For years I have been watching fitness professionals trying to figure out what is the best way to eat and what is the best way to exercise for healthy weight loss. The fact is, even if you figure out what is the best way to eat and the best way to exercise for healthy weight loss, it will not necessarily help achieve sustainable weight loss.
The reason is very simple. The solution to sustainable weight loss has two parts. Part one is having the right know-how as far as what foods we need to be eating, what foods we need to be avoiding, how we should be eating those foods and what exercises we should be doing in order to lose weight and get in shape.
The second part of the solution is knowing how to apply all that know-how into your life, without burning yourself out.
This is the part that most diets and weight loss programs are missing. They assume that once people see results they would be motivated to keep going. The fact is, the best results in the world would not keep anyone motivated if the results were achieved through a method that is overwhelming. The way most weight loss and diet programs approach weight loss is overwhelming for the vast majority of people, this is why 95% of people who do lose weight, end up regaining the weight back
The key to sustainable weight loss is knowing how to apply all the things you need to do, into your life, without burning yourself out.
In my next blog, I would talk more about how to best apply new changes in your life with the lowest chance of burning out.
In this blog, I would love to hear about what are some of the things people struggle with when they start a new weight loss or diet program. Please leave your answers in the comments section.
Another Thanksgiving is upon us with all the food temptations. It seems to me that Thanksgiving has become a holiday about food
and not about giving thanks. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with enjoying the food; what is wrong is that the food has become the main focus. So, enjoy the food, but don’t forget to also enjoy the people you share the food with!
Here are few tips to help you get through Thanksgiving meal:
- Keep in mind, the more food you eat, does not mean the more fun you have.
- If at the Thanksgiving meal you are serving yourself, (buffet or family style) put on your plate half of the food that you think you can eat. You can always get more.
- Remember to eat slowly and mindfully. Always put your fork down between bites and chew your food well. By eating slowly and mindfully you will get more satisfaction from eating and you will end up eating less.
- Go to the Thanksgiving meal hungry, but make sure you eat slowly when the meal comes.
- If you are serving yourself, the first time you go up to get food, get salad only, and then after you eat the salad go back for the main course.
- Don’t forget to leave room for dessert.
- Keep in mind the consequences of overeating and how uncomfortable you will feel after. Why do that to yourself? You can have a great time at Thanksgiving without having to stuff yourself.
- Whatever you do, DON’T GO LOW FAT. If you go low fat you will simply just eat more. So just enjoy your food and try to stop eating when you have satisfied your hunger.
The only thing that was meant to be stuffed on Thanksgiving is the turkey!
Have a great Thanksgiving
Stavros Mastrogiannis is a 25 year veteran of the weight loss field and specializes in permanent weight loss. He is the founder of Live Your Way Thin LLC in Danbury and the creator of The Live Your Way Thin System.
Here is a fact that might shock you. Losing weight and getting in shape is actually a much easier process than most fitness professionals make it. Their hard-core workouts and crazy diets that nobody can stick with for more than a few weeks have discouraged many people from even trying to lose weight and get in shape.
It does not have to be this way. The way most weight loss and diet programs approach weight loss, goes completely again human nature. This is one of the reasons why most people find diets and weight loss program so hard to stick with.
In my 25 years in the weight loss field I have found that when you try to lose weight and get in shape by going with human nature instead of again it, the process becomes much more tolerable and much easier to stick with.
Here is the process you should follow if you want sustainable weight loss and great health. I consider these 5 steps, absolutely essential for sustainable weight loss
STEP 1: You must identify the unhealthy habitual behaviors, that are responsible for your current shape.
STEP 2: You must identify, which of the 8 essential healthy behaviors, are NOT part of your life. (There are literally hundreds of healthy habits that could have a positive impact on your weight and health, some more than others. In my 25 years in the weight loss field, I have identified 8 healthy habits that would have the biggest impact on your health and weight and I consider them essential for best health and maximum weight loss. Those habits include, some form of resistance training to strengthen your muscles (you don’t need to kill your muscles only challenge them a little more than they are used to), some form of aerobics (you don’t need to run, walking does the trick), eating only when truly hungry, eating slowly and mindfully, learning to stop eating when you have satisfied your hunger, making junk food special, eating more fruits and vegetables.)
STEP 3: You must identify any negative beliefs that you have that could prevent you from eliminating any of your unhealthy habits or developing any of the healthy ones. (When it comes to sustainable weight loss, eliminating your negative beliefs is essential. Most weight loss programs don’t do this, and that is one of the main reasons why 95% of people who lose weight end up regaining the weight back)
STEP 4: You must have a clear plan of action that takes into consideration your current lifestyle, likes and dislikes, and of course your motivational level.
You plan must include:
- How you will eliminate any negative beliefs you have.
- How you will eliminate your unhealthy habitual behaviors while still living your life.
- How you will develop and make habitual the healthy behaviors you are missing and make them part of your life.
STEP 5: Take action. Nothing happens without action. However, you should never work on changing more than one habit at a time. Most weight loss and diet programs on the market today, try to help people change all their bad habits at once and we all know the end result, BURNOUT! Just keep in mind that you must stay flexible because things change, so your action plan must have some flexibility. This is where a good coach or personal trainer can be a big help.
These are the 5 steps we follow at Live Your Way Thin, and our clients, don’t just lose the weight they want with less effort but have a much easier time keeping it off, than with any other weight loss program.
So, if you are looking to lose weight and get in shape, and more importantly be able to easily maintain those results, I would strongly advise you to follow the above 5 steps.
If you need help, I would like to invite you to come in for a Free Habit Evaluation Consultation.
Through this Habit Evaluation Consultation, I will help you take the first 4 Fundamental Steps to sustainable weight loss, with absolutely no obligation to join! No Catch!
At the consultation, we will accomplish 4 things:
- We will Identify all your unhealthy habitual behaviors responsible for your current shape
- We will Identify, which of the 8 essential healthy behaviors are NOT part of your life
- We will identify any negative beliefs you have that could sabotage your weight loss efforts
- Based on your current situation and motivational level, I will make my suggestions of how you can make all the necessary changes in your life, and more importantly how to make those changes part of your life.
I truly believe, if people knew how simple the process of losing weight and getting in shape really is, and how easy, keeping the weight off can be when you go with human nature, a lot more people would try to lose weight and get in shape and as people start seeing real, sustainable results, more people would follow their example and this is how we can start reversing the weight gain trend that is plaguing our nation.
I know if you follow these 5 Steps, they will help you get on the right track, and if you need any help, I hope you take advantage of my Free Habit Evaluation Consultation.
Just so you know, our services don’t come with contracts, so you can use our help for as long or as short time as you need it!
How to Schedule Your Free Habit Evaluation Consultation
Here’s what you do next. If you want to schedule a Habit Evaluation Consultation with me, simply click on the link below. When you click, you’ll see a form with questions about your current habitual behaviors, beliefs and possible days and times you can come in for the consultation.
You cannot watch TV, listen to the radio or go on the internet, without seeing some ad trying to convince you to eat something, for various reasons, like it tastes great, it’s good for your health or it will help you lose belly fat.
How many times have you seen an ad telling you not to eat? Or, to make sure you are hungry before you eat? Almost never, right? Did you know, there is nothing better you can do for your health and weight than going for a prolonged period without eating (fasting) and letting your body go hungry before eating? There is no food on the planet that can help you lose weight and improve your health more than fasting regularly and eating only when truly hungry most of the time. Yet, you hardly ever hear about it. Have you ever wondered why?
The answer has a lot to do with the fact that no one makes money if you are not eating! Think about it. Most of the information we receive today is, directly or indirectly, from someone trying to sell us something. For example, everywhere you look there are advertisements. On TV, in Magazines, the radio, on billboards or on the web, everywhere. It is estimated that the average person comes across thousands of ads every day. A big percentage of those ads are from food companies trying to persuade you to eat their food by telling you how good it tastes or how good it is for your health. The milk industry promotes how good milk is for you, the meat industry promotes how good meat is for you, the vegetable industry promotes how good fruits and vegetables are good for you, etc. Food companies are promoting all the benefits of the foods they are selling so they can persuade you to buy more of their food. Food companies alone spend billions per year on advertising.
My question? Who makes money when you don’t eat? No one! Since no one is making money from you when you don’t eat, who would be interested in promoting the benefits of fasting or not eating? Very few people.
I am not saying food companies don’t care about their customers’ health or that there is anything wrong with advertising. They have a product to sell and if something does not benefit their product, they are not going to promote that solution. At the end of the day, it is not their job to promote a solution that they don’t benefit from. They are in the food business, not the weight loss business.
People interested in promoting this healthier idea are people like me who are truly committed to giving information in books or have websites that connect directly with the consumer and do not rely on paid sponsors to make income. Our loyalty lies with our clients and our ideals because our clients pay our salary and we know if we want our clients to keep coming back, we need to give them the best information possible.
Unfortunately, our advertising budget can’t compete with the billions of dollars the food industry spends on advertising. This can be a reason why you hardly hear about the benefits of letting your body go hungry before eating.
Most nutritionists don’t teach the important role, hunger and fasting play in health. When I was in college, I remember all the nutritional courses I took, and not a one talked about the important role of letting your body go hungry before eating. All the courses talk about calories and the type of foods we should be eating or avoiding. As a matter of fact, they taught us that going for too long without eating is really bad for weight loss. There was no discussion of the extensive historical evidence pointing to the long-term benefits of fasting.
Why most colleges and university don’t emphasize the benefits of fasting and letting the body go hungry before eating, I can only speculate. The only conclusion I can think of is that there is something holding them back. My guess? Could be the interests of the food industry. They donate millions of dollars to universities and colleges every year for research and sponsorships, scholarships and grants.
Think about it. It is not in the best interest of the food industry for people to eat only when hungry because they will end up eating less food. The food industry, through the millions of dollars they spend on lobbying, has a tremendous influence on the government’s nutritional recommendations. The food industry would only, wisely, spend their research time and money on projects that will directly benefit them. Do you think the universities and colleges teach things that could disprove a big donor’s product or mission? Of course not.
A great book to read about the food industry and the great influence it has on the way we eat today is the book by Marion Nestle “Food Politics”. You will be surprised when you learn the amount of influence the food industry has on our government and our educational institutions.
Bottom line? The food industry has great influence over the government and the educational institutions and any information that would hinder the sales of food gets ignored or generally suppressed. Most educational institutions don’t emphasize the benefits of fasting and eating less often. Most nutritionists who get their information from those institutions may not be very aware of the benefits.
I am a firm believer in the value of education. Sometimes structured education, like colleges and universities can put blinders on people. I think that is what has happened with most nutritionists and why so few of them teach the importance of fasting and letting your body go hungry before eating.
I don’t want my blog to be misunderstood. My intentions are not to offend anyone but to answer a question I get asked a lot as to why such an important healthy habit has been completely ignored by most mainstream nutritionists.
Founder of the Live Your Way Thin System.
Yes, you read the title correctly, nobody has a weight problem, what we have is a behavioral problem.
The first thing you absolutely must realize, if you want to achieve sustainable weight loss, is that you don’t have a weight problem or a fitness problem, what you have is a behavioral problem. Being overweight and out of shape is the symptom of your current habitual behaviors that you repeat on a daily basis with little conscious thought. Sometimes you are not even aware of them. Unless you eliminate the habitual behaviors that got you overweight and out of shape, and replace them with good behaviors, you will never be able to achieve sustainable weight loss. Just look at all the weight loss programs on the market today, that don’t help people make changes in their habitual behaviors but instead focus on helping people lose as much weight as fast as possible. Although most of them are able to deliver fast results, those results don’t last too long. Just look at the national statistics, over 95% of the people who lose weight regain the weight back. Why? Because they don’t help people eliminate the root cause of weight gain, which is their daily habitual behaviors.
To help you stay focused on the root cause of the problem, which is your habitual behaviors, don’t use the scale as your success indicator.
Let me explain what I mean by that. Most of us, when we’re trying to lose weight, use the scale as our success indicator. In other words, we weigh ourselves every week to see if the scale shows a lower number (which makes us feel successful) or a higher number (which makes us feel defeated). By doing this we focus on the symptom and not the problem. Instead, track on how you are doing on the healthy behavior you are trying to develop or the unhealthy behavior you are trying to eliminate.
For example: Let’s say you are working on breaking the habitual behavior of eating junk food Monday through Friday. You should keep track of the number of times you engaged in that habitual behavior Monday through Friday and each week try to eat less junk food than the previous week. So let’s say the first week you engaged in that habitual behavior 10 times. In other words, you ate junk food 10 times during the week, Monday through Friday. Let’s say the following week you engaged in that habitual behavior only 7 times. That means you made progress and you should consider that week a successful week regardless if you lost weight or not. Each week you try to do better on the behavior you are trying to develop or eliminate than the previous week. Before you know it, you will have developed the habitual behavior of not eating junk food Monday through Friday. Now, keep in mind that developing one new behavior does not mean you will start losing weight because sometimes you need to develop or change 3 or more behaviors before you start losing weight. You just keep reaping this process with each habitual behavior you need to develop or change and sooner or later you will have changed enough behaviors to lose the weight you want.
Another reason why you should not use the scale as your success indicator is that it does not tell you the full story. Sometimes you can do everything right, eat the perfect diet, do all your exercises, and the scale can still show you that you gain weight. This can happen for many reasons — eating salty food or a large meal before a weigh-in; for women, accumulated water weight during a menstrual cycle; or any number of other reasons. A person’s weight can fluctuate 3 to 5 lbs or more in one day. That’s why it’s more realistic and encouraging to focus on the behaviors you are trying to develop or change than the weight you are trying to lose. Besides, your habitual behaviors are the real problem, not the excess weight.
So if you want to maintain the right mindset focus on the behaviors you are trying to change in order to lose weight and get in shape and not the weight you are trying to lose.
At Live Your Way Thin the way we use the scale is to tell us if a client has changed enough habitual behaviors to affect their weight, we don’t use the scale as our success indicator.