When you think about your health, diet, weight, fitness and overall lifestyle, the most important question you must ask yourself is what are my goals? The most common answers I get to this question are “I want to lose weight” or “I want to be healthy” or some variation of “I’m sick and tired of feeling sick and tired”.
Most people want to be healthy, and for most Americans, losing weight would be a good thing; there are many secondary benefits to their health that would result from this. Losing weight though – while a good thing – is not a destination. The reason why diets don’t work is that while many people consider weight loss to be the goal or destination. I think this is incorrect in the same way that if you are driving to New York to Florida, you need more of a goal than just getting to Florida – the vehicle, or the process of driving there or the highway that gets you there is not the end goal. If you take this approach to weight loss as many people do with “diets” – you have the now what problem; what are you going to do once you get there?
This is true for weight loss as well. It should be part of the process of reaching your goals for a healthier lifestyle – not THE end goal. I think it is good to target certain milestones as a part of your overall plan – just don’t’ make the weight loss the end goal. The unfortunate result of that for most people is that after they have lost the weight – they eventually go back to doing what they did before, eating they way they did before, and end up at their previous weight or even heavier. Sound familiar – either in your own experience or in the life of someone you know?
One of the reasons this happens is that the motivation behind the goal is gone; you’ve lost the weight – you’ve “crossed the finish line” – you’ve reached your goal. In my next post I’ll help you look at another important guideline that can help you combine weight loss goals to make lasting changes in your lifestyle. Use the form below if you have any questions or comments – I’d love to hear from you!