Picture this: there you are, sitting on your couch watching CSI, bag of potato chips in hand when BAM! All of your weight suddenly hits you in the belly, your pants split open, and your shirt clings to you like a tight wetsuit. Your double chins hang once again from your face, and you look like the person you left behind one year ago. You let your guard down for ten seconds, and now you have fallen claim to your worst enemy, your old body fat! Except… it doesn’t happen that way.
A lot of people who are trying to lose weight or who have succeeded in getting the weight off tend to think about fat like a Ninja. They act as if the fat that they worked so hard to get rid of is going to sneak back into their house in the middle of the night and reattach itself without warning. I say that fat is more like an old lover that you have tried to kick to the curb. They come to the window at 10pm and wave the alluring scent of cheeseburgers and chili fries in your direction, slowly tempting you to give in and eat the way you’re used to. This is a comical way of thinking about the situation of course, but in the end it’s a big deal and a potentially serious problem. It is one more component of the mental warfare we wage in order to achieve permanent weight loss and fit bodies.
So, once you have really done the work and gotten rid of some of those extra pounds, how do we keep our old self from making a sudden reappearance on the bathroom scales? Here are a couple of ideas;
Step 1- Keep on keepin’ on. I think this goes back to our mindset as we work our way through our weight loss journeys. We have to remember that we are not on a DIET, we are changing our lifestyles. The best way to make sure that we don’t start putting the weight back on is to remember how we got rid of it in the first place. Keep track of what you eat, keep moving, and maintain that healthy lifestyle.
Step 2- Find a benchmark. I remember reading that Vicki from the Biggest Loser had a pair of pants that she would try on every few weeks after she left the show. If the pants were too tight, she knew it was time to get back on track and get her self back under control. Use clothing, the scales, honest friends, or anything else you can to keep yourself accountable.
Step 3- Challenge yourself. Ok, you lost 100 pounds, congratulations! You have an awesome new body to go out and conquer the world with. What things have you always wanted to do or try that you couldn’t because of your weight? Get yourself a new bike and go for ride. Run a 5k. If you are the super adventurous type, try sky diving or bungee jumping. Learn a martial art and become a Ninja yourself! The point is, there is a whole new life out there just waiting for you to take it by the horns. Take advantage of that and make fitness and exercise a big part of your new lifestyle.
Like I said before, anyone can lose weight but it takes a lot more effort to create a healthy lifestyle and keep it that way. I keep preaching this, but I think it is just that important: “Change your mind and you can change your life.” The journey we are on has lots of pitfalls and traps that will lead us right back to where we started. In the end we just need to stay vigilant, keep active, and make sure our hearts, minds, and bodies are in the right place.
See you on the other side of healthy.