by Brian Cannone

If you are on the long journey to losing weight and to stay fit you have most definitely run into your own set of problems and speed bumps along the way. One speed bump that most do not see coming, nor have even felt it when they went over it, but are struggling to find the answer to why they have not lost weight yet. What is the biggest, yet overlooked, speed bump? The grocery store! Yes, that’s right! The grocery store can be the most difficult speed bump to avoid on your journey to losing weight. You might think that it is easy for you to go to the grocery store and go shopping without any problems. But you have most likely overlooked the fact that you are more likely to cheat and grab items that are unnecessary for your diet. When you are going grocery shopping there are two things you should already have done. First, you should have planned out your meals ahead of time. Second, you should have a shopping list in your hand. It is crucial that you have a shopping list with you when you go grocery shopping!

Before you go shopping for food for your diet, you need to be smart and plan ahead. Planning ahead is essential when it comes to losing weight and staying fit. What is it you should be planning? The answer is very simple. You are planning your meals. When you have a plan ahead of time about what you are going to eat for the week(s) you will find that it is easier for you to create your list for the grocery store and it will be far easier for you to get in and get out with ONLY the items you need! If you do not have a plan on what you are going to eat, you will soon begin to notice that you are trying to create meal plans in your mind while you are at the grocery store and you will be picking up items you do NOT need and placing them in your shopping cart. A trick that is often used and has proven to be very beneficial is to have a snack before you ever set foot in the grocery store. When you have had something to eat you will not find things nearly as appetizing as you would had you not had anything to eat.

After you have planned out your meals for the week(s) ahead of time, it will be much easier for you to know what to pick up when you are at the grocery store. Another factor that makes grocery shopping easier, and is by far the most essential, is to go shopping with a list of what you need. When you have what you need written down you will stick to that list and you will not be as tempted to grab something off of the shelf that you do not need. Another way to help your sticky fingers from grabbing something you do not need off of that shelf is to make yourself stick strictly to that list! If you make it a continuous habit to go shopping with a list, and grabbing ONLY what you need, you will see that it becomes easier and easier for your eyes not to catch something and grab it. You also have to get in the habit of keeping your eyes only on the register when you are checking out. When you allow yourself to take a look around at the shelves when you are in line or ringing up, you will be tempted. You will notice that the most temptation for you to pick up something you don’t need is right there at the very end of your shopping trip.

Another important thing to keep in mind when you go grocery shopping is to be quick. You want to get in, get what you need, then get out. When you keep this mentality in mind you will see that when you leave the grocery store you were not tempted to snatch something off of the shelf. When you go shopping with a plan and with a list, it is easier to get in and get what you need with no detours. Also when you go in with a list of what you need and you keep in mind “get in and get out” you will find that you are not lingering unnecessarily and are not picking up items that you do not need. This is how grocery stores and big chains make their money! They are counting on the fact that you did not make a list, that you did not plan ahead, and (to make matters more difficult for you) they place the items that are essential to you at the BACK of the store. The stores are designed this way specifically for the purpose of getting you to buy something you do not need.

When you are trying to lose weight and are trying to stay fit within your regimen, it is crucial that you have a plan. This is especially true when you are going grocery shopping. You should always have a plan! You need to plan out your meals for the week(s) and go in with a list tailored specifically for that meal plan. When your meals are planned out, you will find that it is much easier for you to create a shopping list and stick strictly to it! After you have created your shopping list and go to the grocery store, you need to remember to get in and get out! You do not want to be wandering around the store and picking up items you do not need. You cannot afford them! You might be able financially to afford picking up those extra items, but your health and fitness regimen cannot afford such missteps! Plan ahead!