You have to plan it into your life. There’s no easy way around it. If being healthy matters to you, if you’re over the muffin top, if you’re over living in a haze of life, you have to put in the effort.
I think losing weight is one of the hardest things we can do. Like annoyingly hard. Especially if you’re doing it the right and healthy way and not trying to find a quick fix.
Because the weight didn’t come on overnight, so it’s not going to come off overnight either, especially if what you want to see is sustainable change. But it’s frustrating. You’re not thinking about the series of bad decisions that led to you now looking in the mirror analyzing every part of your body that you don’t like, having a hard time finding clothes that fit properly, or squeezing those parts of your body that you feel are a little...off...
I’m just calling it like I see it. You’re not thinking about the fact that you have been going through the line at the fast food joint more often than not because you didn’t prep dinner, you’re not thinking about diving into the box of cookies late at night and you’re sure af not thinking about all those times you said “I’ll work out tomorrow”.
It’s just reality. But at some point you’re going to get to the point where you’re like damn I’m so over this and I HAVE to make a change. And you want the change to be instantaneous.
So it’s hard when you start that journey and nothing happens. You’re putting in the work and it feels like nothing is changing, like you’re doing the work for nothing. Of course our natural inclination as humans is to be like “I’m done”. I mean why do the work if there’s no pay off? I can understand that. Especially as a parent, busy adult, all those things…you’re working healthy living into an already hectic schedule, so when you’re not seeing any transformation, it’s like why keep adding this complication in to my day?
But seriously, those LBS are going to be the LAST thing you see any change in. It’s a shitty prospect, I realize that, but the scale is going to be the slowest thing to change. There’s tons of reasons behind this, there’s a lot of science I won’t get into, and the sad truth is that since most people want to see that number change first, when it doesn’t change, they stop trying.
This is where I really want YOU to be aware of everything going on in your life. Have a journal, take notes in your phone via SIRI, I don’t care how you do it, but you need to have a mindfulness of more than just the scale. In fact, when you first start your journey into health and living, as well as weight loss, I would encourage you to hide your scale for at least 30 days.
Take note of other things happening around you. Those non-scaleable victories. Are you happier? Are you more energized? Have you been able to cut back on your afternoon cup of coffee because you don’t feel that afternoon slump? Are you craving the candy bars less? What about patience? Have more of that lately with your kids?
Those things are all wins to me. Those are all transformations. Those are all aspects of this journey that are worth celebrating because they make your life better. So take note of them. Celebrate them. Focus on them and don’t worry…the change on the scale will come.
I swear as soon as it gets semi-warm in San Diego, any desire I have to cook goes out the freaking window. I can’t be the only one right? Like the prospect of standing in front of a hot stove or having the oven on sounds horrid.
I mean after a long day at the pool or the beach, who wants to have a hot meal? No thanks. I would totally rather have something cooling, with lots of fruits and veggies. Lucky for me, the warm weather also brings my favorite rock fruits into season, and I’m a totally sucker for some fruits in a salad. I do realize that fruits in a green salad are an acquired taste, so if this isn’t your jam, I totally get it.
But if it is your jam, then you’re totally in luck. Grab the recipe and be prepared for a flavor explosion.
The best part about this one for me was the versatility of having it as either a full meal or as a starter or side salad. I added in chicken to turn it into a full meal (because I had leftover grilled chicken) but you could also do grilled shrimp or even grilled salmon. And you know if you try these things out, or even something else (like maybe steak) and it works out well, I totally want to know about it!
This is going to seem like it’s totally out of left field, but go with me. Do you know who Cus D’Amato is? Don’t go Googling him just yet, I’ll tell you the little bit that I know and why he fascinates me. He was a boxing trainer and boxing manager who trained heavy weight champion Mike Tyson as well as Olympic gold medalist Floyd Patterson. Side note, one of his methods of training was hypnosis.
Anyways, D’Amato was known not just for his unorthodox training methods but also for his quotes, one in particular (it’s super famous and I put the full quote below for your reading pleasure) that speaks about fear and how fear can work to your advantage if you understand it.
I think fear is a predominate force that holds people back, myself included. I remember the first time my PT said I could walk again (without assistance), took my boot and told me to walk. I don’t think I’ve ever been so scared in my life. I thought my whole foot would crumble, I thought I was going to fall, I thought I would FAIL. But I took that first step because I had the support of my PT beside me and I told her what was scaring me.
I think fear is what holds people back from losing weight or incorporating healthy living as a way of life and not just a pipe dream. The actual reasons behind the fear are different depending on the person, but it’s fear nonetheless.
Ultimately it’s fear of the unknown. Unhealthy living is still living after all, not to your fullest potential, but it’s something you become comfortable with like you would an old friend. We get used to feeling like shit, being sluggish and tired, having that roll of fat that pooches over your pants and then we make up excuses for it. Trust me, I’ve heard every excuse under the sun. Everything from “I can’t do it”, to “my body won’t lose weight”, to “I’m just a thick girl”.
I know that what’s really behind those excuses is the fact that changing is scary. That anticipation of what could be is terrifying, you don’t know what will happen on the other side of things so it’s easier to just stay where you are.
So it’s easier to just stay where you’re at and continue complaining. But here’s the thing: if you can understand what’s holding you back, if you can understand where those excuses are coming from, then you can use that fear to propel you past the excuses and into a healthy life.
Harness your fear and what’s holding you back and turn it into a strength, then all of a sudden the excuses that used to work won’t work and you’ll be well on your way to your healthiest and happiest existence.
Here’s D’Amato’s full quote:
“You must understand fear so you can manipulate it. Fear is like fire. You can make it work for you; it can warm you in the winter, cook your food when you’re hungry, give you light when you’re in the dark and produce energy. Let it go out of control and it can hurt you, even kill you…fear is a friend of exceptional people.” – Cus D’Amato
I’ve been thinking a whole lot lately about ego. I mean obviously if you read the last blog post about doing what you need verses what you want, ego goes pretty strongly with that right? Because doing what your body needs might mean putting your ego aside. It might also mean actively stopping the comparison game that I know we all play when it comes to getting healthy. I get it, I share these experiences I have and give these opinions because I’ve been there.
Being in the fitness industry, ego can get in the way so easily and so quickly as can the comparison disease. There’s this constant drive to look amazing, be rocking ALL the muscles, be able to pull off all the tight clothes, be stronger or faster or leaner than the person next to you. Really all that leads to is this dissociative state of reality.
Your ego becomes your inner bully constantly trying to push you to where it thinks you should be instead of embracing the journey you’re currently on.
Case in point: when I was cleared by my doctor post delivery to start practicing Pilates again, I went into the studio, by myself just to see where my body was at. I remember trying to do a roll up (if you don’t know, it’s an ab exercise) and I could NOT DO IT. AT ALL. Instead of taking a deep breath and giving myself credit for even being in such an amazing state of health that my doctor COULD clear me 4 weeks post c-section for exercise, I thought “fuck I’m gonna have to find another job.” No joke. I had NO sympathy for myself. My ego was the sole operator, telling me that I needed to be in a certain place, to be able to perform a certain way when I was only a month post partum, not to mention post major abdominal surgery.
You know what I figured out though? I didn’t need to be ashamed at where I was on my journey because I wasn’t alone. In fact, the women I trained loved me sharing my journey back to my “Pilates shape” because it was more relatable to them than the women who just seem to bounce back post baby with zero issues whatsoever.
That struggle is what binds us because it draws commonalities and also shows us what we’re capable of accomplishing. While that potential for accomplishment can be completely limitless, we have to check our ego in order to make it happen. That ego, that internal bully is going to be the first thing to give you a hard time whenever you try to make a positive change for yourself. Like that saying “you are your own toughest critic”, that ego gets in the way of progress for whatever reason, and ultimately your end goals that are completely attainable end up suffering.
I know you can do it because I’ve done it too and I know how much internal grit it takes to ignore that critic, that bully, that mean girl that always wants to knock you down a peg.
So now whenever that internal bully comes up in my head and starts telling me all my failings, not only do I tell her to sit down and shut up, but I also remind myself of 10 of my accomplishments. Small ones, big ones, it really doesn’t matter. I put where I think I should be aside and embrace where I’m at, embrace that I’m on a journey and it’s only going to get better from here.