One of the more frequent conversations I have with clients surrounds the statement “I don’t understand why I am not losing weight” or “I don’t understand where this extra weight is coming from.”
It’s one of those difficult conversations because, most often, there is not some extraordinary circumstance that is causing this.
Most of us are not the exception to the basic rules of weight loss and weight gain for the human body. What it comes down to is our ability to take a hard look at what we are really willing to do to make changes … but this is not the easy answer for us to hear.
I say it over and over again. The human body is amazing, but really pretty simple in its needs. If weight is not coming off or if you are gaining weight, then you need to change something. Maybe it’s a long time habit or maybe it’s a more recently adopted one that you need to look at, but something has to change for your body to do what you want it to do. Exercise is key for a healthy body but nutrition is, by far, the most important factor when it comes solely to weight loss.
Changing a habit in your nutrition is not necessarily easy, but it’s really not complicated either unless we make it so. Understand, it’s not the occasional piece of cake you have or that one week you only worked out twice. It’s not that one dinner where you ate extra pizza or the party you went to where you drank more than usual. Those are one-time things. Now, if you are doing those “one time” things 4 or 5 times a week, then the combination of them all becomes a habit.
Maybe that is you, but most often it’s the ice cream before bed every night. It’s the regular soft drink with lunch every day. It’s the extra alcohol consumed because a social situation has changed. It’s the three pieces of bread and the extra scoop of potatoes eaten with dinner every night. It’s the big bag of chips grabbed when walking in the door after work. Or maybe it’s the habit of skipping breakfast, eating a salad for lunch, and then using these choices to justify the big, high-calorie dinner and evening snacking.
These are the habits we need to investigate. It’s what we do the majority of the time that matters. Making changes can be overwhelming if we let it be, but to change our less-than-ideal habits we don’t have to go to extremes. Success comes with making one change at a time to create new, healthier habits. These are the ones that stick.
You are not powerless. Your body does not control you. YOU control your body.
The single-biggest factor that has helped me in my journey is realizing that I am the one in control. I do have the power to change. I just have to make my mind up to do it … and so do you.
Forget the past. Sure, it’s great to understand what has worked for you previously and know how your body responds to different things. However, your body changes over time. Your body chemistry changes. Your mindset changes. Your age changes. All of these are factors that contribute to how you and your body respond TODAY to what you are doing. Let go of the statement “10 years ago I could do this,” or “Since I was in my 20s, I have always …”
Be open. By all means, if you have a real concern that your weight issue is due to a medical condition, consult your doctor. There definitely are medical reasons for weight gain and loss.
There also are medications that may be contributing. Don’t be afraid to check that out. But if all of that is good, open your mind to the possibility of change. Don’t neglect taking a hard look at your habits to determine if there really are things that you can do but may be resisting. Remember that you don’t have to figure it out alone. This is where the insight and experience of a professional can help. Consult with a nutritionist or even a qualified personal trainer to help you.
We may not always give you the easy answer and we don’t have a magic pill for you. The truth may not be what you want to hear, but until you are open to change what is not working, you won’t be able to find what does.
Now think about it. What are YOU really willing to do?