Proper Care and Feeding of...You

August 19, 2010

How Long is Too Long?

How many books have you read about how to eat to lose weight or how long you should be exercising to gain that perfect body? Every newspaper has at least a half-dozen columns and the internet is choking with articles. There are magazines devoted to the subjects and books, cd's, dvd's, and conferences designed to get you from fat and frumpy to thin and stunning in 30 days or less. Hasn't this gone on long enough?

The fact is that good nutrition and exercise really are essential to good health and long life. There have been any number of studies to substantiate that fact. Diseases are avoided, healing is promoted, and endless great things happen as a result of eating properly and exercising regularly. So, why is it so difficult to grasp the concept and be consistent with it?

It's All in the Head

Perhaps the answer to that question can be found in the beliefs that we have about ourselves rather than in the disciplines themselves. If you have a belief that you won't be able to stick with a program, then you've already made the decision to quit. If you believe you will never be able to get fit, then working hard is out of the question - after all, why bother? It you believe that by changing your eating patterns and what you eat you will be depriving yourself, then you'll sabotage yourself at every turn.

You Already Know What To Do

Eating properly is not difficult. You may need some guidelines, but chances are you already know what's good and what's not. You don't have to be told that fried foods, sugar, fat, and too many simple carbs are going to pack weight on you. Why do it? Why eat that stuff? Maybe by asking yourself what you have to gain by packing pounds on your frame will yield you the first key to taking the weight off and eating balanced, healthy meals. The same goes for fitness. Showing up at the gym is a great start, but failing to work hard enough to break a sweat is like taking a shower with your clothes on. Not much good.

Find a Friend, Get a Trainer - Become Accountable

How will you get the ball rolling? One of the best ways is to find someone to help you find your path and stay on it. The thing about accountability is that it works. Sometimes we just need someone to answer to, and know there is someone who will ask the questions we can sidestep when we're alone gives us the fortitude to remain committed to our decision. Do you have a good friend you can buddy with, or would hiring a personal trainer be a possibility? There are numbers of support groups for weight loss and self-reflection, and most fitness facilities offer group classes where you can make friends with the people in the class. You can arrange to meet at the gym for a class and then off for herbal tea.

Too often we try to go it alone and find ourselves stranded along the way. Having someone to share ideas with or to share questions and answers with can go a long way to ending the vicious circle of knowing what to do and doing it for a while then quitting and starting all over again. You can take care of yourself well, all you may need is a little help.

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