Monday, August 31, 2009

Weight Loss Diets Simplified - How To Lose 20 Pounds

By Scott Edwards

Food diaries are an excellent self-monitoring method for those who like to be in control of their weight loss. For seven days, stick to your usual pattern of eating. Each day, enter everything that's passed your lips, however small. Then you'll have a good idea of what needs modifying and by how much.

Obviously, if there are several take-aways and other high fat foods, cutting those out would be a start. But if that's not the case, and what you're eating looks OK, then just reduce the amount. Either way, use your food diary as the basis for the changes you wish to make.

Write down an Action Plan for the next week. On a blank page, write down detailed notes to cover the following: With regard to food, note what you can't eat, and what you'll only eat occasionally. Then make a list of food that you can eat freely.

As far as alcohol is concerned, keep it to a minimum. Write down when it's not allowed, and when and how much it is allowed. Cans of soft drinks containing sugar are out. Next comes physical exercise, and whether it's a walk in the park, or visits to the gym - write it down.

Accurately weigh yourself the morning your regime starts. Each week, repeat the process, modifying your plan according to the results you're achieving. Make a note of your weight in your diary once a week.

A plan such as this will allow you to manage your weight loss programme and adjust it to suit yourself. Make comments as you go - keep the diary as a working document. Also enter the exercise you're doing, to make sure this isn't getting left out. A diary is a very simple way to monitor your progress - and a remarkable tool for staying with the program!

Do keep your expectations reasonable though. At first, it seems to be all effort and no reward! Patience and perseverance are everything. Keeping up your motivation is sometimes tough, so try to dwell on the end result and the joy it will bring!

If you do get demoralised with your results, analyse what's been happening. It's possible your programme needs some adjusting. Exercising more regularly can do a lot for your metabolism. Why not take a twenty minute walk every lunch time, and increase the pace each day?

Feel good about every pound you lose. Quantifying the results you achieve makes dieting a great deal easier to maintain long-term. You may not want to splash out on clothes until all the weight has come off. But you could spoil yourself with a pamper session when you reach a mini-goal.

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