The American diet of fast, cheap, abundant, and eaten fast has led us down a plump path.
If you want to turn that around for yourself, you'll need some focus and inspiration.
If you're planning to lose weight and get back to a real-foods diet, I'd highly suggest you motivate. Goals are difficult to reach unless you know exactly what you want besides just, "I want to lose (x) pounds."
Motivation can come through old photos of yourself at a healthier weight, admiring a model or celebrity, or family member or friend with an ideal physique, or (like above) putting your head on your ideal body to see on the fridge.
Another great motivator is numbers. Look at your labs, your stats for weight and waist measurements, blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, etc., and beat your numbers.
Visuals are very helpful and especially to manifest weight loss. You have to really see it in your head, what you'd wear, how you'd move, the choices you'd make throughout the day. During my weight loss, I reminded myself of how surfer girl would live and move, eat, and rest. She was my focus.
I'm daisies and barefeet, yellow gingham and bubbles, viking and surfer, cowboy hat and sandals, blow-up swimming pool and coconut oil, fresh garden fruit and spontaneous dancing. I'm the colors of sea, sky, and citrus. I'm positive and upbeat. I'm a dreamer and a doer. My scent is spicy ginger and sandalwood. I'm the sound of laughter and humming.
Let's gather up pics of before and afters to see how different a person can look.
Here's me 40 pounds heavier, and now (even with Bell's palsy recovering, the face is very different).
my highest weight
(still considered "overweight" by BMI,
10 more pounds to go for a total of 50 pounds weight loss at 5'8")
What inspires me might not inspire you. I have always had a sort of California beach-surfer community-healthy-athletic-skateboarder-Ellie Mae Clampett-country girl vibe.
I like surfer punk music and big 80s. I'm at my best watching videos of surfers and beach living and lifestyle. Yes, I eat avocado toast and every afternoon have a matcha tea break. I'm more likely to do my meditation outside and eat fruit and veggies right from the garden. Living the lifestyle I admire makes me feel part of the culture. Even my paintings reflect it -
I really enjoy Tina Cohen (surfer in Hawaii) as she has the right attitude and lifestyle. Her videos make me feel like I have a tribe, someone whose lifestyle I fit right into.
I also adore anything with Giada de Laurentis, but most especially her series in paradise. Movies that inspire me include "Stealing Beauty" and "Under the Tuscan Sun."
This girl (above) had a helluva before and after. The thing that was missing from years of wanting to lose weight is that I wanted to lose for physical/beauty reasons. This woman does look really hot in both pics, I think, but without fat to give her body inflammation, she looks as healthy as she is.
How about Jonah Hill - a hunk was in there, waiting to be exposed. Remember John Candy? Fame and fortune means nothing if you're not here to enjoy it. Health reasons are always the best motivator.
Can't imagine yourself thin? Go to a site like Face-in-Hole to try your head on a body.
Find a celebrity or sports star with a similar body proportion. For me, I have a long body for my height and a high waist.
Trying on a bikini on Photoshop.
Always had a Jacklyn Smith bone structure in my face and it's good to have it back again.
Maybe buy that dream clothing piece you want to wear and hang it up. Doing my bed/bathroom with a surfer theme would remind me of the lifestyle - lots of fresh produce cleaned and cut and in containers in the fridge, happy summer tunes playing, sunshine, and lemon water.
Live as if and you begin to act as if.
I am in the process of renovating my home and I'm bringing surfer viking girl to life -
Adding the sun/sea/citrus colors to my home brought the "spirit" of my goal to me. I can't go surfing in Phoenix, but I can live the lifestyle - it's attitude.
Immerse yourself in who you are becoming. Taste it, feel it, envision what you'll do, the choices you'll make, how you're dress.
I painted the kitchen wall blue but then thought - since I took out the heavy dark and crowding upper cabinets for some bamboo shelves, I should add a dimension, so I painted in a wave shape. Tiles around the new counter will be white 3D wave pattern, a white stove and white hood, white fridge, and voila!
Another fun aspect of weight loss is you can wear anything. Seriously!
I used to go into my closet and frown because dressing was a defensive process.
No stretchy shirts that show belly, nothing showing arms, layers (even when it's hot)...
Now, I can put on gym shorts and a tank top and head out without being mortified. I can mix anything in the closet and wear it. It's because I have the attitude now.
I'm not a defensive dresser anymore but an assertive one.
Sometimes, motivation comes from the simplest and most poignant source. Post photos of you and your family and friends doing fun things, making memories, bonding. Be healthy for all the things ahead you want to do.
I had a brilliant mentor, an independent oil and gas man who taught me about the industry and indoctrinated me into it.
He was dying of COPD. He told me, no matter what, keep your health top of the list because you can build an empire, but it means nothing if you don't have your health.
Thank you, Steve Summar. My brother, my father, my mentor, my friend.
Build up your image in great detail from the decisions you make about your nutrition and exercise, your activity, your personal and professional goals, what you do with free time, what you wear, where you go on vacation.... Taste it!
That person you are becoming, you have to give up who you are now - you need to reinvent the way that person attacks every day, setbacks, relationships, priorities...
How can you lose weight but MAINTAIN it forever?
What works for me might not work for others, but it's a dream for my system, my life experiences and tendencies, and what's super easy for me to maintain.
I fast 5 pm to 9 am.
No breakfast - just a Keto shake and lots of water
Keep active at least 20 mins a day, but usually 40 or more.
Eat off a dessert 8" plate.
Take 20 minutes to eat a meal.
I never ever feel deprived. I can maintain this easily for life. When I look back at the majority of my life I was healthy weight or even underweight, I was living this way without intending. It was my natural tendency.
If you're married, please don't let the spouse's caloric needs or finicky diet needs (aka, "I hate green") affect your own choices for meals. Don't eat the same size as your spouse. Listen to your body when it wants crunchy fresh stuff or doesn't feel like mac and cheese. It's a bit more effort, but I guarantee it (women) that if you eat your man's diet, you're gonna look like your spouse.
This is my heartfelt advice:
Keep the goal very clear.
Ask yourself, how that person you want to be would do with free time, what he/she would eat, what activities he/she would enjoy.
And give yourself a month of no ordering out or restaurants. I double dog dare you. The 11-inch plates/serving sizes, salt, oils, frying and sugar, are killing you, one casual last-minute meal at a time.
*Note: I am not a trained dietician or clinical physican. I am just a person who did a lot of hard work and research to find how to motivate myself and how to feed my body for life. It's a different path for each person, but the same journey.*
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