- Stop psyching yourself out
I heard Tony Robbins say something recently that I realized described the way I used to think about weight loss – back when I couldn’t seem to make it work. He said, “you’re making it much worse than it is because you’re afraid of failing”. BOOM. Hear me out. If you’re one of those people who says, “But I hate to exercise” or “I just don’t have the self discipline” or “my metabolism is totally wrecked” or “I’m just too busy” – I’m talking to YOU. You’re surrounding yourself with reasons you shouldn’t try because you either don’t want to do the work or you’re afraid of failing. You’re making it harder than it is! You don’t NEED to workout. Sure, its healthy, but weight loss is 80% or more about what you eat. I lost 50 lbs before I set foot in a gym. If you think you don’t have the self-discipline I’d suggest that you aren’t considering the right way to lose weight. It shouldn’t feel like a sacrifice. You should be eating foods you love. When you’re doing that, you don’t feel deprived and you don’t have to constantly white-knuckle your way through the dang thing. Your metabolism is wrecked? That’s not irreparable. Focusing on balancing your metabolism will not only help you lose weight but it will allow you to get healthy. In fact, if your metabolism is wrecked that is all the more reason you need to make a change RIGHT NOW. “Too busy” is a bunch of bologna. We all have the same 24 hours in each day and you’re already spending time eating. Eating for fat loss doesn’t have to take anymore time or energy than what you’re doing now unless you decide for it to. So stop psyching yourself out. Either you want it or you don’t. Either you’re going to put in the effort or you’re not. Stop making it harder than it actually is.
- Decide not to diet
I get it. When we have weight to lose we think we need to go on a diet. Dieting generally means eating less, forgoing the foods you love and perhaps exercising more. You end up hungry, cranky and constantly thinking about all the things you want to eat but “can’t”. That is a terrible plan for a million reasons. First and foremost, you won’t be happy. You’ll feel like you’re being punished and you can’t continue something that makes you constantly feel that you’re not able to do what you want. More importantly, drastically cutting calories is a complete hormonal nightmare. Your body doesn’t realize that you’re cutting calories to lose weight. Instead, because it is programmed for survival, it thinks that food is scarce and it responds accordingly – slowing down your metabolism to conserve fuel and increasing your hunger and cravings to trigger you to go eat! Finally, traditional diets aren’t something you can keep up for the rest of your life. You aren’t going to limit yourself to green veggies and grilled meats indefinitely, are you? So what happens when the diet is over? You pile all that weight back on and your months of sacrifice aren’t worth a damn thing. Anybody been there? I know I have!! Instead, you need to work to find foods you absolutely love that are also fat loss friendly. This is actually a lot easier than it sounds but it does require that you expand your horizons. Try new things. Ask friends (or me!) for recipes. Fall in love with new things. It doesn’t have to feel like a sacrifice, guys! And if it does, you’re just not doing it right!
- Question conventional wisdom
Everything you’ve always heard is not true. It’s just not. Just because you’ve heard it over and over for years does not mean its right. Let’s look at the Food Pyramid. That thing was around for 20+ years recommending 6-11 servings of starch each day. What happened? Rates of obesity SKYROCKETED. Ask yourself who is making recommendations and what their interests are. The whole low-fat/fat-free movement was NOT based on research. It was based on money. The food industry – a powerful political influencer – had the potential to make insane amounts of money with low fat and fat free products. When we look at the “science” they stood on, it is totally flawed. Eat REAL foods. Avoid processed foods. Question convention. Look at where convention got us – fat and sick. I’ve got tons of info on my blog about the importance of dietary fat, how you CAN overeat protein and how toxic sugar is, in all forms. Don’t believe everything you’re told. There’s a new way. You can read more about my very in depth thoughts on all that is wrong about conventional diet wisdom here and here.
- Write it all down
I feel like people roll their eyes when they see this suggestion. Yes, I am suggesting that you write down everything you eat AND how you feel – track your energy levels, your hunger, your cravings, your mood, your sleep, etc. I know it can seem tedious but its not. It takes less than 2 minutes. You have two minutes. Here’s why it matters: it is in the process of writing things down and looking back at your good & bad days & weeks that you start to truly figure out your OWN unique fat loss formula. When you can see that on the weeks you made progress you were eating more fat, that’s POWERFUL information. Or, if you see that you ate way more and your hunger was out of control on days following long cardio workouts, you know how to tweak and adjust. If you see that you’re way more hungry if you have carbs in the morning versus fat and protein, you can make better breakfast choices. You can read tips and tricks all day long but ultimately the most useful tool is understanding your own behavior and how your body responds to food, exercise, sleep and stress. Write it down. Make the time. In the long run, its going to save you time and accelerate your results. I’m not kidding. Just try it for a few weeks.
- Ask for help
It is inevitable. You’re going to have good days and bad days. You’re going to feel motivated at times and completely unmotivated at others. You’re going to get stuck. You’re going to have questions. You’re going to get emotional and frustrated and excited and confused. It helps to have someone who can remind you of why you’ve started, encourage you to push through the hard moments and help you troubleshoot when you hit a rough patch. That’s what I love about my blog, my newsletter and my facebook page. You guys are so great about emailing me and asking for advice and I have to say that it lights me up. I’ve spent years studying nutrition, working in the industry and battling my own food demons – I genuinely have it in my heart to help you overcome these challenges. But its tough to do with just one or two emails here or there! That’s why I’ve decided to work one-on-one with an exclusive group of just 15 people in 2015.
As always, thank you guys so much for supporting me and for trusting me. Let’s go get healthy!!