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How to Kick Start Your Weight-Loss Journey

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, 8 min read

How to Kick Start Your Weight-Loss Journey

So, you’ve decided to embark on a weight loss journey and you’re wondering how to get started? We’ve got you covered! 

We know that changing habits is tough. With an overwhelming amount of information online, it can be difficult to know where to start.

Together, let’s explore 4 vital elements to consider when kick starting weight loss, to maximise your chances of reaching your goals and sustaining them once achieved!

Determine Your Weight Loss ‘Why’

Having a solid ‘why’ for weight loss is important, as this is what you will be holding on to when the going gets tough. Our ‘why’ is the reason we do something, which can be based on two factors:

  • Intrinsic (internal) motivation: this comes from finding something personally rewarding e.g. feeling more confident
  • Extrinsic (external) motivation: this comes from wanting to gain an external reward e.g. validation from others

If your weight loss goals stem from conforming to current beauty standards, they may be unreachable or leave you feeling unfulfilled, as these standards frequently shift with trends. Likewise, wanting to lose weight to gain someone’s validation may be equally distressing since being of a certain physical appearance does not guarantee another person or group of people will like or validate you. 

Instead, motivation should come from within. For example, you may want to lose weight to feel better in yourself and be more confident, to be a healthier parent, or to benefit your overall health. Being mostly (not necessarily only) motivated by intrinsic factors will support your weight loss journey long-term. Everyone has different views on what the best way to live their life is and if you determine your own goals you will have a better chance of reaching them and feeling accomplished.

What to do when your motivation dips?

There may come a time when even intrinsic factors won’t motivate you to stay on track and that’s totally normal! Let’s face it, sometimes we may feel resistance and we “just don’t want to” do something. In this case, relying on discipline rather than motivation will help you stick to your plan of action. 

Because motivation relies on emotion and our emotions change every day, it cannot be relied on for long-term success. Motivation may be responsible for starting your weight-loss journey, but not necessarily for maintaining it. Self-discipline allows us to complete the necessary actions towards our goals, even when we lack motivation.

Embrace a Positive Weight Loss Mindset

You may have tried to lose weight many times in the past, or you may have even succeeded and regained it back, and that’s okay. Focusing on the here-and-now allows us to start fresh and give ourselves a fair shot without being weighed down by negative self-talk and memories of past failed attempts. Most of us underestimate the importance of mindset for weight-loss!

One thing to remember is that weight loss takes time and patience – you did not gain the weight overnight, and you therefore cannot expect to lose it overnight! 

Sustainable weight loss is about making small but consistent changes over a long period of time, rather than attempting to make drastic changes within short periods of time, no matter how tempting.

According to research, half of those who lose weight regain it within two years, and 80% regain it by year five, an astounding statistic that deserves some contemplation. The idea is to only need to lose weight once, and then simply work on maintaining it.

Understanding that weight loss is a result of establishing healthy habits that will last is one way of setting yourself up for success. The habits that you will develop on your weight loss journey are the exact same habits that will help you keep the weight off!

Get Clarity on the State of Your Current Diet and Lifestyle

Establishing your weight loss goal should not be taken lightly and would ideally be consulted with your healthcare professional (for example, the eMed healthcare technicians) who will be able to provide guidance. While weight loss is personal, it’s important to know your healthy weight range since being under or overweight can put one at risk of serious health conditions. It’s also important to recognise when you should be concerned about weight loss.

There are two main components influencing weight loss that we need to consider in order to identify opportunities for change:

  • Energy intake (comes from food and drinks consumed).
  • Energy expenditure (used up through exercise and other activities).

One study found subjects underreported their actual food intake by 47% and over-reported their physical activity by 51%, which may be unintentional and simply due to human error. Not being fully aware of one’s energy intake and expenditure may contribute to a lack of results which would in turn lead a person to feeling discouraged and abandon their goals.

Ways to easily assess your energy intake and energy expenditure:

  • Gain clarity on your current food intake: Keep a 2-to-3-day food and drink diary. Write down or take photos of what you eat, in order to gain an understanding of the amount of food you are eating and identify areas of improvement. 
    Tip:  Choose two days during the week and one on the weekend, as weekends tend to look a little different for most, which is completely normal.
  • Gain clarity on your current activity levels: Keep track of your daily steps on your phone’s app, make note of any workout sessions you do (duration and type), as well as any non-exercise activity such as housework or gardening. 

Gaining insight into your current diet and lifestyle will help you set realistic goals that are tailored to you and your individual needs. Diet and exercise are unique to each of us and we all have different starting points. Determining where you are at the moment and understanding where you want to get to will help you build your very own weight loss plan of action. 

Here are a couple of examples of what we mean:

  • Your food portions: Reviewing your portion sizes in comparison to the recommended amounts will help you understand if you are over- or undereating. As an example, realising your current cereal portion is twice the recommended amount will help you work towards reducing those portions, and replacing the excess with other, more satiating food like Greek yoghurt to keep you feeling fuller for longer and support your weight loss goals.
  • Your daily exerciseKnowing your step count will give you a starting point from where you can increase your daily walking. If you’re currently completing one 20-minute walk per day during lunchtime, you may wish to add another walk in the evening, hence doubling your physical activity for the day and thus supporting your weight loss goals.

Focus on Your ‘Low-Hanging Fruits’ first

As touched upon earlier, many people attempt to achieve all their weight loss goals relating to their diet and lifestyle within a short period of time or even overnight! 

Attempting to complete 5 gym sessions per week, achieve 10k steps per day, eat regular healthy home cooked meals, drink 2 litres of water per day, cut out alcohol and sleep 8 hours per night will be too overwhelming for most of us, leading to us throwing in the towel and feeling as though our goals are too far out of our reach!

Even if we do manage to achieve this for a short period, having this many goals at once will most likely be impossible to maintain!

To set yourself up for success, experts advise to focus on the so-called ‘low hanging fruit’ to kick start your weight loss journey. These are things that for you are the easiest to achieve – quick wins, if you will. 

Some examples of low hanging fruit may be:

  • Drink more water
  • Eat breakfast
  • Eat more vegetables
  • Walk more
  • Drink less sugary drinks

Picking no more than 1-3 areas to work on to begin with will make your journey manageable and as you start hitting these goals, your confidence and motivation will increase. This will compel you to set new, bigger goals along the way, motivating you forward and enhancing your weight loss success. 

How you set goals will make a huge difference to your weight loss success. Experts recommend setting SMART goals - the acronym stands for:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Time-Bound

Some examples of goals that aren’t SMART are:: 

  • “To be more active” 
  • “To drink more water”
  • “To eat more vegetables

These kinds of goals don’t tell us anything about how or when these goals will be achieved and thus do not allow us to track success and celebrate results. 

On the other hand, some examples of SMART goals may be:

  • “To work out 45 mins, 3 times a week” 
  • “To drink a glass of water with each meal”
  • “To add an extra portion of vegetables to my dinner”

SMART goals create clarity and accountability, allowing you to recognise when a goal is completed and increase motivation.


This post provided some tips on how to kickstart your weight loss journey. Are you ready to start reflecting on your ‘why’, keep a food and activity diary and start setting some SMART goals? Our healthcare technicians will be happy to provide some further support on your weight loss journey should you need it!

eMed Weight Management Program: A Holistic Approach to Obesity

The eMed Weight Management Programme offers a comprehensive approach to weight loss that includes GLP-1 medication for appetite reduction, free mental healthcare, physio appointments, and personalised treatment plans. It emphasises a holistic view of health, addressing physical and mental aspects together. The programme operates entirely online, providing ongoing support, check-ins, and medication adjustments. It's designed based on the individual's lifestyle, eating patterns, health history, and weight loss goals, aiming for realistic, sustainable outcomes.

For further information you can visit eMed Weight Management Programme webpage.


  • International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. Motivation, self-determination, and long-term weight control. Link
  • Medical Clinics of North America. Maintenance of lost weight and long-term management of obesity. Link
  • NHS. Tips to help you lose weight. Link
  • The New England Journal of Medicine. Discrepancy between self-reported and actual caloric intake and exercise in obese subjects. Link

SAGE Open Medicine. SMART goals setting and biometric changes in obese adults with multimorbidity: Secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial. Link

The information provided is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Seek the advice of a doctor with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never delay seeking or disregard professional medical advice because of something you have read here.

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