Before you make any big life-changing decision, you will likely assess yourself and the situation. This means that you evaluate your abilities, your desires, and what’s best for you. This should also apply before you begin a weight loss program.
Start by doing a little in-depth research on yourself. Try jotting down information about your activities, goals, and interests. Use this information to formulate a realistic diet and exercise routine.
Conducting this type of self-evaluation can be difficult, even painful. But asking your self a few questions and being honest about the answers can be beneficial for your long-term health. You should do this before you begin a diet and weight loss regimen, in order to guarantee your success.
According to the National Institutes of Health, obesity is the second leading cause of preventable death in the United States. If you are not honest with yourself, and work to find a feasible health and nutrition program, you will suffer the effects for a lifetime.
Because so many diets expect you to follow cookie-cutter methodology, you might follow them for a while, but will quickly grow bored. That is why having a personalized diet and exercise plan is so important. By finding what works for you, you will have an easier time sticking to it.
In your self-assessment, determine how you are doing physically and nutritionally. Grade yourself honestly. Establish how long you have been overweight and think about your crash dieting patterns. Also, determine if you tend to regain weight once you’ve lost it. After listing those things, determine what you want your realistic weight loss goal to be. A sensible goal is to lose about two pounds per week. Finally, determine how you can reach your goal most effectively. Consult a dietician if you need to.
Don’t forget to consider your family medical history. A doctor or dietician will want this information as well. Consider any family members who are overweight. Is there a family history of heart attack, diabetes, or cancer? Also, learn such information about yourself as your Body Mass Index, your cholesterol level, and your blood pressure. Also, assess you general stress levels.
Think about your current level of physical activity. How much you do physically now will determine the rate at which you can begin exercise for your weight loss goals.
The idea of taking a personal inventory is not to discourage you, but to educate yourself about yourself so that you can approach a new diet and exercise lifestyle safely and realistically.
During the Christmas season, summer and its body-conscious state of mind
are distant memories. Hearty indulgence in the many foods shared at Christmas
therefore doesn’t produce the same feelings of guilt. Nevertheless, its not a
pleasant thought to start the New Year carrying any extra pounds. So why then
eat yourself into a resolution to ‘take off a few extra pounds’ if you can
smartly avoid it?
Whether it’s sharing cookies and candies at work, or having an evening out
at a party or dinner, you can have Christmas food and enjoy it. While you seem
to be eating heartily with a smile, the key is to have a secret strategy of
moderation. It involves sticking to a plan that can be called ‘Eating on a
‘Eating on a Budget’ is not about the cost of what is eaten, but about the
quantity of what is eaten. It is important that a ‘budget’ or eating in
moderation plan is developed because it is almost impossible to avoid exposure
to a lot of cookies, candies and other sweets at Christmas. At work, you may
risk appearing like the Grinch who stole Christmas if your response will always
be something like, ‘Uh..no..bah humbug’ all the time that some Christmas goodies
are offered. It will seem as if you aren’t in the spirit of the holidays
especially since at that time of year everyone is usually in a festive and more
relaxed mood, and the pace at work is usually slower.
A practical way to partake in Christmas goodies, for example, is to
substitute some holiday cookies for say the bagel that you usually have with
breakfast or for a mid-morning snack. And instead of just taking one cookie,
from the platter, which is noticeable and likely will encourage a colleague to
tell you to have more, take three instead. That’s where the plan can come into
play. You can then enjoy the cookies over two or more hours, because nobody will
be watching how you really eat. You can always have a few candies, one cookie or
a cookie and a half by your desk and that way it will seem as if you are
heartily enjoying the holiday treats.
Another strategy is to bring – bake or buy – low calorie Christmas cookies
and candies to work to counteract others that are being offered. Since eating
healthy is highly encouraged, health-conscious cookies will not be looked down
upon so long as they taste great. A box of sugar-free Christmas chocolate
candies for example will look just as delightful as regular chocolate candies.
It’s interesting to note that in a poll sponsored by the National Confectioners
Association in 2004, chocolate was the favorite food gift that Americans said
they preferred to receive for the holidays. The lowly and much maligned fruit
cake was last on the list. The second favorite holiday food gift was a fruit
basket and a plate of cookies was third on the list, according to the
For an occasion such as a Christmas party or a dinner, including Christmas
Dinner, where larger quantities and selection of food is available, the ‘Eating
on a Budget’ plan means that serving portions and the choice of food selected
should be carefully watched.
At a party where more desserts and sweets are likely to be available, a few of
the selections can be sampled. If the urge to try everything can’t be resisted,
then do so, but then second helpings have to be severely limited. The same is
somewhat true for Christmas Dinners. One big difference is that the food served
during Christmas Dinner will be heavier, so by selecting portions wisely, one
can always say truthfully that the stomach is full.
And indeed, after a sumptuous Holiday Dinner, your body is likely to be full
from food and your soul full of joy from sharing another memorable holiday
tradition with family, friends and loved ones.