You’ve decided that the weight loss you’ll achieve is going to be sustainable.
You’re going to do it right.
You’re going to take your time, making sure to build up your new habits in a way you can maintain.
It’ll take a while doing it this way, but that’s ok, you know that. You’re on board with that fact.
You’re feeling good about your decision.
You’re scrolling through social media, taking in the updates of your friends. Darren’s been for a run, Sarah’s got a new rabbit. Ooh, Jane’s at Five Guys! Awesome!
And then you see it.
A before and after pic slide onto your screen.
Perhaps it’s a sponsored ad, perhaps an acquaintance you don’t see that often.
Either way, this person has got A LOT smaller. They look happy. Your interest is piqued - that’s what you’re trying to do!
But hang on, it only took them 3 months?!?!
Look out, here comes the Gremlin surge! You’re lost in a squall of self-critical and self-defeating thoughts: maybe you’re doing it wrong; maybe you’re just not meant to ever get the result you want; maybe that success is out of bounds for you.
They can obviously do it, so what’s wrong with you, huh? Maybe you’re just crap. Yeah, that’s it.
You start to think - maybe I need to do what they did?
Here’s the deal. Often, when someone gets BIG weight loss in a SHORT timescale, it’s because they did what I call Hitting The Big Red Button.
They used a method that won’t hold up long term.
Often, those posts on social media come from companies who sell diet shakes, juice fasts or detoxes. You know the companies I mean, I’m sure.
I don’t remember the last time I met or heard about someone who’d lost weight using one of these methods AND KEPT IT OFF.
In fact, I don’t think I ever have met someone like that.
Funny, you don’t see those people in their adverts, do you? You also don’t see the FB posts from people crowing about their rebounding weight gain.
But that reality is there. You just don't see it. It's not great marketing.
Quite without going into how shakes, juice fasts and detoxes screw with your metabolism, those kinds of methods are almost INEVITABLY going to lead to that rebound weight gain.
What do they teach you? How do they change your habits? How do they fix your relationship with food? How do they stop you using food to deal with discomfort?
For me, those diets represent turning your back on what really needs to be done to succeed long term at improving your health.
It’s easy to hit that big red button and reap those short term rewards.
A LOT easier than digging deep and doing the work you need to do.
But that work has to be done if you want to get control of your eating habits.
Have a think about these things:
- Lifelong healthy weight
- Lean body composition
- Healthy blood pressure
- Healthy blood sugar levels
- Healthy cholesterol levels
These things are not things you can create - and expect to keep - with a 3 month shake diet.
Healthy eating IS about eating the right foods, most of the time. But that takes SO much more than knowing what to eat. It takes more following a pre-prepared meal plan.
IT TAKES THE CREATION OF BEHAVIOURS YOU CAN DO - DAY IN, DAY OUT - FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE.
BEHAVIOURS. DAILY ACTIONS. PERSEVERANCE.
NOT SHAKES. NOT JUICE FASTS. NOT DETOXES.
Sorry - I didn’t mean to shout.
It just makes me incredibly angry when companies peddling sh*tty products that actually harm your metabolism, and make it HARDER for you to maintain a healthy weight long term, prey on your insecurities and try to convince you to abandon your well-thought through plan and hit that big red button instead.
Please don’t do it.
Carry on. Keep on pushing. If you need some help, you can always ask me.
Because if you’re going slow, making one small change at a time, nailing that change and then moving onto the next, you’re doing it right.