Thursday, September 22, 2011

Weight Loss Resources

Well, back to the drawing board. I have gone to the library and picked up some books including Jillian Michaels' "Unlimited."; "The Depression Cure"; "Procrastination: Why you do it. What to do about it now." I also purchased Marianne Williamson's "A course in Weight Loss". I am very interested in giving myself all the assistance and help that I can. Weight loss is not an easy thing for me. Weight does not seem to just fall off my body without a significant amount of mindfulness and intentful living. What I mean by that is that I must set my intent for how I want my days to go including the healthy habits that produce weight loss and make weight loss tolerable. Losing weight hurts. It does not feel good. One of the few trainers that is honest and upfront about this truth is Leigh Peele of "The Fat Loss Troubleshoot." Exercise does not make you lose weight. It does make losing weight easier by improving your insulin resistance and burning some extra calories. That does not mean that all of a sudden you can forget to journal your eats, weigh your food (forget measurements, Leigh goes into the frankly useless measuring cups/spoons here in this You tube video.") Jillian also lays down the law about 'doing the work' in her book Unlimited .

The take away message (which is not nearly as fattening as take away curry.) is that success in all things takes what Sandra Ahten calls a top down and bottom up approach. What she means by that is that it takes both the head and the heart to be on board along with the practicalities of planning to bring the feet through exercise and the stomach through diet all together to produce our desired outcome, whatever that might be. Sandra also talks about using what she calls a wrap, a weekly review and planning session where you examine your upcoming days and plan accordingly. This last part and approach is what got me started on this journey. I started 80 pounds heavier, lost that 80, put on 11, and now I'm working on losing 50.

For me that includes doing a certain amount of work on myself. Learning to set aside fears is not simple or easy. Letting go of anxiety can be a scary thing to do. I do recommend trying and using Renee Stephens free podcasts (especially episodes 1-18) to help with that transition. Just trying to rip a behavior pattern out of ourselves in a judgemental rather than loving manner does not seem to produce lasting change. However, just working on those aspects of ourselves using Renee's method can produce lasting change without the requirement for self hate and or flogging. I don't completely subscribe to the 'eat when hungry' method because I find that I don't eat enough or I eat too much.

It does seem like a big commitment. I do workout most mornings. I do make my own eats a lot of the time. I do like to make portion size baggies of weighed carb rich foods. I don't eat foods on my 'do not eat' list unless I want to put on weight. I do keep a food journal. I do read books about releasing my inner demons. But, even if I didn't have a weight issue, I would still need to release that garbage so the truth is my weight helped point me in the right direction. I do use meditations and yoga to relieve stress. But, even if I wasn't heavy I would do that anyway. I want to lose the weight so that I can run easily. If I were easily slender I would do that anyway. So, the truth is, that there is only a few tweeks that I put in place to help with what Sandra Ahten calls "AIM" which is accountability, information, and motivation. I use my journal to give me information and accountability. I weigh my body on a digital scale to help with information, motivation, and accountability. I weigh my food for information. I use the exercises both physical and mental to help me cope with the discomforts of weight loss. I take a multivitamin and I choose to eat fiber rich fruits/vegetables. I also eat only grass fed beef for the omega 3s. I only have organic dairy products so that I can avoid the less than stellar lipid profile in average dairy products. These things all add up to a more successful weight loss plan and a more tolerable one.

Its true, I could skip the cardiovascular workouts. But, my insulin resistance would worsen, my fitness level would dive, and my depression level would get worse. I could skip my yoga. I would no longer benefit from relaxing my vagus nerve. I would no longer stimulate that fat burning or relieve the pain from muscles staying in a contraction and causing back trouble. I could eat all low quality food and skip fiber. I could choose to be constipated, sure, I could do that. I could bring my progress to a halt all the while telling myself that I was trying. I could do that.

But, why? Why, when cardio makes it easier, when yoga makes it easier, when AM workouts are easier, and a fiber and protein rich diet makes it easier? Why make it harder when it doesn't have to be? Why not get it done so that I can then enjoy the fruits of my labor? Why not enjoy being 15 pounds lighter and embracing my feet feeling good? Why not embrace being able to wear my smaller clothing instead of buying new? Why not embrace feeling good, having lots of energy because I literally set down a 50 pound weight. Go pick up a single 10 pound bag of flour and try to run a lap and tell me that 5 of those doesn't weigh you down.

I want to be that nimble runner with boundless energy. I want to be flexible so that I can embrace the yoga poses in new way. I want to be easily employed because being heavy dramatically reduces your ability to get work.

I'm not saying its without work. Jillian says that you must do the work. Cathe Friedrich says, "Work, work!" Sandra Ahten says WRAP. Renee Stephens says to release the urges and desires to engage in behavior that doesn't make use feel good anymore. Dr. Oz says that its your belly fat that gives you high cholesterol. So, it seems to me that in order to avoid a heart attack, depression, insulin resistance (and thereby diabetes.) that I just need to do these relatively simple things that I would mostly do even if I were slender. I might not weigh my eats if I were slender. But, hey, just how hard is it to let the little scale tare out the dish and weigh it? Is it really that hard? Or is it that I have a little part of myself that is trying to avoid annihilation (fat cells, your days are numbered.) or am I looking for some other satisfaction through food or being fat that really can't be fulfilled through food and is toxic through fat?

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