Last Friday I started a new Friday posting about what is different for me this time around.We sometimes have those ah-ha moments when we are reading a book, a magazine article, a blog, watching a TV program or talking to a friend. It might be something we have previously read or heard but for some reason this time something resonates, a little spark goes off in our head and we get it as if hearing it for the first time. I have had some of those Ah-Ha moments regarding eating healthy, losing weight, maintaining weight loss and exercising. They are what was different this time when I decided to tweak my lifestyle, my food plan and fitness program. I read some new books and reread some old books, garnered some new knowledge, refreshed my memory of what I had already learned and get this, I started actually doing those things!
NO TIME FRAME
I am not losing weight for a special event, birthday, anniversary or any reason other than to be the best healthy me I can be. I have never kept off weight that was lost for a certain event. Have you? I don’t have an expectation of how much weight I should lose in a certain amount of time. The changes I am making are for the rest of my life and to better my health. One of the awesome side affects to a healthier lifestyle is a slimmer, trimmer, firmer healthy body. I will take the whole package deal and how ever long it takes to get there is fine with me! Changing my habits and staying fit is more important than how long it takes to happen. Ah-Ha moment!
DIETS DON’T WORK
I use to hear this all the time and I didn’t get it. I knew I had lost weight on diets many times so what were they talking about? Oh, that little problem that I always gained back the weight I lost plus a little bonus! When I read the Dr Phil book The Ultimate Weight Loss I discovered that I have all or nothing thinking. I use to be either on a diet with rigid restrictive rules or I would go off the diet, ditch the rules and eat with a frenzy in rebellion to the rigid diet I just came off and eventually would return to. Oh, maybe diets really don’t work! Another Ah-Ha moment!
I gave up dieting. I have a healthy food plan focusing on eating real food. Nothing is off limits with in reason and as long as I can balance it with my daily food intake and my level of exercise. I would say that I eat healthy foods about 90 % of the time. I don’t eat a lot of sweets or treats in that sense anymore. I don’t go “off” my healthy eating plan, every food is a choice and some days the choices are healthier than other days. I don’t have the “I am on a diet or I am off the diet” mentality. I no longer think “oh I ate something not on my diet so I blew it, fell off the wagon, I might as well have a binge feast because tomorrow it is back to the rigid diet!” Talk about freedom! Since there is no forbidden fruit, all of that stuff I use to think I wanted no longer has the appeal it use to have. I know I can have it if I want to but most of the time I don’t want it. If I choose to have something less healthy as an occasional treat I do so with out worry or guilt.
NO MORE CRAVINGS
When I read the book The End Of Overeating by Dr Kessler I felt like I had been given an owner’s manual to myself! Seriously this book shed so much light on why I use to crave sweets and carbohydrates and seemed to have no self control. Sugar is my cocaine! I learned all about the addictive power of certain foods and the science behind it. It isn’t all about will power, isn’t that revolutionary? I was so relieved to find out how addictive certain foods are. Armed with the knowledge from this powerful book and tips from Dr Oz’s You On A Diet I started tweaking my daily food intake to make it healthier, more satisfying and less likely to cause cravings.
From Dr Oz I learned that if you eat empty calories those being ones that do not contain nutrients that your body needs, your brain will keep telling you it is hungry in an attempt to get what it needs to sustain you even if you have had an adequate amount of calories for the day. This was a huge Ah-Ha moment! The old saying that all calories are equal does not hold true. If you are filling up on refined sugar and refined carbohydrates you can expect to be hungry at the end of the day. If you are eating healthy foods that your body needs the cravings that lead you to over eat come to an end. If you are an emotional eater you still have to deal with the desire to eat when you are not hungry but it sure is a lot easier to do that when you are not craving carbs to begin with!
NON SCALE VICTORIES
I have clothes in my closet in a variety of sizes, that is what happens when you have been a yo yo dieter. Once a week I try on a pile of clothes to see what fits, what almost fits and what I might get on half way this week that didn’t even allow a cheek to take a peek at last week! This is a much better indication of my progress than the scale because I am building muscle and toning and firming with my exercise and that does not always reflect well when I get on the scale. I call this method of judging my progres the Truth Tellers. Ah-ha moment! No matter, I would rather be firm and strong and weigh a little more. I do still get on the scale but I don’t get hung up on the number. I know my weight fluctuates from day to day and I don’t freak out if it goes up a little one day as I know it will go back down as long as I am eating healthy and exercising. I look at everything I am doing right, how I feel when I exercise and all the good things I am doing for my health.
Dr Oz says,”Think of the food you eat as a prescription for your health and ask yourself if your doctor would prescribe for you what you are about to eat.”
I love that saying and I often think about it. It has had a profound affect on my approach to eating. Don’t get me wrong it does not mean that everything I eat is going to be healthy all the time. Most of what I eat on an everyday basis is on the healthy side. I love to cook and I love eat and I am finding a good balance so I can continue to enjoy doing both.
Care to share one of your Ah-Ha moments?
Grateful for Ah-Ha moments and good health.