Monday, December 29, 2014

Fear is my strong motivator

You may not feel that being overweight or obese is a problem to you. So, you may have little motivation or desire to lose weight. Or perhaps, you may be good at rationalization that nothing works. That is fine, so long as you understand the health risks. Your wake-up call will come in the form of the massage from your doctor.

In my case nothing motivated me until the moment, when in May 2010 the doctor informed me that there might me something in my heart and mentioned possible methods of treatment (surgery). He added that losing weight might make the procedure less likely.

That immediately got me motivated. Correction. It got me extremely motivated. I was determined to do anything that is humanly possible to lose weight. The fear of surgery was strong and effective motivation for me.

I am a positive minded person and strongly believe in using positive approach in influencing other people’s behaviors, whether it is raising children or managing subordinates. But no positive motivator was strong enough for me to lose and keep the weight off previously.

I do not wish anybody to get to the point that fear would have to motivate you to lose weight. Be smart now and use other people’s “experience” in this area. The plaque that builds up inside our coronary arteries can’t be removed. Once the buildup of plaque occurs, it stays there. Over time, plaque hardens and narrows our coronary arteries. Heart disease is currently the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States.

I want to include a positive message to everybody struggling with their weight: it can be done and there are ways to make it easier. Weight loss can be achieved without exercise, calorie counting and most importantly without being hungry. 

Having received my super motivation in 2010, I quickly lost 46 pounds that summer and then kept going on a bit slower until I lost a total of 91 pounds.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Planning what to eat in advance

Achieving weight loss is just like achieving everything else in life: success requires planning.

Preparing and cooking healthy meals after work can be very challenging. Doing so while being hungry is difficult and may not always lead to weight loss success. When I am hungry I want to eat rather sooner than later. In addition, when I am hungry I am likely to make poor food choices.

Therefore planning meals in advance can be a crucial element of clean eating based weight loss approach. Since I don’t cook I buy ready to eat grilled chicken salads and eat them five times a week. 

If the salad comes with cheese I remove the cheese. To keep salads fresh I pack and seal each salad in a separate plastic bag. Buying ready to eat fresh and unprocessed food in advance works for me very well. When I started weight loss process I used to make salads myself. It was difficult for me and I was very happy to graduate to a better way in planning and preparing food in advance.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Psychological and social consequences of being obese

Being overweight or obese can have a serious impact on health but it is also associated with many serious physiological, psychological, and social consequences.

Carrying lots of unwanted weight causes difficulties with day-to-day living. Normal tasks become harder when you are obese, as movement is more difficult. You also tend to tire more quickly and you find yourself short of breath often.

There are additional consequences. They are related to psychological and social well-being. Consequences like social isolation or negative self-image can be very painful and damaging. More people lose confidence and are demotivated because of their weight than any other factor out there. 

Not surprising, some obese people prefer not to go out in public because they feel self-conscious or they simply cannot enjoy activities that most people take for granted.

I believe that there is more to life than spending it fretting and being depressed about your physical appearance.

Obese individuals have typically made multiple attempts to lose weight, with little or no success. Their previous attempts result in discouragement, frustration, hopelessness, and lead to helplessness about the prospect of losing weight in the future on their own.

Many people throw in the towel on weight loss because they feel deprived and hungry when they eat less. But there is another way. It is decreasing calorie intake while maintaining an adequate nutrient intake. Eating fewer calories doesn't necessarily mean eating less food.

People get full by the amount of food they eat, not the number of calories they take in. To be able to cut calories without eating less and feeling hungry, you need to replace some higher calorie foods with foods that are lower in calories. The key is to eat foods that will fill you up without eating a large amount of calories.

Being obese has a complex impact upon the individual. 
While health effects of obesity are real and they are dangerous, it’s the social and emotional issues associated with obesity that cause suffering and influences individuals’ psychological state.

I understand that it is a personal and sensitive issue, but when I see obese or overweight people, I feel empathy and desire to help. I write this blog and described what worked for me on website in attempt to try to help people for whom losing weight seems to be an impossible task.

There is help available if you are overweight or obese. It is a condition that you CAN do something about. The more you know, the better you will be able to take action and do something about it.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Why did I eat that way today?

Today I drove several hours (each way) to pick up my daughter from college and bring her home for the Christmas break. Unfortunately I used travelling as an excuse and did not stick to the Eat like Me healthy eating. 

I had pizza on the way there and pizza again while coming back. I even supplemented just eaten pizza with almonds in dark chocolate when buying coffee at Starbucks. Used my usual excuse that almonds and dark chocolate are good for heart.

I prepared myself for the trip and took apples to the car to avoid hunger, but ended up with eating only two of them. I am back home now and trying to find the answer to the WHY question. Why did I eat that way today? I think the honest answer is my arrogance. 

The arrogance that I “can afford” to have one bad day because I know how to lose weight, and the next few days will bring me back to where I should be. Unfortunately I use this rationale more often than I should. 

Just two weeks ago I wrote a post about challenges during travel. What’s wrong with me? I knew I would regret eating poorly later but I did it anyway.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Making a commitment to yourself

Making the decision to lose weight, change your lifestyle, and become healthier is a big step to take. You can start simply by making a commitment to yourself. 

Many people find it helpful to sign a written contract committing to the process.  If nothing comes to mind you can use this:

Today, I am making a commitment to myself to change the way I eat. I will stay focused and every day I will do something, big or small, to help me achieve my goal. I will continue even when it seems like it won’t happen or others say I can’t. I will not give up.

Writing down the reasons why you want to lose weight can also help. It might be because you are scared of heart disease, or because you want to see your kids get married, or simply because you want to feel better in your clothes, or have better sex.

You really need to accurately state and define what your motivations are for losing weight. Whatever your driving force, write it down and read it daily.

No excuses. Excuses are giving up before you even begin.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Stick to healthy eating strategies when on the go

Travelling for the holidays can mean plenty of hearty family dinners and brunches where the calories can add up fast.

That’s why it’s important to have a game plan for sticking to your healthy eating plan when on the go. Instead of relying on the nutritionally corrupt offerings at gas stations, convenience stores, vending machines or overpriced airport bakeries to quell a rumbling stomach, pack your own arsenal of healthy snacks. I take apples with me when I travel by car.

Planning ahead can help you eat healthier. If you can't prepare ahead, choose wisely. Rather than the chips, smoothie, or candy bar, pick whole fruit or salad. Instead of reaching for juice or soda drink water.  

It’s important to stick to healthy eating strategies when on the go. Whether you’re driving to the in-laws or boarding a flight to a far-flung sunny location as part of the rising tide of running tourism, travelling can throw a wrench into your diet. 

If you don’t stick to your healthy eating plan when on the go, you risk bringing home a few extra pounds as souvenirs from your holiday.

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