Losing weight can be a lot of work and even more so if your work and personal schedules do not leave a lot of extra time for you. Between working all day, shuttling the kids to extracurricular activities and staying social with your friends, it is often hard to find the time to work on yourself and your health. Actually, losing weight can be hard but making plans or small changes will help you reach your goals without having to make huge sacrifices.

However, despite your busy schedules, you can lose weight by following these helpful tips.

MAKE A SCHEDULE AND STICK TO IT: If you have multiple appointments, meetings and commitments every day, it may seem like you don’t have time to work out. But if you treat your workout session just as you would any other appointment, as something that you cannot skip, you will be more likely to stick to it. Just at the beginning of the week, look at your calendar and schedule workouts during free-time and don’t break that schedule.

GET WORKOUTS DONE IN THE MORNING: When we leave workouts until the end of the day, they are more likely to be pushed aside because we had to work late or we want to hang out with friends. If you schedule your workout first thing in the morning, there is a better chance you will not have to skip it in place of another commitment.

MAKE A MEAL PLAN: On weekends especially on Sunday, make a plan for the meals you are going to make for the week. If you make a plan and then prepare for your meals, you will be more likely to eat a well-balanced and healthy meal as opposed to unhealthy ones such as junks along the street. You don’t have to make a whole week’s worth of meals in one day, just preparing some of the ingredients ahead of time will make it easier to throw something healthy together quickly.

MAKE HEALTHY FOOD VISIBLE: If you have your fruit in a bowl on the counter or inside see-through containers in the refrigerator, it will be easier to make a healthy choice. If your healthy foods are hidden away, you are more likely to grab the salty chips or crackers in your storeroom or pantry. If you are worried that you will be tempted by unhealthy snacks, clean out your pantry and get rid of anything that will be tempting and throw your diet off track.

HAVE A CLOSE FRIEND OR BUDDY: If you recruit a friend or co-worker who is trying to lose weight too, suggest working out together to keep each other motivated. You can schedule gym sessions before work or lunch break walks. Having someone to talk to about your weight loss journey will help keep you motivated and accountable.

KEEP HEALTHY SNACKS AT HAND: If you are running around to meet up with your appointments when you get hungry, it can be easy to grab sugar-laden snacks, which are not good for your health. Instead of stopping at the corner store, keep healthy snacks in your purse, car or desk. Be sure to read labels if you are buying pre-packaged snacks, so you get the most out of it. Pay attention to things like sugar and salt content, as many ‘healthy’ snacks are actually filled with these additives.

WEEKEND WORKOUTS: If you are not able to fit in the number of workouts you want during the week, schedule some of your workouts during the weekend when you do not have work. This will help you keep your weekly schedule a little more relaxed and allow you to focus on a longer or more effective workout.

SET YOUR ACHIEVABLE GOALS: Setting achievable goals is an important part of losing weight and setting SMART goals is an important part of reaching your goals. I know you may ask; what are SMART goal? SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound goals. Did you get that now? If your goals are all of these things, you will have an easier time not only with sticking to your goals but also reaching them all.

MAINTAIN A BALANCE: When losing weight, it is important not to work yourself too hard. If you overwork yourself, you will get burnt out and your goals will get off-track. So, make sure you are getting enough sleep, treat yourself once in a while and keep a positive attitude about your journey even if it isn’t going how you want it to go.

The bottom line is, losing weight is all about making time for yourself and making choices that will help you reach your goals. By planning and holding yourself accountable, you will be able to make staying active and healthy a part of your busy schedule.

Edited from PUNCH

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