mistake #4: Over-Restriction
Saying 2015 is the year of no carbs, sugar, dessert, etc. While I agree there are foods better to avoid in a healthy diet plan, trying to eliminate an entire food group or food item completely is a surefire way to increase vulnerability to food cravings.
Solution: I help my clients focus on making lean protein, veggies and fruit the main staple of any meal. Fill up on the good stuff first, and you’ll end up having less room and cravings for indulgences.
Mistake #5: The Cleanse
Whether a juice cleanse, soup cleanse, or master cleanse, these choices simply don’t work long-term. Many juice cleanses are loaded with sugar, and participants often gain back more weight afterward than lost. My biggest issue with these types of cleanses are that they set you up to fail or even regress.
Solution: Skip the cleanses but clean up your eating. Even focusing on just one meal each day to be extra “clean” or healthy will make a great impact. Check out Smoothie King’s #ChangeAMeal Challenge to see for yourself. One meal, big impact!
My goal for my clients is to find the right, healthy way of eating that not only helps them lose or maintain weight but also develops new eating habits for a healthy and active lifestyle. Now that’s what I call results!
What 2015 resolutions are you recommitting to this month?