Most people have tried to lose weight at some point or many points in their lives. Usually we regain what we lose and then some and then try another diet to lose weight. We begin with all passion blazing and ready to conquer our food demons for good, only to crash and burn a few weeks later as the reality that diets don’t work sets in.
It wasn’t until I gave up the diet mentality that I lost over 200 pounds without surgery or crazy diets and extreme exercise. It was through sane thoughts and realizations and hard lessons learned that I won my weight loss and freedom. Life actually does give second chances.
I actually got up to 460 pounds by dieting. I was always on a diet, yet amazingly always gaining weight. Why? I couldn’t stick to a diet for very long. In retrospect, I see now that it was the diet mentality of perfectionism holding me back many times, the all or nothing. If I slipped up even a little bit, the day was over and I ate everything in sight. I may as well, after all, I had blown it, right?
There are a few food demons we all can conquer with some sane thoughts. Let me give you ten secrets to master weight loss by thinking sanely. I personally call them my ~Indyisms, as my pen name is ~Indygirl.
1) If you were given a speeding ticket, you wouldn’t go around breaking traffic laws all day. So why blow your day over a slice of pizza?*
It’s that progress not perfection attitude that will help you. So next time you are faced with thinking about how you’ve blown the whole day with a minor offense, just turn around and get back on track immediately. Don’t wait until tomorrow or Monday or any other time. Immediately is always the time to get back on track.
2) Something is always better than nothing.
If you are talking weight loss or exercise, this really applies well. Any movement, no matter how little laps that person sitting on the couch. If you feel like you are getting nowhere by moving so little, just remember that every little move prepares you for the next big move. When I was at 460 pounds, I felt like I had to do what someone weighing 150 pounds who was healthy could do to exercise in order to lose weight. What I found to be true was that 5 minutes here or there added up. In the very beginning, I was lifting shampoo bottles in bed and just moving my feet. It seemed futile. But now I can walk in my house and am not in a wheelchair or bedridden anymore.
It was frustrating seeing little losses and going slow. Any loss is better than no loss though, and it all adds up to huge losses in the end. Do you realize that losing one pound a week yields a 52 pound loss in a year? A 1.5 pound loss a week loss yields a 72 pound loss in a year. The final safe loss recommended is 2 pounds a week and that yields 104 pounds a year lost. That is all AVERAGED though, not steadily lost every week. In fact, I always say that weight loss is most like the stock market in that it goes up and down daily but it’s the overall trend that matters. Play the long game.
3) One always has less calories than two.*
I’m talking about straight math damage control. Sometimes we like to trick ourselves into thinking that since we had one cookie, two more won’t hurt. Actually, they will because you are adding 2 cookies worth of calories to one cookie. What I like to do now is have the cookie and then go find something healthier to eat if I’m actually hungry.
4) Keep your house a clean zone.
Don’t allow tempting foods in. If other family members want them, have them lock up their treats in a tool box or suitcase. My husband does this. When you want a treat, then you have to go out to get it. Get one- one serving. Get the best one there. Savor it while you are out.
5) Don’t treat your body like a garbage disposal.
I’ve heard it before, you don’t want to waste food. New perspective here: Where is it more of a waste, in the waste can or on your body where you suffer medical conditions and have to work it off?
Don’t feel the need to clean your plate, eat up left overs, clean the kids’ plates or anything even remotely like that.
6) Eating the bag of chips today to save you from eating them tomorrow still makes you gain weight.
The calories, when eaten today or tomorrow still end up in the same place. Usually we do this sort of “house cleaning” before a diet where we eat every unhealthy food we can because we will NEVER eat them again. Never doesn’t actually happen, does it? Food remains delicious and available, and well, chocolate will always be chocolate. Skip the binge before the diet because you are not saving any calories.
7) Always select a size smaller.
Use a smaller plater or order a size smaller than what your head is telling you. At first, this seems very foreign. It feels uncomfortable and leaves you feeling a little unsatisfied... For about 20 minutes to a half hour. After that, you realize that you actually ate just the right amount and this feeling of amazement and excitement comes over you.
I like to buy old pretty antique luncheon plates at thrift stores. I feel like I’m doing something special just for me when I make a nice place setting.
8) What I can’t do now is not my defeat, it is my aspiration.*
Never look at something you cannot do now as a defeat. Look at it as an aspiration and make a plan to go after your dream. The best way to do this is to think in terms of what you CAN do and just never mind what you can’t do. Get creative and think outside of the box. In fact, burn the box.
9) Life is happening now not 10 pounds from now.*
Don’t wait to live until you’ve lost weight. The very act of living your life will help you lose weight. Really live and do what you can. Enjoy everything that is in your power to enjoy. What if weight loss never comes? I asked myself that one day. I decided then that life was happening now, now 10 pounds from now. As I began to embrace life more fully, my life started changing and so did my weight.
10) Join an online community.
Join an online community to cheer you on and allow you to encourage them. Having support makes a huge difference in this world of discouragement. Many online communities are free and have food trackers, exercise trackers, social pages, teams and more.
Losing weight is not easy, but it does not have to be miserable if you take it slowly and at your own pace rather than trying to get immediate results. It can actually be a journey and adventure of self-discovery. I would not trade a day of my weight loss journey in for a day of eating everything I wanted. I learned too much about myself and grew a whole new, more nurturing relationship with myself. From caterpillar to butterfly… You must not help them break free of the cocoon, or they will never have the strength to fly.
Watch for my first Kindle book coming out on Amazon soon-
THE MENTAL MAKEOVER WEIGHT LOSS WORK BOOK
by Certified Weight Loss and Wellness Coach Beth Donovan