It could be a few pounds or it could be a life-changing experience, but weight loss is something that many people struggle with every day. We’re constantly bombarded with images of perfect bodies and transformations that seem to happen overnight when in reality it takes real time and real work. But the best plan for success is to change your whole lifestyle, rather than trying the go-to celebrity cleanse, tea, or diet plan.
When Roxanne Crozier of Springfield, Missouri realized she had to make a change, she was 360 pounds. The mother of two twins constantly had her hands so full taking care of her children, she stopped taking care of herself. She didn’t realize that she needed to make a change until she noticed a rash developing on the back of her hand.
After scouring the Internet looking for what the rash could be, she was convinced that it was a symptom of diabetes, which runs in her family – her father and maternal grandmother both have Type II diabetes. Crozier, 28 at the time, was worried that a diagnosis was next, so she decided to make a change.
Roxanne’s Weight Loss Journey
Roxanne started her journey by doing research on which food-diary app would suit her best and through her research, she decided on one called MyFitnessPal. She began logging her food intake, but she quickly realized that her eating habits would need to change, but using the app allowed her to focus and continue on the right path. She began entering her own recipes, which allowed her to know, with relative certainty, how many calories were in each of her meals.
“Once I had my standard meals loaded in the app, I didn’t have to worry about tracking the math,” she explains.
If you’re starting your own weight loss journey like Roxanne, make sure you’re watching more than just the numbers on the scale. With an accurate body composition tracker, you can stay on top of important measurements other than your weight, such as body fat composition, visceral fat, water composition, calorie intake and more! Tracking multiple factors at once can help paint a much more accurate picture than a standard scale.
As Roxanne began making better decisions on the types of meals she was having, the weight started coming off. But she quickly realized that if she was going to lose the weight and keep it off, her habits would have to change. She started to remind herself of a simple truth: “Weight loss isn’t linear“!
Her first positive habit was accountability. She didn’t have a plan at the beginning, but she began crowd-source her choices to keep her honest. She would take pictures of her meals and post them on various Facebook groups.
“Arranging my food on the plate, mindfully, in turn makes me eat mindfully, and really [makes me] put thought into what I’m eating and how much,” she explains. “You eat with your eyes first. I’m able to really slow down and think about the nutrition in the food I’m eating, since I eat to live instead of live to eat. It helps lessen my stress because I’m not left with charting after I eat or accidentally going beyond my calorie range.”
Another new habit was committing to exercise. She enlisted the help of a friend to be her work-out buddy and keep her motivated and on track. At first it started with just walking up and down the driveway, but she eventually progressed to walking “4-9, or more, miles twice a week”.
Lastly, she took control of her temptations. Instead of giving in to her cravings, like she did in the past, she developed a new strategy to fight any unhealthy cravings.
“If the need to binge comes over me, I remind myself how far I’ve come and how much I do not want to [be at] my previous weight,” she says. “I also remind myself that it’ll be ‘a minute on the lips but longer on the hips.’”
America’s Weight Loss Problem
It seems like every year, more and more Americans are dieting and weight loss industry revenue continues to grow.
In 2012 alone, Americans spent $65 billion trying to lose weight , which was steadily increasing over the 3 previous years.
Here’s a breakdown of how Americans in 2010 spent their money trying to lose weight :
Diet soft drinks – $21.15 billion
Health clubs – $19.5 billion (Gym statistics: members, equipment, and cancellations)
Medical plans – $8.25 billion (bariatric surgery, prescription diet drugs, hospital or physician plans, very low calorie plans)
Bariatric surgery – $5.77 billion
Commercial weight loss centers – $3.29 billion
Meal replacements and diet pills – $2.69 billion (Top 5 things to know about weight loss supplements)
Artificial sweeteners – $2.52 billion
Low calorie/diet foods – $2.32 billion
Diet books, exercise videos – $1.21 billion
Unfortunately, these diets don’t always stick. Nearly all dieters (90-95%) regain the weight in one to five years.
Steps To Start Your Own Weight Loss Journey
If you are inspired by Roxanne and want to start your own weight loss journey, big or small, here are some things to keep in mind.
Make A Commitment
Weight loss starts with you. When you’re starting your journey, make a commitment to yourself, like a promise you would make to a best friend. Promise yourself that you’ll always keep moving forward, and that no matter how hard it gets (because it will), you’ll always remember why you’re doing this and that it’s worth it.
Find Your Motivation
Find a reason that you want to lose the weight, other than just to lose it. You need something concrete, something tangible. Maybe it’s to fit (and keep fitting) into a pair of jeans, or being able to keep up with your kids. When you find a reason that is more than just ‘losing weight’, you’ll find yourself sticking to your new lifestyle isn’t as hard as you think.
Set Realistic Goals
Here is where a lot of people struggle. They set goals based on what they see other people doing, rather than what they are actually capable of. While it is important to dream big, it doesn’t happen all at once. There are steps, or smaller goals, to take before you get to the big one. Focus on those and you won’t even realize just how quickly you’re reaching your final goal.
Today, Roxanne has reached her goal weight of 145 pounds, losing 215 pounds in the process! It’s important to remember that the number on the scale isn’t set in stone, and that positive steps, no matter how big or small, is still a step forward to a better and healthier life.