When I started out, I set a goal to lose 182 lbs. Why that number? Because I want to be under 200 but I couldn’t bare the thought of setting it higher because 182 lbs to lose was already overwhelming the hell out me. I quickly learned not to look at that number on my ticker and just focus on losing weight. As time went on, I hit 10 lbs down and then 20 lbs, so it didn’t seem so daunting. My initial goals looked like this:
GW1: 327 50lbs.
GW2: 310 1lb under weight when met husband.
GW3: 299.9 just want to see the damn 3 gone!
GW4: 284 1lb lower than any weight since 1991!
Breaking down a large weight loss goal into smaller, more manageable goals makes it seem more doable.
Somewhere along the way, I changed my overall goal to 192 lbs because, honestly, 182 lbs was keeping me too close to 200 lbs for comfort.
I never bothered to set any goals past the first four because I have weighed over 300 lbs for half my life and just getting under 300 was going to a big milestone for me.
I’m now under 300 and setting new goals. I have one more from my first set to reach, but I need to focus on some new goals. Funny, I only had 78 lbs to get out of the 300′s, but when I started, that seemed harder and longer than getting under 200 does now.
Tips For Selecting Weight Loss Goals
- Pick small, manageable mini-goals. If you have a large amount to lose, try breaking it up into 10 lb increments.
- Pick longer-term goals so you have something to keep working towards when you hit those mini ones.
- Make sure they are reasonable. Sure, we all want to lose it fast, but is it really reasonable to lose 25 lbs a month?
- Personalize your goals. I picked several of mine based on previous events for me. 284 lbs might be arbitrary to most people, but for me, it’s based on a personal reason.
- Be flexible. If you don’t hit a goal, don’t throw in the towel. Refocus and move forward.
- Goals don’t have to be weight-related. You might pick some that are based on fitness or eating (i.e., “I want to walk a mile” or “I want to keep my sodium under 2,500 mg”).
- Periodically, evaluate your progress and adjust your goals as needed.
What are some of your goals?
Many people start a new weight loss plan by making radical changes to everything overnight. From diet to activities, if it’s bad, it gets changed and it gets changed NOW. In “Honey We’re Killing the Kids,” HWKTK, “The family then has three weeks to overhaul its bad habits under the direction of Felicia, who delivers a set of life-altering rules with the aim of completely transforming the children’s future health and lifestyle.” via TLC
While this method might work for some, there was a lot of crying and nashing of teeth when we watched it years ago. For us, this is a lifestyle change from bad habits that took decades to get rooted. Some of these habits don’t want to leave that quickly; they have made a happy little home in our bodies.
So I picked the two biggest issues and tackled them first. For me, that was portion control and excess chocolate consumption. I cut out so much chocolate I should apologize to the CEOs of Hershey and Dove for their falling 3rd quarter sales this year. They might need to re-adjust their 4th quarter sales, too. For Karl, it was portion sizes and carbs. To the CEO of Coca-Cola, sorry about your year-end bonus.
After we made those changes, we moved onto a new challenge. After a lot of bitching and moaning about the chocolate, I don’t think we could have handled more changes at one time! Next up was sodium. OMG, is it necessary to put it in freaking everything?! I don’t even use a salt shaker. The only sodium I add is my Lawry’s Season Salt to my eggs. So, after tracking a month, I was SHOCKED to see how much excess sodium I was consuming. This brought about a lot of label reading and more bitching from me about the sodium content.
Once a change was firmly under control, we would tackle the next one. Rinse and repeat. I think many people fail because they take the HWKTK approach. Slow and steady can work wonders, too. Don’t believe me? Just check out our weight loss tickers to see how much we have lost taking it one or two changes at a time!
Photo by: squidonius
I’ve been a bit intense with the water since I started tracking everything. I feel better, my skin looks better, and I lose weight easier when I drink enough.
The problem is how much is enough and how can you remember if you are on 110 ounces or 125 ounces for the day?
The simplest method is to take your weight, divide it in half, and drink that much in ounces. Generally, that will give you a reasonable number for most circumstances. But if you exercise a fair amount, live in a dry climate or higher elevation, this method might not be quite right.
shauna121211 from myfitnesspal posted a link to a Hydration Calculator that takes several factors into account and gives you a range to strive for.
How to tell if you are getting enough water? “Clear or light-colored urine means you’re well hydrated, whereas a dark yellow or amber color usually signals dehydration.” – Mayo Clinic
I’m using the Water Tracker that is a part of the Food Tracker on myfitnesspal.
There are also numerous apps for the iphone, andriod, and blackberry that will allow you to track your water right from your phone.
Find a method that works best for you and bottoms up!