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In our experience, there are almost as many reasons for people wanting to lose weight as there are carbohydrates in a loaf of bread! People may wish to improve their physical appearance, to improve self-esteem, to overcome food addictions, to improve their overall health, to overcome depression Éthe list is endless.

What is driving you?

What outcomes are you aiming for?

At times on any weight loss program, you will feel like giving in to your weaker side. When you are feeling down, focus on the whole reason that you are making this positive step in your life. Focus on the pleasure that reaching your goal will give you.

Think of it like this:

* 20% of change is knowing how to make the positive change.

* 80% is knowing why you want to change.

No matter what type of weight-loss program you are following, someone will tell you how to change your diet. However, no-one can tell you why you want to make those changes - the 80% is up to you!

It is your desire for change that has led you to this point. If your desire is strong enough you will succeed in reaching all of your goals. One of the best ways to keep yourself focused and motivated is to write down your goals on a piece of paper that you can keep referring back to. Keep it in your wallet or purse, stick it on the fridge or bathroom mirror - anywhere you feel comfortable keeping it. Refer to this often so that you constantly remind yourself why you are doing this in the first place.

Small goals.

Although you have probably decided how much weight you want to lose in total, we think you should focus to be on the "small steps" required to get there. Rather than focusing all your efforts on the end goal, set yourself a realistic weekly target and aim to achieve that first.

"Bag of spuds."

If the baggy clothes, extra energy and increased motivation are not enough to show you how much weight you are losing try a bag of potatoes. Once you've lost 5 kilos, go into a supermarket and pick up a 5 kilo bag of potatoes. Carry that bag for one lap around the store. By the time you've walked one lap not only will your arms be tired but your heart rate will have increased.

Remember, your body has been carrying that weight around with it everyday for some time - what a relief to finally be able to put that bag of potatoes down! Now focus on the next 5 kilos.