The diet industry often advertises with, “Lose weight fast” or “Drop 10 lbs in 10 days.” The “too good to be true” is often what pulls people in, and entices them to spend their pay check on the next best gimmick to help them finally reach their fat loss or weight loss goals.
People are spending thousands of dollars on skinny teas, waist trainers, micro lipo and/or cool sculpting. Confession: Close to 5 years a go, I opened a Care Credit account just so I could spend over a $1000 on cool sculpting for my trouble areas. Worst waste of money ever (insert eye roll emoji here.) I’m reminded of this every time I here an advertisement on the radio, or see one on the television….I cringe every time.
Three words that should never be placed in the same sentence: Lose Weight Fast. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Losing weight fast often comes with consequences. When your fast weight loss and the over haul of your life becomes unsustainable, you’re more likely to gain the weight back, revert to old habits, and throw in the towel completely. For most, they’ll end up heavier and unhappier than they were when they first started. If you can’t see yourself doing two-a-day workouts, and eating 1200 calories per day for the next 6-months to a year, it’s likely you need to re-evaluate what you’re doing to yourself. Eventually you’ll burn out, and eventually you’ll get tired of eliminating your favorite foods and being deathly afraid of carbs.
There aren’t very many diet or weight loss commercials that I’ll endorse, or make me think, “Wow, that’s a great product/concept they’re promoting…I really think our members could benefit from it.” But, I am seriously in LOVE with the Weight Watcher’s commercial and Oprah’s quote of, “I love bread. I now just mange it! I don’t deny myself bread. I have bread every day.” Check it out for yourself if you haven’t seen it already, and make sure to check out the dubstep version if you need a good laugh.
Like Oprah, I happen to love bread. I may not have it every day like she does (by choice), but I certainly have some type of flour in my protein pancakes/protein brownies, or another starchier food like cereal. I don’t deny myself bread, or anything for that matter. Like Oprah, I’ve learned to manage my bread. Did this happen over night? Of course not and I am not by any means perfect.
After years of denying myself foods like bread, it’s taken lots of practice and a shift in mindset. Bread does not equal bad, and nor does any other more processed food. If you ask someone why bread is “bad,” you may receive a variety of answers. But, I can guarantee a few of those will be, “It’s a carb.” Well, an apple is a carb, a carrot is a carb, that entire box of Girl Scout cookies you just consumed are carbs, and so is the beer and/or wine you drink every weekend. Plus, doesn’t your body NEED carbs for energy? Doesn’t your body need carbs to help you push through your workout? Or to help you take care of your growing family?
Some people are going to tolerate more carbs than others. We are not genetically the same, and there are multiple factors that come into play that determine this. But, that doesn’t mean eliminating certain foods, or food groups. It’s just knowing what amount or portion size is right for your body. You could put two people with the same sex, weight, age, height, and body fat percentage next to each other, but it’s unlikely they will have the same exact tolerance to carbs or the same exact caloric intake. But, that doesn’t mean one person needs to eliminate bread from their diet, while the other person incorporates it in moderation.
First, you need to know what carb amount is right for you. You can do this by weighing and tracking your food, and using the trial and error method. Once you figure out what amount works for you and your goals, treat your carbs and all macros (protein, carbs, and fat) like a bank. You can only have so much to spend per day. Some foods will cost more than others. A donut is going to cost more than an apple. Whole grain pasta is going to cost more than spaghetti squash. Make sense? You can also look at is this way…..
You wouldn’t go to the store with $100 cash, and try to spend $150.
There’s also the 80/20 rule. If 80% of your food sources are whole, nutrient rich foods, then it’s OK to have a donut if you really want it or some bread and butter. At first this concept was extremely difficult for me to grasp. I questioned it, and fought it for a while when I first starting tracking macros.
I do want to be clear. I don’t use weight watchers as a dieting tool, but I do love that they promote a balanced lifestyle and moderation. Their plans are flexible, and can be molded to fit any lifestyle. There’s no elimination of foods or food groups. It is much like Flexible Dieting (which is what we do practice at Plates on Plates Fitness.)
Flexible dieting is a tool, and is great for teaching moderation, portion control, and helping you learn just how much of what is right for YOUR body. Keep in mind that if you’ve restricted any food or macro from your diet, there will be an adjustment period. Be patient, and know that nothing happens over night. If you’re only consuming 30-50 g of carbs per day now, your body may not tolerate 150 g per day right out the gate.
The diet cycle can be pretty vicious. I’ve been there, Mackenzie has been there, and maybe even you’ve been there (or are still there). We’ve all pretty much been there at some point or another. Unfortunately, some people will stay there for the rest of their lives. Looking for the next best gimmick…the workout that will melt fat in all the right places…or the quickest solution to lose the pounds for good. The truth is, you’re not smarter than your body and really all it takes is consistency, effort, knowing what works well for you, and avoiding the short-cuts and short-term fixes.
Wherever you go, there you are. So, until YOU decide to commit to something that is a LIFESTYLE, you’ll be stuck in the vicious cycle of yo-yo dieting.
Find something you love, give it your all, and transform your mind, body, and soul.
If you need help, just let us know!