The primary driver for me beginning a lifestyle revamp was hitting a number on the scale which was the highest in my life. I saw it and I said “no more, time to do something”. So, I stared to build my first “Project LIFE” plan.
(Disclaimer: if you’re reading this blog for weight loss advice, you should consult a doctor before you begin any lifestyle altering plan. I’m sharing what worked for me, which may or may not work for you.)
Here’s what I did:
1. I took a piece of 8 1/2 x 11″ lined paper.
2. On the left hand column, I wrote the date of a week – each Monday (this is when I weigh in) and wrote to the bottom of the page. Conveniently, this should be about 6 months. Then I added headers to the page: “target weight” and “actual weight”.
3. At the bottom of the page I wrote my ultimate target weight drop for the next 6 months. Depending on how much you have to lose this might be the total weight loss you want to make, or halfway to your ultimate goal. In my first 6 months, this took me 2/3 of the way to my ultimate goal and turned out to be 10% of my beginning body weight.
4. Then halfway up the page I wrote down a number that was the midpoint between my current weight and my target weight.
5. Then I noted vacations or other times when I might have a hard time reducing.
6. Next, I wrote a decreasing number target about 0.3 to 1 kilo per week. In the beginning it will go fast and then slow down. Most of my target drops were 0.3 kilos. In the weeks on vacation I had a goal to hold or even allow myself to go up 0.3 kilos. The targets aren’t an exact science, but they give a goal to strive toward.
7. Finally, I added Milestones – intervals at which I would check against my targets and assess if they needed adjustments. If you aren’t hitting your target weight for too many weeks it can be discouraging, so try to make them reasonable.
8. Write in pen. It makes it more of a commitment!
9. I transferred all the info into my daily calendar as a reminder of my goals. I use an old-fashioned monthly calendar that my aunt gave me. It’s a nice way to track things (including exercise) and see where I was and where I am now.
10. Buy a fun scale to weigh in. I found a scale emblazoned with a smiley face scale at my local home store and that made it more fun for me! 🙂
You can think of your weight targets like these spray painted red marks I found on a rocky trail at Crowder Mountain. They marked my way through an otherwise indistinguishable path to my destination. Sometimes over very narrow rock paths and sometimes through easy going patches. I predict this is how the experience will also feel for you. Trust the PLAN!
Next installment: what steps I took to actually hit the weekly target weight.