Weight loss does not have to be a miserable state of white-knuckled deprivation. Long-term weight loss success and maintenance comes from permanent lifestyle changes, and those changes can be enjoyable. Here are 6 ways to make weight loss fun.
1. Experiment with New Foods
“Diet foods” can be boring and flavorless. Healthy foods don’t have to be. Shop at your local ethnic markets and experiment with new spices and unusual produce. Join a Community Supported Agriculture Co-Op (CSA). CSAs supply customers with boxes of locally grown fruits and vegetables on a regular basis. This is a good way to rotate new vegetables into your menu. Choose a new recipe from a healthy cooking magazine or Internet site each week.
2. Learn Something New
The best workout is the one you haven’t done yet, as your body quickly adapts to the same old walking or cardio routine. Weight loss can be expedited by new and challenging exercise routines. Exercise classes are a great way to break out of your comfort zone. These classes can be anything from yoga to spinning to a conditioning boot camp at your local gym. Take a martial arts or self-defense class. Pole-dancing classes are becoming more popular and are a fun way to work up a sweat. Try Zumba or a belly dancing class.
3. Make New Friends
Support from like-minded individuals can make a difference in weight loss and maintenance. Your friends and family might not always understand your commitment to your new lifestyle. This is a good time to reach out for support from new sources as needed. Find a walking or running group in your community. Consider joining Weight Watchers or Overeaters Anonymous if you need extra support. Online communities, such as the forum here at 3 Fat Chicks, offer support and camaraderie.
4. Reward Yourself
Celebrate each weight loss and maintenance milestone in a way that is meaningful to you. Remember that you cannot directly control the scale, so try to plan rewards around accomplishments you do directly control. Place a sticker on your calendar for each day you ate and exercised on plan. After a month on plan, treat yourself to a massage, lingerie, new shoes or lipstick in a fun color.
5. Support a Good Cause
Share the joy of your new lifestyle with others. Donate $1 for every pound you lose to a local food bank. Sign up for a walk-a-thon to support cancer or diabetes research. Join a marathon preparation team and raise money for a good cause.
6. Set New Goals
As you become more comfortable with your new lifestyle, you may find that your goals move beyond losing a certain number of pounds or fitting into a certain size. For many people, weight loss is about making their health and well-being a priority. Think about the other dreams you have had. Hike the Appalachian Trail. Swim in the Pacific. Watch the sun rise and set on the longest and shortest days of the year. Find ways to celebrate all that you have accomplished.