SETTING REALISTIC WEIGHT LOSS GOALS
One of the biggest problems people have when they begin a diet and/or exercise program is that they set goals that are too big or are just unrealistic. You can not expect to give up all of you bad habits in one day and be a ‘perfect’ dieter the next. In fact, give up on the concept of perfection. There is no such thing.
Losing fifty pounds in a month (or even a three-month period) is not a realistic goal. Neither is shooting for a goal of decreasing your caloric intake to under 1,000 calories a day. It’s much better to try and reduce your calorie level by 100 to 200 calories per week or even month. How many calories you need ultimately is dependent upon how much you weigh, your age, your metabolic level and several other factors. Generally speaking, most men require about 2,000 calories per day and most women about 1,500 calories a day. Those on a healthy, well-rounded diet plan tend to stick to 1,200 calories daily.
It takes 21 days to make a habit so it’s probably best to make one change to your eating habits such as switching from regular soda to caffeine-free and/or diet-soda at a time. Once you get that under control, you can move on to the next change and so on and so forth. By making manageable mini-goals, you’ll see the scale move in the direction you want it to – perhaps not as quickly as you’d like, but…it will happen, and a loss of 1-2 pounds per week (or less) is more sustainable in the long-term.
Studies have shown that those who make lifestyle changes, ones that are meant to be permanent and for health, not cosmetic, reasons, are more successful in their weight loss efforts than those that don’t.