It’s easier to get started losing weight if you have a plan. Use project management tactics to figure out how to tackle losing weight for good.
Project managers tackle large projects by taking the big goal and breaking it up into smaller pieces. Each small piece that gets completed brings them closer to the finished goal. This helps tremendously to remove the overwhelming feelings that can emerge when a job seems too big.
Get Started Losing Weight
If the idea of getting started losing weight feels overwhelming use these project manager tactics and you’ll be well on your way to losing the weight for good.
Step 1. Define your goal
Identify why you want to accomplish this and then set a clear goal. Make smart goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound. I want to lose 40 pounds in six months is a smart goal.
It’s helpful to write this down somewhere where you can reference it. You may need it later when you hit bumps in the road and wonder why you started this journey.
Step 2. Identify the milestones
When you want to get started losing weight two particular milestones are very effective. The first is learning how to eat right within the limits of what your body needs and the second is learning new ways to move.
When it comes to eating it’s been proven that whole foods and getting plenty of whole fruits and vegetables are helpful with weight loss. You will also want to learn about the calorie limit you need to lose weight. Some of these guidelines are helpful when it comes to choosing your foods.
- Eat foods as close to the way they grew in nature as possible (for example eat a whole apple instead of applesauce)
- If you can’t recognize what this was in nature eat as little of it as possible
- Eat mostly plants
- Use a smaller plate
- At every meal try to have plants (mostly veggies), proteins and good fats (the ones nature made, not man-made ones)
- When it comes to portions sizes make half your plate fruits a veggies, protein the size of your fist and fats about a tablespoon.
- Deprivation usually backfires so try not to be too restrictive. You can have three bites of anything
When your want to get started losing weight it’s important to add exercise to your routine. Exercise alone isn’t very effective for dropping pounds but burning extra calories can supplement good nutrition to help boost how much weight you can lose over a period of time.
The other benefit of exercise building, or at least maintaining, muscle mass. Your lean muscle mass will protect your metabolism to help ward off post diet gaining the weight back (assuming you keep your nutrition stable).
To set milestones for this stage you can set mini-goals such as learn to run a mile without stopping or doing ten push-ups consecutively. As soon as you accomplish one goal set another one to keep you motivated.
Step 3: You improve what you measure
It is important to measure each milestone to make sure you stay on track. Here’s a few ways to measure your progress.
- Buy a scale. Preferably one that also measures body fat and lean body mass percentages. It’s going to become your best friend and your worst enemy.
- Measure your waist line. Your waist measurement 1 is an indicator of good health. You can often see drops in this measurement when the scale is playing tricks on you so it is good to know this number and use it to track your progress.
- Use a wearable activity tracker. Most people will underestimate the number of calories they eat and overestimate the amount of calories they burn during exercise. While not an exact measurement an activity tracker helps to estimate the number of calories you burn during a given day.
- Keep a food diary. Download My Fitness Pal to your smart phone and start tracking. Go ahead. Do it now, I’ll wait…Got it? Start tracking everything you put into your mouth. I mean every single bite. I would bet that if you haven’t done anything like this before that you have no idea how many calories you are eating in a day. Do this for a week before you change anything.
- Compare how many calories you eat per day against how many calories you burn per day. If you are eating more calories than your body burns you are gaining weight. If you are eating fewer calories than your body burns you are losing weight. That is the simple truth to weight loss.
Step 4. Celebrate
Celebrate every single win. It doesn’t matter how small. Celebrate your success. You are worth it!