I’d like to ask you a very frank question. How do you feel about your body? And how does it feel to be in your body? If you could look and feel better than you do now – more beautiful, happy, and energetic – what would that mean for you?
I’m writing this because during the many years I’ve been helping people lose weight, improve their appearance, and cure themselves of tough, chronic conditions, I’ve learned one important lesson – that with the right tools, almost any woman can make dramatic improvements to her body and to her life.
Many women endure a lifelong struggle with their weight. And it’s painful. If you’re one of those women, you know exactly what I’m talking about. The fatigue. The insecurity. The feeling that you could accomplish so much more in your social and professional life, and more importantly in your close relationships, with a healthy, vibrant body.
I’ve also learned something even more important – that if you’re struggling to lose weight, or are stuck on a plateau, it’s not your fault. You have the desire. You have the motivation. And with the right tools and a little persistence, you can get right where you want to be.
One of the most common mistakes I see from folks when they’re trying to lose weight is exercising too much, and not following a diet that helps them meet their goals.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s important to get at least a moderate amount of exercise to maintain good health. And if you’re living a very sedentary life, there are ways you can slowly build up to a healthy level of activity.
But for most women who are trying to lose weight, however, the problem is just the opposite. They get plenty of activity – sometimes too much activity – but don’t have an effective diet. Let me use a case study to illustrate this point.
Sandra was right below the medical definition of being overweight. She didn’t really want to lose a lot of weight, but she did want to lose some flab and hopefully build a little bit of muscle, too. Mostly she wanted to be fit and toned, like she had been twenty years before. She was eating a reasonably healthy diet, and going to the gym 5 to 7 times a week. Though she had made great progress toward her goals for a couple months, her progress had stalled. She hadn’t seen any positive change for 3 months when I met her.
After taking a close look at what she was doing, I gave her a few recommendations.
• First, I told her to cut back on the exercise – limiting her to no more than 45 minutes per workout, and no more than four workouts per week.
• Second, we took a look at her diet. She was getting almost enough fats and proteins, but too many carbohydrates (breakfast cereals, bread, rice, pasta and potatoes). We pulled out most of the carbohydrates, increased the amount of protein, and added the right mix of vegetables to support her general health and reduce the effects of toxicity on her liver.
The results were incredible. She went from being borderline overweight, to an undeniably healthy weight in less than twelve weeks – she lost 18 pounds or 8 kg. Most importantly, she felt better and had more time to spend doing the things she loved. It’s not that she didn’t want to look and feel good, she just needed the right direction to get there.
My recommendations to her weren’t a shot in the dark. They were based on my years of experience and the scientific evidence. For example, the evidence shows that having the right level of protein in the diet is crucial to healthy weight loss.
During my career, I’ve found that for weight loss there is an 80-20 rule. 20 percent of your results will come from physical activity, and 80% from the diet you follow. And often it’s necessary to seek out someone with expertise and an outside perspective to speed you along in the right direction.