By Elizabeth "Leisa" Redmon
I’ve been asked time and time again what the secret to weight loss is. Each time I was asked this question, I responded with a different set of, albeit true, answers. If I had just finished researching carbohydrates and the effect they might have on muscle cramping, for example, I’d be more prone to give a ridiculously scientific answer. Blah, blah, blah… nutrient timing and caloric expenditure...blah blah blah.
Or if I was feeling pretty dang extra one day, I’d most likely give an off the cuff reply somewhere along the lines of, “It’s a beautiful journey and you need to accept the ups and downs that go along with consistency. It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon.”
All of these questions and answers have only led me to beg the question: how on earth do you de-mystify the centuries-old struggle of losing weight? 20 pounds down and the biggest lesson I’ve learned: Do the easy stuff first.
Nothing about losing weight is easy. It’s daunting and overwhelming. Whether you have 100+ pounds to lose or the “last 5,” losing weight requires some part of your life to be completely scrutinized under the proverbial microscope of life and overhauled until you reach success. If that sounds easy, then hell...I want to be you.
From my experience, the more simple you make the process of weight loss, the more prone you are to success. So you don’t happen to be the the one that thinks overhauling your life is a walk in the park, here are a few beginning steps to lead you to weight loss success.
Why do you want to lose weight?
All of the athletes I’ve helped to shed weight have never started their journey in the kitchen. To be completely honest, it doesn’t make sense to start in the kitchen. We spend every waking hour of every day with ourselves, so the process needs to begin in the mind.
Why are you embarking on this journey? What is your purpose? To be completely blunt, keep it simple, stupid. Who cares if your “why” is to be a hot little number, or to want your muscles to glean in those rad photos bound to make way onto the interwebs come Open season? Your why does not need a reason or an explanation to anyone but yourself.
Don’t overcomplicate any part of this journey--especially the beginning. You don’t need to tell yourself you want to lose weight so you can be “fit for life” if you really want, at least right now, to lose weight so you can attract a hot piece of ass. Be honest and keep it simple.
Subtract Before You Add
We all want to add excellent habits into our daily routine: take fish oil, drink more water, eat more vegetables (hell...eat a vegetable.) These are all wonderful habits to incorporate into our daily lifestyle. However, the more we add to the plate, the higher the chance is we push off other habits we need to sustain our mental sanity.
So, before you overwhelm yourself with a slew of additional amazing habits, perhaps begin your journey by subtracting one, not-so-great habit (drink one less soda a day, for example) for a week or two. Then, once you inevitably begin to feel the effects of that positive change, incorporate that new habit into your daily routine. And keep the ebb and flow going. That my friends is how we develop balance.
What do you like to eat?
With all of my athletes this has proven to be the simplest yet most difficult question for them to answer. What could you eat time and time again without growing, immediately at least, weary? Weight loss is 0% perfection and 100% consistency. So, what could your tastebuds manage to encounter, day in and day out, without putting up a fight? Is it as “American” as grilled chicken, potatoes and steamed broccoli? Or some bizarre hybrid concoction of kale, ground turkey and soy sauce with a dainty, little side (more like a heaping ton) of mustard and sugar-free gherkins?
Again, who cares what you like to eat as long as you’re honest with yourself and you keep it simple.
We all live in this world of overdeveloped ideas yet underdeveloped direction. We think there’s ONE hard-and-fast method to success, but there’s not. Break the mold. Keep it simple. And you’re already well on your way to your goals.
For more ways to keep weight loss simple- check out our A la Carte section!