Setting Healthy Weight Loss Goals
Creating realistic goals at the onset of your weight loss program is fundamental in setting the course for healthy weight loss. Setting goals that are too high may lead to frustration with your weight loss efforts, while goals that are too low may not push you to achieve the best results possible.
Before you embark on any weight loss program it is recommended you create a good goal. Setting a goal helps you determine exactly what you are working towards. For a weight loss plan to be effective, you first need a strong goal.
SMART Goals for Weight Loss
A well-planned goal can take your ambition to lose weight and turn it into an action plan. For a goal to achieve this it has to be stronger than to simply “lose weight.” Strong goals often meet the criteria of a common acronym: SMART.
SMART goals are:
In 2013 the University of Chicago published a study claiming that well-crafted goals encourage greater weight loss success. Researchers found that high-low range goals are especially beneficial in encouraging lasting weight loss. This includes goals like “lose 10-12 pounds this month” or “two to three pounds this week.”
Putting these ideas together, a good goal may sound something like this: I want to lose 2-3 pounds per week for 12 weeks, amounting to 30 pounds of weight loss in three months.
This goal is specific and by breaking it down to weeks and months, progress becomes easily measurable. As part of a medical weight loss program, this goal is achievable. It focuses on the results using a high-low range goal, and has well-defined time limitations.
Other healthy goals may include:
- To reduce need for current medications
- To improve endurance in physical activity
- To have more energy to play with your children or grandkids
Personal factors like these will come into play as you craft your own goals. Keep in mind that while it is okay to dream big, it is more beneficial for you to create small goals that you can achieve.
Once you meet your initial weight loss goal you are free to create another as you continue pushing yourself to develop a healthier way of life. Work with Dr. Scinta to create goals that are healthy, motivating and still within your reach.