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It's as easy as moving more and not eating junk food

Monday, January 07, 2013

At least that's part of it. Eat less and move more. Those are the two things that help to lose the excess weight. If it was as simple as that, then we would all be successful. They are key ingredients, but there's more to it.

There's the perfection myth. "If I can't do it all right, then I may as well give up for the day and just keep on eating and not go anywhere." I have yet to meet a person that is perfect. Give up the thought that you are perfect. You may be great and strong in you desires, but there's always some flaw or another. Don't bring yourself down for not being perfect and doing everything to plan.

"I have to eat everything home made." This may be the best way to control your food and it's ingredients, but this is reality. Not all of us stay at home every day being the "merry housewife" of the 1950's tv shows. This is an era of getting a lot more done faster and we don't always have the time for something homemade. In an ideal world, we'd all be eating homemade from scratch food, but this is reality where sometimes we just don't have time. There are ways to prep for those tight on time days, but some days most of us will eat out occasionally or get take out. Just remember to research the nutrition on those places so you are prepared before you walk in. The occasional microwave meal might work into your schedule, read the label though!

"I'm going to work out as hard as I can and as often as possible." Many people start out this way, joining up with a gym and taking some bootcamp classes, just to get burnt out from the thought that you need to keep up that intensity all the time with no room for a casual walk. Although there may be a place for a hard workout in many people's lives, I have never been one of those people. The hardest thing I've ever done is hour long fitness yoga (a pilates/yoga mix) once a week. The majority of my fitness is a casual walk around the park on weekday mornings. I've lost 50 pounds by taking casual walks frequently. It just takes more movement than none. As long as it's movement you enjoy, you'll stick to it.

"I'll never have junk food." The key word here is "never". Although junk food is just that, junk, we are so used to it that it's hard to cut it out completely and forever. I am a chocoholic and will never give it up completely, but I don't bring it home frequently. I have gotten to the good chocolate and not just any chocolate, but it's so infrequent that I don't miss it most of the time. If it's something that will trigger a binge, then it shouldn't be brought home. You may be able to get to that point that you can handle a single serving size of that food without going on a binge.

"I can't have that." That is powerful, but you know what's more powerful? "I choose not to have that." When you say "can't", then you crave it more, but if you say "sure, I can have it, but I don't want it", then you have put yourself in the power position and are less likely to crave the item.

Don't eat when mad/bored/celebrating/sad. If you're having an intense emotion, it's better to blog or find some other way to release the emotion. Many times I'll take a walk to get rid of being upset. I might start cleaning something to release energy. I may put in a video game. I don't put a candy bar in my mouth though, it just makes me feel worse. Ask yourself why you're eating, are you emotional? Then you shouldn't put something in your mouth.

Plan for hunger attacks. There will be times you get hungry between meals. There's the 3pm slump, there's the I did a lot more movement and now my stomach is growling, there's always going to be some time that you find yourself hungry and need a snack. Have extra snacks on hand. Have some fruit or nuts handy. Cheese sticks work well. Veggies and dip may be your cup of tea. Having a plan of attack will get you through those times you might normally hit up a vending machine or pull into a fast food joint.

Try new things. How do you know you don't like something if you've never tried it? It only takes once to decide something is tasty or yucky. It only takes once to determine if something will feel like a chore or it will be a fun way to move. Don't like that thing, then try the next thing.

Sleep. If you don't get enough, then your whole day is thrown off. Work on a bedtime schedule to give yourself enough sleep for you. One person may only need 7 hours of sleep, others may need 9, but we all need to sleep, it's biologically necessary. If you haven't been getting enough sleep, start moving your bedtime back 15 minutes. Start getting ready earlier and eventually you'll be in the habit of getting to sleep at a decent time. Turn off the electronics and work on bedtime routines. I tend to read something after I tuck myself in, it helps turn off the brain. Meditating or list writing may help you too.

Go to the doctor. You may have been trying to lose weight and finding it more difficult. You may be especially sleepy all the time and feel like a daily nap. You might be peeing more than you think someone should be. Your doctor can help you figure out why your body is not working at it's best. When trying to do something new, you should get help and your doctor is one of the best places to start. Sometimes a good blood test is the thing that will determine how your body will react. You need to know what shape you're in right now to be able to have the knowledge of how you'll get to where you want to be with your health.

So although the basics are eat less and move more, it's having a plan of attack for those things that might throw your week off that will be most helpful. Not beating yourself up for going "off plan" is helpful too. Everything in moderation. It's a learning experience, take it as such and change things as they need to be changed. Most of all enjoy your new way of life, if you don't and it seems like a chore, then you won't stick to it for life.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • FRAN0426
    Great blog, enjoyed reading it, thanks for sharing your views.
    1900 days ago
  • ACRAIG921
    What a great blog. Thanks so much for the inspiration :)
    1901 days ago
    haha, for me right now, the formula is move LESS and eat MORE!
    1901 days ago
    I think this is one of the best blogs you have written. I am even sharinging it with a sp friend who is struggling. Not only do you bring up problems but solutions to those issues so many of us have.
    1901 days ago
    I enjoyed reading your blog today. It's a nice reminder of things I already know as well as a new way to think about some things. I have tendency to do it all or nothing but I'm changing those ways.

    I found some strategies that work for me. I have a list of better choices for many different restaurants that I keep with me so I am prepared when I'm away from home and we stop somewhere to eat.

    I found an exercise that I actually enjoy doing. I love deep water aerobics. I get good workout with no stress on my joints.

    I especially like how you turned a negative into a positive. Saying I can't have that makes it sound negative. If you practice all things in moderation there really are no bad foods, just better foods. I like to take things one day at a time, or sometimes one hour at a time when I need to. By saying I'm choosing not to have that I'm making myself powerful instead of letting food have power over me. I can have it later, or tomorrow if I really want to, but I'm choosing not to have it right now. That is very powerful.

    My strategy for cravings is to go ahead and have something I really want occasionally. There have been too many times when I really wanted, say, a brownie from Perkins, and ended up eating 3 Musketeers bars instead. I found myself feeling discouraged and disappointed when I would have been better off just having what I really wanted instead of eating a bunch of other junk.

    I like to crochet or read blogs on Spark People when those cravings creep in. I find renewed motivation from reading blogs by other Sparkers and it inspires me to think about things in new ways.

    All of these strategies used together will add up to big success.

    Thanks for your blog post.

    1901 days ago
    Some really good ideas and a great blog to start the new year. Thanks!
    1901 days ago
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    1901 days ago
    Good blog-I agree we must be very kind to ourselves & find positive ways to deal with situations & emotions. Sometimes when I'm feeling stressed over something that is going on-I click my email & write a letter to my best friend-a lot of times by the time I'm done venting I don't even send it & just delete. Sure helps just to get it all out. I completely agree about moving more because even when I snapped my calf muscle & couldn't return to the gym since Sept. I still managed to lose weight-meet my 100# loss goal & my birthday month goal. There are so many alternative exercises we can do that just helps our body move a bit more-even if you have to sit for it-there's lots we can do. I try to get out of the thinking that exercise =gym. Exercise can = a lot of activities-I burned a ton when I went roller skating & it sure didn't feel like working out-it was a ton of fun. Now I'm hoping my leg will hold up for ice skating this week-going to give it a whirl. :) emoticon
    1901 days ago
  • DIANN111
    Great advice! I just love your blogs...I find them very motivational! I agree with you, there is more to it than just eating less and moving more. I find getting enough good quality sleep and decreasing stress are a must for me to lose weight!
    1901 days ago
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