Monday, September 17, 2012

Getting Personal

This week welcomed a new round of the Biggest Loser at the chapter of Visa that I work at. I help run the program by weighing in employees, checking blood pressure, measuring body fat and offering encouragement.

It's a job I love because of the changes I see in people and the interaction I get each week with people that are (initially) excited about getting healthy. What the first couple weeks also bring, though, is the start of lots of personal journeys.

As one lady walked in for the first weigh in this week she kept saying to her self "I can do this. I can do hard things. This is going to be the time I change." I smiled at her, recognizing that I was about to be a part of something that was a big deal to her and was something quite personal.

Another man walked in that had done a few of the other rounds of the program in the past and said, "This is the time Trisha! I'm not going to need to do this again." And he stepped on the scale.

What these people don't realize, though, is that by simply stepping on that scale they are making the change. They are choosing to become health conscious individuals that love their body enough to give it what it needs and wants.

One of the many questions I get asked by repeat participants is what they did wrong and what they can do different this time. Here are some of the biggest diet health change pitfalls I see:

1. You don't plan - This means planning meals so you don't skip them or just grab random things, and this also means planning time to exercise.
2. You aren't reaching your potential - Most people can workout hard or longer than they might be a bit uncomfortable (note: that doesn't say painful!), but you can push yourself harder than you do a few days a week. It can help to mix up your exercise routine, too!
3. You aren't aware - Eating mindlessly is a huge track what you eat and set some boundaries. This doesn't mean you have to have strict restrictions on foods you love, just be reasonable and be aware of how much you are eating and what that translates to in calories.
4. You aren't doing it for the right reason - It really comes down to why you want to lose the weight. For some people it doesn't matter much and once they choose to it works. For others, they need a internal motivation...the need to do it to feel better and be better, not just look better and fit into smaller jeans. If it is just because someone told you that you should lose weight or you figure it is a good idea, it probably won't be too successful.
5. You expect too much - You probably gained weight over time, and it takes time for it to come off. Don't expect change fast, because if it does happen fast it probably won't last. Be kind to your body as this process of changing will take time but is so worth it!

~What are some of your tips for making healthy changes?
~What makes the biggest difference in deciding to make any kind of change in your life?


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