Wednesday, October 26, 2011

11 Weight Loss Tips for 2011, Part 11: Reward Yourself

This is the final entry in an 11-part series of weight loss tips for 2011. Yesterday, we talked about what to do when you are sick while trying to lose weight. Today, we’re talking about appropriate ways to reward your efforts.

If you have a 100-pound weight loss goal, you may feel like a failure after losing only 5 pounds in a month. That is why it is important to look for small victories in a variety of ways and reward yourself along your weight loss journey.

Even if you have a difficult time creating and maintaining a weight loss plan, at the very least you should give yourself small goals that will lead you to the larger goal. If at the end of the first month you’ve lost 5 pounds and acknowledge that you attained your 5-pound monthly goal, you will not be as likely to be disappointed in the distance left toward your 100-pound total goal.

Don’t forget, also, that it is not just about the scale. If you’re diabetic, give yourself some glucose monitoring goals. If you have hypertension, give yourself some blood pressure reading goals. Give yourself some goals related to fitting into a certain pair of pants or by measuring different parts of your body for comparison.

Once you have established those benchmarks, you should set rewards or celebrations to motivate yourself, but be careful to not celebrate with food.

Though it seems like a cultural obligation to celebrate, everything with food, it really is not appropriate to celebrate weight loss with food. Here are a few other rewards for yourself when you meet a milestone goal:

  • Go to a movie
  • Take the scenic drive home from work
  • Buy a piece of jewelry to mark the occasion
  • Get a massage
  • Buy some clothes that fit now

Use your own likes and interests (and budget) to create a list of non-food rewards that will keep you motivated throughout your journey. Reward yourself every step of the way, and before you know it, you’ll have rewarded yourself all the way to your final weight loss goal.              

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