“My dear, here we must run as fast as we can, just to stay in place. And if you wish to go anywhere you must run twice as fast as that.”
Queen of Hearts, Alice in Wonderland
Weight does not define who you are.
You can have an extra kilo and still be a perfect parent, excellent at your job and a very good friend. It’s just that the possibility that you'll develop or already have diabetes, high blood pressure, heart decease, stroke, certain cancer, osteoarthritis, fatty liver decease, gallstones and depression become much higher with every extra kilo you have.
There is also undeniable correlation between your weight and how you sleep, energy levels and ability to do more things.
If you are slim, you look great and feel more confident.
By being fit and having a balanced lifestyle, you are a better role model for your kids.
You all agree with me, right? Then,
Why is it so hard to lose weight?
Because our body, our instincts and our primitive brain are designed to eat. Because we are surrounded by the persuasive advertising of unhealthy food. Because we follow the crowd. Because humans are emotional creatures and we can easily justify ourselves.
Here are many more reasons: your values, feelings, beliefs; cultural, biological and genetic motives; your habits and addictions. Being obese is a result of a complex interrelated triggers.
If you really decided to lose weight, you'll need to want it from the bottom of your heart, you need to get in touch with your deepest desires. Your brain and your instincts are unfortunately not on your side. You need strong drives and they can be positive and negative: fear of ostracism, or loosing your partner.
You'll need a strong will. Good news: will is like a muscle and can be trained; employ it.
The adage “Drink more water, cook at home, don't eat processed food, eat more veggies” should be you mantra now and you need to believe in it. It’s going to be your behavior now, your foundation of healthy habits, values and feeling. You need to accept it on a psychological level.
You are going to slip many times. Don't be hard on yourself, consider it as a learning curve, analyse why you did it and try not to repeat it again. Just stay focused and remind yourself why you are doing this.
How to start losing weight
There are a few techniques that really worked:
Use everything that will work for you and always remember that we are all different and what worked for your friend may not necessary work for you.
Eating healthy is the most crucial part of you new life. There are heaps of healthy recipes that are also very tasty and easy to cook, you can check them out here: Recipes
When eating, don't count calories or try to break down you food into nutrients, just enjoy your meal!
Eat regularly at the same time. I know its not always possible, try to make at least one meal, lunch for example, at the same time. It will regulate your metabolism.
Eat from the small plates. Eat with a chopsticks. Never eat from untransparent containers. We are eating with our “eyes” and if the brain is not receiving the signal of the amount of food on your plate you are going to over – eat.
Ditch dieting, it’s never worked. As soon as you finish with your diet you'll be back to your normal weight. If you exclude sugar from your food intake you'll lose around 5 kilos in two months. If you also stop eating junk food, overeating and stick to the regime you'll lose even more.
Stop Googling magic pills or powders, they won't help you. The Australian weight loss industry is worth $641.4 million with annual growth of $1.2% for the last five years and it’s designed to brand their products as attractive as possible to make you buy it. It’s in people's nature to be looking for the quick fix. With complex overweight problems, it doesn't work.
Regime in your daily routine is important not only with food consumption but also with your sleep. If you don't sleep enough you metabolism is not working properly. You'll also be prone to eat sugary stuff as it provides a burst of energy for the short time. Try to go to bed before 11. Lack of sleep is also contributing to a stress that is a direct pass to overeating.
Avoid stressful situations or learn to manage them.
Stress can be described as a flight or fight state of mind and body. If you are under stress every day, metabolism increases fat storage as your brain tells to your body that you are on survival mode.
There are a lot of methods to fight stress: walking, spending time with your family, exercising, meditating, gardening; or you can combine two of them in one and get even better results: working-out-in-the-garden.html
Being physically active is another very important aspect of losing unwanted kilos. Choose the activity that you are going to enjoy. If you won't like it you won't get any results. If you are not sure just try everything and stick to your favourite activity. Meantime, start walking, at least 15 minutes a day and increase your time slowly.
Get support from friends, family, join some online groups with a similar goals; it's always a great help and try to avoid people who are not on your side. When I was size 18 I tried to escape any slippery conversation with my mum that was usually started with “You look so gorgeous, please, please, please don't loose weight!”
Remember that scales are not the main indicator. The most important factors are how you feel, you sleep pattern, size of your clothes, energy level and your opinion about yourself.
There is no turning point once you've taken the path of a healthy life. As soon as you stop it you'll get all your extra weight back together with health problems. However, you can be more flexible now, just be careful with your food choices.
And here are my personal life hacks for how to lose weight: