Ok so by now we are well into the swing of it with our January diets... 2 weeks down - we've got this!
Or maybe not.
Getting fit and healthy or losing weight has to be the most common new years resolutions and I'm pretty sure that more often or not they fail after a few months (if not a few weeks). And if they've failed for us in previous years, why do we always try over and over again every single year?
When I was overweight I was a culprit of this. 'New year, new me' and all that jazz. But having been through that and coming out the other side, I am now able to see the real reason behind WHY these January diets don't work.
Most new year diets fall suspect to highly restrictive eating. No chocolate, no pizza, no chips, no carbs, no sugar, no fat... basically nothing except protein and vegetables. I overheard a few friends speaking the other day about a new year '21 day plan' they are doing and they've been told to not eat any carbs at all (even though they're exercising 3 times a week). Seriously? Who on earth would have the energy to exercise 3 times a week with NO carbs? This is the main reason why January diets don't work - restricting food groups will lead to cravings for that food. Tell yourself you can't have something? Well guess what, you want it!
This point goes hand in hand with the one above. Diets that are restricted are unrealistic. You want to know the real trick to weight loss? Consistency. Which relies on sustainability. If your diet is unsustainable you won't be able to stick to it and therefore you won't achieve your weight loss goal. So setting yourself up with an unrealistic diet is a huge downfall. Another thing we often do is set ourselves unrealistic exercise goals e.g. 'I'm going to gym 5 times a week'. If you are someone who doesn't normally go to the gym at all, setting yourself the goal of going 5 times a week from the get-go is pretty unrealistic. And then once you fail because you only get to the gym 3 times instead of 5, you decide it's pointless and give up. So make sure your diet and exercise regime are both realistic and achievable otherwise you will lose motivation.
A lot of people have the generic new years resolution of 'I want to lose weight' or 'I want to get healthy'. Whilst these are great intentions, without a specific goal you will very quickly lose motivation. HOW much weight do you want to lose? WHY do you want to lose this weight? Throughout my weight loss journey, I found that without a why it is almost impossible to find motivation to change. I wanted to lose weight for years before I actually managed to do it. How did I finally do it? I had a reason - I craved the feeling of being confident and to be able to wear clothes that I wanted to wear. This driving factor was so strong that I wasn't going to let anything get in my way. So if you are really serious about weight loss this year, ask yourself WHY. Give yourself a reason, some real motivation. Set yourself a specific goal - HOW much weight do you want to lose? If you do this, I promise you it'll make it a lot easier.
So I challenge you this January - don't give up. Do it properly, eat nourishing food, set realistic goals and don't deprive yourself. Then your January diet is much more likely to last.