I get a whole bunch of people asking what they can do to better prepare themselves before they actually start trying to lose weight. Instead of replying individually, I decided to write up a quick post of all the things you should be doing to give yourself the best possible edge in the battle against the bulge. Most of these preparations are purely mental, which I found rather fitting because the majority of weight loss can be attributed to your mental strength, your ability to persevere through the challenges and trials of weight loss. Anyway, here are the top 5 things you need to do before you can lose weight.
- Surround yourself with people who bring you up and aren’t negative. Possibly the most important step of all, finding positive people to surround yourself with before you attempt to lose weight is an absolute must. Notice I didn’t say NEW people, that’s because your current friends and family might already be super supportive and positive. However, if they aren’t going to help you along your weight loss journey, you’ll need to find some people who will. Losing weight is more of a mental challenge than physical, and you absolutely need helpful people by your side.
The most supportive and helpful people you can find are people who have already achieved their own weight loss goals, as they know exactly what you’re going through. Seek them out, on internet forums and in person. Once you’ve started associating with people like this you’ll feel like weight loss is a much more achievable task, and when it comes time to actually take the plunge and turn your life around, you’ll have some very powerful allies.
- Be prepared for change, lot’s and lot’s of change. If you do succeed in losing weight, you will have gone through a massive change to yourself both physically and mentally. You need to be prepared for these changes, because if you aren’t you could easily fall back into bad habits and end up worse than you were when you started. You’re going to be making hundreds and hundreds of tiny little changes, such as taking the stairs instead of the escalator, drinking a glass of water instead of a soda, eating a roast chicken sandwich instead of a deep fried chicken wing, etc.
If you’re not ready to make these changes weight loss is going to be very hard for you. Most of these changes aren’t big, so if you can handle them as soon as you start trying to lose weight, you’ll be set.
- Be prepared for a difficult ride. If you know exactly what you’re doing, weight loss is easy. Once I realized what I needed to do I soldiered through and lost 60 pounds in 8 months, and I found it really easy. That being said, if you DON’T know what you’re doing, weight loss can be incredibly hard. “What foods do I eat? What exercises do I do? How long do I exercise for?” These are just a few of the questions you’ll be asking yourself, and without the proper answers, weight loss is going to be near impossible. (By the way, all of these questions are answered in the first few issues of the newsletter.)
You need to be prepared for a difficult journey, at least for the first few weeks/months until you know exactly what you’re doing. If you dive straight in to the deep end expecting it to be easy, find out it’s much harder than anticipated, and give up, that would be very bad. Visualize the challenges of weight loss in advance and be ready for them.
- Be prepared to fail, repeatedly. Seems like a bleak prediction, but chances are you’re going to fail a few times before you succeed. It took me nearly a year and a half before I figured out what I was doing wrong and corrected it, but when I did I started losing weight at an incredible rate, and I found it relatively easy. You need to be prepared for, and even expect to fail a few times. Not massive failures, but small failures that you can get up and say “ouch, that hurt, but I’m going to keep trying and never give up”.
If you go into this process thinking you’ll see success in the first day, and then you happen to gain weight, you’re going to take a massive hit to your pride, your ego, and your motivation. Be prepared to fail. (If you want to minimize your failures and cut out a whole bunch of trial and error, look into buying a weight loss program. The good ones tell you what to do and when, so the only way you can fail is by quitting. Checkout my review of Fat Loss Factor.)
- Be prepared to really enjoy the process of losing weight. You might think it’d be impossible to enjoy losing weight, what with all the calorie counting, starving yourself, and exercising, but I won’t be the only one to tell you that it was a whole lot of fun. Most people who have gone through the process would agree with me; weight loss is fun.
What part of weight loss is fun, then?
- Exercising. The rush you get after you finish a big run is phenomenal, nothing can describe how great you feel. Same thing with lifting weights, the DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) is a great feeling, and you know that you’ve done a great thing for your body.
- Cooking healthy foods. Cooking something healthy with your own hands is heaps of fun, and the healthy food itself will make you happier because your body will know it’s getting the right stuff.
- Actually losing the weight. This might be the best part, looking down at the scales and seeing you’re down a few pounds, and looking in the mirror and noticing your love handles are disappearing, is the best feeling in the world. Trust me, you’ll enjoy your weight loss journey.
I’m sure there are many more ways to prepare yourself for weight loss than what I listed, but eventually it gets to the point where you need to stop “preparing”, and go all in and get that shit done. No amount of preparing will get you to your desired weight, that can only come from putting in the effort and altering your diet and lifestyle.
So now that you are (or at least you should be) sufficiently prepared, get out there and start losing weight!