Setting weight loss goals is an important part of any diet plan. However, focusing on your final weight loss goal can sometimes be discouraging when you have a lot of weight to lose. Instead, try setting short term goals that won’t seem so overwhelming.
The shortest weight loss goals you should set are weekly goals. If you set your goals any shorter than that you could end up being discouraged by normal daily weight fluctuations. It’s important to be realistic with your short term weight loss goals. A drop of 1-2 pounds per week is a healthy and realistic goal. Don’t be surprised if, in the beginning, you easily surpass your weekly goal. Weight loss usually tapers off over time. Keeping your goals realistic helps you to be prepared for plateaus. Remember to weigh yourself at the same time of day for the most accurate count.
Monthly goals are far enough apart to see some real encouraging results, but not so far as to seem unattainable. A goal of 5-8 pounds per month is a good goal to shoot for. Remember, you’re not just trying to loose weight; you also want to keep it off. Slow and steady always wins the race.
3 Month Goals
If you have been on track with your shorter weight loss goals, by now you may be 15-24 lbs lighter! It’s time for you to reward yourself. Consider treating yourself to a massage or a new hairstyle. You could probably use some new clothing by now since the weight has been coming off, so treat yourself to a mini shopping spree. Shopping for a beautiful, nicely fitting outfit can be the incentive you need to keep on track. However you decide to reward yourself, know that you deserve it.
6 Months and Beyond
Some of you may have reached your ideal weight by now. If so, the focus turns more towards keeping the weight off. Keeping active is important for maintaining weight loss. Now is the time to consider changing up your exercise routine. Enroll in that dance class you’ve always wanted to try. If you’ve been walking on a track, try hiking some hills instead. Just do whatever it takes to keep from getting bored. This goes for your diet too. Experiment with some new, healthy recipes. Remember, maintaining your weight is a life long process.
Alternatives to Weighing in
Sometimes the scale is not the best way to keep track of your progress. If you’ve been working out, you could be building muscle as you’re loosing fat. This might not be readily apparent by weighing yourself. Some people find that they actually gain a few pounds in the beginning. If you are frustrated by your scale, try using a tape measure instead. Use it to measure around your upper arms, thighs, chest, waist and hips. Keep track of the numbers. This will give you a good idea of how your body is being transformed.
Good luck and happy goal setting!