by Ed Yourdon
There are only two proven and effective ways to lose weight and keep it off for good: Proper diet and exercise. Methods that purport other easier methods for shedding those excess pounds are little more than scams, and they can be highly dangerous to your health.
With that said, it’s still an undeniable fact that following a healthy diet plan and keeping up with a regular exercise schedule can be very challenging tasks. Temptations are all around us. Unless you’re that tough and committed to your weight loss regimen (which virtually crosses out most beginners), it’s easy to waver on your program and go back to the simpler ways of doing things and just close your eyes to the fact that you’re “ballooning” again.
Thankfully, there’s a simple way to ensuring that you keep your commitment to keeping fit and staying healthy. How? By creating your own diet and exercise plan.
Technically, a diet and exercise plan is a written schedule of what you will eat and the physical activities you’ll do for a particular span of time. A weekly schedule is preferable since it makes activities practicable and measurable compared with longer schedules that are far less tangible and thus more difficult to follow.
Before creating your diet and exercise plan, you must first have a goal in mind. Even if it’s just a simple “to cut back on sweets” and “to get off the couch,” for that particular week, it’s necessary that you have a target in which to aim for. Thus, using those two simple goals, you can then create a meal plan that includes less of the sugary concoctions than what you were used to. You don’t have to go cold turkey. If you usually had three donuts for breakfast, for example, you can reduce it to one and add 2 bananas in its place. Of course, this presupposes that you’ve already done your homework and know what a healthy diet for those seeking to lose weight is. As for your goal of getting your butt off the couch, a simple exercise plan might be walking around the house for 10-15 minutes. And that’s just for starters. Get creative and think how best you can achieve your goal with your other meals. You can incorporate things that you love doing in your exercise plan as well. You can have a day where you’ll just dance, for example.
The good thing about creating your own diet and exercise plan is that you know how far your body can go in a certain period. There’s also a sense of responsibility you feel for something that you write yourself compared to following a plan that someone else has done for you. For every activity you’ve accomplished in your plan, check it off. At the end of the week, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how much more energy and zest you have compared to when you first started.
You can work with a nutritionist and/or a fitness expert to formulate a diet and exercise plan that best fits you. However, doing it on your own does not only make you accountable to yourself, it can also be quite fun. And if it’s fun, you’re going to want to stick with it.