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Some time ago, I asked one of my online Running Made Easy groups to tell me what they love about running so far (it was there week 5) and here’s what the girls said (keep in mind that these are girls who just few weeks ago were couch potatoes who thought they’d never be able to run!)

Number 9 is my personal favourite :)

  1. It’s me time
  2. It clears my head
  3. It’s great stress relief
  4. It gives me more energy – better than any sugar fix, berocca or coffee
  5. The after-buzz
  6. The feeling of getting fit
  7. Feels like a huge achievement every time, every step
  8. I feel physically and mentally brighter afterwards
  9. It continues to surprise me how much I’m able to do despite how much I tell myself I can’t
  10. It makes me feel strong and healthy

What do you love about running?

 

Weight loss is such a complex issue, for women in particular. The part that is simple is knowing what to eat and what not to eat. If that was all weight loss is about, we would have very few overweight people. Most people know what you should and shouldn’t eat in order to lose weight – if you don’t know, just pick up any women’s magazines in the shops and you’ll lose 2 stones in a week. It’s most likely not going to be healthy, but you’ll lose the weight. Anyway, in my experience, people’s first concern is weight from an aesthetic point of view – you want to look good. Health is secondary; always, if it was people’s main concern no one would gain weight in the first place.

I know everything there is to know about weight loss and if there’s something I don’t know, I can ask one of the numerous experts I work with and yet, there are times when I struggle to control my weight. It’s not because of my underactive thyroid (though I have to say, there are times when I’m tempted to use that as an excuse not to do anything) that might make me more prone to putting on weight and means I can’t even look at certain things like sugar and refined carbs without them sticking to my belly but it’s not an excuse to being, and remaining, overweight.

It’s not because you ,or I, are lazy. You’re not weak or useless or lack willpower or stupid or unable to do it  or a failure or destined to be overweight or a greedy pig or any of those things you think you are, you’re none of them. Thinking those things is only going to make you feel worse and consequently make it harder to lose weight. But I know, it’s hard to stop thinking them either.

The problem is not just getting motivated and staying motivated – though this is a big part of it, of course, but how do you get motivated? Does it take willpower? No, it shouldn’t.  You have to start from the right place in order to be able to stay motivated easily and achieve your goals without the constant struggle associated with weight loss plans. When you’re in the right place, you don’t need willpower, it comes to you naturally and easily and you will enjoy it.

What is the right place then? The absolute key to getting to the right place is learning to believe in yourself, learning to accept yourself today – not waiting until you look a certain way to accept yourself but accept yourself the way you are today and believe that you are able achieve your goals. You need to respect yourself. If you want to lose weight because you hate yourself, then you have a rough road ahead of you and your likelihood of succeeding is poor. You need to want to lose weight because you love yourself, because you want to treat yourself well, not because you hate yourself because, believe me, if you don’t like yourself today, you’re not going to like yourself when you’re in that hot bikini; it might be for different reasons but you’ll always find something to hate about yourself.

This is not a change that’s going to happen overnight but once you start working on it, you’ll be surprised by how easy it is and how much you enjoy the process.

You might want to check out my Slim with Tina online course starting 5th August if you want to work on this underlying key to weight loss a bit more with expert guidance and support from other women just like you. Details here

 

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Why do you exercise? Or eat healthy? Most people I see do so because they’re not happy with their bodies so they want to lose weight (97% of the people I see) or improve it in some way. Exercise is something that no one really wants to do but if you want a body you’re going to love, then it has to be done; same goes for eating healthy; it’s seen as a necessary unpleasant thing you have to do if you want to be slim. What happens when you achieve that goal? Will you still feel motivated to continue with your healthy lifestyle? Maybe this is at least part of the reason why diets and quick weight loss programs rarely work; because you’re motivated by your dislike of your body and once you start liking it, there’s no reason to ‘punish’ yourself anymore?

exercise because you love yourself

Exercise and eating well are good things, these are loving things to do that are going to make you healthier, stronger, happier, live longer, enjoy better quality of life… the list goes on.  Healthy lifestyles is something you want your children to adopt because you want what’s best for them and you want them to stay healthy. Lying on the couch watching TV every night, stuffing your face with processed foods, take aways, alcohol, sugar… is not a way you’d treat someone you love; this is punishing your body; neglecting it, making it sick and lethargic. I doubt there are many (if any) people who really love their body, who are comfortable with what they’ve got with all their imperfections, who spend their evenings sitting on the couch. If you really love your body, yourself, it is impossible not to want to treat your body right; move and eat well.

How do you learn to love your body? The easiest, and quickest, way is to fake it. How do you think someone who loves their body feels? How do they move? What do they do? What are their priorities? What do they think? Think about someone with an amazing body – find a picture in a magazine or online of a happy, fit woman smiling –  close your eyes and imagine being her.  How would you feel? What would you do? What would you eat? How would you feel about being active? Keep your eyes closed and really focus on that feeling – feel it, as if you had that dream body right now. Stay with this feeling for several minutes, really feeling it in your body, in every cell.

Do you see the difference? Now that you really love your body, you want to move and eat well, don’t you? And you love it, it’s not a punishing chore but more like a treat – you are being good to yourself.  You’re also not obsessive about your weight or what you eat: When you love your body, you’re able to have the odd slice of cake or an ice cream every once in a while without feeling guilty or going on a huge binge because you have a healthy relationship with food.

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From this moment, keep that feeling of having that dream body with you, believe that you have it now, and treat yourself accordingly; your body is your temple. Every morning, close your eyes for a moment and get that feeling of having your dream body in your head before you get up to face the day. Every day, treat your body with the love and respect that it deserves and before you know it, you’ll be looking at your dream body in the mirror!


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