No one undergoes bariatric surgery with the hopes of losing weight for a little while and gaining it back after a few months. The goal of weight loss surgery is to permanently change the way you look and feel. But keeping the weight off is often the most difficult part of weight loss. What do you need to do to experience weight loss that lasts?
4 Ingredients for Weight Loss that Lasts
- Structure. Building structure, whether it’s setting a specific time to work out or writing daily meal plans, helps you create new routines. Routines and habits help you reduce the amount of times you need to make the decision to stick with your lifestyle changes, which makes you less likely to get off track. You’re not making a new decision to workout every day—you’re going to the gym at 7:00 every morning because it’s part of a routine you created a long time ago.
- Motivation. You may find that you have a lot of motivation when you begin a weight loss plan, but that your motivation decreases as time goes on. Create a plan for how you’ll keep yourself motivated. Set up milestones and rewards at different points along your journey and create a routine of monitoring and adjusting your motivation as needed.
- Accountability. Once you’ve decided what you need to do and why you want to do it, how will you ensure that you actually follow through? Decide who or what you’ll be accountable to. You might share your goals with your friends or family members, enlist the support of a diet buddy, or hire a personal trainer or coach to help keep you accountable.
- Support. You will have setbacks. You’ll have days when you don’t feel like staying on track. You’ll also have moments that you want to celebrate. A good support system can help you get through the rough patches and share in your accomplishments. You might join a support group, talk to a number of close friends, or join an online weight loss group to get support.
Build these four ingredients into your weight loss plan and you’re much more likely to enjoy weight loss that lasts.