We all know weight loss really comes down to two things: food and exercise. For me, it’s all about calories in, calories out, and getting as much nutrition as possible within those daily calories.
This is not a revolutionary idea: It is tried and true, simple and straightforward. There is no magic pill or any other weight loss miracle. It’s all about commitment, dedication and hard work. I know I have to put in the time, there’s no getting around it. No one can do it for me.
I’ve had to make my health a priority. And it’s not easy. In fact, it’s hard. Really hard. But when I reach each goal I’ve set for myself, and I’ve worked hard for it, really earned it, well — there’s no other feeling like that in the world.
In my opinion, when you get right down to it, it really doesn’t matter what nutrition plan you chose to reach your own weight loss goals. Low calorie, low fat, low carbohydrate, portion control, Weight Watchers — they all work. You just have to chose something that fits into your lifestyle, get started, do it, be consistent, and keep going.
When I first started on my weight loss journey, I made it my mission to learn everything I could about nutrition. I read everything I could get my hands on about how different nutrients, vitamin and minerals affect the way our bodies function. If you are beginning your own weight loss journey, or even a journey towards better health, make nutrition your new hobby.
The same goes for exercise. Some people swear by running, circuits in the weight room, Zumba, or even just walking a few miles every day. It doesn’t really matter what you do: It only matters that you are dedicated and consistent. This was a key turning point for me.
I’ve always loved being active, but when I made it a priority to be consistent with exercise, the pounds really started to melt away. Don’t be afraid to try something new. Mixing things up keeps boredom from wearing me down. It’s good for our bodies and our brains to try new and challenging activities. Our bodies adapt amazingly fast, and giving ourselves new challenges every now and then will wake up muscles that are on autopilot from a boring everyday treadmill routine.
This past August I was down about 45 pounds, thanks in part to lifting weights and intervals on the elliptical machine at my home-away-from-home, the YMCA in downtown Columbus. But, I was getting so bored with that hour of cardio that I was starting to skip it all together. I thought, if I ever see an elliptical again I am going to die. Enter Zumba: After one 45-minute class I was completely hooked.
It’s so much fun I didn’t even feel like I was “exercising.” I always want the class to last longer and even feel a little bummed when it’s time to cool down. For me, Zumba was exactly the change of scenery I needed to get out of my workout rut.
We can talk about nutrition and fitness all day long, but you have to take action. We have to stop whining and complaining about working out and eating healthy … in the big scheme of things is it really that horrible? You could be finished with your workout already and enjoying the afterglow in the time you waste procrastinating. Now get your butt up and just do it already! And then again tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that.
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.
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