Do You Want To Lose Weight Without Going Crazy?

Here's what to do if you want to wear that slinky black dress, and stay sane:

1. Make sure that you're not being neurotic and overly body conscious.

Meditate. Try to catch yourself naked unawares in a full length mirror. Find out your ideal height-weight ratio. Get some amateur photos taken of yourself in casual clothes. Try to be detached and objective.

Overweight is sometimes a state of mind instead of body. What trauma or childhood inadequacy causes you to see yourself as fat and undesirable, when medically you're normal, or just a little full figured?

If you are definitely a fatty:

2. Meditate. Try to home in on the reason you are overweight.

Is it genetic; are your family 'big-boned'? If not, what need are you trying to fill by stuffing yourself; are you anxious, insecure, do you have family or money or sexual troubles? If so deal with THEM and your need to eat will be easier to beat.

Eating is pleasurable; we get a rush of blood sugar which makes us temporarily feel good, and having a full stomach makes us feel sleepy and calmed down. Are you going for the effect rather than the nourishment?

3. Change your diet.

Eat simpler, less processed, less over-prepared and overcooked food.

Get back to the basics. Substitute fruit for candies, wholemeal bread and boiled potatoes for potato chips, lean steak for burgers, water instead of fizzy drinks.

Eat a grape or a piece of orange instead of a candy; you get a better 'buzz', and it's healthier for you. Another benefit of eating whole, natural food is you fill up quickly, while eating less. The horror of junk food is that it's got loads of fats and sugars in it while not being physically substantial; you can eat ounces of fat in seconds.

Basically, if a chimp wouldn't eat it, you shouldn't eat it. Yes, I KNOW a chimp could probably get hooked on junk food. All right, try this; if an athlete preparing for a track meeting wouldn't eat it, you shouldn't.

Have three meals a day only. Have a proper breakfast; people tend to skip this and then have snacks later to keep themselves going. This is folly.

NO snacks in between; let your belly growl. You're going to train it to need less. It will protest, as it's used to being big, but it will adjust in time.

Stay away from people and places which remind you of your old treats. Try not to let on you're dieting; your 'friends' will try to get you off it, or tempt you for fun.

4. Take more exercise.

You can do light exercise, or better yet work it into your daily routine.

Don't walk when you can run, don't run where you could cycle, leave the car in the garage. Do more household chores the hard way. Take the stairs instead of the lift.

If your work or chores involve exercise it's easy to get your subconscious to go along with it. It seems less of a trial, and you're killing two birds with one stone.

Exercise for it's own sake is hard; part of us can see no immediate gain to doing it, and puts up mental and emotional barriers.

Clean your house, jog to the shops, dig the garden, explore your locale on foot.

Exercise at home. Do push ups, pull ups, sit-ups, use a couple of chairs as dumb-bells. It's a bother and an expense to go to a gym; set up your own routine at home, and stick to it five days out of every seven.

5. Do not take special medications or diet foods if you can help it.

Diet medications are usually amphetamine or stimulant-based; they perk you up, so you don't feel depressed or hungry. Soldiers use amphetamines in war; they keep you keen, and you don't feel hungry. The trouble is you become physically addicted to them, instead of food, and you're worse off in the end. They rot your body and your mind, and you have exchanged one fixation for another, more urgent one.

Eating food supplements will take off the pounds; you'll lose a few pounds to begin with in ANY diet anyway. However, what will happen when you stop eating this expensive food substitute? Unless your will power is engaged, you'll revert to your old habits.

Losing weight involves an act of WILL. If you're the sort of person who diets for a bit and then 'rewards' yourself with a cream cake, WHO are you trying to fool? Your subconscious, your friends? You won't fool the bathroom scales, or that dress you're trying to get into.

Perhaps part of you would like to be slim, especially on public occasions. The other, deeper, part wants to gorge itself on WHATever it likes, WHENever it likes. Eating is lovely, isn't it? It may be your one consolation in an otherwise miserable life.

To fix your weight, fix the other problems in your life, then staying off the snacks will be much easier.

This involves finding out what vocation you have in life. What do you REALLY want to do? If it's nothing, then that's fine. Once you acknowledge this, you'll find your peace of mind improves, and your craving for food will be less.

Otherwise find some activity you can devote yourself to, that engages your whole being.

Eating is often a recreation; find a nobler one.

About the author: T. O' Donnell (http://www.tigertom.com) is an ecommerce consultant in London, UK. His latest projects include a mortgage calculator and ebook, available at http://www.tigertom.com/mortgages-uk.shtml

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