Maintenance is a critical stage in your weight loss journey. It is the time to begin to reintroduce regular foods into your diet. Weight loss maintenance is about lifestyle changes that will set the stage for the rest of your life. It’s time to solidify the habits that will assure your long-term success. You know you can lose weight fast, now you need to learn how to keep it off.
You have worked hard to shed pounds and burn fat in order to transform yourself. Although you’ve succeeded, many who were previously overweight feel that maintenance is where the tough work begins. During the maintenance phase specific strategies are helpful for maintaining your new, slimmer self for the rest of your life.
If you’re like most others, you have likely found that you were able to lose weight fast. The next challenge is to keep it off. The rapid weight loss in the beginning is probably what motivated you to stay on the plan that worked best for you. You’re now finding that the rate of weight loss slowed and eventually leveled off as you approached your goal. This is one reason most people find that it becomes much more difficult to establish the necessary lifestyle changes once the motivation for continued weight loss has diminished.
Keeping the weight off once you’ve lost it can be extremely challenging. In fact, somewhere between 80 to 85% of dieters will eventually regain the weight they’ve lost, often more.
Among the reasons people tend to struggle with maintaining weight loss is:
The latest research has demonstrated that after people lose weight fast, it takes about one year of maintaining that weight before the hormone levels that control hunger and metabolism adjust to their new weight. This is testimony to the fact that weight loss maintenance gets easier after the first year. Until then, the body tends to fight against its new weight.
According to the “American Journal for Clinical Nutrition,” there are several key strategies that have been identified by the National Weight Control Registry as being important for long-term weight loss maintenance:
Remember, in order to maintain weight loss, you are essentially fighting a system that’s biologically wired to re-gain those lost pounds. The good news is the biological drive to re-gain lost weight can be countered by following the strategies above.