This is supplemental material for the June 4, 2014 Issue of Weights & Balances
SETTING SMART WEIGHT LOSS GOALS: What are SMART Goals? Let’s Review.
- Specific vs General (I want to lose a ton of weight vs. I want to lose 25 lbs.)
- Measurable (tracking progress/scale/measurements/charting)
- Accountable (keep a food journal/paper or online, write down everything you eat for the day)
- Realistic (nothing overwhelming/easily obtainable)
- Timeframe (e.g. six months to lose 30 lbs. /might need to adjust time frame, be flexible!)
Things to remember when setting your goals:
- On a healthy weight loss plan, you will be losing between .5 to 2 lbs. a week. Too fast is not healthy!
- Choose a definite start date and don’t put it off. Consider vacation plans, school demands, work demands, relationship issues. You might need to resolve some things before starting.
- Set short-term and long-term goals and write them down. Putting goals in writing makes them more “real.”
- Focus on the journey (process) not the destination (outcome). Changing your daily process is what makes for good outcomes!
- Know there will be setbacks. Try to pre-plan for those setbacks, such as a party, wedding, vacation, etc. Brainstorm ideas and set specific strategies to overcome setbacks.
- Be willing to change your goals as you progress. You might find you can expand your goals or find you might have some new goals with your new lifestyle. Such as I want to be able to run a 5K, be able to wear a bikini on vacation, a new dress for my daughter’s wedding, wear a smaller belt, run a marathon, etc.
- Eliminate these words “always” “never” “every” “must”
- Do it for you! Do not try to please others or impress others! It’s YOUR health, it is about YOU!
- Reward yourself for the small victories! These are foundations to long-term success. I have been buying clothes in a smaller size as my “inspiration” to keep going to reach the next size smaller. Now I am on the lookout for a “goal” outfit that I would like to wear.
- Don’t fall into the “trap” of advertisements that claim great losses in short period of time!
- Try stating your goals in a positive way. Eliminate “negative” words such as: never, ever, every, won’t, etc.
Examples of rewards: (for #9)
- Treat yourself to a manicure/pedicure
- Relax with a massage
- Freshen up with a haircut or blowout
- Splurge on jewelry
- Get fitted for a new bra (you may need to be re-sized after losing some weight)
- Invest in new workout gear, sneakers or a yoga mat
- Buy a book you’ve been wanting to read
- Enroll in a new group fitness class
- Spend some time downloading new music (or old favorites)
- Sleep in at least one day on the weekend
Examples of Unrealistic/Realistic Goals:
|Unrealistic Goals (negative)||Realistic Goals (positive)|
|I’ll never eat more than 1,000 calories every day.||I will eat one more serving of fruits and vegetables each day.|
|Starting tomorrow, I’m going to begin walking two hours every day.||I’ll walk for 20 minutes four times this week. Log your accomplishment! Reward yourself for achieving your goal!|
|I’m going to bake cookies for the bake sale, and I won’t eat or taste any.||I’ll buy cookies for the bake sale and drop them off at the school on my way home from the grocery store. Give yourself a cheer after you drop them off, yay you!|
|I’m going to lose ten pounds before my class reunion next month.||I’m going to eat smaller portions and take a 15-minute walk four times a week so that I’ll feel healthier, more fit, and confident at the class reunion.|
|I am going to eat only one meal a day||Eating smaller “meals” of low-fat/low-calorie foods throughout the day. This will keep me from getting too hungry at any time during the day.|
|I will never ever snack (eat after 8pm, etc.)||I am going to eat more healthy snacks such as fruits, vegetables, and drinking water. When I am hungry after (a certain time) I will drink a glass of water/brush my teeth, etc.|
Although the exact number of calories you need to burn in excess may vary slightly, a 1.5 pound weekly loss means burning about 5000 calories more than you take in. To put that number into perspective, burning 5000 calories is like a 130 pound female doing 15 hours of aerobics!