When looking at the common weight loss challenges that are shared on the internet they tend to be focused on mental reasons. The biggest challenge I recognize when clients first come to work with me is unrealistic weight loss expectations.
Many of the fad diets out there provide big expectations, like lose 10 pounds in 10 days. While this may sound great if you haven’t made changes in your lifestyle that 10 pounds will not stay off.
Some of the common challenges listed in articles include:
I don’t have time to cook.
I feel hungry all the time.
The food doesn’t taste good.
Nutritious food is too expensive.
Don’t have time to exercise.
Embarrassed by failed attempts so won’t share or try again.
Issues overeating at parties or with family.
Pay attention to this list, how many of them seem to be more of an excuse not to make a lifestyle change? Do you truly not have time to cook or is it that you don’t want to?
In today’s fast paced society many of our processed foods are supplemented with high amounts of salt or sugar which makes them addictive but doesn’t improve the flavor. Do you view certain foods as good? Our perception of good and bad foods can also have a huge impact on how we eat.
Another big excuse is not having time to exercise. We have been conditioned to believe that exercise consists of going to a gym or using specific equipment to achieve an outcome. Making improvements in your physical activity can be as simple as parking farther away from a store to walk in. If you live in an urban area can you walk to a store to complete your errands.
In all my years of clinical experience I feel that the biggest challenge with losing weight and maintaining your ideal weight comes from a lack of understanding how your body works.
While working with clients this lack of understanding basic information about their body is why I wrote the book Ideal Weights. I want people to be able to understand their basic bio-individuality. Each individual is unique so understanding the symptoms your body is exhibiting can help you seek out advice from your medical team.
Some of the physical challenges that need to be addressed so you can make long lasting lifestyle changes include:
Fatigue – if you are feeling unusually tired this could be a sign that your hormones are out of balance. You may need to get blood tests done to determine that all your organs are functioning optimally.
Discomfort – if you are experiencing discomfort whether it is in your joints or other areas it is important to determine what the cause is.
Underlying medical issues – slow metabolism, changes in hormones, preexisting chronic conditions. You can adapt your diet and lifestyle to work with these concerns.
Injury – this may prevent you from exercising, but if you work with a qualified person, they can provide you with options to adjust your physical activity.
When you are ready to achieve your ideal weight, it is important to be prepared to make a long-term commitment. As we explored in the Yo-Yo dieting article there are many risks to fluctuating weight. I believe it is better to be overweight rather than deal with the up and down effects. By participating in yo-yo dieting or too many detoxification programs it will actually release toxins. Our body will then use the existing nutrients to excrete the toxins. If you are eating healthy it will deplete your healthy nutrients, but if your body is already struggling it will further deplete the nutrients your organs need to work properly.
Your mindset is key to obtaining your ideal weight. Your goals should be around having more energy, ensuring that you are physically strong and capable, and that you are mentally robust.