I had an interesting experience that I think speaks to a major problem with weight loss. I was attending a fundraiser for a charitable organization I support. This was a high class affair and as such, I was out of place. The nice thing about being out of place is that it give you the opportunity to notice things. The nice thing about high class affiars is that the food was unbelievable. In the beginning, there was an outdoor portion with hot dogs, hamburgers, and french fries. We then moved locales for the appetizers – sushi, london broil, sliders, onion rings, cocktails, and more. There was so much unbelievable food here that I thought this was the actual dinner, but it wasn’t. We then went to the dinner where there was roasted lamb and potatoes arranged like a work of art on a plate. I ate until I could eat no more then I ate some more. Then there was dessert. Tables full of crepes, ice cream with toppings, cakes, mousse, and on and on. I ate to the point where I was almost sick – but it was sooo good. I shudder at the thought of the calorie counts.
I went home and thought about all the people out there struggling with weight. I can only imagine how difficult it must be to work so hard to watch everything you eat – to struggle with the intense cravings and temptations – only to have it all fall apart in a day of disastrous binge eating like the one I had. There are many ways to respond to this breakdown. One of the most common is to throw in the towel and give up. Just listen to the ever-present voice in your head that tells you you’ll never be thin so why bother. Maybe you’ve been here before – you wouldn’t be alone.
Another option is to remember your commitment to weight loss.
I would like to redefine what a commitment is. To do that, we have to clarify a great misconception about commitment that exists in the world today. The following is taken from The Weight Loss Counter Revolution book.
An expectation, on the other hand, is created for a single moment in time. When the expectation is not met, failure is the result and there is no undoing the failure. When you do not fulfill your expectation you are left with nothing but disappointment. There is no action to take.
Sarah Sunshine has struggled with her weight her entire life. She was raised in a home that was full of junk food, fast food, and couch potatoes. She never learned how her body works and why she has such a hard time losing weight. She sees a seminar by this doctor who is crazy enough to think that his book can revolutionize people’s relationship to their weight. He thinks that the solution to the obesity epidemic is rooted in ending the ignorance that is rampant across the country. Being generally optimistic and giving him the benefit of the doubt, she gives the book try. She is taken by this ‘counter revolution’ and commits herself to a permanent lifestyle change. She realizes that it will take a long time to overcome her genetics and bad habits and that she may not always live up to her expectations but she gets to work nonetheless. Things are going great and the weight is coming off but, after a few months, her boyfriend dumps her and she gets depressed. She stops calorie counting and her workouts aren’t as intense. She starts gaining the weight back. She looks in the mirror and is not happy with what she sees. Remembering that her commitment is for the rest of her life, she picks up her copy of The Weight Loss Counter Revolution and reads it again and gets herself back on the train. After a few years, the ups greatly outnumber the downs and she weighs as much as she did in high school and the pounds are still coming off.
As for me, I remembered my commitment to motivate and inspire others to life a healthier life. To do so I need to participate in the lifestyle change I am advocating. So this morning, I went on myfitnesspal.com (the calorie counting app I use) and decreased my daily calorie intake 1650 a day. I’m still living my commitment to a healthy. Today is a new day. What would your day look like today if you were living your commitment?
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