When you are trying to lose weight, you are also, in a sense, trying to change your life. This can be an overwhelming hurdle in and of itself. Indeed, one of the biggest barriers to losing weight and staying fit is actually your own sense of willpower – or lack thereof.

However, if you break everything down and look at the reasons why this is true, you may find a number of factors that play into your previous results. For instance, if you have a pantry full of junk food, you may not be able to resist eating heaps of bad food, which will only prolong your dreams of shedding those extra pounds.

Knowing what some of the barriers to weight loss are will help you knock them down. Once you do, you can really start to see serious results. It’s the same with anything in life: you have to know and understand existing barriers before you can start dismantling them. Here are five common barriers to weight loss.

  1. Lack of Initiative

First and foremost, one of the most challenging barriers for people is the inability to take initiative. Showing some initiative is as simple as not getting up in the morning and doing a few stretching exercises and eating a healthy breakfast. You’ll want to avoid falling in the trap of getting up in the morning and eating a stack of pancakes in front of the TV. Making these minor lifestyle choices will kick you into gear.

  1. Keeping Temptations Around

Of course, you also want to start removing temptations from your life. For instance, if you have a refrigerator full of soda and a pantry full of highly fattening snacks, you want to remove all those things. You will undoubtedly keep coming back to those foods if they are around. All you have to do is trash or donate them. Once you clear out your pantry you’ll want to replace these food items with healthier options. It is important to remember that there is such a thing as healthy and tasty snacks; they’re not mutually exclusive, so all is not lost.

  1. No Sense of Accountability

Keeping tabs on yourself and your decisions is crucial because you want to know where you are in the grand scheme of your goals. For instance, you may want to purchase a notebook and a digital bathroom scale. Every day, or every week, you want to take notes of how much you lost and in what span of time. This will really keep you on track.

  1. Not Making a Plan

Of course, not having a plan is a big barrier because you will just be wasting your time aimlessly trying to lose weight without any results. If you aren’t the kind of person that can stick to his or her own plan, you may want to speak with a nutritionist. A nutritionist will help you develop a customized meal and exercise plan that is right for you. Sometimes, people invent their own diet plan, which can do more harm than good.

  1. Foregoing Exercise

On top of everything, you want to commit yourself to exercising. Sure, eating right is critical, but you also want to head to the gym a few times a week to get your body in shape. The truth of the matter is that you won’t be able to lose weight based on a changed diet alone – you also need to get your heart and blood pumping if you want to meet your goals.