Minimalist Approach to Weight Loss. 10 Things You Can Stop Doing Today

Minimalist Approach to Weight Loss. 10 Things You Can Stop Doing Today

Weight loss is all the rage and has been since the 1950’s. The problem with this is that people have literally been obsessing about weight loss for almost three quarters of a decade! In truth, weight loss doesn’t have to be that stressful! There are 10 common things that most people do when it comes to weight loss that you can totally quit today! If you are tired of trying to lose weight and stressing about it the whole time, then you are going to want to keep reading!

Ditch the scale

We’ve all heard it, yet still ignore all the warnings. That dreaded scale. 

Sure, it feels great to step on the scale and find that we are down another 5 pounds. What about those days when the number has climbed up? What does this do to your happiness? Chances are, it plummets. You feel like a failure. Like all your efforts, your striving, your treadmill struggles, were all for nothing. 

When your joy, and self esteem start you drop, you start to lose track of those goals you originally set. You can forget in almost an instant how great you were feeling the split second before your feet touched that scale. You don’t think about muscle gain or water weight (maybe you do.) More often than not a higher number is a sign of ultimate failure and distress.

This is a crucial mistake that so many of us our guilty of. Allowing a scale, an inanimate object, to determine our joy. Determine our worth. How we value ourselves. The more we allow our happiness to be dictated by external factors, the harder it will be to find true happiness.

How to simplify

  • Don’t let numbers dictate your day.
  • Get rid of your at-home scale.
  • Take time each day to feel your body. Not let a scale determine how you feel.
  • Focus on appearance and how you feel. If you feel stronger, a number shouldn’t make you weak.

Quit guilt eating

Yes, I am talking about those moments of “weakness.” Those times when you find yourself being human. That dreaded moment when you ate an off limit food like pizza or a doughnut. 

I’m here to save you from this guilt by letting you know, these foods are okay. Uh huh, yup, I said it.

These terrible, greasy, sugar filled foods are okay. As long as they are kept as an occasional treat and not a way of life, your health is going to be A-OK.

More than any other no no, this is the one I find myself being the most guilty of. The reason being, I often over indulge in these decadent foods. When I do that it causes me to stop feeling good. If I could stick to 2 pieces of pizza and avoid that 3rd or 4th…or 8th, I would have a lot less trouble with regret.

How to simplify

  • Eat veggies before you indulge. This will lessen the chance of you over-doing yourself.
  • Let go of what has been done. Guilt will never change the past.
  • Don’t restrain too long. –Personally, if I hold off and make treats “off limits” I’m more likely to “flip out” and chow down at the first site of anything bad for me.
  • Allow a small snack each day. Keep a chocolate bar on hand and feed your sweet tooth a small serving when you feel the crave.
  • Take small bites. It makes everything last longer (wink, wink.)

If you are one of those people who rushes through grocery shopping, or isn’t even sure of what to buy to make healthy meals, consider either shopping online and having fresh foods delivered to you or having someone prepare your grocery list for you!

Stop over-reading

Over eating and over reading. Both common mistakes in this weight loss game.

We live in a world where technology is right at our finger tips at all times. Which means we are living in an information overload world. Just like new gyms, new diets are popping up all the time. If it’s not a new weight loss shake it’s some new craze claiming to be the best. These usually require cutting a food of some sort out of your diet. If it’s not cutting, it’s counting. Counting calories, counting macros, counting proteins, carbs or fats.

Math was not my strong suit, which maybe makes me bias when it comes to all this counting. Eating also just so happens to be something that I love to do. Once you start involving math, I start to lose the pleasure in how my food actually tastes. I’d rather keep the counting in my check book.

How to simplify

  • Eat with your eyes. Fill your plate with bright, rainbow colors of fruits and veggies.
  • Next to your sense of smell. Breath in deep and let your saliva get to work.
  • Read a little, then stop. It’s good to have knowledge, but too much can be damaging.
  • Listen to you body. It will tell you what foods it doesn’t like. You don’t need a website for that.

You can read a bit about why I had to cut gluten from my diet.

Start taking breaks

Whenever it comes to setting goals, it’s hard to put the motivation to rest. That compelling pull to keep at it is great and can be totally helpful. It’s when it starts to control you that it can be a real bummer. 

Just as important as healthy foods and exercise, your body requires rest. Sleep is crucial. If you are a full grown adult, you should be getting around 8 hours every night.

There is a lot to do in a day, and you are ensuring that you get that workout in. At the end of the day, you may find yourself with a ton of things you need to do, or shows you want to catch up on. I hear that! As hard as it is to put the work away, or turn Netflix off, just think about how great you’ll feel after a full-on, knocked out, night’s rest.

Quality sleep helps your brain function, it helps your body function, including your metabolism. Not getting enough ZZZs at night can actually cause you to make poor eating choices during your waking hours. Sleep deprivation will throw your metabolic system out of balance and can drastically decrease the production of leptin. Leptin is a hormone that controls your appetite and boosts energy levels. We all can benefit from more of that.

How to simplify

  • Besides just taking an extra hour of sleep, remember to take a day off at the gym.
  • Do a lighter workout. If you want to keep your routine, just dial back your workout!
  • Turn off TV and go to bed!
  • Plan a “skip” day.

If you go, go, go, without taking any time to refuel and re-energize, you will eventually burn yourself out and ultimately stop your weight loss goals in their tracks. Make sure you make time for yourself and get some rest!

Don’t skip meals

Especially after a night of bad eating choices, there might be that strong desire to skip your next meal. I promise, this won’t do you any favors. If you are struggling with some stomach discomfort, consider trying mono mealsEating this way for a few days will give your tummy the break it needs but still keep your energy levels sustained and your body functioning properly. 

Skipping meals can cause your body to react in some pretty un-cool ways. One meal, really, it won’t kill you. If this becomes a habit, that’s when you can start seeing some hormone changes. Elevation of the stress hormone cortisol, appetite hormones, and even sex hormones can be affected.

For cases that don’t lead to starvation, the major concern can be the feeling of deprivation. If anything can lead you to flipping out and binge eating, it’s meal skipping. Even that dreaded calorie counting can lead to this. If you allow yourself to feel like you are lacking something, it increases your chances of bailing on clean eating all together.

How to simplify

  • Eat more simple meals.
  • Eat smaller meals throughout the day.
  • Drink water before each meal.

Stop comparing

No, I’m not talking about committed relationships. I’m talking about those people you “oogle” at in fitness magazines or at the gym. Those people with the butt you wish you had or the toned arms that only happen in dreams. Those are the people I’m talking about.

Being motivated or supported by people who know what they are doing is great! Everyone needs a support system. If you find that you are cutting yourself down, that’s when this stops being helpful.

The biggest loss of happiness, no matter who you are, is when you compare yourself to another person. Truth is, you will never be another person. You can only be you and that is one fabulous person to be!

If fitness magazines are your guilty pleasure sucker, toss them out! They may have great articles and tips, but if the model on the front makes you feel inadequate, be done with ’em. No articles on the inside are going to be beneficial if you feel bad about yourself before even cracking it open.

How to simplify

  • Learning from others, but don’t compare.
  • Encourage people in your mind. –Congratulate them on their journey, without feeling like it should be yours.
  • Remember we all have our struggles! Even those people!

Don’t look in the mirror

I know, I’m such a Debbie Downer. Can’t check out other people, can’t check yourself out. When will it end?

What I’m saying here is don’t stand in front of a mirror and just stare at all of your “flaws.” I know I’m not the only person who bends over and notices that flap of inevitable stomach sag.

We spin around, pull things up, smoosh things down and just all around have a no-good time. Now, mirrors are unavoidable, I get that. You gotta make sure you’re looking presentable before you head off to work. So before you go covering all your mirrors with cardboard, just hear me out. The next time you step in front of a mirror, especially if you’re in your undies; don’t you dare say anything bad.

If your eyes start gravitating toward your cellulite, bring em back and focus. Take this moment to say exactly what it is that you already love about yourself.

How to simplify

  • Focus on the parts you love about yourself.
  • Be thankful for your “flaws” –I have to practice this daily with my stretch marks.
  • Toss the full-length mirrors. Who needs em.

Rethink your goals

Going hand in hand with watching that number on the scale, take your eyes off all those other numbers too. Calories. Inches. Size. They are all relatively irrelevant.

If your goal is to drop your dress size, lose 5 inches, or 20 pounds; change your goals. These aren’t bad goals, but they can lead you away from what you want to accomplish.

Try setting goals that focus more on what you add instead of what you take away. If you tell yourself want to lose, you need less it can end up making you feel incredibly deprived. No one wants to walk around all day feeling like they lost something. But gaining something? That’s a whole other story.

How to simplify

  • Eat veggies each day.
  • Drink more water each day.
  • Sleep more each day.
  • Give yourself 20 minutes of fresh air each day.

All of these things can ultimately lead you to a weight loss goal without making you feel deprived!

Don’t do workouts you hate

Most people beginning a weight loss journey do it thinking the only way to drop pounds is to hop on the treadmill. Not only is this not true, but for most people it’s also not fun at all!

This journey should ultimately be pushing you toward a permanent lifestyle change. If you don’t want to permanently run for 40 minutes every day on the treadmill, then don’t even start on that journey!

How to simplify

  • Maybe you enjoy dancing and there are classes you can take at your gym?
  • Maybe you really just like getting out and walking in the fresh air. Then do that and set goals to do it a little longer each day. Who knows, maybe someday you’ll run. Maybe not.
  • Want to swim? Get some water classes?
  • Yoga, go for it!

Want to just start in your own home? I’ve got recommendations for that!

Quit hopping around

Along with all of these fad diets, are those pills and shakes claiming instant results. Infomercials insisting that their machines will yield a 6 pack in no time.

The reality of it all is that, if you have created unhealthy habits, it’s going to take a while to make some new, healthier ones. Fat put on takes a while to get off. This is why it’s so important to take it easy on yourself during this process. Obsessing over the numbers, comparing yourself to others or allowing yourself to feel deprived will make this long process seem a lot longer. Either that, or you will just toss in the towel after a short time. That means never getting the health you seek.

Remind yourself that if quick fixes worked, no one would be struggling with obesity. Everyone would be at their perfect, healthy weight. It’s never that easy, but it is always that worth it.

How to simplify

  • Set short goals. This way you feel accomplished rather quickly and are motivated to continue.
  • Write your your goals. This planner is perfect.
  • Follow all the other rules above! They will help make this journey not seem as long!

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Dieting really doesn't have to be that hard! These tips are SO helpful!! #minimalistweightloss #weightlossjourney #weightlosstips #dietingtips #dieting