Cut the emotional ties

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My dog, may she rest in peace, loved dried pig ears dog treats.  Pig ears put her into another state of mind.  Get close and she’d growl and bear her teeth.  Touch her and she’d nip at you.

I think we have similar emotional ties to food.

Here’s a way to test it.  While eating with others and everyone seems to be enjoying their food, ask them if they should be eating so much.  Then observe the sour looks.

When we’re eating, we are often in another state of mind.

Emotional ties to food come in many forms.  Some people can’t break the habit of overeating.  Sometimes they have ties to specific foods or treats or eating establishments.

When I was more emotionally tied to my food, my life revolved around it.  I looked forward to trying new restaurants and new recipes and focused more on the eating portion of sharing meals with friends and family than the being with friends and family part.

Severing some of these ties can help you control your weight.   Here are some of the ways I severed my ties:

  1. I began to view food, first and foremost, as a source of nourishment rather than a source of emotional satisfaction.
  2. I reminded myself that each meal was not my last meal.
  3. I found other things to rely on to keep me busy like exercising, reading and interacting with friends.
  4. Don’t eat less now to enjoy more food later.  Sometimes I hear people justify eating less at lunch so they can have a ‘bigger dinner’.   That’s like a metabolic wrecking ball that can make it tougher to lose weight.
  5. Enjoy smaller portions of the stuff you love.  Again, this time isn’t likely to be your last.  Slow down and savor and remind yourself that you will get to enjoy more soon.

I’m not perfect.  I still have some emotional ties to food.  If someone were to ask me while I’m stuffing my face if I should be eating so much, I’d give them a sour look too.

But, I am much better than I use to be.  Much better than when I weighed about 30 pounds more.


FREE exercise videos

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I found free exercise videos on AT&T Uverse’s Free On Demand service last night.

I imagine other cable and satellite TV services have them as well.  This removes lots barrier for folks wanting to start an exercise program or work something different into the current program.

No need for a gym membership or expensive pieces of exercise equipment.  No worries about getting hit by a car or jumped by a mugger outside.  No worries of long lines at the gym or weather.  No scheduling worries.  You can watch the videos when you want in your own home.  You can do in them in you PJ’s.  No travel time to the gym.

The videos seemed to be 20 – 25 minutes in length, so they’re not too hard to fit into even a busy schedule.

There are well over a hundred videos available, so there’s plenty of variety.

I tried one of the videos to work out some kinks from shoveling snow.  It was 24 minutes in length and it got me sweating, stretching and working my muscles.

If you don’t have Free On Demand exercise videos with your cable company, other options include checking your local library for exercise DVDs or checking the internet.  I havn’t research the internet, but I imagine youtube might have some exercise videos as well.

New Book

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There’s a new book out that looks right up my alley. It’s called Why We Get Fat and What to Do About It by Gary Taubes.

Based on the blurb I read in People magazine, it appears to have advice similar to my book and blog here – overdoing it on carbs is bad.

Will post more once I get the book and read it.



Goal 1

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Have you set some goals for this year yet?

My first goal is to be in good shape for the St. Pat’s Run in March.  It’s a 4-miler and it’s a tough course.  It’s a rough one to start out on, but its fun.  The weather can be nice and people dress in all kinds of outfits.

My goal is to finish in 32 minutes.

I’m beginning to prepare by continuing to watch my food intake and with consistent exercise, with a variety of activities and consistent rest.

Happy New Year 2011!

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Here’s to a safe, productive and prosperous 2011.

If you are interested in losing pounds and eating healthier, and sticking with it, here are some tips:

1. Forget “No Pain, No Gain”. Instead, strive for consistency and patience.  People burn themselves out by trying to get into top shape in a month.  Slow down, it’s okay to start off easy and establish your habits.
2. Give up potatoes and rice for one month. Instead eat fruits and vegetables as side dishes.
3. Introduce fruits and vegetables for each meal.
4. Try new fruits and vegetables to find some you may like.
5. Invest in a good pair of running or walking shoes. Hold off on the gym membership for now. To this one, I’ll add that you may want to try to try some yoga, pilates and aerobic videos from your library.  The main goal here is to establish time that you move your body in your schedule.
6. Set a goal to compete in and complete an organized recreational event like a 5k or bike ride in the March – June time frame.  This is a good motivator.
7. Re-prioritize your schedule so that exercise doesn’t get pushed off the list.
8. Try one or two new activities to discover something you may not have known that you’d enjoy.
9. Join groups and meet people who get together for recreational activities.
10. Keep a food diary for 2 weeks and then use my book to figure out how to calculate your food needs.

I burned 20 thousand calories today!

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No, really.

At least I helped others burn 20 thousand calories today by helping to organize the inaugural Liberty Giving Thanks 5k for Hillcrest Transitional Housing.

Sixty runners and walkers came out to support a good cause and help offset some of the damage they would do later in the day.   Great going everyone!


It Was Worth It

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I took some ribbing for loading up bikes and equipment to have during a recent weekend journey.  It did require some extra effort and even I questioned it as I was strapping the bikes onto the car, but it was worth it.   After all, I’d be burning calories with the normal increased activity of vacation.

The place we visited has bike trails nearby (the people there are lucky to have access to many miles of trails) and I was able to get in two hours total of riding (one hour with my family), see some different scenery and burn a few calories.

All in all, not a bad trade-off.

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