I don’t know what to write about today other than I’m scared. I’m scared to step on the scale. I’m afraid to lose weight. I’m afraid that once I lose weight, I won’t be able to keep it off. I don’t want to be that cliche. I don’t want to be Oprah with her wagon of fat who gained all of the weight back and then some less than a year later. Remember that show?

Here it is (via Buzzfeed): Oprah Winfrey Rolls Out a Wagon of Fat

So I’m delving into research from the National Weight Control Registry, that organization that tracks people who lost 10% or more of their weight and kept it off long-term. It pretty interesting stuff.

To maintain their weight loss, members report:

  • Engaging in high levels of physical activity ( approximately 1 hour per day)
  • Eating a low-calorie, low-fat diet I’m not going to do low fat because I know what works well for me
  • Eating breakfast regularly
  • Self-monitoring weight
  • Maintaining a consistent eating pattern across weekdays and weekends.

Moreover, weight loss maintenance may get easier over time; after individuals have successfully maintained their weight loss for 2-5 y, the chance of longer-term success greatly increases.

Okay, so how do you stay so focused and diligent, that’s what I want to know? Here is some research that seems to work, from a Stanford University “behavior change research psychologist” named B.J. Fogg.

Three key steps (and an optional fourth but important step):

  1. Identify your specific desired outcome. Be specific!
  2. Identify the easy-win behaviors—he calls them “tiny habits”—that will put you on the path to that goal.
  3. Finally, find a trigger—something that you already do as a habit—and graft the new habit onto it..
  4. After carrying through with a tiny step, give yourself a celebratory pat on the back.

Okay, so for my first step in this process (daily journaling), I will do the following:

  1. Gain greater knowledge about what makes me want to eat and drink and not exercise.
  2. Daily journaling.
  3. I drink coffee religiously, every single morning. If I don’t have enough time to write a huge blog post, like today, I at least need to check in with a sentence or two while I drink my cup of coffee in the morning.
  4. I just wrote this post out, so I’m going to pat myself on the back. Great job, self!

I’m hoping this sticks! All I need is 30 days, right?!


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