With the New Year Challenge kicking off this week, I’ve heard from a lot of people about their struggles so far.
If you kicked off strong and you’re holding steady, Kudos! 🙂
If not, please know that you are NOT alone. Making big life changes is not an easy thing. It’s SO worth it, but it’s definitely a challenge.
That’s the reason I host 90 DAY low carb challenges…
90 days may seem like a long time and a big commitment, but it’s only 3 short months. But it IS long enough to work on changing lifelong habits, see dramatic changes in both your body and your mind, and also to see real RESULTS in terms of both weight loss and your overall health.
The 90 day challenge is just the beginning though…
What you learn about yourself long-term, when you stick it out, and the changes you experience in your life over time, are nothing short of amazing!
Here are some of the lessons I wish I had learned much sooner in my own low carb life & weight loss journey…
Wake Up Every Day And Recommit To Your Health & Weight Loss Goals
I cannot tell you how many times I have “started over” (and over again!) in my almost 6 year health & weight loss journey.
As long as you DO keep starting over. 😉
NEVER GIVE UP on yourself.
It’s a process. Your diet or low carb lifestyle is as much a retraining of your mind, and breaking / creating habits, as it is a “diet.” It’s about SO much more than just the food you choose to put on your plate. In fact, on the other end of this journey… you’ll discover that “losing weight” was the EASY part all along.
I’m telling you that – from the other side. 🙂
Just keep on keeping on. Every day wake up and decide you want to be the happiest, healthiest version of yourself (EVERY day).
It WILL stick.
At the same time, never put off your goals until tomorrow. Start exactly where you are, every single time. Learn to live in the NOW, and realize that NOW is the only thing that really exists.
I cannot even count how many “tomorrows” came and went, and became yesterday’s that I regretted…
Don’t do that to yourself. Start NOW… every single time – until it STICKS.
Struggling? Stop Fighting Your Mind and Body!
Your body WANTS to be lean and healthy… Just let it.
What you feed it either prevents it or ALLOWS it to be what it desires.
The same goes for your mind & heart: they want to be happy and free.
If you constantly feel conflicted, stressed or frustrated… it’s probably because you’re resisting what your mind and body so desperately wants, or wants to become.
Ask yourself why you fight against or resist positive change and happiness. You deserve it, right? Of course you do! Spend some time analyzing your thoughts and patterns, and getting to the true source of your resistance.
IT’S OKAY TO BE HAPPY & HEALTHY.
Embrace that! 🙂
Changing Your Habits & Your Mindset
A big part of my own weight loss journey has been to change the constant conversation in my mind. The negative thoughts had to be replaced with positive thoughts. Looking back had to be replaced with looking forward. Usual habits had to be identified… and changed.
None of that was easy, and none of it happened overnight.
It was a process, full of mindful deliberate choices… that ultimately became new habits – and my new way of living and thinking.
A gratitude journal is a great place to start. A “negativity journal” was extremely helpful for me too. It’s where I documented my negative thoughts, and the lies I frequently told myself, plus habits I didn’t like about myself.
People will tell you not to focus on the negatives. But hey, they are there – and they DO need to be addressed and dealt with. 😉
Putting those things in front of you gives you an opportunity to analyze them logically (vs emotionally)… where you can see them for what they really are (self sabotage, lies, negative self image, etc). That allows you to decide what you want to change, why you want to change it, and make a decision about HOW you are going to change it.
My advice: Get proactive about this NOW.
Consider getting this InnerGuide Life Coach in a Book, Jump-Start Your Goals in 90 Days! Motivation & Success Planner and putting it to good use as you jump start your goals for the new year ahead of us!
The Weight Loss Roller Coaster: Breaking The Cycles
I think we’ve ALL experienced the frustration of the “dieting roller coaster.”
The start/stop cycle is maddening, and the feelings that go along with it are really tough: feeling discouraged, disgusted, disappointed in yourself, self-loathing, etc.
Those feelings are BAD for you. I finally realized those feelings and thoughts were worse for my health than ANYthing I ever put in my mouth. 😛
I had some really bad habits and mindset issues earlier on in my low carb journey. I finally realized the “feeling terrible about myself” … was actually one of them. It was like self sabotage or worse: self punishment. 🙁
That was one of the things I resolved to QUIT.
I had to start at the root, the source. WHY do I do that to myself, KNOWING how it feels? Was I addicted to feeling bad? Was I afraid of reaching my goal? Did I resist being happy & healthy – and if so… WHY?
Those are the things I worked out in my personal diaries.
If you’ve been on/off plan and struggling with the same harsh cycles yourself – make this the year you STOP doing that to yourself. Just get consistent, eat healthy, stay on track no matter what. No matter what the scales say, no matter what happens in your life, no matter how you FEEL. No matter WHAT, period!
(If food ever DID fix anything in your life… I’d say “eat away!”)
Body Image: Dress For (Weight Loss) Success!
Over the last year I have caught myself dressing in “fat clothes” and realized it’s an old habit. I used to have this GREAT pair of American Eagle jeans that I called my “magic pants” (lol). I could literally lose or gain 20 pounds in those pants!
That is NOT a good thing. 😉 😛
When I go out now, and especially when I go out to eat, I “dress lean” – intentionally. For two reasons: 1) because LOOKING good makes me FEEL good, and feeling good keeps me on track. And 2) Because when I wear fitted clothes… “those carbs will NOT fit in this outfit!” 🙂 haha
Recently I found that not dressing right, or not dressing for my NEW weight/figure (ie: dressing frumpy), really affects my body image – negatively.
It’s tough because I’ll think I’ll know what I want to wear for a specific outing – but then it doesn’t fit me right at all anymore, since losing weight and my body shape changing so dramatically.
My experience: the better you FEEL about how you look, the more motivated you are to BE that “healthy you.” When I feel frumpy, or less confident, it’s so much easier to let other negative thoughts creep back in too.
Tip: Dress for your figure.
Make it a point to look your BEST, even in your comfies & downtime. I traded in all of my old oversized flannel PJ pants and huge sweatshirts… for Fabletics causal wear. It’s feminine, fitted, makes me feel “pretty”… and I do NOT want to bloat up in those pretty fitted clothes, lol.
My old oversized comfies? No one would ever notice if I plumped up from curling up with two pints of ice cream. But in my new fitted clothes, um – it shows, and fast. haha…
Seriously though – dress for your current figure, and accentuate your best features. Don’t wait until you reach your “weight loss goal” for that either. Look your best NOW, and every day throughout your journey!
I find that really helps. Feel good, look good, eat good. Simple!
Am I alone in this?? If I go out to eat in a fitted dress, I eat healthy. If I go out to eat in my “magic pants” and a shirt I could hide small animals in… it’s easier to say “eh, what would ONE roll hurt?!” Do you find that to be true too??
Those are just some of the things I wish I had figured out much sooner in my own journey. I hope they prove helpful for you, wherever you are in your own journey now.
I also wish I had taken exercise and toning more seriously much earlier in my weight loss journey. I was really disappointed in how my body looked when I started getting close to my goal weight, and wish I had worked on toning up what was underneath all that fat – before I lost the body fat. 😛
The ONE thing that FINALLY motivated me to get moving, and KEEPS me motivated is my Fitbit fitness tracker.
We’re having a good discussion about that on Facebook actually:
I would love to hear your thoughts on the points above, as well as anything you want to add from your own experience. The more we share, the more it helps everyone – from those just getting started and figuring things out, to those figuring out “maintenance” and how to live in a new body. That’s where I am now myself, so I’ll share more about that in future posts. 😉
Thoughts/Questions? I look forward to your comments!
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