Why Waiting Until the New Year Might Not Be the Best Approach to Weight Loss

Tyler Coia

January 1 of any year is notorious for motivating people across the globe to start afresh the new year, with many committing to resolutions.

Amongst these resolutions, weight loss is one of the most popular ones. Sign-ups and gym attendance are at an all-time high with people motivated to make it the year of weight loss.

However, waiting until the new year may not be the best strategy to lose weight. Tyler J. Coia delves into reasons why weight loss resolutions in the new year may not be the best idea, and how to set more realistic goals that work.

Set Better, More Attainable Goals

Below are a few common reasons why waiting until the new year may not be the best method to losing weight:

January 1st Momentum

January 1st is an easy date to look forward to starting a goal. The start of a new year means a new chapter and many people buy into the momentum of other people’s resolutions.

For weight loss, that momentum needs to be persistent. Unfortunately, after the initial month of January, people tend to lose that fuel, with only an average of 9% of people who made resolutions achieving them.

Those who go from no exercise to daily exercise may find that they lose that momentum easily because it’s difficult to keep the lifestyle of the daily habit. Similarly, people who go cold turkey to remove unhealthy food and enroll in strict diets may also find themselves in similar positions to lose momentum as well.

Unrealistic Expectations

Weight loss can be a drastic change for someone. People who want to lose weight need to set goals that are attainable and set milestones for them.

However, for New Year’s resolutions, people tend to set lofty goals such as losing 60 pounds by the end of the year or wanting to fit into old clothes. These goals are arbitrary without milestones to celebrate each achievement, which can lead to lost momentum.

All-Or-Nothing Mentality

When people set goals that aren’t achievable, they limit themselves to that one goal, which can cause an all-or-nothing mentality. If they don’t hit that goal, they lose hope that they can achieve the goal and can end up quitting entirely.

For example, if a person sets their goal to attend the gym every day but ends up missing a day, he/she may think they failed and decide to quit completely. This mentality doesn’t recognize the work or progress that has already been made and is largely unhelpful in achieving goals.

Supporting Ways to Help Achieve Weight Loss Goals

Tyler Coia

Below are a few strategies that make weight loss an achievable goal.

Being Intentional

Being intentional about a weight loss goal is key to seeing results. By being intentional, people motivate themselves to drive change instead of waiting for a day like New Year’s Day to roll around to start making that change.

Here, being intentional can mean buying gym clothes, setting up a gym schedule, or choosing a diet plan that they can stick to for the duration of their weight loss journey.

Set Up Key Milestones to Continue the Momentum

For weight loss, people should set up key milestones to help continue the momentum of their progress. In the example of losing 60 pounds by the end of a year, a person can break this up into smaller goals of 5 pounds per month. This goal is a lot more attainable than previously and can be measured every month, rather than yearly. By checking in and achieving small goals, individuals are usually more motivated to achieve their overall goal.

Additionally, by setting small milestones, people can break from the all-or-nothing mentality. Setting goals for weight loss requires great flexibility as it is a difficult goal to achieve so instead of fixating on a single number, people can make key milestones like losing five pounds as a celebratory occasion as well.

In Conclusion

Weight loss is a difficult goal to achieve, but by being intentional with goals and setting up smaller milestones, anybody can achieve their weight loss goals.

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