For long-term weight loss, the usual diets or programs seem to fall short. So, are you ready to find out the secrets to successful weight loss? There are more than 4, successful weight losers out there, all part of the National Weight Control Registry , a group which continually gathers information about their members to find out how people really lose weight and keep it off. The members of the NWCR are men and women who have maintained at least a pound weight loss for at least one year. In general, these members:. What you can already glean from these few facts is that, first, there is no perfect diet or exercise program.
Each member found his or her own combination of dieting and exercising, so that's the first not-so-secret step to losing weight: A willingness to experiment and keep trying until you find a way of eating and moving around that fits with your life.
But, even though there is no one diet or exercise program that fits everyone, there are some common habits and behaviors that all of these successful losers share. What does your diet say about you? It's surely no surprise to learn that exercise is a crucial component for our NWCR members. Men reported burning an average of 3, calories a week while women burned about 2, calories per week. What we can learn from this is that, first, it takes more exercise to maintain weight loss than we might think.
But, that doesn't mean you have to overhaul your life overnight in order to make exercise a reality.
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Before you panic about that much exercise, give yourself permission to take that time and experiment with different activities, schedules and frequencies will allow you to find what will work for you in the long-term, not just a few days or weeks. And, remember, you can set up your program any way you like. A few things you can do include:. The majority of NWCR members reported eating a low-calorie, low-fat diet, with women eating an average of 1, calories a day Regardless of which path they followed, the members ended up following the same type of diet.
Another behavior of NWCR weight losers is weighing themselves on a regular basis.
About 44 percent of members reported weighing themselves every day while 31 percent weigh themselves at least once a week. The idea here is not the scale itself, but the vigilance successful losers maintain even after they've lost the weight. Many diets require you to follow different phases with different levels of calories. Often there's an induction phase or a time when you restrict foods or even entire food groups and drastically lower calories.
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After that, dieters then begin to add foods and calories back into the diet, finally getting to a "maintenance phase" where they eat more calories than they did at the beginning of the diet. That's why it's so important to change habits slowly and choose activities you can see yourself doing for the long-term. Fifty-nine percent of members reported eating the same on weekends and holidays while 39 percent reported followed stricter diets during the week as compared to the weekend.
Being consistent doesn't mean you have to robotically follow the same diet day after day. Below are a few ideas for ways you can stay healthy and still have some fun:. What's clear from the NWCR is that weight loss is a slow, steady process that requires a certain amount of vigilance, commitment, and discipline every day. It also requires that we take chances, getting away from those comforting, but often bad habits, and replacing them with better ones.
Perhaps the most important lesson these successful losers can teach us is to keep on trying. Get exercise tips to make your workouts less work and more fun. There was an error.
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Please try again. Thank you, , for signing up. More in Motivation. Lost an average of 70 pounds and kept it off for almost 6 years Tried to lose weight previously and were unsuccessful Used both diet and physical activity to lose weight Used a variety of different dietary and activity approaches. Setting Up Your Own Program. Tips and Tricks. Splitting your routine. Varying your intensity. Incorporating other activities. A healthy weight is an important element of good health.
4 Secrets to Successful Weight Loss
How much you eat—and what you eat—play central roles in maintaining a healthy weight or losing weight. Exercise is the other key actor. For years, low-fat diets were thought to be the best way to lose weight.
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A growing body of evidence shows that low-fat diets often don't work, in part because these diets often replace fat with easily digested carbohydrates. Hundreds of diets have been created, many promising fast and permanent weight loss. Remember the cabbage soup diet? The grapefruit diet?
How about the Hollywood 48 Hour Miracle diet, the caveman diet, the Subway diet, the apple cider vinegar diet, and a host of forgettable celebrity diets? The truth is, almost any diet will work if it helps you take in fewer calories.