By Kathy Emiko
When it comes to weight-loss, we can whip out a page of excuses longer than our weekend to-do list e.g. â€œIt is not the right time to change my lifestyleâ€. Or, â€œIt s not the right time to deal with my weight and eating habitsâ€ because of this or that reason.
Intellectually, we know all the reasons; why we should get on the weight-loss bandwagon: â€œOur cholesterol is too highâ€; â€œWe canâ€™t stand the way we lookâ€ or â€œWeâ€™re always tiredâ€.Â And, oh yeah, we would like to live to see our grand children. Emotionally though, we just donâ€™t want to do it.Â So, we make excuses not to even begin. That way, we donâ€™t have to do the hard work.
Often, what we think of as excuses are really, removable obstacles. Excuses are artificial; as soon as one is removed, another and another and another takes its place. Yet, obstacles have solutions.Â The key is finding the solution that is acceptable to you; otherwise, you wonâ€™t work at it for long.Â Really, this is the time to change our lifestyle.
With that in mind, here are some excuse bursters from experts; solid, simple-to-follow solutions that will dismantle fences and eradicate excuses.
Excuses # 1
Diet doesnâ€™t work for me: That is true and not just for you. It is true for everyone. Research proves what we instinctively know (very little of the weight lost in diet programme is maintained over the long term). That is why you have to focus on lifestyle change.
(a) Integrate exercise and healthy eating into everyday life. Donâ€™t view them as activities you are going to engage in until you lose weight, after which you go back to your â€œnormal lifeâ€.
(b) Stop viewing weight loss as something that is forced on you. It should be something you have to want to do for yourself.
(c) See the doctor: In a study examining what motivated people to start losing weight, it was discovered that their medical doctor was a strong trigger; telling them that their weight was making them sick or refusing to perform surgery unless they lose weight.
(d) Focus on the Positive:Â Like more sex! In a research study of about 32 over-weight persons, more than half said that their sex lives improved after they lost weight. They thought about sex more, have sex more often or both because they felt better about their body image.
Excuses # 2
My metabolism is too slow: No matter how low your metabolism is, there is always something you can do to rev it up. And, forget about the talk of your metabolism slowing down simply because of age.
Some research findings indicate that most women put on about a pound a year between the ages of 30 and 40, not because of slowing metabolism but because of slowing down (eating more and moving less). The less muscle we have, the slower our metabolism. And, we do have to work harder as we get older to maintain needed muscles.
(a) Lift weights:Â Weight bearing exercise builds muscles, burning up to 25 percent more calories all day long, even when you are sleeping.
(b) Eat frequently: No, not foods from fast food restaurants! Frequently eating small, high fibre, low fat meals that include some protein can keep your metabolism humming. Every time you eat, your metabolism goes up. In fact, about 15 percent of the calories eaten are quickly used up in the process of food digestion.
(c) Push past the set point: The irony here is that as we lose weight, our metabolism really does decrease, making it harder for us to lose more. Upping your work out intensity or length of time used in that manner, or changing the type of work out you do to challenge your body, can give a boost.
I canâ€™t afford to join a gym: SO DONâ€™T!Â They are expensive, loud and some are filled with too many too-thin women in skinny sport wears.
(A) Work out at home: A study, in Florida, of 49 women weighing an average of 170 pounds showed that the women who worked out at home lost more weight and did a better job of keeping it off than those who joined a group exercise programme – like an aerobic does; it is even worse when there is no â€œnutritional adviceâ€ which lots of gym donâ€™t offer. The consequence is that people end up working out and fuelling back with wrong foods! Then, of course, some go to the gym and donâ€™t use the gym!
Excuses # 4
Iâ€™m too busy to exercise: First of all, rid yourself of any pre-conceived notion about the word â€œexerciseâ€. Weâ€™re not talking a daily 45-minute run followed by a weight machine circuit. We are talking about movement; integrating more activity into your daily life in ways that eventually become so ingrained that you wonâ€™t even realise youâ€™re doing them.
Simply increasing your normal activities of day-to-day living (fidgeting, moving around changing your posture) can prevent weight gain if your calorie intake doesnâ€™t change.
(a) Turn off the TV: We watch an average of 22 hours of television a week; and every hour of TV can be blamed for an extra half a pound of weight per year. If you canâ€™t give it up, get on your stationary bike or treadmill plopped right in front of the TV.
(b) Build it in at work: Letâ€™s start with dealing with mails.Â If you walked for 2 minutes to someoneâ€™s office to deliver a message instead of spending 2 minutes at your desk typing an intranet mail, research shows that youâ€™d lose 1.1 pounds of fat annually. Conversely, when you sit at your desk to send the mail, youâ€™re going to gain 1.1 pounds. Worse still, the creeping obesity is associated with significant increase in blood pressure, cholesterol level and insulin resistance. So get up! Go to the restroom on a different floor; never take the elevator (unless you are on the 40th floor, and then walk up at least 10 floors). Try to push against your desk and have your stomach clenched while checking those e-mails. Eventually, youâ€™ll begin to see results.
(c) Pace while youâ€™re on the phone: Why do you think they invented portable phones? You should do at least a quarter mile around the house for every 15-minute conversation.