The U.S. weight loss market is a billion dollar industry. $66 billion, to be exact, according to Marketdata LLC., a 38-year old market research firm that has tracked the U.S. weight loss market and published in-depth reports about its market segments since 1989.
Marketdata’s Research Director, John LaRosa states, “The number of active dieters is estimated to have fallen 10% since 2015, to 97 million, due to a growing size acceptance movement and dieter fatigue. About 80% try to lose weight by themselves, but many fail and the latest CDC statistics show that we are getting fatter, not thinner.”
Holy WOW! This is a major problem in our country and it’s time to change how we diet, because the old school models aren’t working and never have.
While I am a fan of the body acceptance movement, and Health At Every Size (HAES), what most people don’t understand is they’re both more about social justice rather than health. The movements are about every person being accepted no matter their size, but it still leaves a gap in supporting those who want to lose excess weight and struggle to do so.
So where do we go from here? Is it possible to lose weight and keep it off (and stop feeding hard-earned dollars into the diet industry?)
A more permanent weight loss solution, especially for emotional eaters, is to address the WHY behind your eating before you address the HOW.
The first step in doing this is to create your own eating plan.
When you create and follow a plan you’ve created for yourself, you’ll be surprised at how much you learn about your eating habits.
Creating your own plan for eating and exercise is easier than you think.
Here’s 3 easy steps to make it happen. Just remember, this is a more of a self-awareness journey than a weight loss marathon.
How To Create a Diet & Exercise Routine To Fit Your Unique Lifestyle
Step #1: Plan your meals 24 hrs in advance. Plan ahead and be very realistic with what you’ll eat each day. In the beginning of creating an eating plan for yourself, the most important part is to BE REALISTIC about what you will commit to eating the next day. That means you have to meet yourself where you’re at and don’t jump from A to Z over night.
Where most people fail is they try to change everything about what they eat overnight. It’s difficult to go from eating burgers & fries 3 days a week to eating plant-based meals, 7 days a week. This is a sure-fire prescription for burnout and failure.
What WILL work is making a commitment to eating what you actually know you’ll eat, not what you think you SHOULD eat. So every night before you go to bed, write down what you’ll eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The more realistic you are, especially in the beginning, the more successful you’ll be.
The beauty is that you’ll notice by creating a 24-hour meal plan each night, you’ll instinctively want to eat healthier and you’ll plan for healthier meals.
Step #2 Exercise for enjoyment, not fast results. It’s really important to find a form of exercise that you enjoy doing, because if you enjoy it, you’ll actually do it. But if you’re only exercising to reach a goal, you’re training your brain just for that purpose. Which means, once you reach the goal, you’re done.
Also, keep in mind that your exercise routine doesn’t have to be grueling to achieve results. What’s more important, just like with your 24-hour eating plan, is that you only commit to something that you know you’ll actually do.
So in the beginning, if running or walking a 5k several days a week isn’t something you can 100% commit to, don’t plan for it. But if walking outdoors 5-10 minutes a day , 5 days a week, is a definite “yes”, then make that the plan. Remember, you only get results from the things that you actually do.
Step #3 Stick to your plan. This sounds obvious, right? Yes and no. It’s obvious that anything you stick to will get you results. On the other hand, there’s more to it than that.
What’s more important than achieving the results, is what you learn about yourself along the way. When you commit to your plan, you’re bound to have a few hiccups along the way. It’s within those hiccups that you learn the WHY about your eating and exercise, and from there you can make the necessary changes.
However, if you quit on yourself because you don’t see results right away, all you learn is how to quit. So be realistic, stay committed and tweak things along the way. The more you learn about yourself, your eating & exercise habits and your ability to commit, the more likely you’ll succeed at reaching your weight loss goal and maintaining it over time.
So what’s the moral of the story here? In order to achieve weight loss results that last, create your own diet & exercise plan. You do this by taking it one step at a time, meeting yourself where you are right now. Enjoy the journey as you learn about your unique eating & exercise habits.
Self-awareness is the key to success!
If you need support in creating a unique plan to fit your lifestyle, so you can lose weight, have more energy, and feel strong & confident in your body again, I can help. CLICK HERE for a free mini session with me, I’ve got you covered.