Every time you turn on the TV or scroll through social, you hear about diets, cleanses, detoxes, miracle shakes, etc., etc., etc. You see amazing before and after photos with shocking transformations. And you wish it could be you.
I wish these advertisements would also follow up and show just how many of the people in these photos and on these programs gain their weight back.
If they were honest, they’d explain that “falling off” of their program or not using their products takes you back to where you started from, and possibly worse off. Every time I see a picture that shows someone losing a ton of weight in a “month”, I immediately think “Yeah, well how about month two, and after?” That part is conveniently left out….
Now, if these programs or companies could show us a before and after picture 2-3 years apart, they might just get my attention. Wouldn’t it be great if they showed us success stories that lasted years? With people who didn’t have to “restart”, “reset”, or get a “kickstart” again and again??
The truth of the matter is, if changing our food was all we needed, then we’d be in a much better place all together.
If drinking a shake or following a specific diet was enough, then we’d lose the weight, and never gain it back. But that’s not the case. Losing weight and keeping it off takes time, consistency, learning from failures, and self-compassion. Changing our food is not enough. We need to change our mindset and our habits. We need to figure out the “why” behind our struggles. What have we learned that taught us to eat the way we do? Or how are we “feeding” things about ourselves that don’t require food?
Think about it this way: A child falls while playing outside and begins to cry. An adult says “Come here, give me a hug. Let’s get you an ice pop. That’ll make you feel better.” Problem solved, for the moment. But in the long run, what did the child learn? Food makes you feel better. Food is soothing. Flash forward to adult hood. I have a shitty day. I want a pint of ice cream, or wine, or both. I have a great day. I want a pint of ice cream, or wine, or both. I want to celebrate a milestone. I want dinner, dessert, and wine. I go through a break-up. I soothe with ice cream, or wine, or both. I’m excited or nervous for a change, mourning the death of a loved one, changing careers….you name it, we’ll feed it ice cream, or wine, or both. Noticing a pattern here?
And that’s just scratching the surface. You can only change your body (for the long run) by changing your mind first.
You can absolutely try a new diet, lose some weight, gain it back, and hop on another plan. Or you can get back to basics, learn how to eat for your body, and figure out how and where your habits came from. When you can figure that out, you can change forever.
That’s precisely why I focus on mindset over everything when coaching clients. We work on four major pillars: How to Take Back your Power, Getting Rid of Self-Hatred, Learning Independence, and lastly, Your Relationship with Food.
So, if you’re tired of dieting, tired of starting over, tired of failing program after program…. just know that you’re not the problem. The program is. If you want your change to be permanent, you’re going to have to dig a little deeper than some program designed by some person who doesn’t know you, your struggles, or your history. Because a one size fits all program, can never account for the fact that we are not all one size, inside or out.
Keep it burnin',