Albright College



Let’s face it, losing weight is hard enough but staying positive while doing it, well, that is a challenge.  Let’s talk about the “D” word.  Yes, diet.  Diet is a four letter word, but it doesn’t have to be a bad four letter word.

We all know that exercise and eating healthy is what it takes to maintain a good weight and if you are looking to lose weight exercise and eating healthy is also very important.  But did you know that having a positive attitude while working on your weight management goals is just as important?  It’s true.  Telling yourself you can achieve a certain goal or that you can succeed in doing something will help you to keep working and finally achieving that goal.  If you tell yourself that you can’t do something or you’ll just fail anyway so why bother, you will more than likely give up and not work to achieve your goal.

It is difficult to change your mind set in these thought processes, especially if you are of the negative mind set but using cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) can help you replace those negative thoughts and get you in that positive thinking mode.

  • Pay attention to what you tell yourself.  Some people will say negative things about themselves and think of it as fact.
  • Ask yourself if these thoughts are untrue and exaggerated.  You might be ignoring the positive.
  • Changing these negative thoughts to positive ones will help you to feel better and become more motivated.

Your goal should be to let the positive come naturally. 

  • “I can do this”
  • “I am strong enough”
  • “I will achieve and accomplish my goal”

Now for the “D” word.  Let’s stop dieting.  That’s right STOP DIETING.  Dieting suggests that you are restricted from things such as comfort foods and going to certain restaurants and ordering certain entrees.  We do not want to tell ourselves that we “can’t” eat that or we “can’t” go there because we can put ourselves in that negative mind set again.  We want to make small lifestyle changes.

You want to start small so you don’t get overwhelmed.  Start by choosing to eat healthier.  Here are some small changes in which to start:

  • The relationship you have with food.  Why do you eat?  Are you an emotional eater?  Do you eat as a reward?  Or do you eat just because you’re bored? 
  • Changing your eating habits.  Again, small changes.  Don’t change your entire diet all at once.  Work on one eating habit at a time, such as changing your portion sizes.  One portion of meat is the size of your palm.  One serving of pasta is one cup. Servings of fruits and vegetables are proportionate depending on sex, height and weight so please visit the following websites to find your appropriate servings http://www.mypyramid.gov/pyramid/vegetables_amount_table.html, http://www.mypyramid.gov/pyramid/fruits_amount_table.html .  Drink 8-10 glasses of water daily; avoid soda and sweetened beverages.
  • Establishing goals.  Set small goals.  1.  Be specific (walk 15 minutes 3 times a week).  2.  Make them within your reach (Don’t start by running one mile 5 days a week).  3.  Be flexible (so you walked 15 minutes twice one week, maybe walk 10 minutes 4 times the next week).  Once you reach your established goal increase it slightly to walking 20 minutes 4 times a week, etc.
  • Make physical activity a part of your daily routine.  Figure out what is keeping you from being physically active.  Job, kids, or just life in general?  Walk at lunch, get a partner.  Be physically active with your family; play baseball, frisbee or basketball in the back yard, take a bike ride, or walk to the local park.  Have a friend or family member take the kids one day a week to help make time for your exercise.  Take the stairs instead of the elevator.  Do your activities in the morning so you are less likely to talk yourself out of it during the day.

If you are looking for a structured activity consider joining the local gym, taking the dog for a hike, take swimming classes or water aerobics, join a softball team, etc.

Good luck and have a healthy and physical July.


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