You’ve spent one solid year building and following your healthy habits consistently. You finally exercise for 3-4 intense workout sessions a week. You’re eating vegetables with every meal, ones that you didn’t even know existed a year ago! Animal and plant based protein is a part of almost all of your meals and snacks. All of this hard work has led you to lose that 20 pounds you were looking to shed. You are proud, happy, strong and more energetic…but what does the road a head look like? You’ve followed your healthy living habits to reach your strength and body goals, but now what? How do you move into a healthy living maintenance stage? A lot of my clients who reach this point, aren’t sure of the road a head. They aren’t sure how to maintain the body, strength and energy they’ve achieved. Here’s what I tell them…
2 Strategies to Follow in the Strength and Body Maintenance Stage
First of all, congratulations! You have done a great job making the lifestyle changes that you needed to, in order to successfully reach your physique goals. Now that you’re where you want to be, we have to change your mindset a little to the ‘forever’ term. This is how to stay healthy in the maintenance stage.
1. Spend time discovering your deeper ‘WHY’.
Having the goal of staying the exact way that you are, often isn’t as exciting as losing inches and building strength. Now that you’ve hit your weight or strength goals, you have to dig deeper to stay motivated. You have to figure our why your new physique is something you want to maintain for the long-term. Your why, should give you a clear reason to do the hard, long-term stuff when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle. This deeper meaning and purpose helps you avoid getting caught up in daily struggles, like the ups and downs you’ll always see on your scale. It keeps you focussed on exercise, movement and eating right, for the long-term. Writing down your reason why, can help; learn more in this video.
2. Aim for 80% consistency.
To maintain your new physique forever, it is all about being consistent with your habits. I’ve found that you have to follow your healthy habits 80% of the time to maintain results. This gives you 20% of your meal occasions (a maximum of 4 meals a week) to enjoy yourself a little more. If I told you that you could never eat pizza or enjoy a glass of wine again, you’d think I was crazy, and I would be! At the maintenance stage, it’s all about following your habits most of the time. Track your consistency; if you fall off track for one meal or day, do not miss following your healthy habit twice or the bad actions start becoming the new habit. If you’re finding the habit you’re working on is too difficult to stick with over the long term, break it into a smaller and slightly easier task for you to achieve it more regularly. It’s all about being consistent with your habits at least 80% of the time.
To Sum it up…The Maintenance Stage
For life-long weight maintenance you have to be more flexible in your thinking and habit following. Trust yourself to course correct and become either a little stricter or a little more free when you need to be. Know your deep reason ‘why’ you want to maintain your new physique, and follow your habits 80% of the time. These 2 strategies will help you stick with your plan over the long-term. Eating well and moving more really does make you feel better. When you feel better, you’ll be more inclined to stick with your healthy habits!