Here's an interesting question: when does a dieter become a weight loss success story? Is it the day you get on the scale and it finally shows that you've hit your goal weight? The moment you finally reach your target weight is definitely euphoric. You worked so hard to get to your healthy weight goal, and anyone who diets and reaches their ideal weight should be extremely proud of their accomplishment. Losing weight is a long hard struggle. However, it's important to remember that reaching your ideal weight unfortunately doesn't make you a weight loss success story…yet.
Weight loss is like a marathon. Dieting, losing weight, and finally reaching your ideal weight is like training and making it to the start line of a marathon race. You worked really hard to get there, but where you are is just the beginning of a long road. The finish line that makes you a weight loss success story is maintaining your weight for at least 1 year after you hit your goal weight.
Weight maintenance, like running a marathon, has its ups and downs. Sometimes it's easy, and sometimes it's really difficult and you feel like quitting. As we wrote in a previous post, Very few dieters succeed at long term weight loss, only about 20% of people who diet and lose weight succeed at maintain their weight loss for more than a year or two. That's a terribly low number and a clear indication that weight maintenance is a huge problem for most people.
The first step to fixing a problem is recognizing it. Congratulations if you've dieted and reached your ideal weight. However, remembering you're not a true weight loss success story until you've maintained that weight loss for at least a year is the key first step to enjoying a lifetime at a healthy weight.
MaintenanceDiets and the MaintenanceDiets community are here to help guide you and cheer you on towards the finish line of long term weight maintenance.