Weight Maintenance

Maintaining weight

Maintaining weight loss takes a different approach than losing the weight. You can do it, and you can make it easier by following advice from people who have been there and kept the pounds off for years, and even decades.

This is only an estimate and is meant to give an idea of what to aim for. If you do not match this weight exactly, don’t be alarmed. Please note that this guideline does not account for increased muscle mass, pregnancy, illness, etc.

If you’re thinking that reaching your goal weight means you can finally slack off when it comes to exercise, then it’s time to change that thinking right now. The fact is that people who are successful at maintaining their weight loss over time do as much or more physical activity than they did while losing weight.

According to the Framingham Study (the largest ongoing study ever conducted on what it takes to maintain weight loss over time), here’s what the successful “maintainers” have in common when it comes to physical activity:

  • They spend an hour or more per day doing some kind of moderate-intensity physical activity
  • They typically burn between 2,000 and 3,000 calories per week (on average) with exercise
  • They watch less than 16 hours of TV per week, and usually less than 2 hours per day
  • They incorporate a significant amount of physical activity into their daily routines, often by doing many things the “old-fashioned way,” without using modern labor-saving devices.
  • Experiment to find things that work for you. Some ideas: Get into your garden, go for a walk, torch stress (and calories) with a serious workout, do yoga to chill out, or connect with a friend
    • Continued adherence to diet and exercise strategies, low levels of depression and disinhibition, and medical triggers for weight loss are also associated with long-term success. National Weight Control Registry members provide evidence that long-term weight loss maintenance is possible and help identify the specific approaches associated with long-term success.

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