Last time I mentioned that the HOW to lose weight can be difficult. The 'how' as in what method to use and where to start. So many people look at weight loss as this huge mystery and confusing blur of marketing. Which it is on the surface. There's also the idea that weight loss can be fixed quickly with X diet plan and you'll look and feel amazing afterwards! You'll lose 10 lbs in two weeks and everyone will love you and you'll be gifted with puppies and unicorns! The problem is, there is no quick fix for weight loss. The reason is that real weight loss that stays off requires a serious adjustment to your eating habits. Not a temporary reduction in carbs or protein or whatever is consider 'unclean' foods this month. Sure, following diet plans can make you lose weight, but it won't stay off. You have to be willing to take a good look at your eating habits, identify and change the ones that are harmful to you, and stick with it. That's what diet plans DON'T teach you how to do.
But what is physically necessary to lose weight?
As I said last time, the answer is actually pretty simple: To lose weight, you have to consume less calories than you burn. That's it. That's all there is to it. This is a concept that a lot of people do have trouble with. Losing weight is a long process and so many people believe that it involves a lot of sacrifice and major changes. But it doesn't have to.
It can't be that simple!! All the diet plans give you these lists of foods and things to do and not do!
Yes, Imaginary Commenter, they do. That's how they make money. But if you break down ANY diet plan on the market, the ones that aren't pill scams that is, the underlying concept is they're telling you what to eat so that the calories you consume are less than the calories that you burn. The work is already done for you if you follow the plan. The problem is, by following a plan without learning how it's made means that when you lose the weight and stop the diet, you go right back to eating as you were before. You know, your eating habits that caused you to gain weight in the first place. So is it any surprise that so many people yo-yo diet?
What you need to be doing is changing your establish eating habits. It doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing process, either. If the amount of calories you have to cut is intimidating, and it can be, it's perfectly fine to start with one or two things. It's ok to start slow and build. If you build a house, you have to build a foundation, yeah? To build (or rebuild) better eating habits, you also have to build a foundation. Start with one or two changes, give yourself a week or two to get used to them, and then make other changes. It may take you a couple of months to get down to what your calorie goal should be, and that's ok. By building slowly, you're giving yourself time to adjust to lower amounts of food, as well as learning what things you can swap out to make your goals. Remember, building a habit is hard. It takes something like 3 months of conscious effort to make it automatic. REBUILDING a habit is much harder! But since the end result is you being the weight you want to be and knowing how to stay there, I personally think it's worth it.