Ian Ayres was really disappointed in himself.
He let himself go. Again.
After the holiday binge Ian found himself over 200 pounds again.
It happened in a cycle. He would go on a extreme diet and exercise plan he couldn’t sustain it. At first everything seem to work well but by the years end he had fallen to old habits and gain his weight back.
Sounds familiar? A lot of us fall into the yearly yo yo weight gain cycle.
However, being an Yale economics professor, Ian used an old economic theory that helped him maintain his weight and stop his yo yo weight loss and gains.
So what ultimately saved Ian?
The economic theory of loss aversion.
Losses loom larger than gains.
For example, people will work hardier to not lose $5 than gaining $5.
Ian enter himself into a weekly commitment contract with another economic professor. If he didn’t stay on track with his weight loss plan, he would lose $500.
He had no room for carelessness.
No mistakes. No renegotiation . No excuses.
After a three months of hard work, it turned into a major success.
Ian found himself losing 25 pounds and more importantly he finally stopped the yo yo weight loss and weight gain cycle (see image above at his results).
The real value of the commitment for me is in keeping me mindful of my weight.
“Losses loom larger than gains” is exactly what kept Ian mindful of his behaviors that contributed to his weight.
What saved Ian can probably save you too.
Now it’s your turn. I recommend you try this one easy test.
Write a check of an amount that makes you uncomfortable of losing. Give it to your most health conscious friend you have and tell them they can deposit it if you don’t lose weight on a weekly basis. Weigh yourself in person so there will be no cheating involve. I recommend starting small. 1 pound a week.
That’s it. It’s that simple.
You will become more aware of what you put in your mouth and your physical activity.
In the comments below tell me what you will work on and report back with your findings after the first week.
Source of story and images can be found at Stickk Founder’s Stories and check out Ian’s book