Your Weight loss Journey: Strong finish
In the third instalment of 'Your Weight Loss Journey' blogs inspired by my experiences of running we look at the importance of a strong finish.
"The last stone is the hardest"
Follow any weight loss group or forum and you'll hear this at some point. People often feel that shifting that last bit of weight is the most difficult. But is it true?
Technically, no. If you know how to lose a few kilos or a few stone then you can lose the last one. You just need to do what you did before again. It's true your body adjusts as you lose weight and it is also true that as you reduce weight you need less calories every day so your calorie deficit will not have the same impact as it did in the beginning. However, there are some psychological factors at pay here too and these play an enormous part in losing the last few pounds.
This is where you get bored of all the repetitive behaviours that losing weight requires such as tracking what you eat, weighing portion sizes and abstaining from alcohol. You feel like you've done this for such a long time you focus on the arduous process rather than the goal.
When you first start out you are very conscientious in your approach to losing weight. You read every food packet, you weight every ingredient and you track every calorie. You are consciously following your healthy eating plan and are learning to stick to it. When it becomes habit you fool yourself into thinking that you've got it covered and that you don't need to concentrate so much going forward. You become less and less careful and many people don't realise that they are eating more than they think.
Feeling that you've already succeeded
As you get closer to your goal and you feel more happy with how you look it's easy to tell yourself that the hard work is done. It's tempting to think "that will do". For some people 'nearly there' is good enough and they stop short of pushing through the line.
Fear of success
It might sound odd but some people won't let themselves be successful. Sometimes it's because they can't really think of themselves as being successful and it feels uncomfortable. Some people worry that if they achieve a goal they might be expected to do more in future. They fear that the bar will be raised and they won't measure up. Others fear that they won't know how to deal with compliments or accolades. They will allow themselves a little success but they won't let themselves be too successful.
As I entered into the final kilometre of my race I experienced the same thing. I knew I only had 1 kilometre left. I told myself,
"I've run 9 so 1 more isn't such a big deal"
"I've done so well over the last 9 I can let myself take it easy for this one".
I've done so well, if I ease off now I'll still do a good job."
It was tempting to take my foot off the gas. I’d done so much hard work, I could relax now couldn't I? But I knew I deserved better. I asked myself the questions:
"Do I want an OK finish or the finish I really want?"
"Am I willing to push myself for this one last bit?"
"What if I worked so hard I exceeded my expectations? Am I willing to be bold and work for a just a little bit harder for that?"
Instead of easing off I went even a harder. As I crossed the line gasping for air I felt terrible but at the same tie I felt amazing. I got a PB. It was tough going but it was worth it . If you've done the hard work make sur eyou do yourself justice with a strong finih and get the results you set out for.
If you've done the hard work make sur eyou do yourself justice with a strong finih and get the results you set out for.
Are you nearing the end of your weight loss journey?
Are you finding things harder?
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If you'd like some help getting started why not download my 6 Ways to Improve Your Slimming Mindset guide