Monday, April 30, 2012

"I Am Loveable And Capable"

This week I decided to write about what I am thinking, rather than a specific tip.  And this morning, after not a small amount of wasted time and computer frustration, I am finally sitting down to put these thoughts down, and share them with you.

IALAC:  I Am Lovable And Capable.  This is something I was introduced to when I was a child, somewhere around 5th grade.  We had a particularly tough class, and so the Vice Principal brought in a guidance counselor to teach us the principle of the IALAC sign.  It's something like this:  You begin each day with a sign that says "I am loveable and capable".  Throughout the day, things occur;  people say things to you that make you feel good, or things that make you feel bad.  Maybe some computer frustration happens along the way (wink!).  The bad things that are said were nicknamed "cold pricklies" (remember, I was a kid, bear with me), and the good things that are said were nicknamed "warm fuzzies".

So each time someone says something that puts you down, or makes you feel bad about yourself, a piece of that sign (I am loveable and capable) gets ripped off.  And each time someone says something that makes you feel good about yourself, you get to put a piece back on the sign.  Let me go one step further.  Whenever YOU say something to yourself that is negative, a piece gets ripped off, as well.

Everyone is fighting some sort of battle, each day, whether you can see it or not.  Some are struggling with problems with their kids, some are battling cancer, others are fighting an addiction.  Not all of these things are visible to the naked eye.  Each day I try hard to add to peoples' signs and not take away, and that goes for myself as well.  Stop the negative self-talk.  And if we help each other to live more positively, we can more effectively work through our struggles with our signs intact, making us even more capable of dealing with whatever life throws at us. 

Remember the role exercise plays in all of this.  It helps to reduce your stress, increase those beneficial endorphins that make you feel better, and, of course, you look better and feel stronger.

No matter what you are dealing with, remember I am here for you, as are your friends and family.  I am always eager to hand out compliments (warm fuzzies).  Keep moving, keep's worth it.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Do the foods you eat matter?

Does it matter if you have a burger or baked goods, or an apple with a cheese stick and veggies?  Do the types of food you eat matter, as long as the calorie count is the same?  Absolutely.  1200 calories of sugar, fat and carbs are not equivalent to 1200 calories of nutrients, fiber, complex carbs and lean protein.  Your body will function very differently with the better food choices, including but not limited to: your mental outlook (depression, mood), your overall health, and your energy level.

But you knew that, right?  Then why are you still eating those foods that you know aren't doing you any favors?  I'm not saying all burgers are bad, by the way.  By now, you know that I think you can incorporate your favorite foods into your diet with a few small modifications.  Still, coming back to our point...why are you eating foods that you know are not great for you?  Did you know that your body replaces billions of cells every day?  It replaces those cells with the building blocks (food) that you give it.

Ask yourself if you want to replace those cells with garbage, and get garbage cells that don't work well, and have a high incidence of malfunction (mutations!), or do you want to replace those cells with good quality fuel, so that your body has it's best chance at full function at the highest possible level?

And that's really what's important, right?  Giving your body it's best chance a full, high function.

Sunday, April 8, 2012


Anyone who's ever tried to lose weight has encountered sabotage. There are in fact a couple of different types of sabotage that can happen as you navigate your way to a healthy lifestyle.  The first kind is usually encountered by people close to you. No, they generally don't mean to hurt you, but they are used to you the way you are. People are threatened by change. So, your husband who knows you are on a diet, brings your favorite high calorie dessert home, and you can't say no. Or your best friend encourages you to skip your training appointment to go out for lunch, instead, and then wants the fried onion rings and other unhealthy fare to share.  You might even encounter comments like (and this one is 100% true) "What size are you in now?"  "I'm now in a size 6!"  "Oh, you look more like an 8." Seriously?!  Or what about this:  "have you seen Melissa?  She lost even more weight!"  "Yes, but her face looks old now."  Yes, real people actually will say things just like this to you/about you.  Anyone who has lost a substantial amount of weight can assure you of this.  My weight loss is up to 165 pounds, and I'm perfectly willing to take the trade off of some loose skin to be healthy, strong, and comfortable in my body.

Whether they realize it or not, they are trying to undercut your efforts to change for the better.  Sometimes this happens because they are unhappy with themselves.  Ok, most of the time.  Try to let this stuff roll right off your back.  Or, as I do, you can let those comments be the fuel for your determination.  People are actually doing me a favor when they make comments like this.  It makes me even more determined to be the very best I can be, in every way.

Beyond what others say, though, we sabotage our own efforts to be healthy.  One client of mine (and this is certainly not limited to him) would come in every appointment and tell me that he ate horribly.  At every appointment.  We'd discussed food logging...he knew what he should be eating...he had a nutritionist...he had a therapist...and he STILL came in every appointment, weighing in heavier than the last, telling me all the horrible things he ate.  In two years, I can count on one hand the times he came in and had actually taken off a couple of pounds.  Inevitably, I can't make someone's choices for them, I can only make my own.  I can lead a person to the healthful way of eating and exercising, but if they are working against themselves, there's not much I can do.

You need to look deep inside for this one.  If you are constantly ruining your diet, or consistently missing workouts, you need to ask yourself why.  Are you afraid of change?  Are you hiding from something?  Are you harboring worries about weight loss that are groundless on the surface, but deep seated within you?  Are you worried that your spouse/friends/co-workers won't accept you healthier and thinner?  You need to get to the root of why you are working against yourself, and that will lead to fixing the problem.

But that answer lies in you.