Be Optimistic and Realistic

disney-inspirational-life-quotes-Favim.com-956876“Don’t Worry, Be Happy”.  It’s a catchy tune, sure, but it’s not the best approach to success!  Overly optimistic thinking goes like this ” I went WAY over my calorie budget today, but I’ll get back on track tomorrow, somehow”.  While it’s helpful to assert good intentions (rather than beating yourself up) being vague about how you’ll recover isn’t helpful.  Thinking things will get better somehow, without having a plan to make it happen, can derail your weight loss efforts because we need to identify what needs to change and than set specific steps to change it.  So for instance the fix for going over your daily calorie budget could be to plan out your day for tomorrow. While most unhelpful thinking styles are negative (example beating yourself up) the don’t worry be happy style feels helpful and positive.  But it too can lead to feelings and actions or more often, inactions that undermine our journey.  Because it masquerades as something positive, this thinking style might demand a little practice and shift.

An example on how to manage this type of thinking was provided by the Weight Watchers Weekly on this subject.  It teaches you a way to “balance your thinking”.

  1. Identify your “don’t worry be happy” thought. (Example: I ate way more than I planned at my lunch date today. I’ll get back on track later.)
  2. Reality check it.  Ask yourself “what needs to happen to make this true?”  Use your answer to shift to a helpful thought that has one ot more back on track solutions. (example: If I make a plan, I will be able to get back on track later.  I could track what I ate.)
  3. Plan what you’ll do.  Choose one action from your ideas above that’s doable.  Make a specific plan for what you’ll do, when you’ll do it and who you’ll do it with (if anyone). (example: I’ll track what I ate at lunch during my 3pm break at my desk by myself.  That’ll help me see how many calories I’ve used and decide what to eat for dinner)

I’m a good one for this kind of thinking.  I am a big “don’t worry, be happy” thinker when it comes to my weight loss journey.  That’s why it’s ben so SLOW!  I’m always saying to myself “it’s ok tomorrow will be better” – spoiler alert- tomorrow is never better.  The action plan above is great and something I am going to give a try!

GET YOUR YOGA ON

Om time may help you gain control of your cravings.  Researchers at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle found that people who regularly practiced yoga were more mindful of their eating habits.  While there is no guarantee that sun salutations will cure you of wanting seconds, doing a few moves can’t hurt.
FITNESS MAGAZINE SEPTEMBER 2011

HOW TO WIN AT LOSING

Here are some secrets from the Biggest Loser Couples winner Olivia Ward and her sister-teammate Hannah Curlee …
Secret #1 You deserve to be in great shape.  The first step in dropping the weight is realizing that you don’t like where are and know that you deserve to fix it.

Secret #2 Stop being so hard on yourself. Believing that you can do something will make you actually do it!

Secret #3 You don’t have to spend hours in the gym.  Try to find one favorite workout and squeeze that in daily (kickboxing class, spinning, yoga, Zumba)

Secret #4 Eat more, not less.  Start each day with a proper breakfast.  Ditch the deprivation diet and never let yourself get to the point where you’re famished with no healthy food around.  Carry a healthy snack with you at all times for that just in case moment.

Secret #5  Ask for what you want.  When eating out speak up for how you want your food prepared (hold the dressing, half the cheese)

Secret #6  Do the write thing.  Keeping a journal of everything that is going on while you’re losing weight is a great way to stay focused.  This way you can also go back and look at the entries to see what whet right and what went wrong.

FITNESS MAGAZINE SEPTEMBER 2011

HOW SWEET IT IS!

Go ahead, embrace your sugar cravings.  People who reported eating  candy and chocolate tended to weigh less and have smaller waists and lower BMIs than those that said they didn’t eat sweet stuff, a new study in Nutrition Research finds.  It’s possible that the people who consume candy exercise more frequently, says Carol O’Neil, Ph.D, lead author of the study and professor of human nutrition and food at Louisiana State University Agricultural Center in Baton Rouge.  “But that doesn’t mean you can eat lots of candy and expect to drop pounds”, warns Molly Kimball, R.D., a sports dietitian in New Orleans.  “Moderation is key”.  She recommends sticking to a 100 calorie serving.

Fitness Magazine September 2011

Pump It Up!

Here’s the latest word on what you must do to keep your heart in fighting form. If you’re a woman of a certain age, you need to start thinking about heart disease right now.  The American Heart Association suggests following the seven heart healthy guidelines below.

  1. Cholesterol: should be less than 200, one way to help you keep this in check is more fiber.  Pick whole fruits over juice
  2. Blood Pressure: should be 120/80, drive down blood pressure by lowering your daily sodium intake
  3. Sugar Level: should be less than 100, reduce your by sharing the occasional dessert and cutting back on sweets
  4. Smoking: don’t start or quit! If you’ve tried to quit before and failed, go to heart.org for resources
  5. Body Mass Index(BMI): should be less than 25, Unsure of what your BMI is?  Use this iPhone app (BMI calculator, free, APPS.USA.GOV)
  6. Exercise: should get at least 2/5 hours a week of activity, adopt a dog, the worlds cheapest personal trainer, to guarantee you walk daily.
  7. Healthy Diet: Lots of fruit, veggies and whole grains. Eat at least one fruit or veggie at meals or with snacks.

January/February 2012  Weight Watchers Magazine