The idea of committing to a long term weight loss plan can feel incredibly daunting. So how about just 6 days? You can count it as a kickstart, an experiment, or just a week where you could improve your health.
Don’t want to face a gruelling 6 days that you will never want to repeat again in your life? What if you instead completed one challenge every day that actually made a real difference in your life?
If this sounds like it’s just what you’ve been looking for then let’s jump right in to creating your personalised weight loss strategy with this 6 day challenge.
Day 1 | Your Reasons
Step 1: Write down 10 reasons why you want to lose weight.
Step 2: Apply the rule of 3 why’s. For each of your reasons, ask yourself why, then to that answer ask why again, then to that answer ask one final why.
For example- “I want to be healthier” Why? “Because I want to have more energy” Why? “So I can spend more quality time with my kids instead of being too tired” Why? “Because I feel like they deserve better than the tired and irritable version of me that they are getting at the moment.”
With each why, you will probably notice that you delve more and more into your REAL reasons for wanting to lose weight. What really drives you. What is really important to you. And these are the reasons that will keep you going when you’d normally just give up.
Day 2 | Your Triggers
Step 1: Write down 10 things that you know trigger emotional eating, or you deviating from your weight loss plan in some way.
For example, feeling stressed might cause you to seek out comfort foods. A big day at work might cause you to just go home instead of the gym in the afternoon. Skipping lunch might cause you to eat a bigger dinner and then crave chocolate for dessert.
Step 2: For each of these triggers, brainstorm one way that you could prevent the trigger, and one strategy to replace your usual reaction with a better alternative.
For example going for a 30 minute walk in the morning might help you feel less stressed during the day (prevention). Making yourself a cup of tea and taking 5 minutes for yourself to drink it slowly might work as a replacement for stress eating unhealthy foods. This doesn’t need to be foolproof, just choose strategies that you think will have the highest likelihood of working for you.
Day 3 | Your Schedule
You are busy right? It feels like you just don’t have enough hours in the day to get everything done. But is it possible that you have more time than you think? Think about where your time was spent today. How much time did you spend on social media? Watching TV? Googling unimportant things. All things that act to distract or entertain us, but that generally don’t offer a whole lot to us in terms of real value.
Be completely honest with yourself about the amount of time you spend on low value activities, and decide which high value activities you will spend time on instead.
For example, do you spend 15 minutes in the morning scrolling through Instagram or Facebook? Could you instead go for a 15 minute walk, spend 15 minutes finding healthy recipes for the week, putting together a list of ingredients for grocery shopping, or packing yourself a lunch for work?
Day 4 | The Exercise Mindset Shift
Do you hate exercise? Do you avoid it? Have you tried to exercise regularly in the past but always end up giving up? Here you are going to choose to challenge your assumptions about exercise.
Think about anything that you do now or have done in the past that has involved your body moving. Guess what? That was exercise. Pulling weeds? Exercise. Taking the stairs that time the elevator was broken? Exercise. Dancing in your living room? Exercise. Walking around window shopping? Exercise. Getting up off the couch? Exercise.
Set a timer for three minutes, and write down as many ways as you can think of that you have or could move your body, then plan out how you can mindfully include more of these in your day. Doesn’t this seem easier than that hour long bootcamp session you’ve been avoiding?
Day 5 | Set Yourself up for Success
Think about what you could do, research, prepare ahead of time, or plan for that will make the chances of you following through with a healthy behaviour more likely. Would freshly laundered workout clothes laid out and ready to go make it more likely you will go for a walk in the morning? Would having fresh healthy ingredients in the fridge make it more likely that you will cook a healthy meal that night? How about a small collection of weight loss recipes on hand, a bottle of water on your desk, or a healthy snack in your purse?
Day 6 | Put Together your Plan
Look back on all the strategies that you have available to you now, and choose the ones that you think will have the greatest impact on your weight loss. Choose as many or as few as you want, and that you feel confident you can maintain. Routinely review your reasons for wanting to lose weight, and make sure you celebrate your achievements in making changes… starting with today. You did it! 6 days of small challenges that are going to make a huge difference to your life. What will your challenges be next week?