Monday, January 23, 2012
Don't make it difficult
There are all these "fad diets" out there right now that it just drives me insane. I always struggled with my weight, however in today's world my high schools days I would never have been considered overweight but back in the 80's if you were 10 pounds heavy then you were FAT. So I grew up from a young age being told and teased by classmates about my weight....I'll never forget in high school a boy told me that if I lost 10 pounds he would be my boyfriend....funny thing was I always remembered that and it hurt. About 15 years ago I reminded him of that and he was apologetic and we are still friends to this date. If you are told long enough that you are too heavy then you will surely become too heavy or the opposite! After my son was born I ballooned well into the 220's I'm 5'7 but have a muscular build...when my son was in Kindergarten I decided to try the low carb diet and exercise......I don't want to say this "worked" for me but it was a quick fix for awhile. I lost about 60 pounds and felt really great....people noticed people spoke how wonderful I looked and then I got comfortable with that and put it all back on plus 20 some pounds within the next couple years. I know people are only trying to compliment you and make you feel good and it does at times but when you hear it over and over and over you start to get insecure and wonder damn how bad did I look?
What happens with these "fad diets" is that we are not learning how to change our behavior nor our habits and for me I got comfortable and went back to my eating ways. By 2002 I was weighing in at 244 pounds and working my way into a size 24. I had stopped smoking 3 packs of cigarettes a day the year before and I wont blame stopping smoking on weight gain but I am sure I put some on due to that. Enough was enough.....again I did the low carb since it "worked" for me the first time.....if you really think about it when people tell you "I did low carb and it worked or I did the Special K diet and it worked" etc etc but lets be real - If it "worked" for you would you be heavy again? DUH I of course was one of those who still thought those thoughts...it worked before lets do it again. This time I incorporated much more exercise and lost 85 pounds in just over 5 months. I knew with my habits and my personality I would have to do more then that to keep it off this time. I needed goals to work towards and that's when I started biking, running and doing short distance triathlons. I would sign up for a race and knew I had to train to get thru it. I also knew I needed good carbohydrates in order to fuel myself to train and participate in these events. Soon after I decided to also become a ACE personal trainer and was hired on at our local club as a trainer and instructor. This was in my spare time as I was a business owner and was plenty busy....but by having this new occupation I knew I could help others with their journey and they would in fact be helping me so I could set a good example. If I could do what I was doing I knew anyone and everyone else could also...they just needed the encouragement and someone to show them how to believe in themselves. Throughout the past 9 years I have for the most part kept my weight off.....At one point I put on about 20 pounds which was after knee surgery and also just finishing Ironman number 3...you tend to eat more when training for those events and if you are not careful when that training stops you need to get your food intake in check as well! I got serious again back in August and since then have lost the 20 I gained plus am down an additional 17. This is the thinnest I have ever been and I feel wonderful. I don't see myself as a size 6 and I don't know if I ever will.....so many years of being told you were fat does something to your mind.....but I do know I am healthy. I now follow weight watchers points plus program-during my intense training I try to pull in the extra fruits and veggies rather then crappy carbs. So what is this post about.....let me back up.
Without changing your lifestyle and habits your success rate is about 10%. This holds true in so many of life's "addictions" but I think food addiction is probably one of the hardest to concur. Alcohol, drugs, gambling which are a few addictions that are very tough to battle but if you really think about it the lifestyle change that you need to make is quite simple, - don't go into bars where you are tempted to drink, don't go around friends that use drugs that will also temp you to use, don't go to a casino where you are tempted to gamble. With a food addiction you can't just say don't go near food...you have to eat to fuel your body to in order to live. I want to take a look at some of these "fad diets" that are out there....and I call them "fad diets" because they are NOT teaching you to change your long term eating habits. First lets look at the Atkins or Low Carb diet and now a spinoff called the Paleo Diet - all of these too have "special foods that you can purchase".....yes I lost weight on the low carb diet myself but after the first failure and I say failure because when I stopped eating the low carb way all my weight and then some came back on. I did not learn how to properly add carbs back into my daily nutrition nor did I care to learn how to add them back in, to me I had lost 65 pounds YEAH ME and I went back into my old habits and before I knew it all my weight and then some came back on. Now being in the fitness industry for the past 9 years I hear all sorts of different stories, another example is the "Special K" diet.....eat a special K product for breakfast and lunch and a normal dinner and you will lose weight.....uh sure this will work because when you add the calories of the special K products you ate for breakfast or lunch and a normal diet you will have a calorie deficit.....burning more calories then you consume is how you lost weight.....but what have you learned from this? Can you honestly believe you can eat cereal products for breakfast and lunch and a normal dinner the rest of your life? The latest is this Body By Vi ViSalus Shakes....if I have one more person ask me to sell them in my gym or promote them I think I will go ape shit. I keep my cool and I just say "I'm sorry I don't believe in that" Seriously folks....can't you see this is just a money pyramid. Again....how is this teaching you to change your eating habits? Drink a shake substitute for a meal? Can you eat this way for the rest of your life? Then I hear those words from those that are losing some on it...."Once I get the weight off I will keep it off" BUT.......not a single one of them can tell me HOW? Are you going to drink these shakes the rest of your life? Take the 90 day challenge and see for youself......this right here is a set up line for failure.....someone that is overweight will take this as in 90 days you will be thinner and healthier if you stick to our plan.....you better believe it if you stick to drinking shakes instead of meals for 90 days you will lose weight-again this is due to the "calorie deficit" you will NOT being consuming anywhere close to the amount of calories that has put you in your current state of health....if you follow anything for 90 days you will see results.....but what is going to happen after 90 days.....they dont even tell you about that....its' a 90 day challenge and most people CAN commit to 3 months out of their lives if given a challenge. I am kinda curious to research alcoholism and drug addtion therapy just to see how many after 90 days dont continue? I know if I can can get a client to get past the first 4 weeks the chances of a longer term commitment is very promissing, after that 90 days where they do start to see some change in body size and how they feel about themselves is the toughest....and it goes one way or another....they get comfy and tell themselves I got this, I can keep it off now but go back to their old ways.....the succes rates are extrememly low.
The Paleo diet seems to be taking off in the crossfit community. The funniest part of this diet is most folks that preach this way of life then turn around after a big workout and poison their body with alcohol? WHY? I will agree that today's food are full of refined carbs and sugars the paleo program encourages those to remove all kinds of grains, starches and even dairy. Diary is in fact a very high muscle building protein. How do we know what the true paleolithic eating habits were? Sure there was no food in cans or boxes, no fast food restaurants or convenience stores, no preservatives, chemicals,white sugar or anything artificial all that existed is what could be gathered and hunted. I also don't believe there would be one type of paleo diet do to the fact that even back then there were different cultures, climates and geography. The only think I can see that was missing from their diets that we now have today are processed and refined foods....the foods were all natural and derived from proteins, fats and/or carbs. The carb intake would be low due to the fact their were no refined sugars or processed carbs but some studies claim the paleo diet could have consisted as high as 40% in carbs...which is way higher then what is being preached today. Its not that difficult....it's all about eating less and getting yourself moving.