Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Skinny on Wieght-loss

You know what’s funny about going on a diet? The HUGE number of people, out to make a buck, who think that fat people are either naive or desperate enough to buy their outrageous claims. The other day I saw an ad on TV that promised me rapid and easy weight loss, and all I had to do was rub a special cream made of whale eyeballs and spotted owl feathers on my pockets of fat seven times a day….

Where do I sign up?

Another clever weight-loss guru suggested eating cotton balls. Yes, those little puffy white things you use to remove nail polish and mascara. The idea was that with your stomach full of indigestible fiber filaments, there wouldn’t be room for anything else … like say food. It makes me gag even to think about it.

I loved the diet that promised you could sleep your fat away.

Now there’s a lot of scientific evidence that getting a full eight hours of shut-eye a night helps control chemicals and hormones in your body related to over-eating. But this clown suggested something more along the line of hibernation. Cause see – if you’re asleep you can’t eat, just ask a bear.

Perhaps my favorite was the diet that recommended eating anything you want on even days and then fasting on odd days. As if the body didn’t understand the concept of roll-over calories.

Believe it or not, the best diet advice I got came from my son’s basketball coach and he wasn’t even talking to me. The eighth grade team was playing against a team from a neighboring town. This was the third time the two had been matched up, and both times the other team had won. The boys were hungry to even the score and the parents even more so.

Right from the start there was something different in that game. The ball seemed to be charmed and the team jumped ahead quickly. The score for our side soared, and at half time one of the happy fathers pulled the coach aside and asked him what the boys were doing differently this game.

His answer?

“This time we are trying to win not trying not to lose.”

I thought about that a lot, and I realized there is a subtle difference between the effort to win and the effort to avoid losing.

Applying it to my weight loss efforts, I’ve tried to look at this whole experience as a journey toward better health, not an attempt to shed a quarter of my body weight. I’m focusing on the foods I should eat that will give me energy and health and provide the most bang for the least calories.

The second best diet advice I got came from a conference I attended, where the speaker explained that when we stay focused on a goal or an idea, our body naturally works toward that same goal.

So in other words, my body is not the enemy and isn't purposely trying to thwart my dieting attempts by subterfuge and manipulation? Wow, what a relief.

Okay so none of those tips will help me shed seven pounds in seven days, or allow me to “think” the fat away, but maybe they will help me face this experience more honestly. I didn’t get fat in seven days, what makes me think I could get thin in that same amount of time?

Oh dear, I just looked at the clock and it’s time to rub whale eye/spotted owl cream on my pockets of fat again… gotta go.


Patty Ann said...

Oh, I love this one today!! I have lost 40 lbs and it has been the hardest thing I have ever done! I have 30 more to go. I wish it were easy, but it is all about eating less calories than you are burning. So, you lose weight. We would all love the easy ones to work, but the problem is that even if they work short term, they don't work for the rest of your life.

Belladonna said...

At the risk of circcumventing your light hearted channeling of Erma Bombeck, I have to say you made some key points with this post. I think the adversary is so resentful at not being allowed a physical body that he pulls out all the stops to get us to dislike the ones we have. YES, we should all seek good health and appropraite weight management, but I wish people would stop disparaging their love handles and jiggle arms and start CELEBRATING the blessing it is to have these bodies, no matter what the size.

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