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Monday, April 11, 2011

“I still have more to go” crap


Welcome to the first day of the second week of 25 Days of Fitness! Congratulations!!! If you have done the first 7 days, you are well on your way to feeling better, sleeping better and becoming healthier!

When friends tell you how awesome you look, drop the "I still have more to go" crap.  You worked hard and you deserve the compliment!  ~Jillian Michaels

I am guilty of this. I’ve had many people complement me on how I’ve “filled up” since getting married. Apparently a good number of my friends and family thought I was too skinny before that… which I was not. I weighed a perfectly healthy 125 to 130 pounds… anyways, when I am told I look good, I always roll my eyes, smile a big goofy smile and say “yeah thanks” in the most sarcastic tone I can muster.

However, I’ve come to the conclusion that those that love us love us no matter what we look like, so getting into shape, losing weight and becoming healthy are really achievements for ourselves. So from now on, when someone complements me on the way I look, I’ll answer with a genuine smile and a polite thank you.

Speaking of weight loss… my gym buddy and good friend is on a deadline to lose weight before her Mexico vacation in two months, and I’ve been hearing a lot of “I need to stop eating” comments from her. I know it’s frustrating to work out and not see immediate results, however we need to realize that it took a while to gain the weight it’s going to take just as long if not longer to lose it. You just got to keep your head in the game and keep going!!

Here are some of the reasons I’ve discovered as to why results are usually delayed.

1. Water retention

If you are like me, and have set on the couch a bit too long, and are now getting back into exercising and an active lifestyle then your body isn’t use to running, weight training and cardio, hence you need to start slow, drink lots of water and let your body acclimate. The drinking lots of water portion throws the scales off in the beginning. Being more active means your body is sweating and getting rid of all the yuck, but it is also getting rid of water making you more dehydrated. Since our brain is programed for survival, upon receiving the signal that the body is dehydrated it begins to retain more water. It will take a while for your body to let your brain know that its okay to get rid of the water, because you will soon replace it.

So to avoid extra water retention, make sure to keep yourself hydrated at all times.

2. Stress

Did you know that stressing about weight loss can actually make you gain more weight?! Yup! Being stressed, running around at work and doing errands in overdrive does not make you burn more calories in fact it actually sends a signal to your brain saying that you are stressed, your brain then releases a hormone called cortisol to help cope with the stress. Cortisol, while constantly present in our system, and part of our stress and anxiety mediation is also a hormone that makes the body hang on to fat, and deposits it all in your midsection.

So in order to avoid cortisol overdrive which not only increases fat storage but if completely out of control can cause depression, high anxiety and a bunch of other psychological issues, try and follow this motto:

Change what you can and let go of what you can’t.

There are also other ways to de-stress, but mainly we need to realize that stressing over little things is only adding pounds to our butt, abs and hips. Hence, get a good night sleep and try and be at peace with life.

3. Skipping meals

This one is a heartbreaker. I work at the Children’s Hospital of Denver where we have a very high tech and advanced psychiatry department (being a psychology student this is where I work). We also have one of the best eating disorder treatment units, and the cases that come in are usually as last resorts. We have developed this idea in our heads that food makes us fat, and these little girls (all under the age of 18) believe that if they don’t eat then they will start to look like Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton… It takes a lot to convince them otherwise.

As grown adults we should realize that skipping meals are not a good idea. Here is what happens, much like the idea of water retention, our brain is designed to make sure that we survive. Hence when you skip a meal, your brain begins to think that you are starving, and sends out a signal to the cells to retain all possible sources of energy, so when another starvation period comes there is enough energy for your body and brain to function. So, when you eat your next meal, instead of the body only keeping the calories it needs it starts retaining more, waiting for the time that you will start to starve it again.

Aside from how your body is actually reacting to skipping meals, research has also shown that those of us who skip breakfast tend to weigh more then those who eat breakfast. For some reason, we think that skipping meals saves calories for the day, however in reality it only makes us eat more calories in the end.

Most recommendations state to eat three meals a day, however I’ve started to do about 5 to 6 small meals throughout my day and have cut out snacking. I read that having smaller meals throughout the day keeps your metabolism busy and in turn burning more energy.   

So there you have it!  

If you’d like to read the last 7 days of posts click on the links below:

Day 1: 5 Reasons to Exercise

Day 2: Baby Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle – drinking more water

Day 3: The Four Basic Elements of Health

Day 4: Foundational Supplements

Day 5: Performance Supplements

Day 6: Motivation

Day 7: Power Foods


  1. Yes, we definitely need to eat! That's a common mistake! Good tips :)

  2. I love this post. I know all of these things but sometimes you need reminded. My biggest one right now is Stress!

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