You Get A Star!Credit: morguefile.com
Okay, so you're eating healthier and beginning to exercise, but what happens when you're tempted to return to those old bad habits? How do you keep up the motivation that got you started in the first place?
In this final installment of our three-part series on weight loss and menopause, we will explore ways to keep your motivation level up while trying to get your weight down.
There are several things that you can do; here are just a few helpful suggestions:
Track your Progress
Keep a weekly weight loss chart and mark your ups and downs. You must be honest for this to work. Make the chart uniquely yours by decorating it with pictures, stickers, or other items. Include goal pictures, they can be either old pictures of you or pictures from a magazine. Use colored markers to write inspirational or favorite sayings. Also, write the names of the people who are important in your life, the people you want to be around for in the future. Put the chart in an area where you'll see it daily.
Get Moving with Wii
Another great tool is the Wii Fit. If you don't have a Nintendo Wii system, I highly recommend it! Create an avatar to look like you or whomever you want and then track your progress. You can track it daily, weekly or even monthly, it's up to you. I would suggest weekly. In addition, you can do many fun exercises using the Wii fit. No trip to the gym necessary, just turn on your TV and start having fun!
Put Your Favorite Music On and Dance
When boredom is present, or you're tempted to eat when you're not hungry, put your favorite music on and get moving! Dance, dance, dance! Dancing will help curb your appetite and release endorphins to make you feel happy. Get your family into it and dance to some favorite tunes. Also, go out to dance with your significant other, but stay away from those high caloric alcohol and non-alcohol drinks, choose water instead. It will save your waistline and your pocketbook!
Start keeping a food journal and log-in everything you eat. A journal helps when you are tempted to cheat because you don't want to write those bad foods in your journal. After a couple of weeks, go back and study your journal. When are you most likely to overeat? Are you getting all your daily requirements from each food group? How many calories are you consuming in a day? Are you averaging 4 to 5 meals (snacks included) a day?
In addition, if you like journaling, keep a second journal and write down your feelings. When are you most happy or sad? When are you the hungriest? List your goals and when you achieve them, stick a gold star on that page!
Don't Deprive Yourself
A lifestyle change is not a diet. Try to find lower calorie versions of the foods that you enjoy. If you have a craving for something, give yourself one day to eat whatever you want. Make sure to get some type of exercise on that day and don't overeat, eat only enough to satisfy your hunger. Most importantly, return to your healthy living the next morning!
Don't' beat yourself up if you make a mistake or fall off the wagon. Just pick yourself up and start again, it's never too late!
Live a Healthy Lifestyle Now
Some people have to eat well and exercise because of health issues. If you currently don't have any issues with your health, don't let it get to that point. Stay pro-active and live a healthy lifestyle before you end up in the hospital.
Studies show weight loss will be more difficult during menopause. Begin living a healthy lifestyle now and build up those good habits for later. Give yourself a fighting chance when it comes to weight loss and menopause!
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