6-Week Slim-Down: How to overcome hurdles and keep going

By: Canadian Living
Canadian Living

6-Week Slim-Down: How to overcome hurdles and keep going

By: Canadian Living
Weight loss success

Photography: Getty Images

Before you read this, stop and take a minute to revel in the fact that you have made it to Week 6 of the 6-Week Slim-Down! Congratulations on all your hard work. Your body will thank you for it.

Now that you've come this far, you might be wondering what's next. The answer is to keep on challenging yourself with new healthy goals. Last week we asked what hurdles you were facing in meeting your weight-loss goals. Here are some of the hurdles you reported—they also happen to be some of the best areas for you to continue to make goals so you can see your progress continue.

“Exercise mostly—at this time of the year it's no fun.” — Carole Lavoie

“Simply getting started. Got lots of plans and reasons...just scared, I guess, of failing and making myself feel's a super frustrating place to be.” — Sarah Hall

“Sugar, plain and simple.” — Lora Thompson

“Chips and chocolate.” — Dawn Gallagher

“Staying motivated.” — Hazel Nightingale

“Having to SIT all day at work.” — Janet Flash

“My family sabotaging my efforts. I make healthier meals that they refuse to eat and my husband buys junk (pop, chips).” — Sandra Cuttler McClelland

“Thinking I ‘deserve’ a treat.” — Pamela Mason

“ just seems to get more difficult as the body ages.” — Lillian Morris

“Stress eating.” — Sandra-Dee Lapierre

So, what's the best way to tackle these challenges? We asked Kim Lavender, national director of team training at GoodLife Fitness, for her advice. Here's what she had to say:

Do you remember back on the first day of 6-Week Slim-Down, when you had a vivid picture in your mind where you reached your goals and everything went incredibly? Did that picture become blurred when you came up against hurdles, like skipping a workout or indulging in multiple cheat meals? Hurdles happen, no matter what your goal is. Remember: Having a slip-up is not a failure. Instead, think of hurdles in the same way a track-and-field athlete would—as an expected obstacle that you plan for and simply jump over on the way to the finish line. Three of the most common hurdles that members ask me about are very similar to those that were indicated by readers: Food temptation, lack of motivation and fear of failure. Below are some tips I’ve given, and use myself, to help ensure that hurdles don’t stand in the way of success. 1. Managing food temptations 
  • Plan, plan, plan and ensure you have healthy snacks on hand so the drive-thru isn’t your most convenient option.
  • Remember it is not always what we eat, but how much we eat—if you have a sweet treat, stick to the serving size.
  • Ask your friends for their favourite healthy recipes. You will be surprised how many people are working toward a weight-loss goal. You may even find you can work together to support and encourage each other.
  2. Lack of motivation
  • Exercise with a friend; it makes you more accountable to them and yourself.
  • Make your workouts accessible by planning to go on your way to work, on your lunch or on your way home. We all know once you get home to the couch, it’s tough to leave.
  • Take advantage of workouts that you can do at home—like marching or jogging on the spot during TV commercials. Accumulating spurts of exercise throughout the day makes a huge difference.
  • Make it fun! Whether it’s a Zumba class or actively playing with your kids or pets for 30 minutes, exercise doesn’t always have to involve pounding the pavement.
  3. Fear of failure
  • Remember that past failure is not a representation of future success.
  • Celebrate your success by keeping a log that identifies the moments when you felt strong and successful. Looking at your ‘strong statement’ from your last workout can help you mentally warm up for the next one.
  • Honour where you are at today and choose a routine that meets your needs and ability. In other words, walk before you run, figuratively and literally.

Kim Lavender

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6-Week Slim-Down: How to overcome hurdles and keep going