Weight Loss: How You May Be Sabotaging Your Weight Loss Success
You have the fridge stocked with healthy food, you’ve chucked the sweets, you’re hitting the gym regularly, you’re doing everything “right.” But you still cant seem to get or keep the weight off. So what’s the deal?
It’s possible that you may be exercising too much and not eating enough. You’ve probably heard that when the body doesn’t get enough nutrition, metabolism slows down. But here’s the more likely culprit: you’re a busy mom.
See if this rings a bell: You're packing the kids' lunches, checking your Facebook, applying your makeup, swapping a load of laundry and ingesting a bowl of Special K, all at the same time. Your "meals" are typically a protein bar on the way to work or soccer practice, or a few bites straight out of the pot while making dinner for the family. Maybe your kids are grown and you find you're still eating like you're in a race against the inevitable toddler-induced meltdown.
You may not FEEL stressed when you eat like this because it has become a way of life for so many of us. However, studies have shown that when it comes to weight loss, HOW you eat is just as important as WHAT you eat. The reality is that the eating scenarios above create stress chemistry in the body, namely an increase in the production of cortisol and insulin, two powerful hormones that tell your body to store fat, stop building muscle, and decrease calorie burning; not really what you are going for.
And here’s where things get really interesting: stressful THOUGHTS can create the same stress chemistry. For example, guilt or anxiety about what you are eating, self-judgment and body shame, struggling with your appetite, feeling deprived all lead to stress chemistry. Here’s the bottom line, worrying and stressing about your weight actually causes your body to store and retain weight. Uh oh, right? Put that together with rushed, multitasking meals and you have the perfect storm for sabotage of all your hard work.
Here are a few simple behavioral shifts to maximize your metabolic potential and increase the ease with which you can reach your goals:
- EAT when you Eat: Commit to one meal a day where you actually sit down and enjoy the meal without distractions. Even taking 10 extra minutes to savor your morning smoothie at the breakfast counter can make a difference.
- Take Your Vitamin O: O2, that is. Take a few deep, slow breaths before every meal. This oxygenates your digestive tract, relaxes your mind, and turns off the physiologic stress response, effectively boosting your metabolism.
- Release the Judgment: Allow yourself to have pleasure with food, and ditch the “I’m good” or “I’m bad” mentality around food and exercise. And always remember that you are beautiful and valuable right now, no matter what your shape or size.
What are you doing to lose weight and improve your overall health?
Michelle Leath is a coach, mentor, speaker, and the founder of www.unlockyourpossibility.com. She teaches women how to harness the power of possibility, permission and pleasure to create the lives they truly want and deserve. She specializes in helping women create a relationship with food and their bodies that works for them, so that they can release unwanted weight or food habits without dieting or depriving themselves, and so they can show up like the rock stars they are in their businesses, lives, and relationships! Having found recovery from an eating disorder herself, Michelle is passionate about helping others heal their food issues, and she also authors a blog on eating disorder recovery at www.michelleleath.com.
Michelle is a graduate of the Coaches Training Institute, a Certified Food Psychology Coach, and has a degree in Psychology from the University of California at Santa Barbara. She has helped women connect with their potential in various ways for over 20 years.
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