Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Weight Loss Motivation

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Weight Loss Motivation

Losing weight is not that difficult. I’m sure everyone at some point in there life has lost weight whether it was intentional or not. The problem, however, is keeping it off permanently or at least for a long period of time. One major reason for this is that people choose the wrong weight loss methods (fad dieting, diet pills, weight loss products, etc). Another reason is people lose the motivation required to maintain weight loss.

First of all, you have to want to lose weight badly enough. Secondly, you must participate in a good weight loss program that includes a well balanced diet and adequate physical activity. And finally, you need to have the right motivation that is required to take you to your goal. The other thing is you must want to lose weight for yourself - not for anyone else - in order to be more successful.

Most people that have trouble with motivation often forget why they are trying to lose weight in the first place. It may be a good idea to make a list of various personal benefits associated with weight loss, which will help you stay motivated and focused.

Here are some examples of weight loss benefits that may appeal to you:

- Look better in tight jeans
- Breath easier – instead of getting out of breath quickly
- Accomplish physical chores/activities with ease
- Feel more confident
- Enjoy shopping for clothes
- Look forward to holidays
- Have no fear of wearing a bathing suit in public
- Feel sexier and more attractive
- Feel better about yourself

Weight Loss Support

Getting involved with a good support network will help you stay motivated. You can do that within the Myspace community for example. In Myspace, you can search for like-minded individuals who want to lose weight and ask them to be your friends. You can get to know them better and share your needs, goals, difficulties and frustrations. The advantage here is that you’ll have no trouble finding someone who’s had difficult times with weight loss, has overcome the obstacles and found success. This factor alone may be all you need to help you stay motivated and remain focused on your own weight loss plan.

At the same time you can also request support from family and friends. You could encourage them to join you in choosing healthier foods. Finding a friend that you can exercise with would be very helpful as well. As exercise partners, you can feed of each other – help maintain inspiration and motivation, while improving your physical condition.

Once the extra pounds start coming off, you’ll start to get noticed and people will begin complimenting you on your new and improved
appearance. This will also help keep you motivated to stay on track and to maintain weight loss.

So as long as you have a burning desire to lose weight and you surround yourself with a good support system to help you stay motivated through trying times, you will have an excellent chance to achieve weight loss maintenance.

Scientific Research on Weight Loss Motivation

A recent study I found interesting suggested women with diabetes may lose more weight not only by diet and exercise but by discussing why they need to make changes.

The study published in Diabetes Care (journal) reviewed the effects of a technique called “motivational interviewing”. This involves a series of questions put forth by councilors intended to help subjects overcome obstacles that arise when making changes. In this case, the changes involved diet and exercise improvements.

There were 217 women in the study who also had type-2 diabetes. They were split in to 2 groups. After an 18 month period, the women who met with a councilor for motivation interviews lost twice as much weight as those who did not.

The researchers said that motivational interviewing encouraged subjects to come up with their own arguments and reasons for making changes. Councilors also helped clients identify the obstacles that were responsible for their inability to change. They did this by posing open-ended questions and by providing answers without being judgmental.

The findings of this study may also hold true for non diabetics as well. Researchers are planning to hold similar experiments in this area in the near future.

Diabetes Care. 2007;30:1081-1087.

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