By: King Conall
Science has shown time and time again that people who keep journals experience far greater weight loss success than those who don't.
With one study in 2008 revealing that...
Participants Who Kept A Journal Lost TWICE As Much Weight In The Same Amount Of Time...
As their non-journaling counterparts!
With results like that,
Why aren't all of us keeping journals?
If you've tried to lose weight before (and which of us hasn't?), chances are you've stumbled across mountains of little tips, motivation tricks, mantras and rituals.
One woman suggests chewing every mouthful 25 times-- no more, no less...
Your neighbor swears by pretending to eat for five minutes before actually eating...
Your cousin says that the color blue suppresses the appetite, so you should replace all the dishes in your house with blue bowls...
With so much crazy weight loss advice mixed in with the good stuff, it's no wonder we find it so hard to reach our weight loss goals.
We spend so much time testing out other people's weird techniques that we skip right over the ones that have been proven to really work!
But that ends today because I'm here to tell you that...
Journaling Really Will Help You Reach Your Weight Loss Goal A Lot Faster!
The science backs it up, and you should invest far more time and attention into it than into relying on color therapy to meet your weight loss goals.
With that in mind, let's get to the HOW component of this topic.
Here are five key things you should include in your weight loss diary so you can maximize your weight loss success and ultimately get in shape fast:
1) Write Down Your Goals
Now, I know what you're thinking...
Why on earth do you need to write down the goal you've had hanging over your head for the last three years?
It's not as if you're real likely to forget about it any time soon!
It's not your grocery list!
And I hear you.
This isn't because you're forgetful!
Writing things down is not just about remembering.
Several Studies Have Shown That People Who Write Down Their Goals Are More Likely To Achieve Them.
The act of writing is extremely powerful, and it can go a long way in turning your dreams into reality.
So, how can you make the power of the pencil work for you?
Why should it matter if you write down your goal?
Writing down your goal is a key part of goal setting because, simply put...
It helps you figure out what your goal is, in certain, measurable, definite terms.
Many of us walk around thinking of our goal to 'lose weight', but what does that mean?
"I want to lose weight" is not enough because it is vague and hesitant.
For your main goal, go crazy.
How much weight do you DREAM of losing?
When you imagine yourself strutting along the beach in a swimsuit, sipping from a coconut as the breeze blows your luxurious locks majestically around your face...
How much do you weigh?
Take that number and put it into a sentence!
"I will lose 60 pounds" sounds far more convincing, doesn't it?
Now, if you set your goal properly, it probably sounds a little scary...
But that's okay.
Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither will your glorious, fit, post-weight loss body.
Your big, long-term goal is the King of all Goals, but he can't rule a kingdom on his own.
Instead, he's going to send short-term goals to do all his work for him.
Take your big goal and break it down into small, manageable chunks.
Instead of focusing on your end result (60 pounds, in our example)...
Write Down The Small Goal You're Going To Tackle First.
Ideally, give it a deadline.
There's nothing that holds you accountable quite like a looming deadline.
Example: "I will lose 10 pounds by April 6th."
2) Write Down Everything You Eat During The Day
We all know our favorite foods, and we have a general idea of what we ate yesterday...
But you would be surprised how much food sneaks into your stomach while your brain is doing other things.
We're busy, we're stressed, and more often than not, we find ourselves eating with some form of distraction going on.
Most of us really don't have an accurate picture of what, and how much, we eat.
The First Step To Altering Your Diet Is To Figure Out What It Looks Like Right Now.
Before you begin actively trying to lose weight, just write down EVERYTHING you put in your mouth!
You'll be shocked at what sneaks into your food journal!
Writing everything down will make you aware of your eating habits so that you can change them.
For some people, their dietary problems become apparent the second they look at a week's worth of meals.
Maybe you're one who eats a couple hundred calories while 'taste testing' in the kitchen.
Maybe entire bags of popcorn jump into your stomach while you're distracted watching TV.
Maybe you forget about the donuts your coworker brings on Fridays.
The More Detailed You Can Be, The Better.
If you let loose on a package of cookies, go back and count the empty slots to see how many you had.
If you know for a fact you were eating emotionally, go ahead and include that, too!
Any information that can offer insight into how and why you eat will be invaluable to your weight loss journey.
You might find that you tend to eat a lot of junk food if your kids are snacking...
Or that eating out with certain friends encourages you to order fries and dessert.
The circumstances surrounding what, when and how you eat are almost as important as the food itself.
You may find you need to sit down and have a talk with your bad influence friends who are always encouraging you to split dessert.
Or, on the flip side, you may find that having lunch with your sister almost always results in making good food choices!
If you can figure out what factors encourage you to eat healthfully, you can try to increase their influence on your life.
Your Food Journal Is All About Figuring Out Strengths And Weaknesses.
For every chink in your armor, there is a super cool hidden weapon somewhere else.
Once you've got at least a couple days' worth of food to look at, you can slowly begin to change the problem areas of your diet.
Logging your food will offer all sorts of insights into your eating habits, what you're lacking, and what habits you should cut out-- or at least minimize.
The first changes can be as simple as replacing your vending machine run with a healthy snack like nuts and fruit.
As time goes on, small changes like that add up.
If you want to do something fun, hold onto your earliest journal pages.
It's amazing to go back a year or two later and see how far you have come!
3) Plan Your Meals
I know this is the last thing you wanted to read ("I'm busy enough!" you cry), but hear me out:
Planning your meals will make your life easier.
PLUS, it will save you time AND money.
Which, oddly enough, always seems to be the leafy greens stuffed into the bottom of the crisper.
That brings me to the most obvious perk of meal planning:
When We Plan Out What We're Eating In A Day, We Tend To Make Better Food Choices.
When you know what you're eating all day, you're going to be more likely to fit in fruits, vegetables, nuts, beans, and other health-boosting whole foods.
Think about it...
Planning out your menu also encourages a more varied diet, which will be exciting for anyone who may be living with you.
Never again will you sigh with resignation and mutter, "Spaghetti again."
Meal Planning Is The Method To Your Madness.
When it comes to sticking with a healthy eating plan and losing weight...
This will be one of your biggest tools.
So, the morning before you go grocery shopping, sit down and plan out what you're going to eat for the week.
Then put together your grocery list.
4) Monitor The Progress of your Workouts
While your major weight goal remains the King of all Goals, it's important not to focus solely on the scale...
Because weight loss is not linear...
Some weeks will plateau, and sometimes you may even gain weight.
A good way to hold onto your sense of accomplishment when the scale seems to torment you is to turn to Diet's weight loss partner in crime which is....
Exercise... And Yes You Do Need To Work Out.
You can eat as many apples as you want, but if you don't move your body,
You're not going to get the results you want nearly as quickly-- and you won't get much fitter!
The market is loaded with apps, watches and other tracking devices that will tell you your heart rate, miles run/swam/cycled/walked, and calories burned.
You can record this information in your journal and watch for improvement over time.
If you run, challenge yourself to run farther or faster, and write down your mileage/times as the weeks go by.
If you're big into weight lifting, keep track of your sets, reps and maximum weight.
Being able to see how far you have come will keep you motivated, and you may even develop a love affair with your chosen sport.
If you're not regularly checking to see how close you are to reaching your goal, you're not going to be very effective.
That's why, in addition to monitoring your diet and exercise...
You need to brave the scale regularly-- but not too often.
Weighing yourself every day can be frustrating or even dangerous for some.
So pick one day every week and designate it as "Weigh Day".
On Weigh Day, hop on the scale, either celebrate or cry, and scurry off to write down that week's number.
Seeing The Scale Steadily Creep In The Right Direction Will Boost Your Motivation Like Nothing Else.
When you weigh yourself, it's important to try to get on the scale around the same time of day every week.
Our weight can fluctuate anywhere from 3 to 5 pounds depending on the time of day.
So if you weigh before breakfast one week, you should do the same thing in the weeks to come.
This will give you an accurate gauge of how you are progressing towards your goal.
While the scale is a reliable measurement of your gravitational pull...
It may not necessarily reflect fat gain or loss.
Others invest in the technology to calculate their body fat percentage.
Whatever your chosen form of measurement...
Make sure you do it every week, and record it!
Journaling really is a great method to use to get to your desired weight loss goals a lot faster.
Now that you know the power of journaling you can now go out there and start applying this method.
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Thanks for reading this and I look forward to seeing you succeed on your weight loss journey!
To your weight loss success,
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