by Rebecca Douglas
When we start on the journey to health and fitness, the most common train of thought is, “I have to starve myself”, “I need a diet pill”, “I have to cut my carbs”, “I need to add extra cardio”, and so on.
This belief system creates a frustrating pattern of starvation, deprivation, and over extending the physical body in the hopes of getting “skinny” quickly. Unfortunately, this train of thought puts us into a vicious cycle of losing weight only to gain it back (typically with a little extra), a metabolism so damaged that we no longer lose weight no matter how little we eat, and a physical body with no strength and endurance for daily life.
With the New Year upon us, most of us find ourselves in that thought process once again. We start telling ourselves that the extra treats don’t matter. We convince ourselves that we don’t have time to workout. We throw caution to the wind and mindlessly plow through the last few weeks of the year with abandon.
Come Jan.1st, reality sets in as we look at our scales. Once again we feel defeated, frustrated and hopeless and wonder “why we do that to ourselves?” It’s a vicious cycle that CAN be stopped. But in order to stop it, we must stop believing that there is a magic little pill hidden in the next fad diet, workout plan or supplement.
I’m going to burst a lot of bubbles when I say this… If you want permanent fat loss, then you must stop looking for the next great fad diet and “magic little pill” and start looking at yourself.
Your physical body is directly related to how you think about yourself. Let me repeat that: Everything you believe and tell yourself on a daily basis is directly related to your physical form.
- If you believe you are fat, you will always struggle to lose weight.
- If you tell yourself you can’t do something, you won’t.
- If you believe your family genetics prevent you from having a certain body type, then you will never have or be more than what and who you are right now.
So, let’s get rid of the “Dieting” mindset and start making some real and lasting changes, shall we? A physical body full of negativity and limiting beliefs holds on to fat. Diving into the deep, dark crevices of our mind can be one of the hardest things to do, but it can also be one of the most rewarding things, once we start.
Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get started:
- First you must acknowledge your current belief system. Do you believe that you will always hold fat around your hips and thighs because your mom and grandma did? Do you believe that you could never do a pull up? Do you believe that only “fit” people can do a bootcamp workout? Just because you believe something doesn’t mean it can’t be changed. Acknowledge those beliefs so you can start changing them.
- Write out what your Ideal Self looks like. In a year from now, if you were living a healthier life style, what kind of person would you be? What size jean would you be wearing, what kind of decisions would you be making, what kind of job would you have, what do your relationships look like? It’s amazing how your life can automatically make positive changes when you write things out.
- Get rid of the negative self talk. When you look in the mirror how do you talk to yourself? The hateful things we say to ourselves are so bad that we wouldn’t dare say them out loud to another person. So why would we allow that kind of talk inside our own head? For every hateful thing you say to yourself, replace it with something positive. If you are having a good hair day, recognize it! If you like your toes, praise them! If you were kind to a stranger, pat yourself on the back!
- Recognize that most of the negative chatter in our heads comes from sources other than ourselves. We are not born with a negative self image. They are put there by family, strangers, media, bullies, and by unconscious, thoughtless, passing comments of others. Do not own these messages! They are not yours!
- Reach out to a coach with a positive outlook on life. Sometimes we need a little extra help to rid ourselves of negativity and self-defeating belief systems. Don’t get caught up in wallowing and victimization. Find someone, a therapist, a coach or a good friend that will lift you up, not hold you down. Someone that will ask the hard questions, but also help you work through the answers. Someone that will help you see that there is hope, opportunity and possibility!
This is your daily action plan to start reprogramming the mind to a healthier and leaner self image. Changing your mindset into something more positive is the missing factor in long term health and fitness. Start incorporating a daily practice of positivity and watch magic happen!