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Slowly does it, health is not a short-term project

Slowly does it, health is not a short-term project

When you change your lifestyle, it’s not just about getting started physically but also mentally, if not primarily mentally. You know what to do, so why do you keep treading water?

We have previously talked about diet: what to eat, how much, how to get started, how to say no, simple tips and tricks to not feel completely overwhelmed by all the ”musts”, how to handle dinner parties and holidays. A new lifestyle challenge generally starts with more exercising, which of course is a positive thing, but many people underestimate how big of a challenge diet is. There is a delusion that focus should lie on exercise in order to get results on your weight. No, no and again no.  It’s diet and diet alone. Do you want to lose weight? Adjust the diet. Do you want to gain weight? Adjust the diet. Do you want to maintain good health? Adjust the diet. Do you want a new personal best at the next marathon? Adjust the diet. 

Exercise actually breaks you down, diet builds you up and exercise on top of a good diet gives you the results you want.

Our best tip is to be patient and consistent for extended periods of time. Avoid jumping between different methods and diets. Give your new routine the time it needs and deserves. The newspapers might promise you different methods and results, or your friend is doing something new and getting results. We all have different prerequisites that affect our health and nutritional needs – age, height, weight, genes, number of children, hormonal set-up, body shape – all which needs to be considered. 

Find a balanced diet that gives you energy, keeps you satiated, gives the results you’re after, makes you feel strong, keeps you happy and satisfied, that works when you travel, makes eating out easy. A suitable routine should come without too much overanalysing or stress but above all should be one you can stick to for life. 

To find out what works best for you, you need to experiment, adjust your diet, find your balance. Nothing will change overnight. If your relationship with food is complicated, it will take time – you will need to accept this fact. Allow yourself time, see it as a process and not a temporary project with a deadline.

Losing weight is easy, how you maintain the new weight is a different question, that’s the hardest part! If you don’t have the skills or strategies, you are guaranteed to gain that weight again. Almost 80% of those who lose weight fast will regain it, why? Because they don’t know how to put theory into practise, they want fast results without the work. Sure, drinking aloe vera or soups for three weeks is easier than giving yourself six months or more to set new routines. But what will last in the long run? Is it worth starting over every January and May? 

Slowest wins, promise!

Photo iStockphoto

Updated December 8, 2021

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