Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A serious(ly) funny question!!

I was asked the following question this week and the individual was serious: “So, if I have an ice cream sundae, I can then go ahead and just eat lettuce the rest of the day and be fine right? I’d be within my calories.” Ummmm NO! This is not the answer to getting lean. It is not the answer to losing weight. It is not the answer to being healthy. This person (who shall remain nameless) also asked (well told) me that he/she was NOT going to give up his/her Lucky Charms or his/her pizza, so if they have to give that up, then “forget it”.

This leads me to my next blog. You will notice that I have already talked about a lot of what I am about to say and I am saying this to EVERYONE who has heard themselves saying exactly what this person said to me. And, to be honest, I had to say it to myself about 8 or 9 years ago when I first set out on my weight loss journey in college.

As I’ve said before, when I was in college, I weighed just over 200 pounds. I was training to do an Olympic sized triathlon for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. One day while training on the bike my coach noticed that I was starting to “bonk”. I literally had NO energy what-so-ever to complete the ride. He then asked me what I ate that day. I kid you not; I had eaten a bag of Sour Patch Kids and a Large Veggie Sub from Subway. That. Was. It. I was not fueling my body. I was NOT losing weight that way. Instead my body was holding onto any and all the calories and fat it could just to survive. He quickly turned me onto a healthy meal plan called “Body for Life” for which I lost much of my weight. When I started to “stall” on that was when I started counting my calories to get down to the nitty-gritty and actually see what I was consuming. Body for Life is essentially eating a carb and a protein at every meal and having 6 “meals” throughout the day. I was (essentially) counting my calories without counting them until I started to stall with my weight loss and then I HAD to count to lose. http://bodyforlife.com/

The point of that story is; you will NOT lose weight if you kid yourself into thinking that you’re “eating healthy” if you “just have lettuce” OR if you think “wellllll I’m ‘only’ having ice cream and then veggies for the rest of the day” or “I’m only eating pizza all day and nothing else.” Your weight loss, (if there is any) will ONLY BE TEMPORARY. If that’s your goal, then fine...have at it, but don’t sell yourself short. You deserve to be healthy so don’t half ass it!

Also, don’t use excuses such as, “I have a family to take care of and a job (or 2 jobs) and I just DON’T have the time to figure out what I have to eat.” Seriously; if I had a nickel for every time I heard that excuse or the myriad of others, I could be a stay at home mom because I wouldn’t have to work as I’d be rich. Okay, that may be exaggerating a bit, but I would at least have a couple hundred bucks!

Hey…I get it. I truly do! Excuses are SO DARN EASY to use. Here is my list (again) if you haven’t seen them:

· I work full time (Response to yourself: so do most people)

· I have an 18 month old (Response: Most people do have children and if they don’t have children, the probably have someone else in their lives that they have to take care of.)

· I am also a part time photographer (Response: Most people these days do have 2 jobs)

· I have MS and the fatigue is killing me (Response: it could be worse & this is a main reason why you shouldn’t be making excuses.)

· I’m tired (Response: so what?! Exercise has been scientifically proven to help you sleep better when you do go to sleep and to increase energy when you’re awake.)

· I don’t have time (Response: Nobody has the time. Only select few actually make the decision to MAKE THE TIME.)

· I don’t feel like counting calories (Response: then don’t, but don’t expect results)

· I don’t feel like exercising (Response: then don’t, but don’t expect results)

I saw this on Frank Nash Training Systems http://franknashtrainingsystems.com/abouts2.php FB today and it is beyond true: “You can’t out-exercise a bad diet” and to quote what the caption stated; “THIS IS SO TRUE! In order to successfully lose weight, you have to burn more calories in a day than what you intake, but don’t forget that you also have to nourish your body so you shouldn’t go lower than 1200 calories a day, which is already really low I find. Also, consuming large amounts of saturated fats can result in fatty substances such as cholesterol being deposited in the walls of arteries or cause high blood pressure. Let’s not forget how HIGH in calories are the fast foods! So, the next time you think about going to the drive-thru for a fast lunch, maybe you should go to the grocery store nearby and find something ready-to-eat that is a healthier alternative or prepare your lunch the night before so you don’t have to look for lunch! PREPARATION IS KEY!"

Since the nameless person mentioned Lucky Charms: all I have to say about them is this: they are 41% sugar and 4% fiber and contain yellow, blue and red dyes, which brings them in as the third-worst cereal. http://www.mainstreet.com/slideshow/lifestyle/food-drink/worst-breakfast-cereals Opt for something healthier like a Kashi brand cereal or at least something with more fiber! The fiber will fill you up and not leave you STARVING an hour later. Just sayin’.

Also, this will ONLY work if you are in it for the long haul! It is not a “quick fix”. If you are only trying to lose weight because you are going on vacation in March and you need to “quickly” lose 20 pounds; sorry to break it to you, but there is no way it will happen by March. If you are doing this the right way, you should NOT lose more than 1-2 pounds per week. IF you are lucky to lose more than that one week, expect to see no loss or smaller losses in the weeks to follow. Slow and steady. Ten pounds is quite do-able by March, but why stop in March? Why not keep going? Again, set goals for yourself; both short-term and long-term!
Need a little help with the meal plan part? I will include a link at the end, but first, how are you doing? Are you staying with it even though the "New Year" is no longer the "New Year"? It's hard. Nobody said it would be easy! What is stopping you, or better yet...what is keeping you going??

Here is a link to a sample meal plan: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/healthy-weight-pyramid/SA00103

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