I just finished reading this book by Anne M. Fletcher, M.S., R.D. The full title is Thin for Life: Keys To Success From People Who Have Lost Weight and Kept It Off. I HIGHLY recommend it to anyone who is determined to keep the weight off after losing it. It packed full of wonderful advice, tips, and principles...415 pages of 'em.
This time around losing weight (I lost 25lbs about 2 and 1/2 years ago) I knew I had to do somethings differently if I wanted to keep this weight off. Not necessarily losing the weight, but in keeping it off. But since that was my focus, I ended up losing weight differently too.
What I loved most about this book was not only did it highlight similar/pattern behavior that worked for the group of weight loss masters (those who had lost the weight and kept it off for a number of years) but also the individual things that the weight loss masters did keep the weight off.
Here are just a few of the highlights:
1. It doesn't matter if you've lost weight beofre and gained it all back, b/c most of the masters didn't make it the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd time around either.
2. Majority of masters weigh themselves regularly so they can cathch themsleves when their weight starts to climb. Most have a special plan of action if their weight starts to climb.
3. Maintenance means much more than weight maintenance. It includes the maintenance of other healthy lifestyle behaviors, such as healthy eating patters, exercise, reducing stress, keeping healthy relationships and more.
3. If you spent six months getting in shpae by jogging and lifting weights, how long would you expect the positivie effects to last after you'd stopped? Exercise training doesn't last three years later. You have to keep practing the good habits or you lose the skills.
4. Biology permits obesity to occur in individuals; but the environment causes obesity to occur in the culture.
5. You motivation for weight control will wax and wane.
6. Maintenance is not static. What works at one point in time may not at another.
7. Regainers were far less likely to exercise
8. Some experts advise you spend at least one month in a maintenance program for each month that you spend losing weight.
9. The masters gain and enjoy new tastes in food.
10. Some masters view more healthy foods, such as fruits as desserts/rewards. Others develop low-fat/calorie "splurge" foods.
11. The masters make conscious choices about how to choice their calories. Part of the choice making process is trade-offs. If you have a higher calorie or fatty item, you may have to forgo something else.
12. There's evidence that the longer you cann keep extra pounds at bay, the more likely you'll be able to keep weight off for good. Maintaining weight loss for 2 to 5 years decreased the risk of subsequent regain by more than 50 percent.
13. The most striking similarity among the masters was that they have discovered a way to nip weight gain in the bud. The masters nip weight gain in the bud on a day-by-day basis and on a meal-by-meal basis. The vast majority of masters stop gaining before they put on 5 pounds.
14. Masters don't let lapses become relapses. Lapses are single events of doing something unplanned that is not ideal for weight control.