Howard’s Health: How to stay on track with your weight loss goals

John Howard

John Howard

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It’s that time of year again. Time to vow that you’ll start jogging, join the gym, always eat healthily, and lose every single pound you’ve gained since you left school.

And it may start that way. But will you lose focus as you did last year, and the year before that? We all do at times, it’s only natural as work or family pressures distract us.

But with the right one to one support from someone who understands how hard it is, and how great it feels to get to goal, you can do it.

Here’s some top tips to help you keep going this year:

1) Ease into 2014 with a checklist. The smaller the changes you make, the greater the chance that you will see them through, and reach your goal.

2) Don’t be a perfectionist. So what do you do if you’ve scoffed a muffin, three pieces of toast and a chocolate bar by noon? A 300-calorie indulgence is just that. But if you see it as a failure and a reason to quit, it can turn into a thousand-calorie indulgence.” When you slip: Learn why and don’t worry. Tomorrow is a new (and healthier) day.

3) Expect setbacks. Everyone is bound to give in to temptation (hello, curry) sometimes. The danger isn’t a single splurge but letting it become an excuse for an all-out binge – and we never fully restart.

4) Don’t be on your own. It’s hard to make changes over the long term by yourself. Seek one to one support and don’t get lost in a class.

5) Reward yourself for success. Dieting is hard work -- and it’s not always fun. Small rewards can keep you going. Your reward could be new jeans, a massage, a day out. But not chocolates or curry, not yet anyway!

6) Have a maintenance strategy. For many people, losing weight is far easier than keeping it off. Plan an appointment with a professional, whether it’s a diet coach, a nutritionist, or a counsellor. An expert can help you start right and then maintain your healthy habits in to 2015.

n Diet coach John Howard supports dieters on a one to one basis from Eye, near Diss, and a Stowmarket health centre to lose about a stone a month. He can be contacted on 01379 678416, 0787 231 4653, or by email at For more details:

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