The true motivation behind a weight loss journey determines success. We are all real people who need to get our lives back instead of obsessing over weight loss. What are you trying to lose weight for? You can lose weight without dieting by simply by changing the focus to “I want to get healthy”.
Stop obsessing about calories and spending hours at the gym. Stop buying into the quick weight loss gimmicks. Is it even working? It may or may not be, and many of us fall into the latter. Even if it is, it likely will not last. In order to truly get weight to a healthy amount, we need to focus on improving health rather than losing the weight. When you lose weight without dieting, a healthy weight will emerge due to eating real food and moving a bit.
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Lose Weight Without Dieting
Shift Your Motivations
If you are losing weight for looks, it will not be successful. Those who truly care about you will only seek health and want you to be around and not have to care for your declining state some day. Those who don’t care will never be happy with what you look like, so send them off for a hike. Love yourself as you are or change it for you.
Who are we trying to impress? Does anyone really care? The important part is that YOU feel good and you are healthy enough that you can easily get down on the floor to play with your kids or be around for your grandchildren. These are priceless scenarios where it is worth every effort to get healthy. Losing weight is important for its own reasons, though the ultimate goal is health. Losing weight does not always equal healthy, especially when dieting. Many diets are focused on unhealthy behaviors or enough rules to make you hate your life.
Stop Obsessing About Food
Calorie counting is exhausting and not shown to be effective. It’s more about what you are eating and the quality of food. Most of the food that should be consumed will not have a label so no calories to be counted. Give yourself a break. I see too many people warming up their microwave meals trying out the dieting thing and its not even real food or enough food. This is garbage and will not get you healthy. Anything that provides prepackaged meals is best avoided.
That being said, going in all or nothing is likely to cause problems. Think of trying to eat right 90/10 or 80/20, whatever works for you. Eliminate one bad thing per week and see how it goes. Don’t make yourself a crazy person who can’t enjoy themselves in social food situations.
What to do instead
Focus on eating real, whole foods. No, real food is not the equivalent of anything that is edible. Read my post on The Healthiest Diet for more tips on food and how you can lose weight without dieting. Steer away from labeled food and that which comes in boxes. Cook your own food at home, make it a priority (or stop spending an hour on Facebook and there’s your time!). It may take longer but you will be at your healthiest soon enough and weight will balance to be where it is best for your body. Real foods include anything with only itself as an ingredient, meats, vegetables, fruits, milk, yogurt, nuts, butter. Yes, butter. Eat your fats.
Real food, that’s all you need to know.
Start Doing What You Love
Stop spending an hour on the treadmill. Don’t miss hanging out with your significant other or friend because you had to go workout that day. Before I wrote this I had set to do yoga every day this week, but it didn’t happen today. Well, my husband and I were having a chat about life and a beer, and I didn’t get around to it. That chat was valuable and worth every bit of non-working out. But you know what else? I brought my daughter on a long walk that day, so that counts (I didn’t sit on my butt all day!).
Start talking about the treadmill goers. If you love it, please do it. If you don’t, then I will make you feel better about it. Cardio has shown to be less effective than strength training to lose weight without dieting. Think of it this way, we spend an hour on the treadmill, it tells us we burn however many calories (inaccurate by the way), and then we decide we can “reward” ourselves and eat junk. Even if you’re not eating junk, you’re likely eating more. This negates the whole effect. I’m not saying to go exercise and not eat. I’m saying spend less time doing a more effective exercise. No, strength training will not make you huge.
What do you love to do?
Are there are moving activities you like to do? Do those more. Walking the dog, dancing, golfing, yoga, stretching, hiking, swimming, whatever you like to do, it all counts. Every movement counts. Don’t beat yourself up if you hadn’t gotten to do your scheduled routine.
If you are unsure what you like to do, try taking a walk. Alternatively, try strength training or body weight exercises. It doesn’t take much. Try my Lean Lazy Arms or Lean Lazy Legs for super easy exercises.
I know this all seems hard to grasp as a way to lose weight, but everything falls into place when done correctly and enjoyed. A lifestyle change is the best possible way to get to your healthiest self and ultimately lose weight to create a healthy body.
Real food + some movement = weight loss to a healthy amount and overall enjoyable life.
Fresh Ideas: Shift your focus to improving health. Eat real food and move a bit for a lasting lifestyle change instead of obsessing about weight loss.