Maybe a snow day isn’t a weight loss day

Everybody wants to know the secret to successful weight loss.

Well, here is my secret. “Maybe today isn’t a weight loss day.” Some days are easier than others to go full speed ahead with your diet. When you have a day like that, use it to your full advantage.

Other days, like when you’re stuck home while the snow swirls outside it may not lend itself to losing weight. You’ll probably know if it’s a weight loss day within a few hours of waking. A day that isn’t good for losing weight can be anticipated or take you by surprise. Either way, it’s just not going to happen today. That’s okay.

Today is a good day to practice maintenance.

One day you will be at goal and you will need to know how to stay there. Today is a good day to start practicing. Maintenance, contrary to popular belief, isn’t returning to “before weight loss” behaviors. Maintenance is somewhere between what you did before you began your diet and what you do when you’re on your diet.

The research shows that exercise is a big part of maintenance. In fact, maintenance relies on regular physical activity more than weight loss does. One thing for sure, snow days provide plenty of exercise opportunities both inside and outside of the house.

Outside there are the obvious activities – shoveling and playing. Since we can’t stop the snow, we would be better off to get out in it and have some fun.

Of course, when the wind is whipping the snow sideways and we can’t see in front of our faces, having fun in the snow is probably only going to happen for the most hardy.

That’s not me. I do better with moderate weather and snow falls. My preference to stay inside where it’s warm still leaves me with physical activity opps. The most obvious is tackling some cleaning jobs that have actually needed attention for a long time. Cleaning closets is good physical activity.

If the day is already going bad enough because of the snow and the plans it wrecked for you, maybe cleaning closets isn’t going to improve your mood.

If you just can’t get your head around spending time indoors exercising that’s okay. Pay attention to how much time you spend sitting. Get up and move for at least 5 minutes for every hour you sit. Maybe catch up on laundry. Carrying dirty and clean clothes, folding and putting them away is a great way to break up sitting.

Okay, don’t do laundry if you don’t want to, but do get up and stretch and move 5 minutes for every hour.

Screen Shot 2017-02-13 at 7.01.38 AM

Maybe it’s a better day to search recipes for a really good, reduced-calorie meal and to top off the meal with a special dessert.

Maintenance requires monitoring. A food diary may be even more important to keep off the pounds you lost than to lose them. Pull out a notebook or a sheet of paper of even use your computer of mobile device to track what you eat. Give yourself freedom to eat what you want providing you track it all.

shutterstock_577313062

Tracking is an effective way to keep your food choices and serving reasonable. 

Maintenance is a mix of good food choices, portion control, and treats. Today could be a really good day to put that into practice. Cut out a few calories during the day and add a few in the form of a special dessert – just remember to track.

shutterstock_557490040

 

Jackie Conn

About Jackie Conn

Jackie Conn is married and has four grown daughters and four grandchildren. She is a Weight Watchers success story. She's a weight loss expert with 25 years of experience guiding women and men to their weight-related goals. Her articles on weight management have been published in health, family and women's magazines. She has been a regular guest on Channel 5 WABI news, FOX network morning program Good Day Maine and 207 on WCSH.