Time to Stop "Losing Weight"

Time to Stop "Losing Weight"

5 March 2015

I recommend to my clients to not get on the scale because I've found that when women create a reliance on what the numbers reflect to them, it has the potential to create a negative cycle when the numbers aren't what they want to see. More importantly though, it’s because the scales don't know how much fat you are actually burning and that’s what you are ultimately trying to do. Anyone can go on a shake diet and lose 'weight' because they're losing fluids, but they're not actually expending any stored fat cells.

Its ok to have a rough idea of what you would like to weigh - I fluctuate between 85 and 90, but more importantly I know what body shape I want to be. I can see a layer of fat over my stomach muscles, or a second chin developing, so when I notice that its simply time to increase my cardio, get my heart rate up and be more mindful of what I’m eating. Of course its not just that easy – I have to get out of bed, go to the gym, not have the pizza that I want, but it is easy when I focus on what I want to achieve instead of what I'm missing out on.

You may be saying “Well it’s easy for you to say – you don’t have kids and a history of failing at diets” and I can’t argue with that, but I can advise you to not argue for your limitations. The reason I don’t have a history of failures is because I was lucky enough to understand how big a role my mind plays in how my body looks. And I don’t have kids, but I have a company that I'm building with a lot of clients that need my time. I also have a permanent disability from my time in the Army when I blew my knee out, a girlfriend to keep happy, a dog that needs exercising, family that need visiting, friends that need company…we all have a life, your health just has to be a priority. We can tell ourselves why we cant do something, or we can tell ourselves why we CAN do it. We all have that voice in our head, it just needs to be trained properly to help you, not hinder you.   

Many of my clients don’t like looking in the mirror because they don’t like the reflection, but we can’t change what we can’t access. If you're “afraid” of what you will see, fear will become a barrier to what you are trying to achieve. Check yourself out in the mirror once a week – look at who you are, LOVE the body that you see but then decide whether you are ok with the shape of it or not and if not, decide to do something about it, but change the mindset and way you look at it to how you have been in the past! If you hate it or are offended by your body, you will be ashamed of it, try to ignore it or tell yourself that its not that bad. I get it – I get why people do this, but there is a different way.

The term "weight loss" is a dangerous word and I think it gives a false sense - a lot of people don't like calling it "fat loss" because they hate hearing or being reminded that they're carrying excess fat, like its something to be ashamed of so lets water it down to make it more palatable. We need to accept where we are. We need to understand that you are that shape for a reason. Most importantly, you need to realise that you can do something about it. Not in the way you have tried before, but by getting your mind in shape before attempting to get your body in shape. Weight loss is a by-product. What's more important – the way you look and feel, or how much you weigh? So why do we even still call it weight loss?

So get off the scales and get in front of the mirror. Don’t buy into what other people are selling you, don’t buy into what you are probably selling yourself either unless it is positive reinforcement, accepting self talk and motivating thoughts. Finally, understand you're not trying to “lose weight” - you are finding a way to decrease the risk of obesity related illnesses and to live a high quality, sustainably healthy life with the people you love, doing the things that make you happy. Exercising isn’t a chore. Eating the right quality and quantity of food doesn’t mean you're “missing out” on anything. You're not “losing” anything…think about what you're actually gaining.

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