Weight loss is a different proposition for a woman over the age of 40. As women get older, it becomes harder and harder to lose weight. Diets that might have worked in the past are no longer effective. Unfortunately, for most women over 40, the only methods they are aware of for losing weight are diets.
If you’re over 40 and are genuinely fed up with your weight, then turning to diets is the wrong way to go because they don’t provide lasting results. In my experience, women over 40 are sick of yoyo dieting and want a more long term solution.
From this point of view, let me show you the 9 steps that every woman over 40 should take to lose weight and keep it off:
1. Don’t Think About Losing ALL Your Excess Weight… Yet
Rather than setting a large goal and getting disappointed by how far away it is, I always recommend setting a short term goal. The short term goal that I usually find to be the best is one stone (6.35kg or 14 pounds). It’s a significant amount of weight but I have also found that with my clients it is relatively easy to achieve.
2. Don’t set a deadline
This seems to go against most goal-setting advice, but it is actually very important for long term weight loss that you abandon deadlines. If you are trying to lose weight for a deadline, you will be more tempted to use short term fixes that involve depriving yourself rather than changing your habits which is more of a long term solution.
3. Make small changes
Don’t do it all at once. With no deadline, you can take it easy. Make very small changes each week that eventually add up. Slow and steady wins the race.
4. Lifelong change
Make sure every change you make is one that you are happy to do for the rest of your life. Most people trying to lose weight make drastic changes because they want to get their results quickly. But in the back of their mind, they know that they won’t be sticking to these changes forever. But of course if you don’t stick to the changes, you will simply start gaining weight back.
5. Make it pleasant
Ensure that you can still eat out, travel and do other enjoyable things. If your weight loss method involves depriving yourself of all the fun in life, then it is probably going to fail very soon. This is where many “diets” fail. They are too unpleasant to continue for life.
6. Get someone to help you along the way
Aside from showing my clients how to lose weight without dieting, I think the most valuable things I do for my clients are shouldering some or most of their worries and anxiety about their weight, reassuring them that they are on the right track and keeping them going at times when they might otherwise have given up.
7. Keep perspective on what a realistic rate of weight loss is.
In this world of unrealistic weight loss claims (“Lose 30 pounds in 10 days”), most women do not have accurate expectations for what a good rate of weight loss is for someone over 40. Remember, even losing a pound a week adds up to a 2 stone in six months.
8. Have a plan for coping with difficult situations.
Life doesn’t make way for people losing weight. Rather than trying to suspend your life while trying to lose weight, you have to learn to cope with all the different situations that occur in a normal busy life. This involves anticipating and planning for them in advance.
9. Think of setbacks as learning experiences.
Sorry to say, but you will experience setbacks while trying to lose weight. It happens to everyone. But whereas most people respond to a bad week by giving up, the best way to deal with them is to learn what went wrong and how you can avoid it happening again.
There are so many women over 40 out there who have become convinced after years of failure that there is something wrong with them and that they can’t lose weight. But this isn’t true. Diets are the real culprit here. For women over 40 who want a long term solution to their weight loss, taking an approach that is slow and steady and focussed on changing habits will pay far greater dividends.
Dr. Khandee Ahnaimugan (Dr. K) is a medical doctor, weight loss expert and author of the best-selling book, “Slim and Healthy without Dieting”. He provides individual consulting programmes for people wanting to lose weight without dieting. Try his 7 Day “How to Lose Weight without Dieting” Email Course for FREE at www.doctorkweightloss.com