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New Year’s resolution ready: 7 tips to stick to your weight loss goal

New Year’s resolution ready: 7 tips to stick to your weight loss goal

Like many people, you might have made a New Year’s resolution to lose weight in years past, only to see your resolve fizzle a few weeks or months into the effort. Now, you want to start enjoying life to the fullest as a healthier (and slimmer) version of yourself. How can you stay on track to achieve your renewed weight loss resolution? Follow these seven tips for help and inspiration on your journey.

1. Know the fundamental formula for achieving your New Year’s resolution.

More physical activity + fewer calories = weight loss. That’s the basic method for losing weight—and the golden rule of weight loss. Forget fad diets. The most effective way to lose weight is to burn more calories by increasing exercise and consuming fewer calories overall. In other words, you need to (gradually) adopt a healthy lifestyle.

That’s easier said than done, but you can do it. It takes commitment, patience, motivation and a willingness to keep moving forward when setbacks occur.

2. Make your New Year’s resolution for the right reasons.

Why do you want to lose weight? Your motivation can have a major effect on your success.

According to a 2020 study, people who make New Year’s resolutions based on something positive they’d like to achieve are more successful at sticking to their resolutions. For example, you may resolve to lose weight because you want to improve your overall health or enjoy more activities with your children. That type of motivation may lead to more success than wanting to lose weight to avoid judgment (real or perceived) from other people.

3. Aim big but act small.

Making an ambitious, long-term New Year’s resolution, such as losing 40 pounds in a year, can serve as excellent fuel for action. You may be more likely to achieve it by setting short-term, stepping-stone goals.

Take your eating habits, for example. You’ll need to follow a healthy eating pattern to lose weight, but changing what and how you eat takes time. Set small goals you can stick with until they become habits.

Try setting a realistic diet resolution, which doesn’t mean following a trendy diet plan. For example, if you pick up fast food for dinner four or five nights per week, try eliminating one fast-food dinner each week until you’ve phased the habit out. Over time, achieving many small goals will help you stick to your weight loss resolution.

4. Enlist others’ help to stick with your New Year’s resolution.

Losing weight takes support. This can come from a variety of sources.

Your friends or family members can play a key role in sticking to your resolution. Invite your family to eat healthy and take walks after dinner. Sign up for a class at the local gym with a friend, which will help keep you accountable.

Need additional support? Turn to your primary care provider or an accredited weight loss program.

5. Document your good-for-you deeds.

Want to know how you’re doing with your New Year’s resolution? Keep a journal to track your progress. Document your eating habits, exercise exploits and the pounds you’ve dropped. When you feel dismayed, consult your journal to see how far you’ve come—and remind yourself that you can achieve your goals.

6. Remember that setbacks are no cause to stop trying.

You’re bound to experience setbacks with your New Year’s resolution. You may gain a pound after losing five or go three days without exercising because you couldn’t muster the energy. That’s OK. Don’t be too hard on yourself, which is counterproductive.

Setbacks aren’t failures—they’re bumps in the road. Use them as an opportunity to recommit to your resolution and keep moving forward.

7. Celebrate the successes on your New Year’s resolution journey.

Achieving your ultimate goal isn’t the only cause for celebration. Take advantage of opportunities to salute yourself along the way.

Every time you lose a pound, set a new personal best on a run or reach another milestone, reward yourself for the achievement with a favorite snack or small gift. Those moments make sticking to your New Year’s resolution worthwhile.

Struggling to lose weight on your own? We can help. Learn about our wide range of weight loss services.