How It Works
I have intended to start this page for over a year. I remember how intimidating it was when I was first trying to lose weight. Sometimes (a lot of times) I wouldn't ask for help or ask a question, because I felt I was the only one who didn't know the answer. So I wanted a closed forum for my clients and friends who are trying to loss weight. A place you can come and ask questions and share hints and tips, and not feel embarrassed or uncomfortable or judged in any way.
I want to build a support group! I can attest that this support system is the vital little push that got me started on my successful 200 pounds weight loss. My tactics at the beginning weren't all that different from the umpteen other times I had tried unsuccessfully to lose weight. It was knowing that I had these friends out there, and that I would have to honestly tell them how I'd done that week, that made the ultimate difference.
So, if you want to be included, it's pretty darn easy! ...
First off, introduce yourself! I know some are shy, but we're all in this together! You can share whatever you're comfortable sharing...or nothing more than your name. But along with your name, share a goal or two or three! What are you trying to accomplish right now with weight loss and fitness?
Second, every Friday we're are going to report in. Like an official weigh in! NOW...no numbers need to be shared! You can say give your starting weight or not. It's up to you. But even if you don't share a weight, you can report whether you've lost or gained, and how much, the past week. then we'll applaud or commiserate. Steal good ideas from you that worked, or brainstorm solutions to problems that were encountered. The more we connect and communicate and help others, the more we help ourselves!
Third, minimum posting to belong to this page is every Friday. This is accountability! Share your loss/gain, something that was a difficulty and how you overcame it, if you did. and at least one suggestion/tip/healthy recipe to share. Throughout the rest of the week, it'll be organized chaos. Have a question? POST IT! I can guarantee that SOMEONE else has had or has the same question. And I can answer it one time, in one place, and everyone gains knowledge! And if YOU have an answer, YOU can respond too! I want to build a community here!
Why This Group Will Work
From the introductions, you can quickly see that we’re all at different points in our odyssey to get fit and healthy and strong and happy. And that’s ok. Actually, that’s damn perfect! For each and every one of you in this group, there is SOMEONE who has ‘been there, done that’. There is at least ONE person, if not multiple, who has been exactly where you are and have managed to move beyond and grow. Demons have been conquered. Fears have been faced. Walls have been either climbed or simply torn down. Not only have we survived and learned, but knowing how hard it is, I think it’s an intrinsic quality in any good human, to WANT and NEED to help each other. We need to use our experiences to make it less painful or time consuming for others struggling with the same issues. I believe we’re called to do this. We’re all here to share and support and motivate and commiserate.
The reason I started this group is because a similar, though less Internet-savvy, group was the linchpin in my weight loss journey. This group of five or six woman, scattered across the United States were all different ages and all had very different lives and very different goals. But we all were trying to improve our health by losing extra, unhealthy weight. Some had ten pounds to lose, some had forty, and one had two hundred, but it didn’t matter. What mattered is that once a week, I knew that I would have to write an email and tell these ladies whether I had lost or gained weight over the last week. This was huge. This was major. This seemingly LITTLE detail…this public accountability… is the only difference I can find, when I compare my myriad previous weight loss attempts with what was ultimately my successful, two-hundred pound weight loss. Actually, it wasn't even the PUBLIC accountability, because weight watcher meetings were actually one of my failed attempts. I think what is was, was actually accountability to a group that I knew and liked and respected. Friends...though I only knew ONE of them to begin with. The meetings with groups of strangers didn't do it for me. I needed to be accountable to people who I had more of an intimate connection with. So I love that I'm already seeing connections being made and friendships being forged. Because I think this is what we need. It worked for me. And I hope and pray that it will be the same way for you.
Losing weight is a daunting prospect. And if you’re new to this, it’s going to involve making multiple changes. Face it, what you’re doing now isn’t working. And things you’ve tried in the past, didn’t work. So logically, to obtain a different result, you’re going to need to try DIFFERENT THINGS! Ah-ha! Can I just get a hand raise from anyone out there who has lost weight, gained it back, and then went straight back to the original plan when they decided to lose weight again. There’s a reason the weight came back…it could be that your plan was too restrictive to actual maintain…or you weren’t eating the right things…or you didn’t deal with WHY you are this heavy. Seriously, I’m pretty sure none of us made a conscious decision at any point in our lives to be miserable and feel ridiculed. Did we? There are countless reasons the weight comes back on. And they need to be addressed so we can keep moving forward.
Losing weight requires soul searching and honesty and commitment and self love. At some point you need to realize that YOU are more important than that damn bagel. That getting up in the morning and LOVING what you see in the mirror is so much more soul-satisfying than yet another plate of fettuccine alfredo at Olive Garden. That the ability to look forward to every day…to not dread something as simple as getting dressed in the morning…will have more of a positive impact on your life than you can even imagine. And not just your life. This impacts the lives of your spouse, your children, your friends. You come first. But they definitely will reap the rewards of your hard work too.
Weight loss isn’t just about eating right, getting enough sleep, and exercising. It’s about fixing what’s broke…inside and out…so we don’t need to rely on food as a crutch or a solace or a safety net any longer. And it’s totally do-able. Especially since we have each other.
How The Hell Do You Get Started
OK….now on to the more pressing issue at hand. How the hell do you actually get started?
Honestly, I could throw a boatload of information and facts and statistics at you. And while I do think it’s important that you know the science and the reason behind things, so you can make informed decisions about what you put into your body, I also fully believe that overwhelming you right out of the gate is detrimental! Keep it simple! That’s my goal. And believe me, it took awhile to put the weight on, it’s going to take a while to get it off. We’re here. We’re not going anywhere. Let’s start by making a few major changes that can have the biggest impact and then taking it from there.
This week you have three assignments.
Clean up your diet.You don’t need me spouting off about paleo or telling you why you shouldn’t eat xyz. Deep down, you know what you should be eating and what you shouldn’t. Take some responsibility for yourself, your choices, and your actions. No one can make you eat crap. No one is ramming burritos down your throat. It's all you, baby! lol! So stop. It makes you feel like crap. So why in the world would keep doing it? You will be amazed at how simply making one good choice will make you feel like a million bucks! It's self rewarding. I promise. And yes, down the line, fine tuning your diet will be vital. And soon, I will give you more information and links and recommended reading. For now, you just need to start. You know you shouldn’t eat donuts. You know frosted flakes have no inherent nutritional value. So don’t eat them. Eat natural food, as close to the way nature made them, as possible. How simple is that? I tell people, that if they eliminate stuff that comes in boxes, cans, or bags, they’re 80% of the way there, in terms of healthy eating. Of course, there are considerations to be made…but if you start questioning whether canned salmon is ok, you’re missing the point and I will bop you on the head. Don’t be argumentative and don’t whine. If it’s ever a true question, ask it…but also don’t nitpick. This isn’t rocket science. Don’t make it harder than it is. Obviously this will be more of a change for some of you, then for others. Don’t kill yourself if it’s not perfect this week. Even two or three a week will add up…so this week, you might cut out soda, drink more water, eat at least one veggie at each meal. Great start! Next week, you’ll keep doing those three, and add something else. Obviously, the faster you start making positive changes, the faster you’ll see results. But it is much better, in the long run, to start slow and FINISH, then to go balls to the wall right out the gate and be so miserable that you stop.
Weigh yourself once a week.Now, I’m no longer a scale whore. Yes, for years I weighed myself multiple times a day. And it was a very hard habit to break, and if you’re one of my students or clients, you hear me talk about how weight is actual such an ineffectual measure of our progress. Especially if you are doing strength training. That being said, it is still the easiest and most universal form of documenting our progress. I highly recommend having someone take your measurements too, and I will write something up soon about how to do that. But for now, the scale will be a gauge. If you didn’t weigh yourself yesterday, do it today. AND THEN PUT THE SCALE AWAY until next Friday. Yep…you heard me. Don’t obsess. Weigh once a week. First thing in the morning. Me…I weigh myself the instant I wake up, butt naked, before I’ve even had water or coffee, right after a trip to the bathroom. Whatever works for you, just be consistent. Weight varies too much throughout the course of even a single day…so if you start off weighing in the morning, stick with it.
Move!If you’ve never exercised, make a goal to walk around your block ten minutes three times this week. If you’re already taking classes or working with a trainer, go ten minutes more than usual or up the intensity or try something new. The goal is to move MORE than you did last week.
Next week we’ll talk about goal setting, priorities, and food journaling! This week, just focus on these things!