How to maintain your shape post weight loss
While losing weight and transformation might seem like a glorious achievement in a person’s life, maintaining the form and body shape is a challenge that stays forever. I had been successful in losing 13 kgs back in 2012, and continue to weigh the same ( plus or minus two kgs). Sustaining the success you had once achieved needs a constant check and self discipline. While you can afford to let go, once in a while, there is a need to tighten the ropes again, every now and then.
Your relationship with food
I acknowledge that since childhood, I have had an unhealthy relationship with food. So while I was always a fat child in my brain, I would sometimes not eat a morsel, and at other times hog on food as if it’s Mayday! During the period of weight loss, I learnt to maintain the proportions of food on my plate and enjoy fats and carbs without feeling guilty afterwards. This is how I do it even now:
- Learn to order the pizza correctly the next time you go out. Ask for very less cheese, with extra veggies of your choice. Similarly, eat the burger sans cheese.
- Get your sub roasted, add no cheese and choose the sauces cautiously. Say no to mayonnaise and stay away from marinated stuff like jams and pickles.
- Don’t gulp alcohol, sip it instead.
- Eat that pastry, but only the lower fraction, which has comparatively much lesser cream and fat.
- Have white food in less quantity (rice, butter, white bread, etc) and choose other colours instead like brown.
- Stop having the regular coke and popcorns when out for a movie. If you’re still eager to munch, take your time to have a mouthful of corns, just a sip of coke and get over with it. Let your partner have the rest. J
- It might be hard initially, but learn to share foods like chocolates and ice-creams with people around. That way, people love you, and you consume much lesser, while having a jolly good time.
- Have roasted instead of fried, hence, roasted chicken instead of butter chicken. Apply rules on other foods similarly. Brown sugar instead of white. Red wine instead of white. Dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate. Papayas and apples instead of mangoes and bananas. The list is endless. Be aware of the food you eat and learn gradually.
- Continue to cheat the guests at parties by eating slow, and sustaining the same plate of food for long.
- Know that you should always consume the heavy foods during the first part of the day, and keep it bare minimum in the second half. This is the best way to keep that tummy in effortlessly, in my personal experience.
Trust me, I always have just one piece…while my friends have the rest J
Setting a weight alarm and keeping a weekly check
- No matter what, it is not always easy to say no to that ‘second piece of Rasgulla’ or ‘another piece of chicken’ or ‘extra cheese on the pizza’. And so, if you cannot keep a day to day check on yourself, keep a weekly check as an alternative. During festival time, or when you travel to a relative’s place for a week, set yourself a bit free to indulge and tell yourself that – ‘ I will detoxify myself and get back to my routine by Saturday.” Keep a fruit fast for a day afterwards.
- Set a weight alarm as I mentioned. For example – my weight alarm is 68 kgs. While I weigh 65 kgs presently, if the scale goes to a 68, I immediately buckle up, start exercising and stop binging.
Maintain an active schedule
Let’s talk realistically. There are very few of us who would go to the gym forever or continue with our other exercise routines steadily. As an alternative, keeping active on a daily basis aids weight gain.
- Take stairs and avoid lifts, as much as you can.
- Use public transport more and walk back home.
- Don’t allow yourself the luxury of a vehicle for work within a certain radius of your home.
- Don’t sit for at least half an hour after a meal.
- Keep a steady routine and wake up at fixed hours.
- Do adventure travel. You explore your wild side while hiking, trekking or bungee jumping and come back fitter!
- Dance at parties! Sweat it out and become popular at the same time!
- Wash your clothes, or clean your utensils, and for God’s sake, go get that glass of water yourself!
That’s me (in the red sweater) trekking in Dalhousie with a group of friends a few weeks back. I came back 2 kgs lighter because of the continuous walking for a week.
There are several other methods and routines one can follow to maintain that precious figure you attained after much effort. However, loving yourself each day is the best way to long term fitness. While there would be happier and difficult phases, one must never compromise on health. I have done all of the above mentioned and more to keep myself steady, and none of this guidance, had I read or learnt from anywhere – they are all self- learnt. Please feel free to write about your struggles with maintaining weight and how you deal with them.
Did you like the suggestions about how to maintain your shape post weight loss?
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