Your journey is your journey; Don’t compare yourself. A Google search of “weight loss journey” and you get SO many people sharing their stories/videos of what they did to lose weight.  Many are inspirational, with tips, workouts, and hacks on exactly what they did on their journey. But– their results may not be the same for you!

We all have different starting points, external influences, and belief systems. A shift in my own mindset played a huge part in achieving my own goals. I started to tailor my actions to work within my own lifestyle. Because ultimately this was MY journey. Here are ten things I wish I knew when I was on my weightless journey.

 

  1. Start with small habit tweaks– The biggest mistake I made early in my journey was trying to do too much at the same time.  I started working out EVERY day, trying to eat healthily, trying to drink enough water, etc, ALL AT ONCE. This was not sustainable.  I would get SO overwhelmed and just give up!  After becoming a registered dietitian and going through my own weight loss journey with habit tweaks, I would have started very differently, I would have planned small actionable steps for success. If I went back to the beginning, my first plan of action would be to integrate moving my body on a regular basis in small, manageable ways throughout the day. I would have made one habit change at a time. I would habit stack!
  1. Add variety, add color, and eat balanced meals consistently! What’s a balanced meal think-enough protein, carbs, and fat (if desired) and add those veggies. These varied, colorful, nutritionally dense meals and snacks should form the foundation of what you eat, consistently! THIS makes ALL the difference on so many different levels!
    AND don’t forget to add your FAVORITE foods think chips and chocolate! The more we restrict the more we desire these foods. Restriction will NEVER work for sustainable results. PERIOD.
  2. Keep a food and weight diary. Self-monitoring is a critical factor in successfully losing weight. You can use your cell, mobile app, or dedicated website to record every item of food that you eat and drink daily. Also, you want to monitor your progress. Track your weight, and measurements, and TAKE lots of pictures. Looking back, I wish I would have taken a picture at least every month. If I did, I would have had even more inspiration over the years to keep going. The images would have been the ultimate evidence of how my body was changing – especially in the times when I was frustrated with my progress and thought nothing was working. All of these are essential to track progress on a weekly basis. You want to identify if you’re losing inches. around your waist, hips, and other areas of your body. ALSO, remember to track other non-scale victories such as Are you feeling more energetic? Are your clothes fitting better? Are you sleeping better? Are you having less bloat, ETC. You get the idea!
  3. Add movement that you enjoy so you can stay consistent! Moving your body is vital, not just for weight loss but for SO many other benefits. I’ve experimented with every type of exercise over the years!  Some I loved and others I spent months forcing upon myself. It took a while to realize, I didn’t have to incorporate everything into my lifestyle.  Just do what you like!
  4. Add in resistance training– what an impact this has!! Focusing on strengthening your muscles improves overall muscle mass.  It’s this mass that helps burn more calories in your day-to-day life.10 things I wish I knew | thevwn.com vegan weight loss
  5. Be Patient.  I know going through the process feels like an eternity. That’s why patience is key! Whatever your starting point is, it probably took a few years or months for the pounds to creep up. Don’t be fooled to think it will only take a short time to reverse.  Be kind to yourself.
  6. Don’t Pay Too Much Attention to the Scales. Here is a perfect example! I tried on a pair of jeans that couldn’t fit me before. They fit – zipped up and everything!  I immediately jumped on the scales as I was convinced some miracle rapid weight loss had occurred! BUT guess what?  The number on the scale had increased by 2 pounds since I last weighed myself!!!  Standing there, in my jeans, I was confused! Here is the thing, you HAVE to look at the whole picture! Think – too much salt, dehydration, lack of sleep, hormones, water retention, food digestion etc. Don’t only rely ONLY on the scale. That’s why taking pictures and starting with small steps is so essential!   Consistency is better than doing something every now and then. But trust the process! Celebrate EVERY single little win!
  7. Your plan will change during your journey. Because we are all different, different things happen to our bodies when the pounds start to drop. My main goal was – to lose weight!  There was no plan, no idea of what would happen during the journey or when I got there.It’s important to be willing to change the plan but never the goal. If what you’re doing is not working for you, can’t fit into your lifestyle or makes you feel bad about yourself – change the plan to suit your goal.  Weight loss may be the start of your goal, but the journey can lead you to all sorts of health and well-being goals that you didn’t even consider before. Be flexible.
  8. A Set Back is Not a Failure. I cannot remember the number of times I had a setback in my journey.  Each time would affect me in different ways.  No matter how long it took me to get back on track – I always did.  I never gave up.  Yes, this made the journey longer.  But just imagine if I had completely stopped. Not just imagine the weight but imagine how I would feel about myself.  What beliefs about quitting would have been reinforced? There’s always going to be a time when you need to take a little break, stop making progress, or just can’t be bothered.  These points in your journey do not mean you have failed.  You cannot fail until you quit trying. Whenever there is a setback – take a breath. Look at the triggers of what caused the setback. Pause and then take a small action to start up again.

Just keep going, vegan babe!!

If you need help navigating your meals during your weightloss journey, schedule a Free Consultation Call with me, a Vegan Registered Dietitian.

 

Carol Aguirre MS, RD/LDN