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Awareness Magazine
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How to Lose 50+ Pounds and Keep it Off

Doing What You Love

By Dianne Bischoff James

(author of The Real Brass Ring: Change Your Life Course Now)

 

 

I stood barefoot on the cold scale in my doctor’s office, the metal weights swung up and down, settling in at 192 pounds. I felt nauseous and embarrassed, devastated. I had been struggling with obesity since childhood, but gaining forty-five new pregnancy pounds after the birth of my third child was a living nightmare. Not a fan of calorie counting, self-control, or overt food deprivation, I tuned into my body’s natural communication system and practiced a feast and famine model, losing 55 pounds without cutting out any food groups. These simple rules will help you put a lid on overeating, restore your inner guidance system, and put a smile on your face when you look in the mirror.

Rule 1 – Reboot Your  Relationship with Food

To me, food was a sumptuous, tantalizing reward, a friend, and a lover and then moments later, a cruel, villainous perpetrator. My rapport with this monster was certifiably bipolar. I ate to feel better about life, but the more I ate, the more I fell into a self-loathing pit. In order to get healthy and begin a journey of weight loss, I had to first change my core beliefs about food. A pint of Ben and Jerry’s Chocolate Therapy is not a pacifier, a friendly hug, or compassionate ear. Food is not love; food is fuel.

Rule 2 – Your Body Is Talking… Are You Listening?

Many of us have lost touch with two basic body impulses — the stomach growl and the gentle feeling of satiation. In order to lose weight, you must be able to feel and respond to your innate Hungry/Full meter. The best way to do that is to ask yourself a simple question, “Are you physically hungry right now?” Be honest. If the answer is “No,” get a glass of water, a cup of tea, or piece of gum. Wait til your stomach talks before you feed it and stop the minute you feel full.

Rule 3 – Eat Like a Toddler

Despite what our society promotes, three full meals a day is way too much of a good thing. When we’re young, our food consumption is directly related to activity levels and natural cravings. After a morning play date, a toddler grabs large bites of hotdogs, peas & apple chunks, then will eat lightly for dinner, naturally balancing calories. As we age, our metabolism decreases and we require less food to function. To get lean, focus on eating two significant meals a day and make the third meal a medley of light, healthy snacks.

Rule 4- Lock the Fridge after Dark

Since we are more active during the daylight hours, we typically metabolize a hearty egg breakfast and hamburger for lunch as functional calories. Conversely, the heavy dinner calories at night are stored as body fat in the hips, thighs and stomach. To lose weight quickly and easily, “lock” the refrigerator figuratively after 6 p.m. If you get hungry later in the evening, eat fresh fruits and steamed vegetables to curb your appetite. The pounds will simply fall off.

Rule 5- When You Love What You Do, Everything Becomes Easy

When I was at the top of my weight class, I was fortuitously cast in a local musical theatre production of Oliver. This was an exciting time for me and I joyfully danced and sang every night for months, preparing for the opening of the show. Miraculously, 30 pounds of fat melted away and never came back. It never fails, when you’re emotionally happy, eating less, and physically active, losing weight happens all by itself. 

Rule 6 – Gross Motor Movement Is Key  

When it comes to keeping weight off, it’s critical to take part in activities that utilize the large body muscles such as hiking, swimming, Zumba, or fast-walking for at least 17 minutes every other day. If you get on a treadmill and jog while watching your favorite reality show, the time will pass quickly and both your heart and waistline will thank you.

Rule 7 – Make the Scale Your Friend

According to the traditional height/weight charts, everyone has an ideal weight range that remains the same throughout life. Armed with your perfect “champion number,” start looking at the scale as an honest friend who had no personal opinion regarding your weight. Hop on the scale every morning before eating or drinking, and then monitor your weight without emotional attachment.

Rule 8 – Don’t Give in to the Setbacks

When I started down the weight-loss road, I set a goal of reaching a resting point of 155 pounds. After reducing late night meals and light jogging for several weeks, I hit this number with relative ease. I then became totally hysterical when 1-3 pounds seemed to creep up on my body every day. I comforted myself by remembering that the yo-yo effect is normal because fat cells like to return to their original state. I stuck with the plan and refused to give up because I was in charge over food, not the other way around.

Dianne Bischoff James M.S., is an acclaimed, motivational speaker who specializes in life-enhancing transformation and encourages audiences to create a reality that is prosperous, deliberate and meaningful. She is the author of the award-winning book, The Real Brass Ring — Secrets of a Midlife Reboot (Findhorn Press), Screen Actors Guild actor, marketing consultant and founder of Live Your Everything, a sanctuary for midlife transformation at liveyoureverything.com Diane will be speaking at the Conscious Life Expo in February at the LAX Hilton.