A resolution is a “firm decision to do or not do something”, it’s a promise but unlike most promises it is made to oneself. Many people set a new year resolution but sadly year after year the same goals are simply copy and pasted onto a new list.

This year, let’s make a weight loss resolution that sticks.

Be sure to download our free New Year Resolution Worksheet to help you apply these tips and stay on track.

Write it down

This goes without saying, unless it is written it does not exist. The resolution deserves an official record. Putting pen to paper also makes it easier to check off each goal once completed.  

Be Specific and Make Goals as “I” Statements

Make goals specific and always state “I will” or the present tense of the resolution as if it already exists. 

Examples of “I” Statements:

“I will reach my goal weight of 130 pounds by (enter specific date including year)”

“I will walk daily from 6 -7 pm for 1 hour 5 days a week”

“I will meal prep every Sunday and Wednesday for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and 2 snacks daily”

“I exercise 60 minutes a day 5 times a week”

Start with no more than 3 weight loss goals

Keep it Simple.

Less goals are more attainable and achieving simple goals builds confidence. This will require prioritizing what is most important.

Examples of simple weight loss goals (Choose no more than 3):

  • Lose 1-2 pounds a week
  • Weigh in Weekly
  • Track foods in daily food diary
  • Walk 30 minutes to 1 hour daily
  • 10,000 Fitbit steps a day
  • Drink 64 ounces of water daily
  • Eat lean protein and healthy fat at every meal
  • Stick to daily goal macronutrient balance
  • Cut back from 3 alcoholic beverages a week to 1
  • Strength train twice a week
  • Pack daily lunch for work
  • Eat out at a restaurant twice a month
  • Cut out sugary beverages
  • Remove added sugar from diet by cutting out baked goods and packaged sweets

Don’t forget these goals still include the first step, make “I” statement and be as specific as possible.

A goal without a deadline is just a dream

Setting an end date makes the goal real. Deadlines create accountability, require monitoring, and ensure step wise progression toward measurable success.

An example of a specific resolution with an end date would be “I will lose 20 pounds to reach a healthy goal weight of 140 pounds by April 15, 2019”.

The goal must be realistic

Your goals are as realistic as you want them to be so this part of the exercise requires honesty. A disciplined person may be able to lose 20 pounds in a month with a well personalized plan, precise execution, and the perfect schedule; however, a busy executive with limited time, poor sleep habits, and a team of employees working long hours may find reaching an aggressive weight loss goal difficult.

When setting resolutions ask yourself, “what am I willing to give in order to achieve the outcome?”. Anything worth achieving requires sacrifice. The sacrifice may be time, dedication, discipline, discomfort, or disappointment. If you are unwilling to sacrifice, then find a new resolution.

Learn something worthwhile in the process

Weight loss is more about the journey than the destination. On the road toward long lasting weight loss results ask yourself the following:

  • How will I grow?
  • What will be added to my life?
  • What do I need to learn about myself?
  • What will I accomplish that will change my life forever?

Identify the Obstacles and Crush Them

There are guaranteed to be obstacles along the way! However, with proper planning most obstacles can be anticipated and what you can anticipate you can plan a strategy for. On the Resolution Worksheet next to every resolution identify a barrier and write out how you plan to overcome it.

Long term successful weight loss is just as much about diet and exercise as is it about strategy, planning, and execution.

Build Accountability

Accountability is paramount. On the journey to crushing obstacles and achieving goals your brain will play tricks on you. These “tricks” come in the form of resistance, self-doubt, and negative self talk. An accountability partner serves as a force outside of yourself to provide support, encouragement, and honesty.

The accountability partner is unique in that they lend a helping hand while upholding the promise you’ve made to yourself.

Examples of Accountability Partners:

  • Family member (spouse, sibling, child, parent)
  • Friend
  • Co-worker
  • Physician
  • Fitness trainer
  • Dietitian
  • Health Coach  

Build the maintenance plan into each goal

In the case of weight loss, achieving the resolution is only the beginning. The next step will be maintaining it. The best way to maintain a weight loss resolution is to build the maintenance plan into the original goal.

Celebrate Your Success and then Raise the Bar

Once you’ve completed the resolution then it is time to celebrate!

Reward yourself for a job well done but don’t stop there… after celebrating, raise the bar.

The brain needs constant challenges so although you’ve reached a goal it will be essential to continue making new and exciting resolutions year after year. Each year that you achieve a new resolution will provide the momentum needed for future resolutions.

Happy resolution making!