For twenty years I have struggled with my weight. I tried diet after diet. I lost weight and only to regain it. I started on a program of exercise, only to quit when I felt sore or tired or too busy. I felt powerless to change.
What I have learned from years of trying to lose weight (and regaining it) is that it’s not how much you eat or whether or how much you exercise. It’s really about what you eat and how your choices affect your body. Body fat is regulated by hormones, in particular, insulin. Body fat accumulates when insulin levels are elevated.
And what drives insulin levels up? Eating carbohydrates, specifically easily digestible, carbohydrate-rich foods: flour and cereal grains, starchy vegetables such as potatoes, and sugars, like fruit, table sugar and high-fructose corn syrup. Eating these foods triggers the hormones that store fat and make us hungrier and tired.
The challenge is to change my eating habits and remain mindful. I am learning to listen carefully to what my body tells me about what I eat. So far, it’s saying, Go Green!
For the last several years, I have focused on improving my physical fitness. After hitting the wall in 2009, I learned to run. I ran my first 10k race, my first half-marathon, and then my first marathon. Then I returned to the sport of triathlon, completing my first Olympic distance and then a Half-Ironman. Then I learned to climb mountains and climbed to the summit of the Grand Teton in 2012. And last summer we trekked 110km in the Arctic circle.
Meanwhile, I became a certified CrossFit trainer for my 49th birthday and then celebrated my 50th by earning my Kettle-bell trainer certificate.
This year I am determined to get to my goal weight (68 k). I’m tired of renting space in my head to my waistline. I have been frustrated by getting closer and then letting up on my effort and re-gaining weight when the stress-monkeys attacked.
This time it’s different. I am looking at my habits and designing new routines that will make reaching my goals automatic and seemingly effortless. And I’ve also started a coaching group on Facebook. It’s called 50 fit. Let’s help each other enjoy the skin we’re in. As spirits having a human experience, I believe our bodies can bring us joy. It’s never too late to start over!