If you want to learn how to make a plan to lose weight, it does not require a slew of complex calculations and formulas, but it does take precision. Misunderstanding how many calories are in certain foods is a major culprit to any weight loss plan, so don't let that happen to you. It may take a little extra effort to research what the caloric value of certain unlabeled foods (such as fruits, vegetables, and restaurant meals), but in the end the results will be worth it. Follow these simple steps and you will have a successful weight loss plan in no time.
- Make a easy-to-update spreadsheet of what you eat in a day. This can be in word, excel, or good old fashioned handwriting. Whatever mode works best for you, as long as it's easy to follow. From experience, it is best to have the whole week on the same page, with the values for each day in columns. That way, as you add more values as the day progresses. Everything you ate will be easy to total at the bottom of the page. Another bonus of this layout is that you can easily compare daily totals, which will help you attain a weekly goal.
- Pay more attention to weekly goals rather than daily goals. Following a weight loss plan can get discouraging when you find you have gained weight after eating well the previous day. When factoring in water weight and the rate at which your body processes foods, what you eat the day before is not always a perfect indicator of what the next day on the scale will bring. On the other side, if the scale says you've lost a pound overnight, don't get too excited. Most of that is water weight and you shouldn't look to lose more than a couple pounds per week (if you're looking to diet in a healthy way that will keep the weight off). As long as you keep track of what you eat and stay within your caloric limits, you should only get on the scale once a week in order to track actual progress.
- Allow an unplanned "splurge day." A successful weight loss plan has to have wiggle room. Most importantly, unplanned wiggle room. For instance, if you dub Fridays to be your "splurge day," you will find that it will be too easy to go all-out just because "you can." Then, when Saturday night rolls around and you didn't plan on your buddy bringing over a case of calorie-filled beers, you end up having two "splurge days." So, by just playing it by ear, it will be easier to handle unexpected situations. However, keep in mind that weekend nights tend to have more unplanned food scenarios than weeknights.
Follow these tips and you will be sure to make a weight loss plan that will yield the results you are looking for.