Throughout my lifetime, I’ve adopted many different beliefs about diet, exercise regimens, and body image. Some practices were healthy, while others were not. I’ve spent my lifetime as my own personal guinea pig, in an effort to prove the authenticity of such diets, potions, and exercise programs. I hoped that those products would give me the results I was looking for, but found false promises instead.
I’ve always been the athletic type and in the past there was really nothing wrong with my body. But, when I was young I had a distorted self-image of how I looked and never thought I was thin enough. So when I began dieting, my focus became losing as much body weight as possible and to become as thin as I could. I determined my attractiveness by my tiny butt and waistline. During this time of my life, my eating habits were very strict and bordering upon unhealthy.
In 1978, I began conditioning my body with resistance weight training. By 1980, I had become a popular female bodybuilder. Because I was participating in strength training and endurance exercises, my low-calorie diet evolved and became a healthier nutritional plan. I became more focused upon building muscle and efficiently utilizing my body fat for energy. Nutrition was extremely important to me and feeding my muscles took priority over achieving a low body weight. I began to educate myself, learning as much as I could about diet and nutrition, so that I could be strong and healthy.
Some years later, I became a wife and mother. Although, my self image was still important to me, the dynamics of my life had changed. I had moved to the country by then and was no longer in the public’s eye. I began to participate in other activities that I enjoyed, such as horse-back riding. I allowed myself to indulge in delicious foods I never knew I loved, and I watched my body change as I developed a softer layer that I’d tried so hard for so many years, to avoid. But, I remained active and monitored my fat intake. I also regularly scrutinized myself very closely in the mirror. It was during this time in my life that I began to experiment with new miracle potions and all sorts of weight loss “fad” diets. Through it all, I maintained my body weight to within about fifteen pounds of what I perceived my weight should be.
After I was divorced, I found myself “distracted” by the simple daily act of survival as a single parent. I had enrolled in on-line classes and I found myself sitting in front of a computer for many hours each day. I began to steadily gain weight because I was less active and no longer monitored what types, or how much food I consumed. When I noticed my body weight increasing, I attempted to lose the weight quickly by buying into popular weight loss plans I saw advertised on television as the latest and greatest new thing! Few of them gave me any results, were an expensive investment, and left me feeling like a failure. I became quite depressed with myself and began to avoid the person I saw looking back at me in the mirror.
Dieting the right way
Over the course of thirty five years, I have found that fast weight loss “fad diets” don’t work for long. Once you give up on the plan, the weight usually comes back. Therefore, to lose it and keep the weight off, we must learn how to eat, find a diet plan that works for us, then continue to nourish ourselves with foods that offer the highest levels of nutrition, and also offer biological and emotional satisfaction, too. I believe that we are a nation of “over-fed/under-nourished” people. We eat without really nourishing ourselves. We are semi-conscious when we eat. This must change if you want your health to improve. We must become and remain conscious eaters.
As you follow along with me, you’ll probably notice that I use the term diet quite freely. The reason for this is because whenever you’re following a specific eating plan, no matter what it includes, you are following a diet. The media has associated the term diet with weight loss, when essentially a diet is nothing more than a determining factor of how and what you regularly eat. Just because you’re on a diet doesn’t have to imply that you’re starving or punishing yourself. My intention is to improve your current diet or change it altogether!
Nourish your body
I’m so fortunate to be a person who enjoys healthy foods. I feel good about myself when I make healthy choices where my diet is concerned. Therefore, I choose to eat vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, and I maintain a level of satisfaction by nourishing myself with lean, clean protein. I prefer to keep my diet simple by focusing upon the four basic food groups I mentioned, and dressing those food choices up with a variety of different herbs and spices. Our food should taste good and there are healthy ways to improve its flavor! I also recommend including multi-vitamins, Omega 3 oils, and other antioxidants to the diet. Otherwise, it can be a real challenge to get enough of the necessary levels we need of these nutrients in the foods we eat today.
"Let food be thy medicine." ~ Hippocrates
You need to acquire a sense of personal responsibility where your health is concerned. It’s not the government’s job to care for your health, or tell you what you can, or can’t eat. I believe it’s your responsibility to take charge by choosing foods that protect your health from disease. An over-fed, under-nourished body is vulnerable and unable to defend itself from infections, cardio-vascular disease, Type II diabetes, and immune disorders. Being over-weight is not healthy. And while many over-weight people appear to be happy and healthy, it’s healthier not to be over-weight.
It's never too late!
Together we will design an individual plan that works for you, and I will teach you the skills you need to know to become involved in the self-care of your own personal health. I will encourage you to become actively responsible for yourself. It’s helpful for you to hear the truth from someone whose purpose it is to help you. Sometimes, it can be a difficult thing to talk about because it’s such a sensitive issue. But, it’s o.k. I understand how you feel because I’ve been there!
One of the many benefits of working with me as your coach is that I have already experienced the confusion and disappointment of my own failures in the past. I understand that past failures can cause us to lose belief in ourselves. Failing at weight loss can be a confidence killer but, you no longer need to feel discouraged.
Let me help you relearn how to eat a healthy, balanced diet. From there, you’ll learn how to prepare and feed yourself the foods that taste great and will help you not only lose weight, but keep it off and develop better self-esteem!