Make Dieting a Game

I know that dieting isn’t fun. Having to stop and think about what you are doing or eating takes extra time, so how do you motivate yourself to get started when you know you need to drop a few pounds? First, congratulate yourself if you only have a few pounds to drop. Your commitment will be much lengthier if you have 20, 30, 40 or more to lose. Either way, a good way to begin to diet is make a sport out of it.

For a bargain hunter, it is the thrill of the hunt. Maybe your budget isn’t squeezed as tightly as a 10 pound sausage in an 8 pound bag and you don’t need to pinch pennies to survive. For many of us in this economy, we are pinching pennies like never before. For example, one local grocery store discounts fresh vegetables as they are getting close to expiration. The price is usually marked down 50-75%. When I see this markdown, I will buy it, just for the sport. And yes, I will consume it and not let it go bad. One can get used to playing the bargain hunting game and will continue to play it to see how well they can do. This is good method to use in making your dieting fun!

Reviewing Diet Basics
We all know to lose weight that we must cut back on calorie consumption and up the exercise factor to lose weight. We all know that 3,500 calories equals one pound. For every 3,500 calories we cut back, we lose 1 pound. We all remember to lose weight and keep our metabolism stoked, we must drink plenty of water (64+ oz/daily) and be sure to eat breakfast so our body won’t go into a starvation mode or so you won’t overeat later. Eating 3 small to medium meals + a couple of small snacks is a good way to get the metabolic furnace going. I mention these basics as sometimes people can tend to forget them.

Let’s Make Dieting Fun
Here is a way to play a game and compete against yourself, kind of like doing a crossword puzzle. There are many ways to track your food consumption and exercise output, but this particular way is effective and fun for me.

  1. You can make a form using your computer and keep an electronic copy.
  2. You can print the forms and write the information in by hand.
  3. Take a spiral notebook and draw a grid that shows each mean and calories consumed. (This is the option that I am into at the moment)

Setting up for the Game:
I have made a grid for: breakfast, lunch, dinner & snacks on a page in a spiral notebook. I have subtotal spaces for each meal calories intake and a total at the bottom. To the far right, I track the amount of water I am drinking. On the upper left corner of the page I have listed exercise and on the top right corner of the page, I put my calorie goal. The spiral notebook approach works for me because I am a tactile type, I enjoy a Filofax calendar to a digital one. Do whatever method that speaks to you.

Here is the Game
Now you think of your diet tracking as playing “diet” Bingo! Look at your “scorecard”, your grid and plan your moves like you were playing Chess or checkers. Plan your daily meals. Keep them as simple as possible for easier tracking and for keeping calorie counts down. I am taking joy in looking at what I can eat and what I have to do to keep it in the budget. Feeling victorious will encourage you to stick to this plan as long as you need to.

The first couple of days on a diet are an adjustment. If you have been eating huge amounts, a good suggestion would be to stair step your way down to lower amounts for a week, otherwise, you’ll throw yourself into calorie shock and you will be more apt to blow your diet and be mad at yourself. After the first couple of days, you will be on to smooth sailing to making your diet successful.

Look at dieting as a sport and have some fun with it. Put your focus on winning with your diet score card so then you can win with the scale. Having fun with the process will definitely improve your chances for success. What are you waiting for?

About Northside Class of '74

Northside Highschool Class of 74: and we are also on
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