For many, maintaining weight loss can be almost just as challenging as losing the weight was. Often people struggle to keep the weight off and regain most, if not all, of the weight they worked so hard to lose. They don’t seem to understand that the key to maintaining weight loss is adopting habits that promote long-term weight management (& losing the weight the right way to begin with). In this article, we will discuss tips and strategies to help you keep the weight off for good. Whether you’ve just reached your weight loss goal or you’re looking to maintain your current weight, these ideas will help you achieve & maintain weight loss for life.
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Losing weight can be a challenging task, I myself struggled with varying levels of obesity for more than a couple of decades, but after losing over 100 lbs and maintaining that weight loss for the past couple of years I thought it would be helpful to share some of the things that I have learned along the way with my own weight maintenance.
To understand how to keep the weight off, it’s crucial to understand the role our personal daily choices of lifestyle habits make when it comes to weight management.
*If you would like to read my free fitness series (where I go over all of my healthy habits), go here.
When you’re wondering “how to maintain lost weight”…it’s actually only hard to maintain lost weight if you lost the weight in an unhealthy way (or too quickly).
Losing weight through proper diet and exercise (and developing a myriad of healthy habits) is the only way to truly make weight loss permanent. Don’t get discouraged if you lost the weight in other ways…it’s still possible to maintain it but you are going to have to develop those healthy habits in order to do so.
Maintaining weight loss requires a significant level of permanent behavioral changes. You must fully adopt a healthy lifestyle that includes regular physical activity, healthy eating habits, and stress management. These changes take time, effort, and dedication but are necessary for long-term weight management.
One very bad mindset that people get into is that they keep telling themselves that they’re going to do this healthy habit until (enter whatever date)… and that is just plain not how fitness works.
We don’t get fit just to look good in that dress for that special occasion and then immediately after the event fall back into our “fat and lazy” old habits…
You must remind yourself, daily if necessary, that fitness is about wanting to take care of your body every single day, and always picking yourself back up after you fall on your face (if you find yourself falling on your face a lot with your fitness goals you may want to read my guide to get back on track with fitness).
Strategies On How To Maintain The Weight Loss
Here are some tips and strategies for maintaining a healthy weight:
Continue To Monitor Your Caloric Intake
To maintain lost weight, you must continue to monitor your calorie intake and adjust it as necessary. This means tracking your food intake and ensuring that you’re not consuming more calories than you’re burning.
There are SO many apps and tools available to help you track your calorie intake, and how many calories you are burning, which makes it incredibly easy to stay on track…in the age of technology it’s important to use that technology to our advantage.
If you need help understanding how to make sure that you’re not eating too much, make sure to read my post about “how to understand fitness in general“. If you don’t want to count calories, I also have lots of suggestions on learning to properly portion control, you can read that here.
Focus On Eating Nutrient-Dense Foods
What are nutrient-dense foods? They are those foods that provide a high amount of nutrients relative to their calorie content. These high nutrient foods can help promote satiety (meaning, they make you feel full longer), making it naturally easier to maintain the weight loss just by eating them.
Examples of nutrient-dense foods include fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats (if you’d like to read my thoughts on eating carbs go here, and I wrote about eating protein here).
Engage in Regular Physical Activity
Regular physical activity is crucial for maintaining weight loss and being healthy in general. It helps burn calories, build muscle mass, and improves your overall health. At a minimum, aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week, such as brisk walking or cycling.
Oh, and remember that all of your movements add up. If you’d like to learn how to be more physically active in your everyday life (no gym needed), I suggest reading this article on it.
Find Healthy Ways to Manage Stress
Hight levels of stress can be a significant barrier to weight loss and maintenance. It can trigger emotional eating and disrupt healthy sleep patterns, both of which can lead to weight gain.
Finding ways to manage stress, such as through meditation, yoga, or deep breathing, can help you maintain healthy weight.
Staying accountable to your original weight loss goals can help you maintain your progress over the long term. This means tracking your weight, measuring your body fat percentage, and monitoring your food intake and physical activity on a pretty regular basis.
You can also consider joining a support group or continually working with a personal trainer or coach to stay on track.
I have found that the best way to maintain weight after losing it is to continue to do my daily fitness journaling…I set little daily goals and it keeps me as accountable as possible.
How I Stay Skinny
Like I mentioned earlier, being fit, or “skinny”, is a permanent mindset shift. You don’t just do healthy things once in a while…it’s an “all-consuming-brain-shift”… change those negative thought patterns from “I can’t” over to “I can and no one is going to stop me”…and once you make that shift in your mind, being healthy in general just becomes a normal part of your daily life.
If you didn’t want to read the longer version of the weight maintenance tips above, here is the condensed version of some common tips from people who have successfully maintained weight after losing it:
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet
- Exercise regularly
- Get enough sleep
- Practice stress management techniques
- Stay accountable to your goals
- Stay motivated and positive and keep a healthy mindset
For permanent weight loss, a person should make sure that they are continually adapting all of those healthy habits in their daily life.
If you want to achieve permanent weight management, it’s essential to make sustainable lifestyle changes that you can maintain over the long term. This means adopting healthy habits that become a part of your daily routine, rather than following a restrictive diet or exercise plan that is just plain too hard to stick to.
Making small, gradual changes to your lifestyle is key. Rather than trying to make big changes all at once, focus on making small, manageable changes that you can maintain over time. For example, start by adding more vegetables to your meals or going for a 10-minute walk each day and then once you get good at those changes, make it a little more challenging but do it gradually.
Remember that fad diets may help you lose weight quickly, but they are not sustainable over the long term. Avoid diets that promise quick results or restrict entire food groups (those diets are often only pushed on you by someone that is trying to get rich off of you). Instead, focus on making healthy, balanced food choices that you can maintain over time.
Over time, several years, I myself made sustainable lifestyle changes that became a part of my daily routine. I focused on eating a balanced diet that included plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats. I also continued to engage in regular physical activity, such as setting daily step goals and strength training.
Now, years later, I have maintained my weight loss and continue to live a healthy, active lifestyle. While it hasn’t always been easy, the key for me has been making sustainable lifestyle changes that I can maintain over time.
Maintaining significant weight loss can be challenging, but it’s possible with the right strategies and mindset. By making sustainable lifestyle changes, focusing on nutrient-dense foods, engaging in regular physical activity, managing stress, and staying accountable, you can maintain weight loss over the long term too.
Remember to set realistic goals, celebrate your successes, and seek support when needed. With dedication and persistence, you can achieve your weight loss goals and maintain them for years to come as well.
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Other Helpful Resources On How To Maintain Weight After Losing It
If you didn’t like what I had to say about how to maintain the weight after weight loss, here are some other great places to look for more information on the topic:
If you would like to check out my entire fitness section, go here.
Here are direct links to several of my other posts that you may also find helpful:
* Please note that this article was originally shared to this website on 05/01/2023, and has since been/will continue to be updated to improve user experience, remain relevant, as well as to be as shareable as possible across the social medias.