Are Setting Weight Loss Goals Important for Success? Before initiating a weight loss program, it is essential for people to know how much weight they should lose. There should be two primary weight loss goals:
1) Initial goal (short term)
2) Long Term goal (approximately one year from now)
Both goals should be realistic and practical for you to achieve.
Initial Goal – 10 percent Weight Loss
Achieving the initial goal will allow you to start enjoying the health benefits of weight loss immediately. For an initial weight loss goal, many health experts suggest 10 percent of your current body weight.
Current weight x 10 percent = initial goal for losing weight. For a person weighing 200 lbs., the initial weight loss goal would be 10 percent x 200, or 20 lbs. Weight loss of greater than 10 percent can be achieved under medical supervision.
Long-Term Weight Loss Goals
Long-term goals vary from person to person, and you will need your help to determine them. Your target should be within the weight appropriate body mass index (BMI) range, which you can quickly identify with a BMI-chart.
Establishing Realistic Weight Loss Goals
Goals, which are set effectively, are more likely to be achieved. The process of setting the target plays a significant part. The reason many people do not reach their goals is often due to how they set them. What are well-set goals? One method is known as setting SMART goals.
SMART stands for:
Ensure the goal you set in particular, clear and straightforward. Instead of setting a goal to lose weight or be healthier, set a specific intent to lose 2 inches off your waistline or to walk 5 miles at an aerobically challenging pace.
Keep the goal simple, so it is easy to understand what you want to achieve. The goal needs to be vital to you and exciting enough to prompt you to do what is necessary to make it. If the goal is not relevant to you, I encourage you to drop it because you are not likely to achieve it and often end up feeling as if you have failed.
You can set many goals. However, I recommend just choosing the one you want to have as a result.
The goal needs to have a specific, verifiable effect or else it ends up only as “wishing.” For instance, it is not measurable to say you want to be healthier or feel fitter.
However, it is measurable to say you want to be fit enough to swim 20 lengths of the swimming pool.
If you set weight loss goals which are too far out of reach, you probably will not commit to doing them for long. Although you may start with the best of intentions, the knowledge that it is too much for you means your subconscious will keep reminding you of this fact and will stop you from even giving it your best.
A goal needs to stretch you slightly, so you feel you can do it and it will need a real commitment from you. For instance, if you aim to lose 20 lbs in one week, we all know that is not achievable. Nevertheless, setting a goal to lose 1 pound and when you have achieved that, aiming to lose a further 1 lb. will keep it feasible for you.
The feeling of success, which this brings, helps you to remain motivated.
Devise a plan and a way of getting there which makes the goal realistic. The goal needs to be realistic for you and where you are now. A goal of never again eating sweets, cakes, chips, and chocolate may not be realistic for someone who really enjoys these foods.
For instance, it may be more realistic to set a goal of eating a piece of fruit each day instead of one sweet item. You can then choose to work toward reducing the number of sweet products gradually as and when this feels realistic for you.
* Time Bound
The goal should have a set time. If you do not set a time, the commitment is too vague. It tends not to happen because you feel you can start at any time. Without a time, limit, there is no urgency to start taking action now.
Just remember, goal setting is important when going on a diet to lose weight and remembering to think SMART will help you in achieving all your short and long-term goals.
I hope you found this article helpful and inspiring. If you have anything that you’d like to share or any opinions on any of the content on my site, please do speak up. I look forward to your comments, questions and the sharing of ideas.