5 reasons you’re not losing weight

Published 9 May, 2016

It’s time for a fresh approach to losing weight

Make that little voice in your head steer you down the road to weight loss and wellness success, instead of pushing you off-course.

Join WeightWatchers® and take the first step to successful weight loss

Here’s how to navigate some common hazards:

1. Stop trying to be perfect

What’s your vision of a faultless healthy lifestyle? "Many of us believe that perfection is possible if only we try hard enough," says psychologist and personal development coach Honey Langcaster-James. "While working towards a goal is a positive thing, it’s not beneficial if the hurdles are unrealistic."

Manage your expectations rather than lowering them, so achievement is kept within realistic boundaries.

Also, apply the 80/20 rule. ‘If you follow the rules 80 per cent of the time, that’s a high standard but a realistic one,’ says Honey. ‘If you try to achieve the other 20 per cent, life is likely to get in the way.’ In practical terms, this means staying committed to healthy eating as pasrt of your weight loss plan, but still allowing yourself wiggle room.

2. Boost your confidence

Low self-worth often results in comfort eating, which then increases that feeling of self-defeat making losing weight even harder.

Emotional eating tends to happen when you’re tired or feeling negative so find an alternative.

If you’re angry, try a boxercise (beat up that punching bag, rather than yourself) or Hiit class. If you’re stressed, do something therapeutic like meditation or Yoga. And be kind to yourself - give yourself a high-five for doing okay today, rather than a mental kick for a moment of derailment.

3. Embrace change

‘Old habits make us feel safe whereas changes to our routine can feel daunting,’ says Honey.

So, repeat after me (and Honey)... "When you get into a healthy new habit, it becomes easier to do so because, by repeating the behaviour, you’re building and reinforcing a neural pathway in the brain. But don’t change everything at once. For example, it’s a bad idea to embark on a new weight loss plan and exercise regime, and redecorate the house at the same time. You could feel overwhelmed" warns Honey. "Get one new behaviour under your belt before you tackle the next one.’"

4. Ask for support

WeightWatchers is all about support and community - join in Connect to really get a sense of that. Don't be embarrassed or shy - it’s worth knowing that leaning on others for support is proven to help you reach your wellness and weight loss goal.

It might be time to buddy up, as some of the best future buddies are in your meeting or right there on Connect. "Talking to like-minded people can be incredibly motivating and inspiring," says Honey.

And that extends to those outside of your WeightWatchers community. ‘"If you want more support from your partner or friends, don’t just say, 'Can you help?'. Be specific: tell them exactly what you would like them to do – and what you wouldn’t!"

5. Stop depriving yourself

You know the drill: you tell yourself you can’t have something and it becomes all you can think of. "Feeling deprived can make you snap, then say yes to everything," says Honey.

So, start really enjoying the taste of your food. Losing weight doesn’t have to mean cutting out the food you love."‘What’s key is gaining more satisfaction from appropriate portions of treats, so you don’t feel deprived," she says. "Have a small treat, but pay attention to the taste and texture of every single bite." Also, choose foods that satisfy. Protein can help you feel fuller for longer, while foods high in fibre, such as fruit, vegetables and whole grains, give a slow, steady release of energy and are beneficial in helping you to lose weight.