The “diet train”? Yeah… she was on it! That’s how it’s been for the last ten years. Through every season, she was sure of two things in regards to weight loss: it was only possible if she was exercising, and if she was eating 1200 calories or less.
This client is a real person. She might even be YOU. This thought process is something that many women on the diet train have in common. What drives this train, you may wonder? The desire to be thinner, to fit into cuter clothes, and to feel more confident. The goal has always been the same, to lose weight. However, the incentive to be healthy and build positive habits at the same time hasn’t always been there.
The Hard Truth
There is one fundamental truth that those on the diet train must accept in order to make progress toward being healthier and happier. The body NEEDS more calories! To be clear: weight loss (and weight gain) cannot be summed up into a simple “calories in/calories out” formula, though, there is some truth to how much energy our bodies need to function properly. Calories help our bodies participate in all the activities of daily living, think: driving, walking, cleaning, cooking, or sleeping! When we consider all of the things that we do on top of all of that (exercise, playing with your kids, and anything else related to your work, hobbies, or life) then it’s easy to see how our need for calories is much greater.
You would be hard-pressed to find and adult that doesn’t require at LEAST those 1200 calories to thrive. When you consider the many other things we do, aside from breathing and walking, you can start to see how we actually need much more energy (calories) for everything to work properly! If our bodies’ most minimum requirements aren’t being met, then there is no way that it will be capable to do what we ask of it. (Like, maybe, properly metabolize our nutrients to carry out the various chemical reactions required for our muscles to contract, for our mind to remain focused, and our bodies to feel energized?)
Shifting Our Mindset
When it comes to calories, there is a delicate balance between maintaining our body weight and composition, and starving ourselves to the point where we are walking zombies. The last thing we want to do is be malnourished. Being thin, but malnourished means that we aren’t really living our best life. We are tired, unfocused, unmotivated, and we don’t find satisfaction in eating or drinking. Plainly, we have a hard time enjoying and living our lives.
The path to where you are now did not happen overnight. It didn’t happen in two weeks, or two months. (Maybe it was two years? More? Only you know this!) The point however, is that the process to a healthier version of yourself, who has a happy relationship with her body and food, is a path that lasts a lifetime. Making drastic changes to lose weight, without shifting any of the stories you tell yourself… (“Eating this slice of bread will make me fat,” “I can’t have even one drink because that will cause me to gain ten pounds overnight,” “I don’t deserve to enjoy myself at this party,” “When I lose twenty pounds I will finally be worthy,” etc. The list goes on.) will leave you no better off than where you began.
When we understand that making the decision to lose weight is really making a decision to be happier, we can begin to accept the process for what it is. Eating enough food nourish our bodies and fuel what we do every single day so that we live with energy and vitality. This process is a new way of looking at our bodies, a new way of looking at our food, and a new way of moving through the world. When we restrict our food intake, we set ourselves up for failure because we deprive your bodies of the nutrients that they so desperately need. Under-eating keeps our progress at bay, because we don’t have the capacity to improve or grow.
So What Now?
Decide to do something different this time. Get off at this stop on the train… and make the decision to never get on it again. Come and meet with one of our nutritionists. We want to learn about you, your story, and where you want to go next. We want to make a plan to help you reach your goal of a healthier and happier life! We are here to support and encourage you, every step of the way.