When it comes to weight loss, your mindset is your greatest tool and your greatest threat to success.
In the thousand or more meetings I have personally had with people interested in getting fit and losing weight, there has been a consistent theme separating those that follow through with their goals and those that do not.
The difference between success and failure almost every time is mindset.
Mindset is such a crucial part of success in most aspects of life but when it comes to weight loss and keeping weight off there may not be a more important tool in the arsenal than a powerful mind.
There is no “easy” road to weight loss. No matter where you are starting from, you will be required to make changes to your lifestyle that require you to get uncomfortable. If you are not mentally prepared to handle the discomfort, there is a strong chance that eventually being uncomfortable will be the reason you quit or fall off the path. This is extremely common in people that need to lose large amounts of weight.
When you talk large amounts of weight, we are not talking 20# here. Not to say losing 20# is not an incredible accomplishment, but it is to say that losing 20# and keeping it off requires a different level of commitment and lifestyle change compared to losing and keeping off 50# or more. The length of commitment and sacrifice tied to losing 50# or more is vastly different than someone needing to lose 20# or less for numerous reasons that you could probably conclude without any help.
What about those needing to lose even more weight How about people needing to lose 100# or more? You are talking about a staggering amount of weight to lose and if done in a standard healthy way could take YEARS to accomplish. How many people do you know that have the mental fortitude to diet for multiple years? Unfortunately, the rate of success is low. Not due to the willingness to put in the work in the beginning. The drop off rate increases significantly around the 3-month mark in our experience at CFT. This timeline coincides with my own experiences of when the initial motivation has completely dissipated and now you are left with your mind and your will power to carry on with what you started.
There seems to be a wall that is hit around the 90-day mark that coincides with our human desire for quick fixes. Popular television, marketing, and magazines have taught us that weight loss and life changing results can be had in the blink of an eye. You’ve got cleanses, challenges that sell you on 20# in 4-6 weeks, powders that will clear you out, tummy wraps, and the list goes on. Here is the truth of the matter, anything can work if you have the mindset necessary to take what you accomplished in that short time frame and run with it beyond the initial event.
If you chose a short-term fix, you probably were not thinking about the long-term requirements required to keep it off in the first place. Your mindset is built for short term discomfort rather than slow and steady results over a much longer period of time. You need to look no further than bariatric surgery data to support that argument.
Someone close to me had recently considered the surgery and went as far as to book the surgical appt and start physically preparing for it. Along the way they spoke to multiple people who had the surgery expecting to hear many positive reviews and the responses were quite mixed. Many that had the surgery had gained some or all their weight back within 2 years of the surgery date. Others had kept it off but admitted to constantly struggling with the mental part of keeping the weight off. This led me to do my own research utilizing scientific data to see what the success rate really was.
According to a 5-year study published on the National Library of Medicine website, 50% of the patients studied saw a significant weight regain somewhere between 24-36 months post-surgery. The physical part of weight loss is essentially removed with the surgery so all that is left to cause the weight to regain is the mindset around food and physical activity.
According to another study posted online by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP), most patients experience a weight regain of 15-25% of the weight initially lost from surgery. Common reasons for the weight loss were depression, lack of self-efficacy, difficulty in asserting new behaviors, and inactivity. These are all cues that a mental component is missing from the equation. For success to be lasting, you must change your mindset equally, if not more, than your physical habits.
None of this is being written to belittle or downplay the importance of surgical options for those that truly need it. This is simply a call to arms for all to arm your mind with the weapons needed to fight through the inevitable dark times. You need to have the weapons and knowledge to fight through the moments of weakness to fall back into old habits that can last days, weeks, and even months. If you are not mentally prepared for those moments than you stand to fall prey to the statistics mentioned above.
But fear not! There is always a solution to every problem including this one. There are many ways to build your mind whether you do it through building healthy habits slowly and steadily, you can get a mindset coach that helps you dig up past traumas that may be influencing how you think, you can lean on a nutrition and fitness coaching combo, or you could blend a combination of everything above.
There are so many options and tools out there at your disposal to help with your mental approach to weight loss and keeping the weight off. Which ones you choose that best fit your needs are up to you. If you take even one small step towards improving your mental fortitude towards maintaining your physical health then every bit of time, effort, and research that went into writing this was worth it. The future you want and deserve is out there, now it’s time to align your mindset to achieve it.
It starts with booking a complimentary No Sweat Intro Session with our Client Success Manager, Katie, HERE
If you are interested specifically in a Habit Based Nutrition program that can be done from anywhere, you can sign up for a complimentary Nutrition Assessment with Coach Shannon HERE
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