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Fat Loss Mindset

Reward yourself daily to accelerate your fat loss

Written by Liam Marshall | Thursday 21st Jul 2022 |

Do you ever set yourself rewards for completing certain tasks? If not, you could be missing a big trick that can help you on your fat loss journey.

Discover how rewarding yourself daily can help accelerate you towards your ultimate fat loss goal.

Why should you reward yourself?

Rewards make up a pivotal part of the habit loop and encourage us to repeat positive behaviours.

When it comes to your fat loss journey, creating positive habits is an integral part of your success. A habit is a small decision or action you perform each day, which over time will lead you to your end goal. In fact, around 45% of our daily actions stem from habitual behaviour.

James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits (one of our favourite books), states:

“Your life today is essentially the sum of your habits. How in shape or out of shape you are? A result of your habits. How happy or unhappy you are? A result of your habits. How successful or unsuccessful you are? A result of your habits.”

Habits are important – but where do rewards come into it?

Well, the process of building a habit is divided into 4 stages:

The four stages of habit from James Clear's Atomic Habits

The Four Stages of Habit from ‘Atomic Habit’ by James Clear

Rewarding yourself is the end goal of any habit and each of the previous steps feeds into it.

Your cue is about noticing the reward, your craving is about wanting the reward, the response is about getting the reward, and the reward is… well, the reward.

It’s important to reward yourself as this will help you to learn, but will also provide you with satisfaction. This sense of satisfaction will help you develop positive associations with a task and tells your brain you enjoy it, meaning you’re more likely to repeat it in future.

By rewarding yourself you can build new habits which will progress you towards your fat loss goal.

Rewarding yourself can help you lose weight

How can you reward yourself?

Some rewards will be more conscious than others. After all, you repeat so many habits each day that you’re probably not even aware of most of them.

When you walk into a dark room (cue), you crave light and respond by flicking a light switch – light is your reward.

But not all rewards have to be so minuscule. Rewarding yourself on a more conscious level will also help you to progress.

Think about this scenario:

  1. You go to put on your favourite jeans and find they no longer fit (cue)
  2. A desire is sparked to return to your former weight (craving)
  3. You adhere to a calorie deficit and increase your movement to lose fat (response)
  4. You achieve your fat loss goal and reward yourself with a new pair of jeans (because you deserve more than an old pair from the back of the wardrobe, even if they were your favourite!)

This is just an example, and not all rewards have to be costly or over the top. Remember, you should be able to repeat them daily. If you wake up and successfully complete your morning routine, reward yourself with a mug of coffee – it’s that easy!

However, there’s a but… if you don’t choose your reward wisely, it won’t help you build your habit.

If your reward doesn’t satisfy a craving, then it’s not likely to help you build those associations that will get you to repeat your habit. In fact, it’s going to do the opposite.

A reward that doesn’t fulfil your craving will make you less likely to repeat the habit in future, which could hinder your progression.

So, make sure you consider carefully how to reward yourself in each situation to ensure that you’re going to want to repeat it down the line.

Everyone is different and so what satisfies you as a reward will differ from person to person, and will depend on your goal.

How are you going to reward yourself for a job well done?

To learn more about how you can build habits that will set you up for success on your weight loss journey, click here to apply for coaching.

Written by Liam Marshall

Liam is Body Smart's copywriter. He studied Creative Writing at Edge Hill University before embarking on his content career, having ventured into the worlds of magazine publishing and digital journalism before joining the Body Smart content team.

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