After an amazing achievement of reaching your weight loss goal, many people are left wondering ‘what do I do next?’.
If you’ve been following an OPTIFAST weight loss plan, we recommend that the next step is to transition to our Maintenance Plan. With this plan, most of your meals will be from conventional foods, however, you can still keep your favourite OPTIFAST meal replacement products close at hand to support you on the next stage of your weight loss journey.
Now that you’ve reached your goal weight, it’s important to know how to maintain it. We’ve provided some tips to help keep your weight at a healthy level.
1. Change Your Mindset
Lasting weight loss is all about changing your mindset. You’ve made several changes to your lifestyle and it’s important to remember that they weren’t just a quick fix – you’ve made the commitment to make these changes for the long term.
If you’re serious about maintaining your weight loss, you can’t revert to your old eating habits. You need to continue to maintain the changes you’ve already made like watching the types of foods you’re eating, keeping track of your calorie intake, and limiting any cheat days. But also try to take up a few more new habits like taking a walk after lunch or dinner or making a new and healthier recipe every week.
2. Exercise More
When you’re following a weight loss plan, exercise plays a key role in helping you lose and maintain your weight. It can also help you to tone up after weight loss. Butultimately what and how much you eat will likely have a bigger impact than how much exercise you’re doing.
However, you should keep up habits like walking instead of driving, taking the stairs instead of a lift, or getting off public transport one stop early so you can finish your journey on foot.
After you reach your weight loss goal, you may also want to consider adding in a swim, gym or yoga session or a run into your weekly schedule to help increase your fitness levels further.
3. Weigh Yourself
It’s important to continue to regularly weigh yourself after your initial weight loss. It helps you monitor how much weight you’ve lost and how much more you need to lose to reach your goal weight.
If you’ve previously been weighing yourself weekly and you notice the number on your scale creeping up, be proactive and take action right away. For example, reassess your eating habits or consider switching to fortnightly weigh-ins. This way, you’ll know what you need to do to get back to your desired weight.
4. Watch Your Carb Intake
Continue to avoidprocessed foods likehighly refined carbs and sweets, as they are not only high in calories, but also contain unhealthy fats that aren’t good for you or your digestion.
You should alsotry to continue to have your meals centre around lean protein and non-starchy veg which can also include fresh fruit and whole grains.
5. Limit Alcohol
Alcohol is full of hidden calories and can impair your judgement. It can also potentially lead you to make unhealthy food choices both in amount and type.
When you’ve made it to the maintenance phase of your weight loss journey, you can allow yourself to enjoy a glass when celebrating special occasions. Otherwise, you’ll want to keep your alcohol intake to a minimum or consider having a lower-calorie option such as spirits with a slimline tonic or a diet fizzy drink.
6. Know Your Triggers
If you know that certain emotions may lead you to comfort eat, make sure you’re aware of these triggers and have distractions at hand to prevent yourself from undoing all of your hard work.
Instead of reaching for a snack or ordering a takeaway, get outside and go for a walk, run a relaxing bath, phone a friend for a chat, or do something that keeps your hands busy.
7. Treat Yourself
For every month that you maintain your weight loss, treat yourself to a little something to help keep yourself motivated. Whether this is new clothes, make-up, jewellery or booking tickets to an event, reward your progress with whatever makes you feel good – you deserve it.
8. Set Yourself New Goals
Once you’ve reached your weight loss goal, create a new goal to focus on and keep your sense of purpose going.
Try making a goal around a new hobby or learning a new skill or even moving forward with your career; Whatever you choose, your new goal will help you stay focused and motivated.
9. Remember Why You Started
Hold onto your ‘before’ photosandany other records you may have from the start of your weight loss journey; they will be a reminder of all your hard work andprogress. You might not need them prominently on your fridge anymore, butit helps to have them close by for those days when you need an extra reminder of how far you’ve come.
10. Keep in Touch with Your Support Network
Don’t lose touch with people who know and understand the journey you’ve been on – your colleagues, family members and Facebook friends – and just how hard you’ve worked to achieve your goal.
Your support network are the people who help pick you up and get you back on track when you need it the most or are having a tough day.