When you’re ready to “go for it” in terms of weight loss, it can be easy to focus on the big changes that need to happen. For example, my “big-picture” mind says to stop eating junk and start moving my body more. But what does that really mean?
In truth, it means making a ton of small changes that will ultimately lead to BIG changes.
If you want to lose weight, this is actually a good thing. Small changes are easier to focus on and small-scale goals are more easily met than big ones. They are the stepping stones to big changes. Truthfully, we can’t genuinely and permanently change our lives and lose weight without these little changes.
15 Small Changes to Make If You Want to Lose Weight
Stop drinking your calories.
There are exceptions to this rule depending on your goals, but in order to eliminate sugar, you should be drinking mostly water. I make exceptions for shakes and smoothies, but otherwise, you should be spending your calories on nutritious foods, not drinks. The goal is to stay hydrated and jam-pack your foods with nutrients. If you’re a juice or soda drinker, this can be a big one.
Eliminate hidden sugars.
Sugars that don’t get used as energy immediately get stored as fat. That means that if you are drinking sugary drinks or eating other sugary foods, you are almost always adding extra fat to your body’s reserves. It’s obvious that sugar is in candy and soda, but have you paid attention to how much sugar there is in breads, salad dressings, yogurt, etc? You’ll be surprised at how many things have extra sugar added. Check out this link to read more about hidden sugars. Just eliminating one food subgroup or swapping it for a healthier brand can help.
Increase your water intake, big time.
Water not only flushes out toxins, it keeps you from getting headaches related to dehydration. That means you can workout harder and stay focused. Drinking water also helps keep your tummy feeling full in between meals and some research suggests it helps increase your metabolism, too. When you’re trying to lose weight, everything counts.
Start to meal plan, even if it’s not consistent.
Meal planning and prepping consistently can be a huge commitment. But just knowing what you will cook even and making a plan (even if you don’t precook meals) will help you make good decisions when it comes to nutrition. If you come home from work or reach dinner time without any plans, you’re more likely to eat things that won’t help your weight loss efforts. While it can be extremely helpful to meal prep for several days, just putting some forethought into your meals can be a big help. If you manage to replace even just one or two unhealthy meals with nutritious ones, you’ve made a move in the right direction. I have these cheap meal prep containers and they help with portion-control and meal prep big-time.
Plan your workouts.
Saying things like, “I’ll workout 3 times this week,” is okay. But by not having a plan as far as the actual individual workouts, you’re probably selling yourself short. (That means less progress!) I suggest having, at the very least, a loose plan for EACH workout. I think that this is so important that I wrote an entire post about what to do if you show up to the gym without a workout plan. The idea is this: you’re more motivated and you’ll push yourself harder if you have some structure and goals for each workout. Again, small goals (and changes) add up to big things.