Weight loss is process that consists of 6 stages.
Stage 1 is when you learn the causes of overeating. Stage 2 is when you create your weight loss plan. Stage 3 is when you start to apply your plan to your life. Stage 4 is when you practice your plan. Stage 5 is when you master your plan. And stage 6 is when you look to the future.
If you want to learn more about each stage, click here to read The 6 Stages Of Losing Weight.
The creation of your weight loss plan is in the second stage. Although this is a really important part of the process, make sure to remember it's just one of six stages.
With that said, in this stage, you'll start by creating your protocol and your exception protocol. Then, you'll create your meal plan. These three things make up your weight loss plan.
Your protocol is a commitment you make for the rest of your life for how you want to fuel your body.
It's basically a list of the foods you'll allow yourself to eat.
And because you'll use your protocol for the rest of your life, make sure you include foods that you'll actually eat.
I strongly suggest you don't include foods with sugar, flour, or concentrated foods. And if you want to learn why, read The 2 Root Causes Of Overeating.
Here's some food suggestions for you to consider including on your protocol:
After you create your protocol, create your exception protocol.
Your exception protocol may include foods with sugar, flour, and concentrated foods if you want it to.
Your exception protocol is a list of foods you'll allow yourself to eat occasionally.
The goal is to learn how to eat these kinds of foods in a manageable way.
After you create your protocol and exception protocol, use them to create your meal plan.
Some people like to create daily meal plans. Some like weekly meal plans. Others like monthly meal plans.
I recommend you create a weekly meal plan.
Pick a day and time each week that you'll sit down to create a meal plan for the upcoming week. I complete mine on Sundays at 10:00am.
On that day and time, sit down and write out your meal plan for the upcoming week.
Will you eat 2 or 3 meals a day?
What will you eat at each meal?
The most important part about creating a meal plan is that you're planning at least 24 hours in advance. Why? Because it's more likely you're using the part of your brain that takes your long term goals into account. And you're more likely to make good food decisions.
One of your weekly meals should be from your exception protocol. You include that meal into your plan the exact same way as all your other meals.
I've got 3 tips for you as you create your meal plan.
Tip #1: Keep It Simple
If you like to cook and you've got the time, then skip this tip. Feel free to complicate away.
But if you don't like to cook or you're strapped for time, I recommend you keep it simple. Don't overcomplicate it. Stick to meals that are quick and easy to create.
I rarely use a cookbook or create meals that require recipes. For me, one meal could be eggs, spinach, and goat cheese. And another meal could be fish and bok choy.
I keep it simple and never overcomplicate it.
Tip #2: Listen To Your Body
I used to feel sick when I ate eggs. Now, I eat eggs a few times each week.
My husband has always loved eggs. He never feels sick when he eats them.
The point is that all of our bodies are different. So, as you create a protocol and meal plan for yourself, think about which foods make you feel the best.
I would never suggest using a plan that someone else creates for you. Only you know which foods feel best inside your body. And only you can create a plan that will work for you in the long term.
And just like my body changed over time when it came to eggs, yours may change over time too. When you're conscious of how your body feels when you eat foods, you'll be able to quickly recognize when something changes and adjust your plan over time.
Tip #3: Test Your Plan
Approach this like a scientist conducting an experiment.
Start by creating your first protocol and meal plan and accept that they won't be perfect.
When you start to apply your plan to your life, your focus will be on testing the plan.
Let's say it's Monday at lunchtime and your meal plan tells you to eat a green salad with tuna. You'll eat that green salad with tuna and you'll pay attention to how it makes your body feel.
Do you physically feel good or bad?
If you feel good, then you'll make a note of that and include that particular meal in your meal plan in an upcoming week.
Be a scientist. Create a plan. Then, test your plan.
Weight loss consists of 6 stages. The second stage is creating your weight loss plan.
Start by creating your protocol and exception protocol. Then, use them each week to create your meal plan.
Plan your food at least 24 hours in advance. Keep it simple, listen to your body, and test your plan.
And make sure to have a little fun along the way.
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