Author: Taylor Bathel
So, you reached your goal weight! You did a happy dance, texted your BFF, and then thought: “oh man… now what?!”
It’s scary — we get it. You’ve spent so long thinking about getting to this point, and maybe wondering if you’d ever get here, so most people haven’t quite thought about what comes next. Never fear, #NoomNation, we’re in this together for the long-haul!
Here are 10 ways to help prepare yourself — mentally, emotionally and physically — to maintain your weight loss for life:
- Use what you know. Believe it or not, you’ve been preparing for weight maintenance throughout your entire journey. How? You’ve changed your habits. And most importantly, you’ve developed habits that are sustainable. This will make life after weight loss feel way smoother than trying to learn how to maintain your weight loss after that quick fix diet you tried in the past. Whatever habits carried you this far will continue to be your guide.
- Play with calories. When weight loss is your goal, your daily calorie budget reflects a calorie deficit (eating fewer calories than you burn). Now that your goal is to maintain weight, you can eat more calories. As you now know, your body is unique, and so is your happy place for daily caloric intake. Start experimenting by adding 100-200 calories a day to your diet and gradually increasing it over time if that feels right. Tune into your body, and soon enough, you’ll arrive at your happy place.
- Keep moving. A number of studies show that, the higher a person’s daily step count and activity level, the more likely they were to maintain their weight loss. It doesn’t matter how you move, just that you do. In fact, more leisurely activities, like walking and biking, were just as effective compared to higher-intensity workouts, and oftentimes, they’re a lot more sustainable.
- Stay accountable. Who did you rely on during this journey? A friend, a colleague, or of course, yourself? Find a way to stay accountable. That could be continuing to log your meals with Noom for a while, or even a few times a week, weighing yourself regularly, or keeping up your lunchtime walks with your colleague.
- Be self-aware. It’s a proven idea that the more one self-monitors, the better they maintain weight loss. Think about it: if you catch yourself after 10 lbs of weight gain, it will be way easier to manage than catching yourself after 30 lbs of weight gain. Check in with yourself and reflect – considering your weight, your habits, and your health beyond numbers.
- Have a “big picture” goal. You lost weight for a reason, and it wasn’t to be defined by a number. Always remember that reason! As you self-monitor your weight and health habits, also keep tabs on your big picture goal. What do you want for your health? From your health? Is it energy to play with your kids? To feel confident in that dress? Your big picture goal can and will change, but having one that’s easy to access will help motivate you to maintain your new weight.
- Remember your foundation. Studies show that those who have stronger stress coping mechanisms (AKA not turning to food) are more successful at maintaining weight loss, and most of you have heard of water’s power. Don’t underestimate the basics like drinking enough water, getting enough sleep, and keeping your cortisol in check. These are the basics of your health and they are strongly interwoven into the complex web of well-being and weight management.
- Be flexible. The body is an amazing, complex, and sometimes confusing thing. What your body needs right now will be different from what it needed yesterday and what it needs tomorrow. Be ready for some changes, be ready to tweak some habits, and then be ready to tweak them again. Never stop experimenting to find what makes you feel your very best, and meet your body where it is today.
- Get to know yourself. When you imagine yourself in your mind now, who do you see? It can take time to change your self-image after making a change in your health and habits. Work on getting to know yourself and finding love, compassion, and kindness in the process.
- Practice gratitude. You accomplished a really difficult goal! You did it. Show yourself some gratitude and thank yourself!
Your journey isn’t over. In fact, it’s just beginning. We are so excited to see all the places you’ll go!