The Four principals for weightloss

Visit a nearby newsstand and I am sure that you will come across some magazines promoting miraculous weight-loss formulas. Sometimes they turn to the mythic properties of fruit, like with the “Lemonade Diet” or with the “Papaya Diet.” Other times they just create special nutritional plans, say the “Low-Carb Diet.” There are also the magic workouts and exercises that are supposed to reduce your belly circumference by 10 centimeters in three days – while toning your muscles….

Come on!

The reality is that there are no shortcuts or easy ways to get in good shape. Sorry, but someone needed to tell you this.

Now, don’t get me wrong, you won’t not need to starve for days or perform some Spartan training activities. As long as you get conscious about what you are doing, you will see the results. Below you will find the four principles that you need to keep in mind in your weight-loss journey.

1. Forget About Diets

People that go from diet to diet never reach a stable weight, let alone a good shape. The reason is quite simple: diets are, by their very nature, temporary. You can’t expect to eat properly for two or three weeks and fix your weight problems for the rest of the year.

I know it is encouraging to read that you could lose 20 pounds in 2 weeks if you were to eat this and that. It is encouraging but not true. They might even work in the short term, but after a couple of months you will recover what you have lost.

Many of these diets are not even targeted at fat loss. They promise that you will lose weight, but the caloric cut is so drastic that you end up losing many pounds of water and muscle mass along the way, and that is not what you should be aiming for.

If diets are not the solution, what is then? Proper nutrition, and we’ll cover this on the next principle.

2. Proper Nutrition

If you want to keep your weight and fat percentage under control, you will need to learn the basics of nutrition. Once you learn them, you will be able to eat healthy throughout the year.

Buy a nutrition book on some library and read it. At the very minimum you want to know how your body works, what sources of energy it uses, what are the roles of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, minerals and vitamins.

You will need to shift your paradigm about food. Many people, especially those with weight problems, tend to see food as a source of pleasure. They eat what they like, when they want to, and in whatever proportions it might take to satiate them.

This is not the correct approach. You should see food first and foremost as something functional. You will eat because food is the fuel for your body. If you adopt this mentality, you will start eating what you need, when you need, and in the correct amount.

It might sound extreme, but even with this approach you will be able to have pleasure while eating. It is just a matter of getting used to it. Once you detox yourself from the junk food you will see that an apple can be just as tasty as a sugar-jammed apple pie.

Needless to say that if you are trying to lose weight you will need to have a caloric deficit in place. That is, you will need to eat less calories than what your body needs to keep his weight. Ideally you want to jot down some numbers and calculate how much you should be eating. There are plenty of resources online that can help you here.

3. Physical Exercise

Eating healthy and having a caloric deficit will only take you half the way. The other key factor is physical exercise.

Low intensity cardio is the corner stone of any weight loss program. That is because the higher the intensity of the exercise, the lower the amount of free fat acids in your bloodstream (free fat acids come from your stored fat through the lipolysis process, and they are burned for energy).

So far so good, but what is considered low intensity cardio? The easiest way to determine is to find your max heart rate (220 – age = max heart rate) and calculate 40% and 60% of it. That is the range you should aim for when doing low intensity cardio. Suppose you are 20 years old. This means that your max heart rate is around 200, so your range for low intensity cardio is from 80 heart beats per minute to 120 heart beats per minute.

Pragmatically speaking, what activities can you do as low intensity cardio? There are many of them, from walking to swimming and riding a bicycle; just find something that you like to do.

Start with two weekly sessions, and build your way up. The same theory goes for the duration, find what you are capable of doing in the beginning (without feeling too tired), and build your way up. It might be 10, 20 or 30 minutes, it doesn’t matter as long as you make progress along the way.

4. Discipline and Perseverance

You can start eating healthy and exercising properly, but unless you stick doing it regularly, the results won’t appear (if they do, they won’t last).

Discipline and perseverance are key here.

You could find a friend to exercise together, a mentor to guide you throughout the way, or even write down your progress day after day,  like this person has done on his fat man weight loss blog. Do whatever it takes to stay on track.

That is pretty much all you need.

It won’t be easy, but very few worth things in life are easy to achieve, right?

Good luck!

Hungry for More……

Author and Speaker Robyn M. McGee Tackles Weighty Issues in her book Hungry For More

Foreword by Joycelyn Elders, M.D, former U.S. Surgeon General

November 2005—If you are an African-American woman, chances are you are considered to be fat.  Statistics show 70% of black women are classified as overweight or obese.  Is this a result of the classifier or the classified?  In reality, it is both.  Due to their genetic makeup, very few adult, African-American women are able to wear a size 2, the image that the movies, music videos and magazines serves up as the body type of the “perfect woman.” Though outwardly stylish and confident, inwardly, many African American women feel as if their self-image is under attack by the constant barrage of messages subliminally reminding them they are not beautiful because they don’t have the “correct” body dimensions.  Buying into this impossible standard can be both mentally and emotionally draining-and dangerous. Robyn McGee author and speaker knows first hand how damaging low self-esteem combined with trying to live up to someone else’s idea of beauty can be.

“My sister Cathy always loved a good party.  The last time I saw her, she was hosting a friend’s wedding” McGee reveals.  “With her head thrown back in laughter, Cathy held a champagne glass in hand and was surrounded endless bottles of wine and enough food to feed ten armies.”

Cathy was always self-conscious about her full bosom, wide hips and thick legs, yet Cathy was a beautiful and accomplished black woman.  She was married with four children and she owned her own business.  Despite living what many consider the American dream Cathy was forever dissatisfied with her looks.  Her lifelong obsession with her weight compelled her to indulge in the wrong foods, at the wrong times all for the wrong reasons.  Eventually, Cathy gained the one hundred pounds over her ideal weight that qualified her for gastric bypass surgery.  Her desperate quest to be thin proved to be deadly. She died from an infection four days after her operation.  Cathy never made it back home.

“As I look back, I realize that Cathy’s struggle was not with her weight, but with feelings of inadequacy,” declares McGee.  “If she’d understood that her perceptions were obscured by the societal norms and popular culture, she would have appreciated the dimensions that God gave black women and celebrated what she was rather than chasing something she wasn’t.”

Today more and more African American men and women are seeking weight loss surgery as a quick fix to a lifelong problem. It is estimated that 150,000 people had gastric bypass operations, in 2004 about 15% of those patients were African Americans.  Frustrated after a lifetime of dieting disappointments, sick and tired of the teasing, the insults, and in poor health, many folks rush headlong into this major surgery without considering all the ramifications.  In fact in October 2005, NBC news reported that 1 in 200 people died within a year after having weight loss surgery. This number is much higher than was previously reported.

In Hungry for More: A Keeping-it-Real Guide for Black Women on Weight and Body Image, author and speaker, Robyn McGee offers a holistic approach to weight and health by addressing their social and cultural implications.  With foreword and praise by former U.S. Surgeon General, Joycelyn Elders, M.D., Hungry for More is a straight-talking, informative book that encourages readers to take control of their lives and utilize practical ways they can combat obesity and an unhealthy lifestyle.  McGee believes that without self-love and self-acceptance no diet or operation can be successful long-term.

“Unless you change what’s in your heart and mind, no amount of surgery will make you feel whole. Without psychological change to go with your physical change, you could risk gaining all of the weight back and still be miserable,” McGee said.  Although she is not a medical doctor, in Hungry for More, McGee suggests trying less drastic ways to lose weight permanently before calling the weight loss surgeon.  Weight Watchers, Overeaters Anonymous, seeing a therapist for possible depression, consulting a nutrition expert along with a commitment to regular exercise, could offer the results overweight people desire without the pain and risk of weight loss surgery, according to McGee.

Keeping her sister’s memory at the forefront, McGee’s timely tome is nonjudgmental, sympathetic and upfront in conveying to readers the importance of honoring themselves by making healthy lifestyle choices, being patient and diligent, seeking help when necessary and remembering that they are much more than a dress size or the numbers on a scale.

Hungry for More: A Keeping-it-Real Guide for Black Women on Weight and Body Image is due to be released in December 2005 by Seal Press, an imprint of Avalon Publishing Group, Inc.

Advance Praise for Hungry for More:

Hungry for More is deliciously informative, real satisfying food for the soul, and a must read for all women.”Josefina Lopez, Chicana activist and author of Real Women Have Curves.

“With the obesity epidemic among African-American women on the rise, this book provides very valuable information for black women who want to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Following much of the advice in this book will lead to a higher quality of life.” Alvin F. Poussaint, MD. Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Judge Baker Children’s Center, Boston MA.

“I promise this book will make you feel full. McGee dares to go where few authors do – into the heart, stomach and pulse of the African-American female battle with hunger and weight.  This is a personal and urgent   account of how women are destroying ourselves – and how we can turn the tide away from hunger and obesity into freedom and power.” —Eve Ensler, Playwright.

“This insightful book comes at a critical time: when more and more women are dying to be thin.  After losing her own sister to gastric bypass surgery, Robyn McGee set out on a mission to get to the bottom of Black women’s with obsession with their weight.  The result: A fascinating read. This is a great book to give to your sister, your mother, your best friend, and, even better, yourself. —Pamela K. Johnson, West Coast Editor, Essence Magazine.

My amazing weightloss! I loss 38 lbs with HCG diet

Human Chorionic Gonadotropin, a hormone produced by the placenta during pregnancy. During pregnancy, the substance almost completely controls the women’s metabolic function.  However the HCG used in the diet is synthetic.

I live in Atlanta, GA and I saw a billboard sign that said lose 30 lbs in 30 days. I’ve always struggled with my weight and tried several different programs to lose weight, so I figured why not one more? Besides, 30 lbs in 30 days, that sounds too good to be true.

I scheduled and appoint and went in to talk to the doctor about how it works.  After the doctor spoke to me, I was still a little skeptical, but I figured why not I was desperate!

So needless to say I signed up for the program here in Atlanta, followed the program exactly and loss 38 lbs initially, but then I continued to lose even after I stopped the program. So if you interested in finding about a remarkable product that works and has had zero negative feedback, then this is the program for you.


10 Easy steps to Jumpstart your Weight Management Program

We’re all getting ready for the new year and making new years resolutions, well weight loss is an excellent resolution to have in spite of how difficult it may seem.  There are many fad diets out there, but a 10 1lb weight loss can improve your health and your risk for diseases with obesity, diseases like Type 2 diabetes, hypertension and heart disease.

Here are ten easy steps to jump start your weight management program.

1.  Accept that weight management is an achievable goal -if you approach weight management with the concept that small steps will add up to make a big difference over time, then the idea of losing weight does not seem so hard.

2. Make a plan to succeed-identify 10 food items that you currently purchase that you know are bad for you and that you can live without.  Make a consistently plan to start eliminating 2 of these items each week from your grocery list.

3.  Contact a nutritionist and make and make an appointment -every individual should have a customized plan tailored to their age, weight, height, metabolism and activity level.  This plan is best created with a professional who will dedicate time to working with you one on one.

4.  Schedule regular exercise -this is very important so make it a goal to double that distance you walk each day. And if you haven’t started walking yet, this it’s time to start, just start out slow until you are walking at least 30 minutes a day.

5.  Set realistic goals -rapid weight loss that can’t be sustained only results in frustration.  The goal should be to lose approximately 2 lbs each week.  Depending on how much you choose to lose, over the course of a year this will result in a substantial amount of weight loss.

6. Develop a support system -it is important to join a support group and to develop a network of individuals who are committed to your success.  You can research online and find walking groups in your area, like on meetup.com, or join a gym, or even weight watches or ediets.

7.  Weigh in regularly -it is important to check your weight regularly.  Every week you should check your weight in the morning before you get dressed and on the same scale.

8. Positive reinforcement -feel good about the success that you are making and provide a small reward for yourself each week that is not food related.  Some excellent suggestions include a manicure, a massage, taking a scenic walk, purchasing a new CD or new clothing item.

9. Congratulate yourself -weight loss is similar to a marathon that is not always won by leaps and bounds. The goal is to stay focused on your goal even if there are small setbacks from time to time.

10. Love yourself-while absolute weight loss is a goal, it is important to love yourself no matter what your size maybe.

I hope this helps someone as it has help me in my journey towards weight loss.  I’ve currently loss 40 lbs and down to my last 10 lbs.  Please note the information that I’ve provided you was taken from black w omen’s health, but it’s something I wanted to share. I hope you enjoy it.

Remove the word “Low” from your diet!

Low Fat Foods DON’T WORK.

You cannot lose weight using Low Fat Diets.  Low fat foods have been popular for more than 15 years, but yet our society is getting more overweight as each year passes.  This fact alone should tell you that eating a purely low fat menu is not the answer to losing weight.

Also, virtually every person in today’s society is buying mostly “low fat” or “non fat” food at the grocery store, everybody is conscious of the “fat grams” inside the food they buy.  However, people are getting fatter than ever by doing this and people are not losing weight by switching to the “low fat lifestyle”.

Low Calorie Diets DON’T WORK.

You won’t lose weight using a Low Calorie Dieting Plan either.   In fact, eating low calories is the worst thing that you can do to your body, since that will only slow down your body’s fat burning engine and ruin all chances of losing weight (low calorie diets may allow a few pounds of weight loss for the first few days, but then after that all weight loss comes to a halt — known as a dieting plateau).   You can never get slim by starving yourself.

The reason you cannot lose weight by starving yourself (using a low calorie diet) is because your metabolism will detect any major drop in calories and it will then ADJUST ITSELF by burning fewer calories each day.

Low Carb Plans DON’T WORK.

You’ll probably find it extremely difficult to get slim using a Low Carb Dieting Plan.  Low carb diets have recently become popular over the last couple years, but the problem with low carb menus is that they are too strict and TOO HARD TO FOLLOW for average people.   Low carb menus tend to rob your body of too much energy (carbohydrates) and make it nearly impossible to remain on the program for very long.  This is why so many dieters find it difficult to follow a strict low carbohydrate menu.

Low carb diets have certainly become popular in recent years, but such diets often leave you feeling miserable each day (since they drain most of your energy and can leave you feeling quite awful each day).

Check out these facts below…

Did you know that several popular low carb diets are so strict that you cannot even eat a large apple during the first couple weeks?    It’s true.

Also, many low carb diets won’t even let you enjoy a ‘normal’ restaurant meal (ordered without any carb restrictions) for many months after you begin.

Therefore, low carb diets can leave you feeling MISERABLE each day, which is not the answer.

It’s insane to repeat the same behavior while expecting a different outcome.

What this means is that you cannot get slimmer until you CHANGE your eating habits to something NEW and DIFFERENT, something which you’ve never tried before.

50 things I want to do before turning 50

There are a lot of things that I want to do that I haven’t done, so I thought I need to write them down and check them off once completed.  I only have a few items so far, so I’d appreciate any input on somethings I might add to my list. These things are in no particular order, here goes

1.  go horseback riding

2. go scuba diving

3. travel to Europe

4.  travel to China

5. Write a book

6.  learn a new language

7.  Be an effective mentor

8.  take a trip around the world

9.  take a trip to Africa

10.  attend broadway play in New York

11. hike up a mountain

12. travel to hawaii

13. travel to Italy

14. travel to Spain

15. Learn to play piano

16.  start a magazine

17.  have a child

18.  become Art collector

19.  host a dinner party

20.  take singing lessons

okay that’s all I can think of right now. I’ll add more later

The “Weight Problem” and African American women

Did you know, that 50 – 60% of African American women are categorized as being overweight?  So the first thing we must do in the African American community is admit that we have a problem.  There are several reasons for this problem, such as demographics, our cultural norms, diet, and lack of exercise.

In the African American community it’s good when a women is called “thick” or “big”.  it means she fine, and good for bearing children .  As a result it is culturally acceptable for African American women to have big butts, hips and thighs.  African American men love larger women with a little meat on their bones; and this can be traced back to the days of slavery.  (I discuss my opinion of the African American man in a later blog).

Culturally speaking African American women have thrived off “soul food”.  And although these meals taste good, the way in which it’s prepared makes it completely unhealthy.  Food is not the only reason for unhealthy food choices; low incomes, single parent families, and habits of overeating can also lead to unhealthy food choices.  However, obesity among African American women effects women at all income levels.

All magazines, commercials and clothing stores, etc. emphasize the slender body image.  The slender body image definitely affects some African American women and the majority non-african american women, but it’s definitely not the majority.  So what do we do?  Should African American women continue with tradition and culture and disregard the popularity of the slender image?  Or are they risking their health and well-being by not conforming?  The mass media holds most of us to ransom, so if African American women conform, who stands to gain?

I really would like your feedback on this topic. Am I way off base? Or am I missing something?  I have more blogs to write on this topic, so I hope to have your input as I begin on this new journey.