Another diet bites the dust? Stuck in the endless cycle of yo-yo diets? What if we removed the word “diet” all together?
Hard truth. Diets don’t work.
Yet, so many of us are wanting to know the simplest, quickest, and best methods to lose weight, keep it off, and look amazing all the time we are doing it.
How many times have you started and stopped an extreme diet make-over? For me, this was a constant search for the next thing that I would try. Talking cabbage, apple, small containers, supplements, to even documenting everything I ate. My biggest takeaway was that I wasn’t going to find a quick fix or something that was absolutely perfect in how, what, where, when to eat.
This led to a darker pathway that this very OCD mama started down. Instead of enjoying the major pleasures of life, I was placing (heavily) emotions on certain foods. The amount of guilt I placed on my shoulders was enormous and many times felt like I was sinking to the bottom of the pool.
It took me a long time to stop the downward cycle and realize that my mindset (or focus) was not where it should be. Instead of searching for the next “get thin” diet, my goal was to find a way to make my body the healthiest is has ever been. The focus was on lifestyle changes vs. extremes.
Let me stop here and say…I am not a nutritionist or dietitian. The tips below are what I have found to work and sharing my experiences. Please seek assistance from a licensed professional if you feel like your eating methods need to be evaluated. This is a very serious part of our lives and it does need our attention if things are not feeling right.
Check out these seven mindset tips for weight loss, keeping the weight off, and feeling fabulous in your own skin.
Tip 1: Don’t Eliminate Foods. Portion Them.
For all the fad diets coming our way these days, you would assume the best way to lose weight would be to fully remove a certain food or food group and only consume kale and carrots. This is so far from the truth.
For many of those who have lost weight and are maintaining a healthy weight did not accomplish this by cutting out certain foods from their diet entirely.
It’s more about the reduction in the size or amount of food that one is eating vs. eliminating a food or food group that you enjoy.
And if you are starving a sweet tooth…that can lead to the cravings being a beast. Many times this beast can take over and before you know it, you are in the dark pantry hiding and eating the entire pop tart box.
For this tip, think about eating that food that may be deemed “bad” but making the porition smaller. For example, I like cake…like really really LOVE cake. I could sit and eat an entire cake without even batting an eye. Instead of saying, “you cant have that”, I will go to the store and buy the single slice of cake.
Portion control and getting that sweet tooth in a good spot.
Tip 2: Slowly Change Your Routine
For weight loss, it’s all about making healthier and wiser choices but….sometimes old routines are really hard to stop (or even notice).
Many of our daily routines might be having a negative impact on our ability to make healthier choices as we have done them so many times and autopilot has completely taken over.
Studies show us that it takes 21 days to really get a new habit in place. For me, I like know that there is no expectation that something new (or a habit) should automatically stick and that it is ok for this to be more of a journey vs. a hard rule.
Overhauling your life in one day isn’t going to stick. Most likely, this is going to lead to one stressed out day that leaves one throwing up their hands.
The key for this tip is to go slow and steady. Change up a few things each day/week. Take more bite-sized pieces with change.
For this tip, think about adding one thing to your daily routine today. This could be an extra glass of water, taking a multi-vitamin, extra veggies on your plate, or even taking the stairs vs. the elevator.
Tip 3: Change Your Mindset of What “Exercise” Looks Like
If you can only take one tip from this post, this is the one!
Starting today, change the word “exercise” to “movement”.
So many of us get stuck in the thought that we have to have a very structured and rigid exercise workout. Plans are made to attend that spin class at 7p that night and the next thing you know, the day is over and spin class was forgotten.
For this tip, change out the word “exercise” with movement. Ever single movement you do today will fall into the category of exercise. This makes this so much easier to add just a little more but not make your busy schedule sideways or extra crazy.
This could be standing during a meeting. Taking the stairs. Parking your car the next line over.
Tip 4: Throw the Scale Away
Ladies…we are so past due with ending that nasty relationship with the scale.
For me, I found that I was weighing myself excessively during the day and that number on the screen was directly tied to how I felt about myself and my body at that moment. Logic told me not to tie this to anything other than trending a number but it was not something I could actively separate.
If you are in this same boat, I offer the tip of throwing out the scale. Yep….throw it away.
Instead, think of another measurement that you can use to take a quick snap shot of your progress. The best measurment is how you are feeling. Talking energy and mood levels.
Check out this quick video with more ideas for measuring your progress.
Tip 5: Get off the Cardio Hamster Wheel
For many of the women that I talk to, there is a common myth that we have to spend a large amount of time on a cardio machine. This is so far from the truth and totally time to break this myth to pieces.
While cardio is important, it does not need to be the main focus of our “movement” (see what I did there).
The one thing that has changed my body is strength training. Talking about picking up the heavier weights!
Strength training is like adding major gasoline to your metabolism engine.
If you are looking for a home workout (or even one you can do in the gym), check out this very blog for different types of workouts. I am a firm believer in 30 minutes or less workouts that leave your body shaking and feeling amazing.
Check out these 2 quick links to my favorite workouts this month.
Tip 6: The Toddler Diet
This is the exact way of eating that I use every single day. I call this the toddler diet but the more common term is “intuitive eating”.
Think of this method like this….you eat when you are hungry and stop when you are full (and throw your food on the floor like a toddler…chuckle).
Re-learning how to listen to your body cues is a process and not something that can be perfect overnight. Many of us where taught to eat what was on our plates regardless if we were stuffed or not.
We also live in a time where meal times are pretty much laid out with breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
While this can be the perfect match for losing weight and keeping it off, this one does bring it’s own set of challenges. Be prepared to not eat at traditional meal times. Also, learning how to push the plate away will be a process.
Couple of tips to start into this:
- Before taking that first bite (or preparing your food), ask yourself if you are hungry
- Go slow when eating and really listen to your body. It will tell you when it is starting to get full.
- If eating at home, leave the food on the stove vs. the table. It’s easier to say no if you have to get up and get seconds.
- If eating out, get the to-go container right away and put some of your plate away. Total lunch for tomorrow!
Tip 7: Sleep
Sleep is one of those things that can be easy and so hard to put into place. I think as moms we put this in the “other” category and figure we will catch up eventually.
But….we put so much emphasis on this for our kids…why are we not doing that for us?
Sigh…I hear you and know that this is a hard one with a to-do list that is never ending and a nighttime/early morning being the only time to get things done.
Sleep is when our body takes a time out, a reset button, a time to repair, and it’s plugging in to charge.
Start small with this one. It could be going to bed 15 minutes early or stop hitting the snooze button and just getting up when you normally would.
Wrapping this one up!
My fellow mamas….which of these tips will you start? Have you found one that works that isn’t listed? Tell us below in the comments!
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