Monday, October 17, 2016

"I Can't Wait to be OFF This Thing! I Just Want to Eat 'Normally'!"

"Hoping that I could lose my weight and then go back and eat like a normal person."

This is a very real desire that we all have to confront at some point or other in our journey towards optimal health.  
Thinking about this topic sparked so many thoughts in me that I decided to make it a blog!

Well, put it this way, we don't HAVE to confront this idea, we can IGNORE what is deep down and simply ACT on that hope after "losing weight", which WILL likely cause us to gain it all back again.
Or, we can deal with it and CHANGE OUR WANTS.
Let me give you a different perspective on it. Do you REALLY want to "eat normal"?
Firstly, doing what you've always done will get you what you've always got. Is that the status quo you want to maintain after all your hard work?
Secondly, the idea of "normal" in this country is what has 2/3rd's of Americans being overweight and fully HALF of those overweight Americans are OBESE. So, "normal" is overweight or obese. Healthy weight is actually the EXCEPTION. We are the MINORITY, those of us who are a healthy weight.
Most people who are a healthy weight remain so because their bodies naturally tend towards that. Some of us are a healthy weight because we were FORMERLY obese or overweight and decided to make a lifestyle shift, to fight for the right to be healthy!
Since only about 5-15% of people who lose a significant amount of weight maintain their losses for two years or more, (but Health Coaches are 5 times more likely to NOT regain their weight within the next 2 years) that means those of who have done that, who ARE in the healthy weight range, are the minority of the minority (of the minority of the feels like one of those pictures of a mirror with a picture of a mirror with a picture of a mirror....I digress.....). 
So tell me, do we WANT to eat NORMALLY to BE NORMAL, or do we WANT to eat EXCEPTIONALLY to be EXCEPTIONAL?
Do you know who else chooses "Exceptional?"
Olympic quality and elite athletes. Their lives are RULED by their training. They eat "normally" for an Olympic Athlete. What IS "normal" for an Olympic Athlete? Well I've done some study, and Olympic Athletes are very regimented when they are in training.
Take Olympic athlete Gabby Douglas, who was featured in Cosmopolitan this last summer. You can copy and paste this link to read about it, but I'll sum it up here. Basically, Gabby Douglas trains, in split-training, SIX HOURS PER DAY. What does she eat? Here it is:
Chicken Breast
Grilled Asparagus with Balsamic Vinegar
Handful of Dark Chocolate-Covered Almonds
Sauteed Garlic Green Beans
1 Cup Pasta
Homemade Gingerbread
Basically, she is consuming 2 "Lean & Greens", 3 servings of grains, 1 fruit, and 2 snacks. Oh, and she is training at the Olympic level in gymnastics for 6 hours every day.
Henry Cavill a.k.a "Superman". If you have seen any of his interviews about his work-out/eating regimen while training for and shooting the Man of Steel movie, you will see what I mean. He had to sign a CONTRACT with Universal Studios which dictated that he would only eat what the studio provided him to eat for six months. SIX MONTHS! Why did he do this? Because he had a goal in mind. He wanted to play "Superman" and he knew what he needed to do in order to realize his dream. And he did.
Channing Tatum.
The Principles Of Channing Tatum Diet;
5 to 6 Small Meals Spread Across the Day
Lean Proteins like Beef and Chicken
Plenty of Fresh Fruit, Oranges, Apples and Banannas
Large Range of Vegetables with Every Main Meal.
Carbohydrates in suitable proportions, whole grains are best.
Yogurt and the “Yummy” Treats in life, Just in Suitable Proportions.
Channing Tatum declines "buns" when he is out to dinner and orders a hamburger. We don't see this played out, because we never have dinner with Channing Tatum. However, he does. If Channing Tatum were an overweight woman asking for his "bunnless burger" everyone around him would assume he were "on a diet". No, he's just eating in accordance with the goals he wants to accomplish.
Exceptional in this context means that you are comfortable with and striving towards your health goals. You have lived the life of a "normal" American adult, and it did NOT bring you peace and joy. In fact, quite the opposite, it brought you heartache and emotional conflict and pain such that you made a decision to NOT BE THAT WAY ANYMORE.
Our bodies are our bodies, we can't swap 'em out for bodies that DON'T store extra calories/carbs etc as fat. Our bodies will always do that, we have not and will not change that propensity, dictated to us by our genetics primarily. What we HAVE accomplished by losing the excess adipose tissue (long-term energy storage) is that we have brought our bodies back in to energy balance. We are no longer hoarders of calories on our person. We are also living a life, those of us who have done that, which is necessarily more active. For me, this life I live now is infinately more satisfying and exciting and downright FUN that the life I was living as a Class IV Super-Obese-yet-"normal"-eating individual.
Our program is structured, to be sure. Our program is clinically proven safe and effective, 100% so. The question is, how do we VIEW our program? Do we view it as some "diet" which has been "foisted" upon us and therefore we regret it? Or do we view it as an OPPORTUNITY to be in TRAINING for the life we WANT to live?
And I will eat exceptionally, and I will move exceptionally, because I CHOOSE TO DO SO.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Stage 2 is NOT a "Diet"

Are you on a "diet" or are you practicing a healthy routine?

How do you frame what it is your are doing?

It matters!

Many times people who struggle with their weight develop a "diet mentality" when they decide they are going to try to "lose weight".

For me, I am practicing a "healthy routine". Now, losing weight may be part of that healthy routine if I am overweight or obese when I begin the process, but it ain't no "diet!" I have learned to re-classify my daily actions in light of what I am trying to accomplish, which is to live a healthy lifestyle.  What I do is no different than an athlete who has a goal and is "in training" to accomplish that goal!

Therefore I'm not on a "diet" in order "to lose weight". I happen to be "in training" for living an optimally healthy life!

In our program there are 6 stages to living an optimally healthy life.

1) Preparing for your journey
2) Reaching a healthy weight (which, by definition, is necessary to live a healthy life!)
3) Transition to healthy eating
4) Live the Habits of Health
5) Optimize health for your age
6) The potential to live a longer, healthier life

As you can see, reaching a healthy weight is simply the SECOND stage of my healthy life training! It is the second stage out of SIX STAGES! Yet most of us seem to concentrate and zero in on viewing the second stage as the ONLY stage, and we tend to classify it in our self-talk (and what we tell others) as "I'm on a diet".

I am desiring to live a healthy life, that is my goal, and I am taking the steps in order to LIVE A HEALTHY LIFE! I am not taking steps to "be on a diet".

Blah! Yuck! Who wants to do that? "Diets" are temporary things where people force themselves into a chronically deprived state, can't eat any yummy things, and feel bad about themselves! That is not what I am doing!

I am simply in a stage of change from previously living an UNHEALTHY life, or being in a state of "Dis-Ease", to living a HEALTHY LIFE!

And that process began when I prepared for my journey and made the choice to do it! That process doesn't "begin" when I am at a "goal weight" and "then I'll be happy".

I'm happy NOW! I'm in training for a healthy life! I've engaged in the process to LIVE a healthy life, and I am on the path to it! I'm not on no stinkin' DIET!

Now, stage 2, which is "Reach a healthy weight" necessarily involves putting my body into a state where it is highly encouraged to utilize my EXCESS weight (fat) as energy. I do that on purpose. It is part of the plan, it is part of "Reaching a healthy weight". The way in which I do this is very scientific, clinically proven safe and effective, and harnesses the science of weight loss perfectly so that I don't have to figure it all out on my own by devouring "diet books" or reading about the "latest celebrity fad". All I need to do is follow a structured eating plan and make MY day look like a day in the Quick Start Guide. If I do that day in and day out, I am accomplishing stage 2 automatically.

Athletes use "sports supplements" to optimize their training and performance goals. Protein powders. Sports gels. Meal-replacement bars. They do this because it gets them where they want to go, it allows them to live the life they want to live. I am no different in this respect. I also use "supplements" and I call them "fuelings". Just as athletic and sports supplements provide athletes exactly what they need to get the right kind of fuel for the results they want, my fuelings or "supplements" get ME the right kind of fuel for the results that I want, appropriate to the stage I am in! It is really NO DIFFERENT.

I don't focus on the things I "can't" have. I don't even look at it that way. I look at is as "what CAN I do today to further the process of the stage I am in?" I look at it with hope and optimism because the "attain a healthy weight phase" can take me into the next stage provided I follow the plan! No muss, no fuss, no pining over yummy things that aren't ON the program. Why would I? They don't appeal to me. They won't take me where I want to go! I'm in training for a healthy life, and this is the new healthy me, so why would I "cheat" my dreams and risk NOT living the life I want to live?

Just some thoughts for today on how to "reframe" your journey. Let's not get "stuck" in the "Stage 2 loop" endlessly because we are viewing it as a diet. Diets don't work. There is so much beyond stage 2, so let's move through stage 2 and into the rest of our "health" by taking the steps necessary to MOVE us through stage 2 and into stage 3.

Rinse and Repeat!