Make Weight Loss Fun!
As we're assaulted every day with images of skinny models, diet pills, and the obesity epidemic, it's important to maintain a good attitude towards weight and weight loss. While there are serious health risks associated with obesity like heart disease, diabetes, and high cholesterol, there are also physical conditions that contribute to a lower quality of life.
Change Your Attitude
If you're looking to lose weight, take some time to think about why you want to. Do you feel your size limits the physical activities you can do? Do you want to lose a couple extra "vanity" pounds to fit into the dress you wore last summer? What's your weight loss goal? Is it reasonable? Maybe your body was never meant to be a size six, but is perfect at a size ten or eight. Be reasonable in the demands you make of yourself.
Dieting and Exercising
If your weight has fluctuated recently, or if you've dieted for a while but can't keep the extra weight off, maybe you need a change of attitude about exercise and dieting. When you think about exercise do you think about sweating it out on a treadmill, or running around playing tag with your kids? If you can think about exercise in a fun way, and incorporate it into your daily life, it won't be a burden. Instead of going to the gym, go on a nature hike with your family, or play Frisbee golf with your friends. This way you'll explore new places, engage your family and friends in fun activities. Take a new class like Yoga, Tai Chi or pilates. The support of others in the class and the regimen of a regular class is great for some people. Or try and set a weekly or monthly date with a good friend, where you'll try something new each time.
The same goes for dieting. Instead of restricting your food intake to protein shakes and diet bars, really have fun with food. Challenge yourself to see how many different vegetables you can cook with in a week or a month. Or invite friends over and assign each one a fruit or vegetable to make a dish. Food should be fun and exciting! Seek out things like wild rice, roasted nuts, lentils, or barley.
Throw out the Scale
Don't follow your weight loss by the scale. You can judge weight loss by how your clothes fit (or don't fit). Follow your new exercise habits and food adventures with a calendar of all the new activities you've tried and the new foods you've discovered.
This is the best part. Whoever said dessert had to be bad for you? Treat yourself to a new cookbook of light desserts. Make a simple dessert out of fresh fruit, some honey, and yogurt. If you want something heavier, try angel food cake with berries, or a sauce made of cooked fruits. Experiment with a splash of dark rum, brandy, or white wine when creating desserts. Eating and living well just takes a little bit of effort and creativity. Who knows - maybe in the process you'll find in yourself a budding chef, or a new favorite hobby. Enjoy!