Want to lose weight? What are your options?

Congratulations!  You have decided to make 2016 your goal to get back into shape.  Please know that you are in good company as more than 66% of Americans making their annual resolution focus on fitness.  The downside is that by the 7-day mark almost 25% have already given up on their resolution and by the 12-week mark more than 50% have given up on their goal.  Whether you are one that does or does not do a new year’s resolution, chances are that weight loss is something you are considering and most likely may need some professional help.

With so many choices in weight loss programs, it is hard to know which one is your right path towards sustainable weight loss and, ultimately, weight control.  This article will compare the top four approaches to weight loss and offer a guide to help you determine which one is right for you.  

Option 1: The Fitness Center

The fitness center is easily identifiable as it is loaded with fitness equipment.  You will know you are in a fitness center because it will be packed for the month of January and February only to slowly return to normal flow by April or May.  

The fitness center provides access to excellent equipment and, in some cases, group exercise classes.  Whether you use your membership or not, it is up to you and know that the odds are not in your favor.  According to an industry report over 67% of fitness center or health club members do not actually use their membership.  

Also, fitness centers typically focus exclusively on the physical fitness aspects of weight loss.  Some centers bring in the use of supplements, however it is secondary to their primary function of getting you physically fit.

Option 2: The Weight Loss Center

The weight loss center typically consists of group discussion rooms or one-on-one private meeting rooms.  In these rooms, you discuss your food intake and determine what is needed in order for you to lose the necessary pounds within the necessary timeframe.  Most of the time, supplements are recommended and exercise is discouraged as the supplements will increase your respiration rate and, subsequently, your metabolic rate.  

However, with most weight loss centers, they are concerned with providing you quick results and so by the time you have reached your target weight you are no longer interested in learning the sustainability side of weight loss.  The supplements go away and unfortunately 95% of the time, your weight will return within a short period of time from reaching your target.  

These types of center are focused on your nutritional intake and will use supplements successfully to allow you to achieve your weight targets within the shortest period of time.  Finally, you are surrounded by like minded individuals who share your common goal.

Option 3:  The Lifestyle Improvement Center

This is a relatively new concept in the health and wellness industry.  A lifestyle improvement center combines precise aspects of a weight loss center with certain aspects of a fitness center and surrounds it with emotional support via a personal health coach.

A lifestyle improvement center typically offers group fitness and group educational courses, 1 on 1 health coaching sessions, nutritional guidance, and personalized physical fitness routines.  Because a health coach is assigned to you, they become familiar with all aspects of your weight loss process and will hold you accountable to your goals.  No more giving up on yourself!

Some lifestyle improvement centers offer a 24×7 accessible private fitness facility for you to exercise within comfortably.  This type of facility allows you to access as needed and not be intimidated by other more fit members that you would find in a standard fitness center.  Supplements are not recommended as the facility will discuss lifestyle change over supplementing one’s lifestyle.  Like the weight loss center, you are also surrounded by like minded individuals sharing a common goal.

Option 4: The Lone Wolf

The lone wolf is very similar to the lifestyle improvement center but is done outside a formal process.  A lot of self-education occurs along the way and you may find yourself digesting a steep learning curve around weight loss, as there is a lot of misinformation out in popular media around successful weight loss strategies.  

The lone wolf requires a high level of discipline and interest in health and behavior change in order to not only lose the initial weight but also be able to keep it off.

Which option is right for me?

Below are four simple questions to help you get on the right track.  Identify which one most resonates with you.

  1. I believe that exercise alone will help me achieve my weight loss targets.  I can hold myself accountable to workout, as needed.
  2. I want to lose weight in the shortest period of time. I am willing to forego short term lean muscle growth in order to achieve my weight loss targets.
  3. I have tried other diets in the past and nothing has worked. Based on this, I am now willing to modify my lifestyle in order to achieve lasting weight loss goals.
  4. I am very disciplined and can accomplish anything I focus my efforts towards.  I have a high level of interest in health and behavior change, therefore I am willing to learn the elements needed to be successful long-term.

If answer one best represents where you currently are in your weight loss journey, then a fitness center is probably best for you.  You can augment your fitness center experience by using a personal trainer to develop personalized fitness programs that will optimize your workouts for weight loss.  The personal trainer may recommend supplements based on what they feel is needed for you.

If answer two best represents where you are currently in your weight loss journey, then a weight loss center is probably best for you.  Weight loss centers can typically provide rapid weight loss as they speed up your metabolism and decrease your calories via supplements and diet.  They may provide some lifestyle coaching but may be difficult to follow as you will be using the supplements simultaneously.  

If answer three best represents where you are currently in your weight loss journey, then a lifestyle improvement center is probably the best for you.  As a member, you will be assigned a health coach that will personally work with your physical, nutritional and emotional needs as you progress through lifestyle change.  Successful lifestyle change is accomplished via small tweaks from where you are, not large changes conforming you to a specific diet and/or fitness routine.  Your health coach will work on such problems as prioritizing your health in your life and/or finding a healthy balance between the various roles you play in life.

If answer four best represents where you are currently in your weight loss program, then you are a rare bird!  Go forth and get it done.  Why are you even reading this article, you should already be halfway there!

There are so many weight loss programs out on the market today.  We have just touched the major buckets where you can find a solution that meets your needs.  Once you identify the solution that is right for you, go online and research the program.  Read the reviews on Facebook and/or Google and determine which is the best for you, then act.  Because one thing is guaranteed. If weight loss is your goal this year and you decide to put it off till tomorrow, that day will never come. You will be thinking about 2017, the way you were thinking about 2016, but now maybe 5 to 10 lbs heavier.

Want to learn more about LightenUp Fitness’s lifestyle improvement center? Please contact us.

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