Weight Loss Obstacles
If you think chocolate is the temptation most likely to derail you from weight loss, think again. British researchers recently identified 3 top weigh loss / dieting pitfalls, and chocolate did not make the list. Read on for our biggest diet destroyer list.
Alcohol, friends, and keeping late hours were the most potent trio of diet destroyers. That’s according to a group of volunteers who used their cell phones to monitor their cravings for a week. They reported that for every dozen times they were enticed, they gave in on about half of those occasions.
Learn from their experience and use this 3 part guide to help you stay on track with your weight loss plans.
Top 3 Obstacles to Weight Loss
*Diet Busters – Alcohol, Friends, and Late Hours:
Weight Loss and Alcohol:
People often underestimate the calories in alcohol. Even light beers may have more than 100 calories a serving. Sweet concoctions like a Chocolate Martini rack up as much as 550 calories in a single drink!
2. Order “better” drinks.
If you must drink alcohol, fortunately, there are much lighter options. An example of a better choice is something like a Bloody Mary that contains a little more than 100 calories, and half of that is tomato juice, so you get important vitamins.
3. Choose smart snacks.
Drinking alcohol often causes us to overeat the beer match. Have a plan in advance. Be prepared to skip the deep fried cheese sticks and opt for hummus and baby carrots.
4. Slow down.
Pace yourself for long evenings. Limit your consumption to a specific number for the evening, and when you’re done, you’re done.
5. Practice portion control.
The size of a drink can vary dramatically. Keep in mind how large the drink is that you are ordering.
6. Drink more water.
Filling up on water works wonders. You take in fewer calories and reduce the dehydrating effects of cocktail hour. For every alcoholic drink you consume, also drink a full glass of water.
Weight Loss and Friends:
1. Share activities together.
Sign up for a yoga class with a friend instead of going out for pizza after work. If you normally get together on the weekends for a meal, take a walk together before or after.
2. Be mindful.
Having company around tends to distract you from what you’re eating. You may also feel like it’s courteous to go along with what everyone else is doing or eating. Be extra mindful about what you’re eating when you’re with friends.
3. Provide mutual encouragement.
Some of your family and friends are bound to be working on their own weight issues as well. Team up to cut down on sugar and unhealthy foods.
4. Focus on overall health.
View your weight loss endeavor as part of a bigger picture. Increase your motivation by imagining how good it would be to live a longer and more active life with your loved ones.
Weight Loss and Late Hours:
1. Maintain a consistent schedule.
Go to bed and rise at about the same time every day. That includes weekends and holidays.
2. Get an adequate number of hours of sleep.
For most people this means 8 – 9 hours of sleep. Don’t go below 7.
3. Turn off devices before bed.
Bright screens and crime dramas may be keeping you up at night. Not only does the content of what you look at impact your sleep but the blue light before bedtime interferes with the body’s ability to product sufficient melatonin required for falling asleep and for sleeping deeply.
Shut off your phone and computer a couple of hours before you retire. If you must look at a device prior to bed, be sure to wear orange glasses to block the blue light that interferes with the production of melatonin. They are extremely helpful!
For more information about how beneficial orange glasses are for sleep, see Chris Kresser’s article: How artificial light is wrecking your sleep, and what to do about it.
4. Manage stress.
Engage in regular exercise and relaxation practices to manage stress. A few examples: take a walk, listen to soft music, or read for pleasure.
5. Develop bedtime rituals.
Let your mind and body know that it’s time to give in to drowsiness. Lie in the tub on a warm bath, or read one chapter of a classic novel each night.
6. Upgrade your sleep environment.
Black out drapes will stop street lights from keeping you up. Replace a sagging mattress if needed. Clear away clutter or store it out of sight.
Plan ahead to keep the most common triggers from interfering with your plan for weight loss. Hang onto your friends and support each other in terms of developing healthier habits. Drink responsibly and get adequate sleep. In the end you’ll find it easier to eat nutritious foods and lose weight. Beat these weight loss destroyers today!