Want to know two things that are practically synonymous with childhood?
Kickball and elementary school.
Anyone who has ever played can remember standing in line, anxiously staring at the team captains and willing them to pick you to join their team. No one wanted to be the last kid standing at home plate.
Picking a weight loss plan can feel a lot like being the elementary school kickball team captain. There are dozens of plans all lined up, staring you down and practically willing you to pick them.
There’s the no-carbs guy who looks all lean and buff… but maybe too buff. The paleo girl who looks amazing, but makes you wonder if she’s even real. And don’t forget about the crazy low-calorie kid who looks like he might be blown away if someone even sneezes in his direction.
All of them, plus so many more, are just standing there, staring you down, waiting for you to pick them.
And all you can think is, “I just really want to win this game.”
Picking the Right Plan
When you’re finally ready to do something about that extra weight you want to get rid of, the first thing you need is a plan. Picking a plan that works for you is going to take some time and effort. The Mayo Clinic offers some great suggestions for picking a diet plan that’s right for you:
Involve Your Doctor
Before you start any weight loss plan, take the time to visit your doctor. Together you can set goals based on your current health, medications, and other physical limitations. Plus, you’ll be able to establish a baseline that you can use to gauge your success.
Recognize Your Needs and Limitations
If you want to lose weight, your plan has to work within the life you currently live. Yes, you’re going to have to make changes, but they can’t be changes that don’t work with your life.
It’s important to understand and recognize any limitations to a plan before you begin. You can’t exactly commit to a plan that requires making all of your own food if you don’t know how to cook, or one that asks you to spend hours a day in the gym when you don’t have a gym membership. Don’t forget to consider what the plan means for your time and budget, too.
Research and Understand Your Plan
You’re not going to succeed at any plan if you don’t know what you’re getting into from the get-go. Weight loss takes time and it’s easy to give up on your plan if it throws a curveball at you three weeks in. It’s also important to understand the timeline of your weight loss plan to see if it’s healthy and realistic.
Ask Lots of Questions
For starters: What does it consist of? Who’s behind it? What are the risks? What are the results? And most importantly, is it safe? The questions could be endless and the more you think of and get answered before you start, the better off you’re going to be in the long run.
6 Signs of a Safe and Healthy Weight Loss Plan
You should never be restricted to only prepackaged meals or select food groups. Cutting certain foods out completely only means you will struggle with your weight as soon as you add them back in. Your weight loss plan should help you maintain a balanced diet full of all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients your body needs to survive and thrive.
2. Allows Freedom
Again, any diet that forces you to eat everything out of a prepackaged box is setting you up for failure. It means you’re putting someone else in control of what, where, when, and how you eat. A diet like that is going to be pretty difficult to stick with, not to mention expensive and maybe even boring.
3. Lets You Eat with Family and Friends
This one’s a must! Let’s be honest: life kind of revolves around food. Lunch with friends, date night with your hubby, office meetings, school programs, birthday parties… get the picture? If your weight loss plan is too restrictive, you’ll find yourself avoiding friends and family just so you can avoid the food that’s bound to be part of the get-together. Having a weight loss plan that allows you the opportunity to eat with friends and family also makes sure that your friends and family are part of your weight loss goals and successes.
4. Provides Realistic Results
If any plan promises you can lose 20 pounds in 20 days, turn and run the other way. Fast.
The truth is, it took a lot of time to put that weight on, and if you want to be able to lose it and keep it off, it’s going to take just as much, if not more, time and effort.
It’s important to find a plan that provides realistic weight loss goals. For most people that means losing one to two pounds per week, depending on your starting weight and fitness levels.
5. Teaches Healthy Habits
A weight loss plan should be about getting rid of bad habits and creating new healthy habits. Learning about your emotional triggers, how to control cravings, and how to add exercise to your life are all keys to weight loss success. Understanding these things helps you develop new habits to combat your former weaknesses and makes your weight loss goals more attainable.
6. Focuses on Changes that are Sustainable
It’s sad but true that most people regain weight after dieting. Some studies place the results as high as 80 percent. That means a lot of people are picking the wrong weight loss plan. Many plans are not sustainable for the long haul, and if your plan is one of those, you need to be aware of its dangers. The truth is, you need a plan that is more about a lifestyle change than anything else.
The Best Weight Loss Plan?
Our solution isn’t a diet. That’s because diets don’t work. You don’t need a diet, you need a plan. A good plan. The BEST plan. And, when you pick the right plan, it will help you win the weight loss game.
Thankfully, we have the perfect plan for you. IdealPlan isn’t a diet. It’s a lifestyle, and it’s a game-changer when it comes to weight loss. This plan includes all the nutrition and exercise advice you’re going to need to help you finally lose the weight you’ve been dying to get rid of.
After you’re done, you will look and feel better than you have in years, and who knows… you may even have the energy for a game of kickball!