“The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook” –Julia Childs
Diets do not work.
I am not sure what does. I struggle with my own weight, so I am probably the last person that you will want to take advice from on this subject.
This is what I am doing:
I am eating healthy, wholesome foods. Trying to focus on unprocessed, organic as much as possible- because I do like the idea of that. I am also increasing strength and aerobic exercise- which I don't like so much, but I am doing it because I know I NEED to. These are tried and true approaches we have all been told are key to weight loss, but I am also experimenting with a couple of new ideas:
• Have a compelling reason. This is not about getting skinny for the “upcoming Caribbean cruise in the spring” or to “fit in that size 2 wedding dress by August”. This is more long-term. I am getting older – the nest is empty, the bank account is stable- there is nothing stopping me from getting out and travelling and enjoying life- except that I don't have the energy that I should have for someone my age. I want to be healthy and have the power to maintain this new lifestyle!
• Keep moving. My job is the type where- if I am not mindful of it- I could easily spend most of my working hours sitting and hunched over a keyboard. My rule is not to sit for more than an hour. Every 60 minutes I am getting up and walking for 10 to 15 minutes. At home- each evening- Mr. Self Care and I are limiting our computer time and getting active together- walking, wii-ing, running on treadmill. I have also joined a work program that encourages walking and there are classes on site and during work hours for stretching and stability ball training.
• Zero Deprivation. I am adding to my life and not taking anything a way. I am not starving myself, but I am not overeating either. When you think of food as fuel -quality and quantity are important. Eat what you need. And as for Chocolate... Dark chocolate actually contains a nutrient that is good for you! I am allowing myself a square if I really want it- so far I haven’t. I am slowly finding acceptable substitutes for or limiting things that I love that I know are not good for me. I am not changing everything at once though either! Still having my one cup coffee in the morning, just substitued my late morning one with green tea.
• Knowledge is power. Understanding how your body reacts to certain foods and what your body needs to work optimally is really powerful for fuelling a healthy lifestyle. I have been reading about how the body produces insulin and realize that I need to keep my levels lower and consistent throughout the day- this means watching sugar intake. (which is probably why I have been resisting chocolate so easily- I know what the sugar in it does to me)
• Forgiveness. My previous attitude was that I had to do things all the way or not at all. So the second I fell off of a healthy routine it would be all over for me. I am anticipating that I will step off (not fall off) at times and giving myself permission to do this. I don’t have to be perfect, but I do have to be persistent.
I will let you know how this new plan goes.