With New Years just here, making resolutions is way too common. I like resolutions, but we tend to stick to them only for a few days, before old habits take over again. Seldom do we make a real commitment to achieve what we made our mind up for. To lose weight in 6 weeks, or a shorter period or even as a long term goal is one of the resolutions people have often made, including myself. However, these dreams were too soon shattered because we went back to eating the food we shouldn’t and the quantities that were way too much.
Even though we make so many resolutions and not nearly 20% of them are ever fulfilled, there are the moments in life when you do make up your mind firmly about a specific thing or change that you want to work on, because things are getting in your way and you are fed up. And then you make a commitment, you set a new goal, and you do not worry how much it will take, you are willing to pay the cost.
This is exactly what I did a couple of months ago. I made a commitment to lose my excess weight and keep it off. And today, I recommit to this long-term goal to lose weight. And I will go step by step and stick to it over the next 6 weeks.
A long-term goal like losing a good number of pounds is not easy and you have to be realistic. Taking it one step at a time is crucial because the vision of your goal gets blurry and you get exhausted by working on it so hard every single day.
There is no use in trying to lose 100 pounds on one commitment. You have to decide to go one step at a time. Every 5 pounds are an achievement and make me go forward. So, I want to lose 20 pounds in 6 weeks. And I will work toward it.
With the global obesity pandemic, investigators have found overweight people start 4 to 5 times every year to lose weight; it seems though that people do not notice the high number of attempts and how little they achieve. They lose a few pounds and go back quickly or gain even more, because their is certainly a mystery around losing weight successfully and keep it up. In effect, studies show that less than 1% of these people lose weight and keep it off for a lifetime.
That is an unbelievably small number, given then millions of people that are dieting every year. When I set my mind to losing weight, I decided that I would not be one of those people this time. I have done the same for the past 15 years, but this time it is different. There is a determination in me that is somehow not letting me down this time and has helped me greatly over the past months. Indeed, this is the first time in my life that I keep weight off for longer than 3 months. That’s an achievement and way to go. I can do it and so can you!
How Do I Stick To My Goals?
If you’ve followed my blog so far, you will know that I weighed 287 pounds (roughly 100 pounds overweight) at the end of September 2017 and I made a commitment to change my eating habits. As of December 2017, I was down around 27 pounds, which means I still have roughly 70 pounds to shed before I am in my right sized body.
It sounds like a lot and impossible at times, but if I look to the other side, I find that losing 27 pounds in just 3 months is great. Even though I had wanted to lose 35 pounds, I am very happy that I made it through the holiday season without binge eating and also without gaining weight.
You might ask how I survived with all the food that was served during the Christmas holidays. Let me restate what I said before, if you are tired of one thing, you get to the point where you do not care about the good food served on Christmas, but you just look on how to achieve your goals. Keeping my goal in mind helped me stay true to my diet.
I am aware that I would have lost more weight if I would not have cheated at all. However, it is not realistic to go to family gatherings and not eat what they serve. Here is my recipe to success:
I tried to stick to my diet (read about my meal plan here) whenever I was home. For instance, during the day, I would eat my portions of veggies and fruits, proteins and good fats, but I had a minimum intake of sugar and flour. And when there were parties, I would eat as I would have before my diet, but of course, trying to avoid sweets and flour as much as possible. And believe me there were many parties, and somehow I managed to go through the season without losing my focus and determination.
Certainly, there were days when I craved sugar and flour again, as I had not in the months that I cut 100% on sugar and flour. And then there were the moments when I thought, it is impossible to live without sugar and flour! I struggled on some days to stay focused, but thankfully I did not fall back into the old habit.
Here I am, and I am now back to 100% my diet plan for a few days already and have already lost another 4 pounds, which makes me really happy and ready to commit to a 6-week span of not going off plan.
Are You Ready To Try It?
So, do you want to lose weight in 6 weeks too? If so, read on and follow the steps that I outline here and you will definitely lose extra pounds during this time.
Here is the most important of all steps to lose weight successfully. A few months ago, back in September, I decided that I not only wanted to lose weight but also go for a healthier lifestyle. In the end, it is about feeling healthy and not so much losing weight. I have learned quite a bit about nutrition in the past few years, but I had not come to the point where I wanted to apply my knowledge and be healthier and lose weight.
Mark your calendar today when the 6-week period will be over and do not forget to mark every day when you are successful at eating what you should. See how many X’s we can get over the calendar! There should be 48, but I will be very happy with as many as you can put there.
However, this time around this change is serious. It is not easy, because we live in a world where food is available 24/7 and we make use of it that way. Unfortunately, even with this myriad of food options available, we do not eat the healthy food that we should eat. Too many carbs, proteins, and non-good fats, but too little of vitamin and mineral packed fruits and vegetables.
Eating too many calories throughout the day, when you do not have a very active lifestyle, is just not the right way to lose weight.
What Is The Magical Recipe To Achieve That?
There have been quite a few times in my life in which I have tried to lose weight fast, but did not achieve that. I have learned recently that it all comes down to one thing: Make a change in your lifestyle and your weight will go down accordingly.
There is no magical diet nor can you find wonder working meal plans that will help you keep off weight for your life if you do not change your lifestyle. And that is what I ultimately want: Get rid of my excess weight and not regain it after a few months; but be healthy, happy, thin and free.
No doubt, there are great programs to help you lose weight, and there are excellent meal plans to help you with your weight loss goals. The makers of these programs have created wonderful drops, medications, prepared foods, recipes, and whatsoever to help you lose weight. That is awesome. But I have one problem with these plans, if I buy their stuff until I lose my weight, what will happen after that? This endless cycle of gaining and losing weight will continue forever.
Every time I am offered a new diet, I ask myself: Will I stick to that plan forever? Can I go with it for the rest of my life? Can I eat the way they want me to eat for the rest of my days? The answer is most likely a no! Therefore, this is not a long-term solution.
After you’ve lost your weight successfully with these diets, there is a family that will invite you over, friends that will take you out for dinner, you will be traveling, etc. And what is going to happen? You will think that you now have the right to eat the food that you are being offered and off we are off to this endless cycle again.
My recommendation for you is, if you are determined to lose weight, you should be determined first to change your lifestyle and eating habits. After that, go ahead and buy one of your favorite diets (if that is an absolute need), but beware: Think of the diet plan as a help, but NEVER as the solution to your problem.
You need to do things differently than you have done them until now. There is a need to challenge yourself to be OK eat other foods, to eat different amounts, to incorporate exercise (find out if that is for you). And most important of all, you need to get rid of things in your house that is always appealing to your appetite.
That sounds impossible, but there is a way and I challenge you to do just that in the next 6 weeks. Make up a new thinking about weight loss and health and tell me about it. I want to hear about your success after that. And I will update this post in the meantime as well as to how I am doing.
What Exactly Am I Doing?
Here are a few things that I am doing in order to lose a great 20 pounds in the next 6 weeks.
1) Food Intake
I got rid of most sugar and flour in my home! You ask, can that be? What do I eat then? It is very difficult to get rid of this to a 100%, but to a 95%, I think it works. My wife and I have decided to just not buy anything that has that.
Honestly, if you go to the convenience stores in gas stations, sometimes the only thing you find that does not have it, is water, plain water. And I have come to the conclusion, even if I would just find water in the convenience store, I will buy only water.
You need to change some things completely and do things differently than you have done them until now, as I stated before if you want to achieve your goals. My lifestyle change includes not eating sugar and flour. Period. That is just not my food. (You can read more about food addiction here). I want my hunger and satiety hormones (What is that? Click here and read #1) to work properly and tell me when I am full and when not. If you plan to try this, wait at least 4 weeks until your leptin (satiety hormone) kicks in and works properly.
Another thing that is important for me to lose weight successfully is a high intake of fruits and vegetables. Currently, I try to eat as much of that raw, although I do some cooked, some steamed, etc. Fruits and vegetables are low in calories, packed full of healthy stuff, and besides, they taste good.
And then there are the good fats that have to be in your diet, for instance, avocados, chia seeds, almonds, salmon, nuts, and other sources. If you are not a salad person, add a small amount of your favorite good fats and your salad will taste better.
We cannot forget grains. Eat a small number of grains every day, I prefer oats in the morning, but you can go for quinoa and rice, and others.
And lastly, proteins. Incorporate different proteins into your diet, which will give you energy, and they are usually the tasty stuff (if you are not a vegetable person.
I did not give you any amounts on purpose. It all depends on your body, gender, and age. And very important, also your daily activities play a role in it. However, I will give you a few quick numbers and proportions:
In my early 30s, male, 6’5″, I eat around 20 oz of vegetables, 12 oz of fruit, 18 oz of protein, 2 oz of grains, and 4 oz of fats per day. That gives you a little idea of how your diet meal plan could look like. You can add a little if you feel the need to, but for this amount has been excellent. I have not gone hungry once, so I have stayed with these numbers.
Be creative, but do not over focus on foods, because it can be stressful if you plan the whole day around what you will eat.
2) Plan My Food Ahead.
A great recommendation that I once got, is to write down what you will eat a day before you plan to eat it. Willpower is something you have to deal with in great measure when losing weight. And you run into problems when you have no specific daily plan. Look through your refrigerator, cabinets, pantry after supper and make a list of what you will eat. Get yourself a planner like this one. A cheap option, but definitely helps you stay on track and works wonders.
3) Drink Lots Of Water
Drinking lots of water throughout the day to help lose weight is nothing new. Get yourself a large bottle of water (here is my pick), fill it up 2-3 times a day and drink a small sip often. If you drink a good amount of water during the day, your weight loss process is definitely going to speed up, which in turn could give you even better results. Toxins are flushed away and it keeps your body energized.
I use to carry a water bottle around the whole day! That is actually one of my priorities. And if I take it along, it helps me to remember that I am doing this for my health, but it also helps me to not drink other sweet drinks during the day.
I also recommend strongly that you drink water at all your meals. Yep, it takes time to get used to that, but once you have made that habit, you will not want to change that. Believe me on that. It happened to me. Against all the odds, I drink only water for meals, and have done that for a few years already, when I once believed that it was impossible.
4) Stay Away from Juices and Other Drinks.
To your possibility, avoid juices and other drinks as much as possible. Juices are loaded with sugar, and if you we take sugar from the plan, then juices must go too. There are too many calories in juices and without realizing your calorie intake is full for the day and you will not lose weight.
Juices are delicious and even healthy, especially when you make them yourself. But if you make orange juice, you need 8 oranges to fill one cup of orange juice. I stated that I ate around 12 oz of fruit per day, that is around 2-3 oranges. So, calories go up to quickly.
And store bought juices, check their ingredients: Sugar is always on top! Juices is a definite no when trying to lose weight.
5) Avoid Dairy Products.
I like to stay away from dairy products, even if they are my favorite protein source. They are not the best option if you want to lose weight. If you eat then, do it preferably in the morning (oats with milk or fruit with sugar-free yogurt). During the month of November 2017 I made an experiment with it. I ate more dairy than usually and my weight did not want to go down as well as it did before. So dairy products should be eaten in small amounts.
Sleep is known to be a wonderful aid in weight loss. If you get a good night’s sleep, you are energized next morning, you have more willpower and your body is not as stressed and can mange weight loss better.
Again, back in December 2018, I slept very little due to a heavy workload, and even though I ate the same amount of food that I did before, I was struggling to lose weight as quickly. And willpower is depleted and you are prone to eat more than you should and also to eat things that you did not put onto your meal planner. So try to get a good rest as often as possible to lose weight.
In my case, with 2 babies in my house (a 3-year old and a 6 month old) it doesn’t seem to work, but I at least go to sleep when they are sleeping, so I get enough rest.
And there you have it! My 6 ways to lose 20 pounds in the next 6 weeks. I cannot wait for the results. Please stay tuned to find out how it worked and what happened.
Please leave a comment below for questions, ideas, or a simple word of encouragement. You know what? I would be happy if you would join me. Make a resolution and make this the time to change your lifestyle, be healthy and lose weight on top of all that.
To yours and my success,