Did you know that only 5-10% of the people who lose weight manage to keep it off? Oh. Oh.
How heart-breaking would it be to open a letter and read that the person you love most in the world can no longer walk up stairs without pain because of knee problems? How sad would it be to learn that your closest childhood friend now has diabetes and expects to be on medication for the rest of her life? How devastating it would be to hear that a beloved cousin has been diagnosed with heart disease. Heart disease is not fun. No disease is. Yet, when you weigh too much, these are the problems you invite into your life.
If you had the power, wouldn’t you do everything you could to prevent these physical nightmares from happening to someone you love? Think about it—Are you letting diseases slowly happen to you? Do you find it easier to look out for others? What about you? What about your own joyful spirit? Are you letting yourself down?
And if a legion of dreaded diseases are not enough to look at the reasons why you under-exercise and over-eat, then financial indigestion may be. If you were no longer covered for health care, could you coolly stand by and watch your savings disappear down the cesspool of medications and budget-busting insurance premiums? Then, there are those nasty rules about pre-existing conditions . . . Ouch.
What about the positive motivations to change your weight? Carrying less weight around increases energy. You might accomplish your life mission if you no longer lose precious energy because of excess weight. What else? Someone admiring your slim shape may boost your self-confidence as well. O.K. Enough about motivation. What is the real reason negative and positive motivators don’t work long-term for 90-95 % of the people who lose weight?
Even though you know how to set healthy, weight-change goals, even though you have the power to change, you probably won’t change your weight long-term until you take one tiny step.
What underlies your turning to food for comfort? That one tiny step of understanding “why” is the first step. Incubate A Dream Question Tonight Ask your Dreaming Consciousness tonight, “Why am having difficulty achieving my weight change goal?” Or, “What is the main obstacle to my weight change?” Actually Changing Your Weight
After you understand WHY you are experiencing challenges changing your weight, take steps to address those issues. Change what you can. Immediately. Learn to live with what you can’t
change—until you can. Then, you will still need to do the hard work of staying motivated by dancing the days away, by promoting impulse control through regular meals and snacks, and by setting up an environment that supports your weight change goal—This essential step took me several months.
In addition to all the weight change steps, take just five-minutes each morning, center, and imagine weight change success. Then, ask for one image that will inspire you to change your weight today.
Diets that feature high proteins and low carbohydrates are not the answer. The reality is that you can maintain your hard-won weight change only if you make healthy, happy, life-style changes throughout your lifetime. Expect your feelings to fluctuate while you work to achieve your goal. Yes, there is suffering, sacrifice, and fear! And yes, there is reward, upon reward, upon reward.
Five Ways To Maintain Your Weight Change
1 Eat Small Portions — Eat 1/2 or 2/3 of what you think you “need.” If you are in your forties or older, eat small portions of well-balanced meals after you’ve felt hungry for about fifteen minutes. Associate the feeling of hunger with the sensation of feeling alert.
Avoid the groggy-brain feeling that comes when you are full. Instead, think, “I seek the clarity of mind that comes when I feel slightly hungry.”
However, avoid building up a “really good appetite” or you will eat larger portions than you actually need. Remember, a portion of meat is the size of a small deck of cards.
I know a graceful, eighty-two year-old woman from Sri Lanka who told me that she sips a glass of water or a 1/4 cup of orange juice before she eats. Then she doesn’t feel the need for large portions of food. She was an inspiration on the exercise front too. When the ice and snow kept her indoors while she visited her daughter in the Twin Cities, she did a half-hour of stretches and exercises upon arising each morning.
2 Eat Breakfast — 80% of the people who keep their weight off, eat breakfast. Each morning, enjoy energy-giving fruit with a healthy low-fat and low-sugar cereal, porridge,or egg and toast. For your 10:30 break, pack up a tasty low-fat and low-sugar snack.
I like variety so I toast one slice of bread, divide it into two quarters and one half. On the quarter piece, I barely brush ½ teaspoon of almond butter. Then, I put grape jelly on the other quarter, and hummus on the half. Each morning, I vary the fruits as well: two small prunes, an orange, a banana, etc. Or, I try healthy brands of yogurt with one brazil nut, granola and berries on top. Delicious! I’ve even tried a snack of asparagus with salad and a tiny portion of steak. Why not? 3 Take 11,000 Steps Each Day — That’s right. People who take a mere 5,000 steps per day, don’t keep the weight off. Rent a pedometer if you are unsure of exactly how many steps you are actually taking each day. Aim for four miles if you walk, or complete exercises that burn 2,800 calories per week if you don’t walk.
Lifting weights builds muscles, which, in turn, burn fat—even while you read a great book or sleep. Intensity burns fat! For twenty minutes, alternate walking briskly for two minutes and jogging for one minute. That adds up to just six minutes of jogging.
If you feel discouraged and tell yourself “I’m not in the mood right now,” don’t wait for that moment when you feel slightly less discouraged. Do one minute of squats now and especially if you overindulge—Do about twenty. Clasp your arms, open your legs, keep your torso straight, and squat down almost to the floor.
Studies have shown that physical activity is the best predictor of long-term weight change.
I love studies! Studies tell me that I should eat less food and do more movement. Good old-fashioned common sense!
4 Be Proactive about Your Feelings — But it’s my mood that needs adjusting! My conscience is sharper than a tack—you shouldn’t have eaten all those chips. You shouldn’t even have them in the house. You should have more willpower. You should really go for a walk, even if you’re tired and it’s cold out and it’s too windy. Yes, my common sense and my conscience are ever-present. The real problem is my discouraging self-talk, my mood . . .
Alright then, immerse yourself in your mood. Go “toward” your feelings for five full minutes. Then take three steps to lighten it! You’d do that with another person who felt discouraged, wouldn’t you?
Enjoy early morning sunshine—even stepping outside for one minute may lighten your mood enough so you can do one minute of exercise inside. Try making that first minute comical. Get yourself at least to smile. Make that one minute fun—I sing a melody I love, the one everyone knows the words to. You know, the “la-la-la” song. Doing any exercise means you haven’t given up on yourself. So, take heart. Many people feel like you do. Don’t give up on your Self. Feel “blah” but exercise!
5 Sleep helps us thrive by contributing to a healthy immune system, and can also balance our appetites by helping to regulate levels of the hormones ghrelin and leptin, which affect our feelings of hunger and fullness. So when we’re sleep deprived, we may feel the need to eat more, which can lead to weight gain. Avoid TV and the computer two hours before sleep, (melatonin) stretch, and relax for ½ hour before sleep, set the thermostat to 65 degrees, journal your joys and worries, and finall, get eight hours sleep in a pitch black room.
The Dream Café
What did you dream last night?