There have been several news stories lately about extraordinary feats. In two separate incidents, an ordinary man and woman, using seemingly superhuman strength, lifted a car from someone trapped underneath. Another story told of a child surviving a pool drowning after being beneath the water for nearly twenty minutes. “How in the world could that happen?” you wonder.
Even when we do something crazy.
Case in point: when we attempt a starvation diet, pills, shots or liquid protein diet; all of these actions only result in our bodies going into protection mode. Sure we will lose weight initially but in the long haul, our bodies will discern that this is not natural and will slow our metabolism to save energy. Then when we come to our senses, finally deciding that it’s expensive, harmful and ridiculous, our body begins to store fat for later use. Because after all, “the crops might die again” and we’ll need that stored energy to survive. This is innately self-protecting as well as self-defeating to our egos. It seems our body wants to live more than we do! But we feel like a failure.
There is no miraculous way to lose weight. It always goes back to physiology: sensible nutritious eating, consuming water and exercising to burn calories and tone muscle which burns fat. Boring and time-consuming. So to speed things up we’ll desperately try anything! Gimmicks don’t work.
My suggestion is in order to lose weight, make life a game, challenging but fun! Increase your water intake by filling a container with water adding a combination of lemon, cucumber slices, watermelon, berries, celery . . . you get the idea. Create a chart and for every glass you drink, check off a block. Every box is worth a nickel, dime, whatever. Display the jar and tangibly see your accomplishments right in front of you. That’s a great feeling of self-discipline. Self esteem issues were probably one reason you gained in the first place, right? (Congratulations – you’re now a winner!) Use the reward money for a family fun night, DVD or shopping trip.
When did exercise cease to be fun? When we were children we ran for the pure joy of it! Find a sport the family can perform together. Whether it’s throwing the Frisbee, biking, swimming, badminton, hiking; these can all be fun activities and bond the family together. As your health improves, so does your children’s.
Cooking. This can be a fun family achievement as well. Have each family member list their favorite dinners and place all in a hat, then plan your weekly menu. Even hamburgers, meatloaf and pizza can be created with less fat. Use 93% ground round or homemade pizza with less cheese and more veggies. Grilled chicken or roasted pork loin with grilled potatoes, veggies and salad are not fattening. Use the leftover pork for BBQ sandwiches and extra chicken for salad. Search through cookbooks as a family to see what recipes would be fun to try. Did you know that 80% of the time, families consume the same 12 meals? Boring! Your body needs nutritional variety.
Strive for excellence as a family, instilling discipline and common sense. What values are you teaching your children? They watch and learn.
“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires;” (Ephesians 4:22)