Are your jeans feeling a little too tight? Do you feel short of breath when you climb up stairs, or have to cross the road quickly? Maybe your doctor has told you that you need to lose a few kilos, or your love life is suffering. Maybe you simply want to be around to see your kids grow up.
Losing weight can seem like an insurmountable challenge. After all, we usually look at what we’re losing in the short term (dinners out with friends, a few glasses of wine at the bar, snacks on the couch while watching our favourite shows), and we forget everything that we’ll be gaining- smaller clothes, more energy, better health, increased sleep, and higher self-confidence.
The trouble is that losing weight can take time. And humans are impatient. So when we’re on the struggle train for a week, eating well and going to the gym, and then we see no results, it can be easy to throw in the towel and believe that we’re one of those people who just can’t lose weight.
It doesn’t help that we’ve been fed so much conflicting information about food, nutrition, exercise and weight loss. It used to be that we were told to eat foods that were low-fat, and now it appears that these are usually high-sugar and unsatisfying, leading to weight gain and mood swings.
If you go on a really strict “diet”, it can be hard to keep to it, and the moment you eat some food that’s not on the approved foods list, you feel bad about yourself, decide you may as well eat what you want and start the diet again tomorrow, and you begin a cycle of yo-yo dieting which is really bad for your metabolism.
The trick is to make healthy changes. If you’re someone who likes dessert, swap out high-carb cakes with a couple of pieces of high-quality chocolate and you’ll be satisfied with fewer calories. You can also do things like replace pretzels with carrots, mix your favourite dip with a little cottage cheese to make it go further, and ensure you’re eating plenty of protein throughout the day.
You may think that in order to lose weight you need to head to the gym every day, but your diet is actually the most important thing when it comes to losing weight. However exercise is great for your body and mood and can help you tone up, get fit, and gain self-confidence.
You don’t need to spend hours in the gym, just get active in a way that you’ll enjoy and stick to. That could mean taking a dance class or martial art, trying a new sport, or joining a running club.
If you want to be educated about food and weight loss, consider Chi Of Life– a weight loss and wellness retreat that can help you learn everything you need to know in order to meet your weight loss goals this year.