Getting back in the “groove” after vacation with the family is always a challenge. One of the things I miss is my morning ritual of coffee and
By Nicki On May 3, 2009 1 Comment
I can hardly stand it, yet another celebrity on national television sharing her weight crisis. You’ve probably heard by now, Kirstie Alley, actress, past Jenny Craig spokesperson, has found the weight she lost with Jenny Craig. Not only has she gained the weight back, she admits to staying away from exercise for over a year. Hmmm, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again and again and again, DIET’S DON’T WORK! Even if a company is paying you to lose weight, what happens when the money stops? Kirstie Alley has shown us. It’s like any diet, what happens when the motivation is gone, the wedding is over, the reunion has passed? Oprah has shown us. If you’re not buying in to the reason you’re changing your lifestyle, it won’t stick. If you’re not making changes that make sense for you and your lifestyle, weight loss won’t stick. If you’re restricting yourself so much that you are unable to achieve any sort of balance, weight loss won’t stick.
Amid all the tears and shame, Alley is saying that she believes after this experience, she has broken the weight loss code and will be revealing herself in 6 months or so, but she can’t reveal her secret. What? Are you kidding me? I know the secret, eat less and move more and do it in private. Stop putting the eyes on you as your sole motivation to lose weight……again. Ahh, but then Kirstie revealed she’d be writing a book about it, now I get it, another celebrity weight loss book. That makes perfect sense for those of us so immersed in a lifestyle like that of Kirstie Alley.
The most disappointing piece to this whole sordid weight loss debacle is that Oprah had Kirstie Alley on her show recently. Part of me “gets” Oprah’s reasoning, to let people know that weight gain happens, many times. But if you’re going to have someone like that on your show, why can’t you point out to the millions of people watching WHY Kirstie failed, why you have failed, why millions of people fail on diets every single day? There has yet to be ANYONE that delves in to the why, other that dietitians on news programs, but Oprah and the other celebrities seem to turn away from the straight up truth about weight loss. You know why? Because there’s not one clean answer, it’s different for everyone, yet Oprah and Kirstie Alley and the millions of others who have gained and lost weight think it should be easy and therefore when they fail, they feel like idiots, “Shouldn’t ANYONE be able to do it?” Yes, anyone can do it but not just anyone can keep the weight off and that is where we miss the boat. ANYONE can lose weight, but the maintenance piece is always missing from the average weight loss program.
Here are my thoughts on why the diet approach continues to fail for so many.
1. Expectations are incongruent with the work that needs to be done. No matter how much you may want to lose weight, if you’re not willing to do the work consistently to get the results you THINK you want, don’t even start. It’s about having realistic expectations. You think you should lose 50 pounds, perhaps start with 10 and go from there. High goals that are not congruent with what you’re willing or able to do (as well as genetics) will set you up for failure again and again. I see it all the time, people think they know what they want, but when they realize the work behind it they quit and once again view themselves as a failure. If expectations are realistic, the work to follow should be as well.
2. It’s all about the exterior. You cannot try to create perfection because you will fall short every time and falling short means quitting, quitting the diet. If I had a quarter for every woman that came to me wanting a flat stomach or thinner thighs (these are typically genetic things that can’t be changed), I’d be a wealthy woman. Because we see magazine covers and celebrities, many believe that is what they should look like, not good. Focusing on the exterior will often result in disappointment simply because change happens from the inside out. Therefore, focus on changing inside first, outside will follow.
3. All you think about is the weight loss, BIG MISTAKE! The more you focus on weight, the less you will focus on health, trust me. Those that weigh themselves consistently become so obsessed with the numbers, they’ll do anything to get the weight off such as skipping meals, counting points (often selecting unhealthy options), cutting calories dangerously low, etc. If you want to get to a healthy weight and be healthy for the long haul, stop weighing yourself and simply focus on making healthy lifestyle changes, move as often as you can and work everyday to eat as healthy as you can. Therefore, making lifestyle changes for your health, that is something that makes sense.
4. You use the scale, BIG MISTAKE! How many times have you been having a really great week, eating well, moving more? You get on the scale after two weeks, (after all you’ve been gaining weight for 20 years and in 2 weeks you expect your body to transform) and you weigh yourself, you’re down 1/4 of a pound and want to scream. Instead of screaming, you eat ice cream or go out for fast food or simply ditch any further effort to lose weight. I know, I’ve been there. You cannot rely on the scale to tell you how you’ve been doing in only 2, 3 or even 6 weeks. As women go through the various stages of life, they lose weight differently, I know it’s unfair, but it is what it is. The best thing that you can do is listen to your body, it will tell you how you’re doing, don’t let the scale dictate your success or failure.
Look, I’ve been following this diet stuff for over 20 years and nothing has changed. Diets simply help people lose weight but rarely, very rarely do diets teach people how to maintain a healthy weight. Sure, there may be maintenance programs, but the reality is that once the diet is over and the weight is lost, people don’t know how to assimilate back to normal life and that’s where the trouble starts. You see, people use food for many different reasons, coping mechanism, comfort, reward, punishment, etc. And until there are other methods of dealing with those issues, food will always remain the obstacle to gaining control over the health. So above and beyond moving more and eating less, perhaps discover what role food plays in your life and how you can change it. I tell my clients all the time, it took you a long time to gain the weight and change your lifestyle habits, give yourself the same patience in getting back to health. As a client of mine recently said to me, it’s brilliant, “Better to be patient, than a patient.”
Here’s to a healthy you, explore, discover and become your best.
By Nicki On January 21, 2009 No Comments
This week has been an exciting one. A new President takes the reigns and with that comes the responsibility that no average person would want to take on. However, anticipation and a positive mindset sets the course for all things possible. As President Obama said throughout his campaign, “Yes we can,” we can only hope that he will be guided to the right decisions for our country and the world. Whether or not you’re an Obama fan, the fact remains he is our President and I look forward to seeing our country come together and rise above the challenges, I think it’s possible.
In a country of the free, I’m honored and privileged to be able to write what I want, work how I want, be a woman that owns a business, has a family and can speak my mind all without the fear of senseless retribution. I look forward to a great year, come what may. Believing that anything is possible and actually making it happen is a powerful experience for sure.
Many forget that part and parcel of good health includes a mental component as well as a physical component. In fact , for many people, if their mental state if strong and healthy, that can affect their body very positively. Conversely, if one’s mental state is unhealthy and there’s a lot of negative input, that can have a profoundly negative impact on the body despite one’s best efforts.
Over the years, when meeting with clients they can be so focused on simply the exercise and nutrition component, they forget about the value of keeping the mind healthy. Granted, exercise is a positive contributor to a healthy mind, but if the exercise is the only source of positive mental input, it won’t be enough. It’s like exercising without paying attention to nutrition. So, after exercise, one needs to feed the mind positive thoughts just as one needs to feed the body positive nutrition.
You have seen people that look much younger than their years and people will chalk it up to good genes or the fact they exercise, but it also has much to do with their happiness quotient and good eating.
Our new President is a pretty active individual and presents a positive attitude and a silent confidence that for some isn’t easy to do. I believe that the positive input from his family growing up, along with seeking out positive options in his life, including his wife, has contributed to his overall health, (seems he’s doing well with quitting smoking) and life success. I believe he can be a positive role model for adults as well as children.
For years I have told clients that healthy living is a package deal, healthy body, healthy mind, you can’t have one without the other. So find sources to motivate you mentally just as much as you seek out sources to motivate you physically. I’m a proponent of daily quotes, things that can feed your mind positively. I continue to be amazed at the people that talk about themselves so negatively, it doesn’t serve health well.
I understand that you can’t be walking around with Mr. Bluebird on your shoulder every day, but you certainly can find ways to enhance the quality of your life by seeking out options for a healthy body and a healthy mind, they’re out there, you just need to find what works for you!