Maintaining Weight Requires a Balancing Act

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Question: How do I change from a weight loss plan or routine to one that will help me maintain my weight without gaining it back?
Answer: Losing weight – once you have all of the pieces in place, 8 glasses of water a day, cardio 4 to 6 times a week, weight training 2 times a week and following an 80/20 food plan, becomes as easy as just following the plan. You develop a routine that you know is producing results but at some point you will need to stop losing weight and maintain the weight which was your goal. Immediately after you reach your ultimate goal you get a rush and feeling of satisfaction and closure. Then the fear sets in: Will I be able to keep it off? What if I don’t keep it off? I don’t ever want to gain it back. So you sometimes just keep doing what you were doing but the motivation just isn’t as strong and you begin miss workouts or eat something not in the plan and you chastise yourself for it. It’s a difficult point to reach and the transition to balance keeping the weight off and easing up in your routine without gaining it back may not be easy. Here are some tips to help you with that.

  • Be aware of the habits that caused you to gain weight and avoid repeating them. Don’t allow work or social obligations to consume your time completely and cause you to skip training. If you need to stay late occasionally, do what you have to do but too often we place our needs on the back burner.
  • Keep on cooking. You stopped eating out every day and began cooking food in advance and in bulk while you lost weight. Continue to prepare food in advance and keep healthy snacks with you. Don’t go into social events that include food when you are hungry.
  • Keep lifting weights. Your weight training built, tightened and toned your muscles. Continue to support your hard earned muscle mass which is your primary calorie burning machine with intense workouts. You can, however, cut back on the frequency of your aerobic conditioning but not the intensity on your training days. Instead of 4 to 6 cardio sessions a week reduce that to 3 or 4.
  • Make the scale your friend by monitoring your weight weekly. Don’t panic if you see it rise a pound or two but set a limit within 5 pounds of your goal weight. As you see the scale climb begin to repeat some of the steps you used to get the weight off. Record your food for a few days which will make you honestly aware of where you are slipping. Add an additional cardio day to your maintenance routine. This will keep your weight in check and within limits.
  • Occasionally enjoy some of the foods you may have omitted from your food selections while you lost weight but if there are foods that you know are trigger foods or things that you can’t enjoy in moderation, engage the discipline you built as you lost weight and stay away from them.

You worked too hard to let yourself slip back in to bad habits.
God bless and keep training,
Daryl

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