Michele Lian struggled to lose weight for years. She ate less, exercised like a machine and managed to hit her goal weight. Only problem was that the weight didn't stay off. It wasn't sustainable. Just over a year after reaching her goal, she found herself sitting at a desk all day, feeling stressed out and losing interest in a healthy lifestyle. Four years after that, she was back at square one. The weight had returned.
Tired of being a constant dieter who always ended up exactly where she started, Lian set out to overhaul her life. She mastered these habits and now she's sharing them with us!
1. Don’t view foods as "good" or "bad."
She says, "The more I considered certain foods "bad" and cut them out of my diet, the more I craved for and binged on them, leading to feelings of guilt and hopelessness. Now, instead of categorizing foods as "good" or "bad," I see them as foods that I should eat most of the time or sometimes." Nothing is actually off limits and by practicing portion control, Lian keeps her cravings in check.
2. Move with purpose.
"Exercising consistently made reaching my goal shape and staying there so much easier, thanks to the lean muscle I gained and the boost it gave to my metabolism. My exercise routine consists of three days a week of high-intensity workouts alternated with low-intensity yoga to help my body recover." If you're looking for both intense workouts and mellow yoga, check out SweatFlix℠
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3. Find ways to manage your time effectively.
Like many of us, Lian is a procrastinator. She says she would find herself sucked into a time wasting black hole on the internet. Cat video, anyone? Lian says, "Before I know it, I’ve gone through five videos that have taken up 30 minutes of my time — 30 minutes that I could have spent squeezing a quick workout into my busy day or prepping for my next meal so I wouldn’t have to head to the drive-through. Having done a review of how I use my time and separated the time wasters from the actual activities that contribute to my productivity and well-being, I now prioritize my time to include the things that I know
are good for me first."
4. Tune into your body.
When feeling hungry, Lian asks herself, “Am I really hungry, or do I want to eat because I’m stressed, upset, or bored?” She says, "Just being aware of my reason for wanting to eat helps me reduce my chances of eating unnecessarily. If I’m not sure, I ask myself another question: “If all you had in front of you was steamed, unseasoned broccoli, would you still want to eat?”
If the answer is no, I do something else that takes my attention away from food and my craving."
5. Surround yourself with like-minded people.
Being accountable to someone other than yourself can be incredibly helpful. Lian says, "having someone else to answer to also helps get me out of my own head and focus my attention on helping someone else get through her
workouts or healthy eating habits instead."
6. Treat yourself with kindness.
"Giving in to three cupcakes or missing my workout used to make me want to give up on myself altogether. But what I realized is that I will
make mistakes and there’s no shame in that. The sooner you acknowledge that and try to get back on track, the less likely you’ll be to fall into a downward spiral."
7. Celebrate the small wins.
"While keeping my eye on the big prize helps keep me on track, it can also be discouraging because it seems too far away. So I celebrate the small milestones that I reach, be it eating just one cupcake throughout the day or smashing my workout. The small wins make me want to keep winning."
Practical, sound, wonderful advice.
Can you incorporate these habits into your life to get you closer to your weight loss goals? What healthy habits do you recommend?