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You Won't Like This Post


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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

(I'll warn you up front that you might not like this post. Feel free to walk away right now. I won't be offended, honest.)

The scale goes up.
The scale goes down.
But it mostly goes down.

And it will do that if you are trusting in the right process and are committed to making the change in your life.

Perhaps you are having difficulty losing weight. That is not an uncommon situation. Ask yourself these three questions:

1. Do you have a reasonable and thoughtful net calorie target to hit?

If you are using something like sparkpeople.com to arrive at this value, I think the answer is going to be yes. The calculator here is good. Now I've posted an exhaustive post on how I arrive at my net calorie target value so I won't rehash that here. I'm not always successful hitting that but I try to get close. Sometimes I'm a little below that target for the day. If it is around 100 calories short at the end of the day, I don't sweat that.

If you don't have that net calorie target, you're going to have difficultly losing weight. How do you know how much to eat? You can't go off of feel, I believe, because if you're like me, you've been overeating for years, maybe decades. It takes less than 5 minutes of your life to figure out that number. Take the time.

2. Are you being honest and exact in your food tracking?

So you have a net calorie target. Great. Are you being honest with yourself in what you are eating? Are you being careful to get as close an estimate on your food intake as possible? Notice there's an implied "You are tracking your food." here - you can't analyze what you don't measure. We are terrible estimators. Studies show that we are horribly bad at guessing how many calories or how much fat or carbs or sodium is in a given plate of food. Take the time to measure things out. It doesn't even take 5 minutes. Soon enough you'll be really good at measuring things.

And more importantly, are you being honest? Maybe you had 6 cookies today and are embarrassed by this. You need to track it anyway. You are not alone here. Changing habits is hard. Want to feel like you are not alone? I've blown it before and done boneheaded things like stop on the way home from work and get a big soft pretzel and two - not one, but two - bags of licorice and eaten it all on the way home. Not proud of that but it is reality. Track that food. You'll never learn from the mistakes you make and try to sweep under the rug.

3. Are you trusting the process to work?

It's easy to get frustrated because of unrealistic expectations. It's easy to get frustrated when you feel like you are not progressing at the rate you think you should. Stop that nonsense. Either you trust that the process will work or you don't. Look - giving up is what you've done before, I bet. I know I have. You have to give it time.

Remember something - you didn't put this weight on overnight. Why would you think it's going to come off overnight? That's just silly. Don't be silly. Be committed.

If you can answer "yes" to these three questions, great! Keep on doing what you're doing!

If you answered "no" to one or more of these, you've got a decision to make.


Is this going to be the time things are different or is this just another halfhearted attempt to lose the weight?


I'm going to meddle a bit here. You might not like this part. I warned you... there's still time to walk away.


Do you recognize that your obesity is killing you? KILLING you. It is putting stress and strain on your body. It is clogging your arteries. It results in diabetes. It results in heart attacks and emergency heart surgery. It results in blood clots. It results in excess wear and tear on the joints and bones. It is diminishing your life. YOUR LIFE, folks.

Do you care?

Have you given up? Why? Why would you give up on something that can absolutely be accomplished?

Look, there are kids right now in Memphis, Tennessee at St. Jude's who want more than anything to live. Through no fault of their own they find themselves at death's door. Doctors and researchers are doing everything they can to find a cure to save these kids. And the sad fact is that some of them won't make it despite the extraordinary efforts being taken. They are doing whatever it takes to save a life. Fighting diseases that are difficult to fight. Fighting diseases that are difficult to cure.

And there you sit. Shoving that donut in your mouth and having a pity party about how it is too hard. How you don't have the willpower. How you can't do it.

Rubbish!

(I told you you might not like this part.)

Look, you can change your life - CHANGE YOUR LIFE! - today. You have the ability to do this. You have the ability to improve your health. A tiny percentage of you might - MIGHT - have a legitimate medical condition that is causing your obesity. The rest of you - including me - are this way because of choices made. Take ownership of your obesity and your life. Take responsibility for your actions.

Stop it now. You can change right now. RIGHT NOW.

The question is... do you even want to?

Look, I'd love to be able to make that decision for you. I'd love to be able to keep you on the straight and narrow. It's just not possible. You've got to do it yourself.

Unlike those darling precious kids in Memphis, you and I can change our lives simply by having the commitment to do so. By "keeping calm and carrying on", as the saying goes. By caring about ourselves more than about that crap food we're shoving in our mouth.

Why wouldn't you want to be healthier? Why wouldn't you be committed to do it?

Maybe you think you aren't strong enough.

That's ridiculous. You're strong. Stronger than you think.

Is weight loss hard? Yes, absolutely. But you know what? It is something you can do.

You can change your life starting today.

The question is... will you?


You might not like my posts. You might think I'm being an opinionated jerk. Honestly, I think I'm dead on about this. I don't shoot from the hip much. And this post is written as a reminder to me primarily and to you if you happen to read it. You might not like that I don't coddle you much in my posts. Tough. You need to hear it straight just as *I* need to hear it straight. I'm trying to encourage you to save your life. If you're offended or frustrated by what I write, ask yourself "why?".

Make it a great day!
Matt



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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
ENLIGHTENED7 11/28/2012 6:57AM

  I wish I could find the words to adequately thank you. Your admonishment was"on the money." I'm saving your blog to my favorites, and finally settling in today.

Trust me, Matt, I needed that!

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GERMANIRISHGIRL 11/28/2012 6:44AM

    emoticon emoticon

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SUSANK16 11/28/2012 6:39AM

  Indeed

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FARIS71 11/28/2012 6:27AM

    Totally true. Appreciate the honesty.

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MARYBETH4884 11/28/2012 6:25AM

    Everyone needs to read this. Why should we waste our lives complaining when some children would love to just get up and play but can't.

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NCSUE0514 11/28/2012 6:18AM

    Right on.

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TRYINGHARD54 11/28/2012 5:45AM

    I'm not being honest , and I can tell to. I'm not getting nowhere..
What makes a person click , to finally say I'm going to lose this weight ?
What can I do to make it click?

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KITT52 11/28/2012 5:34AM

    right on

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WONDERFUL2BME 11/28/2012 5:28AM

    I can tell by the number of responses you are receiving that people know they need to hear this. It doesn't help any of us to listen to other people's excuses. It is refreshing to hear the truth straight up.

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CYDNEYLEECH 11/28/2012 4:46AM

    I love the honesty. I do have trouble with the losing, and I am we'll aware it is because I am to impatient. I know that it might take a long time; but since I have nothing better to do than wait and not give up while doing so, i know I can't give up!!!!

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SHERYLDS 11/28/2012 3:34AM

    I like the honesty...
I know when I hit long plateaus...it isn't just because the body wants to hold on to the weight.
go for it

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LESLIESENIOR 11/28/2012 12:19AM

    RIGHT ON! RIGHT ON!! RIGHT ON!!!

Honest self evaluation is the bottom line for recovery from anything!!!!
I'm a great example of that!

Take Matt's advice people. Quit whining and making excuses. You can save your own life. I know this first hand.

I chose God, honesty, and ACTION!


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CHOOSE2LOSE2014 11/28/2012 12:10AM

    You are 100 percent rite..Ive been looking for answers form within and your words of how IM killing myself slapped me in the face and made me realize that I am wasting my life away and feeling sorry for me way too much..Thanks for this post...Blunt is the way to be....

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AJDOVER1 11/27/2012 11:55PM

    Honesty is the greatest weight-loss tool I've found

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HEALTHIERKEN 11/27/2012 9:24PM

    BIFF!!! BAM!!! SMACK!!!! Take that! And this!
emoticon

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HDHAWK 11/27/2012 8:34PM

    So true!

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LINDAK25 11/27/2012 8:29PM

    Thank you! I get tired of people who don't take responsibility for themselves. They like to pretend whatever is controlling them is a mystery. There's no mystery here: make better choices! Let's rattle some cages!

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GOING-STRONG 11/27/2012 7:57PM

    emoticon

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BLUENOSE63 11/27/2012 6:35PM

  Hey Matt

You have nothing to apologize for or warn people about...the truth is this isn't a therapy site....it is a site that is supposed to empower people to get off their butts and save their lives......You, my friend, have hit the nail right on the head with this blog and I, for one, applaud you. This is what we need on SPARK...a kick in the pants to remind us why we are here in the first place.

Keep up the good work

You got a new pal in Ottawa, Ontario Canada who loves your blogs emoticon

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DOVESEYES 11/27/2012 6:21PM

    I sat here and took it on the chin, thought about it and yes you are right.!!!!

Great blog. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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RAINEMARIE214 11/27/2012 6:20PM

    THIS is a great blog.

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CHERYLN 11/27/2012 6:14PM

    Boy, you said a mouthful and I believe right on the mark. Thanks for a strong post.

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REMEMBER2BME 11/27/2012 6:08PM

    Killer blog.

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COOKINGSTARS 11/27/2012 5:42PM

    Well said emoticon emoticon

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RUNNER12COM 11/27/2012 5:28PM

    Wow. Nothing rings quite like the truth. Excellent blog!

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_BACK2BASICS_ 11/27/2012 2:27PM

    I plan on sharing a link to your blog with my team mates because I think it would be worth their while to read it. Thanks for taking the time to care.

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INTHEGAP 11/27/2012 1:32PM

    You are right, I didn't like this blog. But, I sure as heck NEEDED it. emoticon emoticon emoticon The comments about St. Jude's really hit home. Their ads always touch my heart, so much. emoticon Your blogs truly are inspiring ~ soon you will have a TON of followers. You're like Spark Guy, only you take time to read our posts and help us, if we need it. Thanks again. Just what I needed. emoticon

Comment edited on: 11/27/2012 7:37:36 PM

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NOMORENOMORE 11/27/2012 11:18AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TEMPENATIVE 11/27/2012 11:01AM

    Well it sure was a catchy draw, so I bit. Yeah there's some things I dont like. But the advice about getting honest, well everyone needs to hear that on some level. So thanks for putting it in writing and being so candid about your foibles. It makes it more real when I hear it coming from somebody 'like me'.

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JACKIE542 11/27/2012 9:55AM

    I liked your blog, thank you. Well written, many good points. emoticon

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MAMISHELI53 11/27/2012 9:29AM

    Today is the 27th, so the proverb of the day is #27, where we find the following verses :"Open rebuke is better than secret love.
Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful."

The truth may hurt sometimes, but spoken in love - and I think your honesty was in no way mean - it can bring life. Well said. Shel



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CSAGIRL 11/27/2012 9:27AM

    Actually, I do like this post. For the past several years, I've done so many things right, and have made so many positive lifestyle changes. What I didn't do was your first 2 points. I guesstimated and eyeballed so much of my food, and therefore I continued to gain weight in spite of myriad other healthy changes. Put simply: I was eating way too much. Far more than I needed.

Now in my 3rd week of sparking (which really means tracking my intake and staying within the SP limits), I've seen the results. For some of us, especially at middle age, the tracker will be the most powerful tool we have, but only when used consistently and honestly.

Well said, Matt. Let's keep each other honest.

emoticon

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MJRVIC2000 11/27/2012 9:23AM

    It's difficult reaching goals when we do things without the knowledge of what we are doing. I try to ask questions like WHAT, HOW, WHY? WHY might well be the most important question to as oneself. God Bless YOU! Vic.

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READY2LIVE85 11/27/2012 9:22AM

    Well written. Thanks!

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TIG123GER 11/27/2012 9:19AM

    You definitely are dead on and frankly I appreciate the honesty. It's great to get all the encouragements from others but sometimes someone just needs to say "Wake up and smell the coffee." Thanks!

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