In case you haven't checked it out, Houston Health Blogs is an awesome blog that features lots of amazing guest posts from bloggers in the Houston area. Kat and I submitted a post about goals and wanted to give you guys a sneak peak a little early. Enjoy!
Part of weight loss and maintaining health includes setting goals. Goals are the proverbial “carrot on a stick” that keep us motivated and help us measure our success. There are tons of resources and blogs with tips on how to set attainable goals, how the measure progress and (best of all!) how to reward yourself once you’ve reached those goals. But Kat and I wanted to take a different approach to goal setting. We’ve compiled the 5 Worst Goals that we see as dietitians.
#5 “I will lose XX pounds so that hot guy will like me.”
We hate to take away anyone’s motivation to lose weight, but trying to lose weight for anyone other than yourself is never a good idea. You are a worthy person regardless of whether or not some hottie wants to date you and by trying to change so someone will like you is not fair to you. It may help you get started, but what happens if things with Mr. Stud don’t work out? You lose your motivation and fall back into bad habits. I know a lot of people in relationships want to trim up for their significant others (S.O.), but it’s important to differentiate between “I want to lose some weight so I will feel as hot and sexy as my S.O. thinks I am” and “I want to lose weight so someone (who otherwise wouldn’t) will think I’m hot and sexy.”
Bottom Line: Someone who really loves you will love you whether or not you have a little extra jiggle.
#4 “I will run 10 miles so I can eat a whole cheesecake for dinner.”
Uh, nice try. A whole cheesecake isn’t good for anyone. A little bit of cheesecake after a long run is okay, but try not to use exercise as and excuse for overindulging in unhealthy foods.
Bottom Line: It important to eat a healthy, varied diet to get a good mix of nutrients with occasional treats in moderation.
#3 “I will lose XX pounds so I can fit into my cheerleading uniform from high school.”
We all wish we were the same size as we were when we were younger, but don’t hold yourself unrealistic expectations. Some people may be lucky enough to stay the same size over the years, but remember our bodies change as we age and there are just some things we can’t change. Metabolisms slow down as we grow older, childbirth changes our bodies and our lives are just different. Sure, when we were younger we could eat more and workout less, but teens burn calories at a much higher rate since they’re growing. And they don’t have the added stress of running a household, paying bills, keeping up with small kids. It’s apples and oranges: you can’t compare the two. Try to make it a goal to change what makes you feel healthy and strong. Regular exercise can help counter a slowing metabolism.
Bottom Line: Embrace the fact that your body was able to grow a child in it and just enjoy what your strong, healthy body can do now, rather than chase the dream of staying “high school skinny.”
#2 Once I lose XX pounds, I will be happy!
So this isn’t really a goal, but it’s important to address. There could be a lot of reasons why you’re overweight and if those issues aren’t resolved, you could end up smaller but still unhappy. If you’re an angry person at 200 pounds, you’ll still be that same angry person at 150 pounds, just smaller.
Bottom Line: Health is not a linear journey that just ends one day. It’s dynamic and constantly changing. You should adjust your goals as life throws you curveballs!
And the worst weight loss goal to have is . . .
#1 “I will lose XX pounds because I’m disgusting/a slob/etc…”
We can’t say it enough! The number on the scale does not determine whether or not you’re a good person! Don’t let something as trivial as a number make you feel like you’re a bad person or ruin your day.
Bottom Line: The number on the scale is just a reference number to track your progress. Take it for what it is (just a number!) and move on with your journey to becoming healthy by changing things under your control.
It is important to make sure you always evaluate your goals. Though some may say they are trying to just be “healthier” they may truly have other motives behind their lifestyle changes. You should always evaluate your goals and if they are linked to some of the above “goals” you should make sure to address those accordingly so you can become a healthier and happier person for the right reasons.