Often, achieving better fitness and weight loss outcomes isn’t a walk in the park. Studies show that of the people who aim to establish healthier habits, more than half fail to do so. That’s because many find it challenging to self-regulate their behavior when wishing to reach specific goals.
Starting on a wellness journey alone can be an isolating experience, especially when you have no guidance on the best strategies to employ and no ways to keep yourself accountable. So if you find it challenging to stick to traditional diet and workout strategies, then maybe social support is what you’re missing.
Here’s how social support can benefit fitness and weight loss outcomes–and how you can achieve it yourself.
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How social support benefits your fitness journey
Research finds that no matter the strategy you choose for fitness and weight loss, motivation to stick to that strategy is key to success. With social support, you’ll have people to cheer you on. Receiving encouragement from the people who matter to you can boost your self-confidence and push you to work harder, knowing that they believe you can reach your goals.
It can be challenging to consistently stick to workout routines and healthy diets. Your support system can provide a healthy kind of pressure that encourages you to consistently work toward your fitness and weight loss goals. By having someone to report to, you’ll be giving yourself a better sense of urgency to form healthier habits and achieve better outcomes.
Gaining new knowledge
Fitness and weight loss strategies aren’t one-size-fits-all: for example, weightlifting for strength training may not be suitable for everyone. That makes it challenging to find out what works for you, and frustrating to keep going when you have no idea what you’re supposed to do. Social support can prevent this from blocking your progress. You can use your connections to exchange knowledge about the most effective workout strategies or learn about delicious yet healthy recipes you can try!
How to maximize social support for fitness and weight loss
Join dedicated workshops
Sometimes, support from friends and family may not be enough if they don’t understand your specific circumstances. Instead, you may want to join a network of people with similar fitness and weight loss goals and experts who can offer the best advice. With a simple search for “weight loss workshops near me,” you can connect with these people in judgment-free zones and receive practical advice so you can try the best techniques possible for your needs. They can also keep you accountable for better fitness and weight loss outcomes.
Depending on your needs and preferences, you can even choose to attend these workshops online. Despite the distance, joining an online community of fitness lovers can help expand your network to all corners of the globe–and benefit from fitness knowledge wherever it can be found.
Find a workout buddy
A workout buddy with the same goals as you can provide a sense of belonging, inspire you to exercise regularly, help you with health-related questions, learn new things, and gain new experiences. Specifically exercising with someone you know can also make working out more bearable and fun, allowing you to stick to your fitness plan.
With a workout buddy, you can talk about shared fitness and weight loss struggles. Having someone who has experienced similar setbacks can motivate you by making you feel that you’re not alone in facing the same weight loss challenges. You can find a workout buddy by talking to your friends, co-workers, neighbors, or even someone at the gym.
Seek expert help
Your emotions can contribute to unhealthy eating habits, especially when stressed. Dealing with them can be integral in improving your weight loss outcomes. Having therapists or counselors in your social support network can help you address emotional issues and develop healthier coping mechanisms. That way, you won’t just be guided emotionally–you’ll also receive the support and validation you need to encourage you to engage in a healthier lifestyle.
Achieving better fitness and weight loss is a step-by-step process. By seeking help from the right people and knowing where to begin, you can be well on your way to achieving your goals.