Giant Weight Loss Goals Need Many Mini Milestones

Endless road

My BIG total weight loss goal is a somewhat overwhelming 123lbs, or 55.8 kilo. It’s not even alright if you say it fast. But it is what it is. I may get there. If I get even half way, I’ll be putting out the bunting. (In truth, having waved a not-so-fond farewell to 40 lbs since September I’m almost at the one-third mark and there is already cause for celebration.)

At the moment though, I’m psyched up and going for the whole nine yards.

But with so much weight to lose, that end goal is a long way away. Whilst it demands to be acknowledged, it’s hard, after a lifetime of yoyo dieting, to cheerily own it, as if all I have to do is visualise myself in that spray-on party dress, micro-bikini (bikinis at 55 – maybe not) or oh-so-chic tailoring, and it will be so. I’m all for positive thinking but I’ve fought this fight a few times already and I know it’s going to need more than that.

With the big goal so… big… what I need to keep me going is a set of interim goals or mini milestones which give me regular opportunities to acknowledge my progress and honour my success-to-date.

And I’ve become an expert at finding those mini milestones.

So… if you’re looking for interim markers along the way to a big weight-loss goal, let me suggest a few.

  1. Whether you weigh yourself in stones and pounds or pounds alone, or kilos, all three options are entirely legitimate when you’re looking for those weight-loss milestones. (For my USA readers, a stone is 14lbs.) So for starters you can look for nice round weight-loss numbers in all three units of measurement, for example:

First 10 lbs lost… and all subsequent 10 lbs… 20, 30, 40, etc…

First 10 kilos lost… and all subsequent 10 kilo markers… 20, 30, etc…

First stone lost… and (you guessed it) every subsequent stone… (For those of us in the UK who measure in stones, waving goodbye to a stone is A Big Thing.)

  1. Next, you can calculate your current weight in all three units of measurement, and you have a whole new set of ‘big’ round numbers for your milestones list:

Achieving (or passing through) a stones marker… 17, 16, 15 stone, etc…

Achieving (or passing through) a big round pounds marker… 240, 230, 220 lbs, etc…

Achieving (or passing through), yes, a big round kilos marker… 120, 110, 100 kilos, etc…

  1. If you know where you started, you then have another set of really great mini milestones – the percentage of your original weight that you’ve lost. Much has been written about the many health benefits of losing 10% of your body weight, from wherever you begin – so that’s a great one to celebrate.  But on a big weight-loss journey why not mark 15%, or 20% too?
  1. Lastly there’s BMI (Body Mass Index). The big markers are 40 (above which the medics and insurance companies label you morbidly obese), 30 (above which you’re plain obese), then 25 (above which you’re still overweight but at least no longer that dreadful word… obese). Once you get to below 25 you are, joy of joys, a normal/healthy weight – a cause for much insane (but please, self-controlled) celebration. Though it has its shortcomings, BMI is a generally useful measure, reflecting both your height and weight, although not (which is more relevant to a body builder or a rugby player than an overweight middle-aged woman) muscle mass. If you want to work out your BMI, and you’re not a body builder or a rugby player, search for a ‘BMI Calculator’ on Google.

Here’s a segment of my well-populated list of milestones, to give you an idea of the almost limitless possibilities:

Starting weight:                      270 lbs / 19 st 4 lbs / 122.47 kilo

Farewell to 19 stone:             265 lbs / 18 st 13 lbs / 120.20 kilo

Under 120 kilo:                       264 lbs / 18 st 12 lbs / 119.75 kilo

260 lbs / 10 lbs lost:               260 lbs / 18 st 8 lbs / 117.93 kilo

1 stone lost:                            256 lbs / 18 st 4 lbs / 116.12 kilo

Farewell to 18 stone:             251 lbs / 17 st 13 lbs / 113.85 kilo

250 lbs / 20 lbs lost:               250 lbs / 17 st 12 lbs / 113.40 kilo

10 kilo lost:                             248 lbs / 17 st 10 lbs / 112.47 kilo

10% loss (27 lbs):                   243 lbs / 17 st 5 lbs / 110.22 kilo

Under 110 kilo:                       242 lbs / 17 st 4 lbs / 109.77 kilo

2 stone lost:                            242 lbs / 17 st 4 lbs / 109.77 kilo

240 lbs / 30 lbs lost:               240 lbs / 17 st 2 lbs / 108.86 kilo

Farewell to 17 stone:             237 lbs / 16 st 13 lbs / 107.50 kilo

BMI Below 40:                        232 lbs / 16 st 8 lbs / 105.23 kilo

230 lbs / 40 lbs lost:               230 lbs / 16 st 8 lbs / 105.23 kilo

15% loss (41 lbs):                   229 lbs / 16 st 5 lbs / 103.87 kilo

3 stone lost:                            228 lbs / 16 st 4 lbs / 103.41 kilo

20 kilo lost:                             226 lbs / 16 st 2 lbs / 102.47 kilo

Farewell to 16 stone:             223 lbs / 15 st 13 lbs / 101.15 kilo

Under 100 kilo:                       220 lbs / 15 st 10 lbs / 99.79 kilo

220 lbs / 50 lbs lost:               220 lbs / 15 st 10 lbs / 99.79 kilo…

And so on… you get the picture.

I’m quite visual about these things, and I think it’s great to have your mini milestones printed out and put up somewhere, perhaps in your own private space. It’s a good feeling to score a line through another, and another, on your journey downwards.

I don’t make a big song-and-dance about every single mini milestone on my list and in any case you’ll have noticed that here and there, one milestone sits right on top of another. I’m hopeless with kilos too – I’m a stones and pounds girl – but I think even I will acknowledge slipping below 100 kilos. The key milestones for me have been the stones lost, the round pounds lost, the 10% and then 15% weight loss (I’m teetering on the edge of that one right now), and, best of all, falling beneath that morbid BMI 40 marker. I’m also seriously focused on the big round 50 lbs loss figure (which sits right on top of the equally significant under 100 kilo milestone for me) – mainly because I’ve never managed to lose more than 49 lbs in any past weight management campaign, even though I’ve needed to.

These mini milestones are quantitative and weight related. There are many other more qualitative ways to acknowledge progress towards a healthier weight. I might share some of mine in another post sometime. Meantime, I’d love to hear if you have any special mini milestones, weight related or otherwise.

Author: Jools

Abundant, Bold, Confident, Determined, Empathetic, Forthright, Grumpy, Healthier, Individual, Just me, Kind, Loving, Mellifluous, Natural, Optimistic, imPatient, Quirky, Real-world, Single-minded, unTreatable, Unwound, Verbal, Wilful, eXtraordinary, Young and old, Zero-tolerance.

27 thoughts on “Giant Weight Loss Goals Need Many Mini Milestones”

  1. Firstly WOww fantastic pat on your back and bloody good show!
    Secondly you could do… dress sizes or inches but really? Do you need to do any more than keep keeping on. Fan bloody tastic!
    *Bowing repeatedly* p.s. I wore a bikini at 56 with a sheer sarong but none the less I done it. don’t let on but I had not worn one before that ever.

    1. Aww… Thank you! Dress size is good – and for me that’s already translated into another fun one… getting back into favourite pieces or outfits that haven’t fitted me for years. I have a whole (spare bedroom) wardrobe I’ve started to reclaim!

      As far as the bikini goes, I salute you! Well done you! I’m a firm believer in ‘wear what you like, and wear it proud’. But I’m not at all sure a bikini would do me any favours, even after those 123 lbs have gone! For me, there’s a snug above-the-knee black skirt waiting patiently in that spare bedroom wardrobe…

        1. All the way from England to… England! Greetings fellow Brit! 😊 it’s funny how we don’t always realise in this social world, just where our blogging buddies hail from. I’m just a little way outside of London as it happens. 🇬🇧

  2. Mini milestones makes great sense in whatever we do. It’s like the eating-an-elephant saying (though how that one came about I have no idea): trying to tackle the whole thing at once is overwhelming, but doing it one bite at a time gets us to our goal. Hmm, maybe next time I’ll have to think of a less gross, non-eating metaphor…

    1. Yes, the eating-an-elephant metaphor is particularly inappropriate in this circumstance!!! I find it much easier to focus on the next small goal, rather than the bigger picture. My Fitbit is helping there, as I’m re-setting my goal, stone by stone. At first I didn’t realise you could do this, but once I got to grips with it, it became more fun to see some tangible progress. A pound lost against a goal of 14 pounds is a lot more visually gratifying than a pound lost against a goal of 123 pounds!

  3. Julie, so glad to read your now-finished blog on milestones! Love to hear others’ perspectives on weight loss. You are doing great and it’s so nice to have a fellow blogger in the same boat as me, although my goal is losing a few more pounds than you. Congrats on all you’ve accomplished so far. We CAN and WILL do this!

    1. Thanks, Robin. Part of the reason I changed direction with my blog and put my weight/health goals ‘out there’ was to share my journey AND other people’s journeys too. Mutual support does put the wind beneath your wings, doesn’t it?

  4. Really, really well done, Jools. I have nothing but admiration for what you’re doing and what you’ve achieved. I’m one of those annoying people that rarely puts on weight but I do have a sweet tooth and I don’t believe I have the willpower to give up sugar, let alone anything else. Keep going!

    1. Annoying indeed! But thank you so much for your encouragement, Dylan. I’ve been here before but this time does feel different and I’m much more positive about my own ability to keep good habits going. But when you *can’t* eat anything and get away with it, you can’t even take a day off!

  5. Mini milestones are such a positive thing. Every single step in the right direction is a great step.
    You should feel proud of your progress, and I believe that you will get to your big goal as you have such a positive and determined attitude. Best wishes 🙂

    1. Thank you – that’s really kind and encouraging, of you. I find the positivity and determination has grown over the weeks so far, boosted by those numerical milestones achieved, and also by other ‘wins’, like getting into clothes I’d long forgotten, and more. It’s easy to forget sometimes, that it’s not just a huge mountain to climb which is going to take months or longer; it’s also a pathway along which there are many, many smaller rewards and encouragements.

  6. I say, “Whatever works.” You’re doing a great job, and you should be very proud of yourself, especially when you look in a full-length mirror. For me, what’s always seemed to work best has been getting into clothes long stored away as being too tight, too tiny. Even now, when no one would accuse me of being significantly “overweight,” I keep a pair of jeans at the side of the closet purchased when in the 130-135 pound range. In these days of stretchy waistbands and baggy knits, which seem to be in fashion even for the truly thin, it’s easy to “grow” bit by bit while wearing my everyday wardrobe. Trying on those jeans now and then — and “trying” is often the operative word — keeps my eye on reality.

    1. You know what, Nina, it’s so easy to lose track of what size we are. I’ve been in elasticated waists and stretchy jersey for years now, but sooner or later, even these become too loose – and what a thrill that is! I don’t mind paying out for new trousers when they’re a size smaller than the old ones 🙂 Not only that, but this week I thought I’d give a ‘first try-on’ to a tailored pair of (non-stretch) business trousers I used to love, that I thought I didn’t stand a chance of getting into yet – and they fitted like a glove. I had no idea I had lost enough weight to fit them. Still a long, long way to go, but I love all those mini victories along the way.

  7. I’m with you on your journey and setting goals for myself as well. I want to lose 70 pounds and am using an incredible amount of exercise to get me there. I have gained muscle, so the scale has only given me 5 pounds deficit in 3 months time. Discouraging? Yes. AND, I have gotten three injuries through all of it. But, I am not giving up! And I am giving myself 3 months to take off 25 pounds. A year in all to get the 70 off. I’m ok with that. Like you, I am visualizing the end goal and have come to the conclusion that this is a lifestyle change. I am not killing myself over the diet totally, but I think that needs to change in the next 3 months to see that 25 pounds off! Good luck!! Keep us posted!

    1. Wow – I’m impressed! I understand only too well how discouraging it can be to begin a regime of exercise and find your weight loss actually slowing – or even reversing – as you build muscle. It’s happening to me right now, as I’ve begun working with a personal trainer (to boost my stamina and strength mainly) and my weight had been stuck in a zone for the last month. We just have to keep on keeping on, and in the end the hard work will be rewarded.

      I’ve been at it for 11 months now and am beyond 63 pounds lost, with a long haul ahead, perhaps another 50 pounds, which will be slower – but I’m ready for that. The rewards are huge already.

      Good luck, and thanks for joining the conversation.

  8. I dont think it matters what your goals are – as long as they’re important to YOU and keep YOU motivated. As you know my experience of this area has been a lot of trial and error!

    From what I can see in your blog (and what you’ve said to me so far) this is important to you – and that’s what makes it do-able. As a friend said when I started to lose weight – it doesn’t matter how slowly you go, forward is still forward.

    A pound a week is nearly four and a half stone per year – so my advice is don’t worry about timescales – just on ensuring that you foster change that will remain for life 🙂 x

    1. There is only one way to do it… one pound at a time. We all have to find our own way, but sharing helps and inspires others and keeps us accountable.

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