More than 12,000 racewalkers have taken the Beginning Racewalking classes that I teach. A good majority of them (runners included) were looking for weight loss in their exercise endeavors. That's what I was looking for as well when I started running back in the late 70s.
Racewalking and running are certainly great tools to help you manage your weight, But are they enough?
You think I'm going to talk about a healthy diet? No. That's a registered dietitian's job.
I believe that there's a mental component to our fitness, health and body size.
Weight management problems exist mostly in your mind and that's the place you'll solve them. Exercise, low-fat and high-fiber whole grain foods, consulting with a registered dietitian and a coach or personal trainer are tools to help you reach your goals.
However, there's more. You must create a new vision of what's causing the weight problems and make a decision to change that faulty thinking and take some action.
What happened to you in the past is not what counts. It doesn't matter that you were fat as a child, or that you had an unhappy childhood, or no one at home supports your weight loss. Maybe using weight as a shield was an effective tool for you at one time. Is it working for you now? If not, make a new vision and a new decision. Your history is not your destiny.
Success in weight management is connected to vision. The problem is that we tend to visualize and talk about the negatives in our life. "My job is killing me." "I don't have any time to exercise." "I am sick to my stomach over what's happening in the world." "I have gotten so out of shape that I hate myself."
Instead, talk about what you want to create, not what you want to get rid of. Whatever you talk about—you'll create. That's how our minds work. Want to have relationship problems? Talk about how there are no eligible men/women out there. Want to be unemployed? Keep talking about no good jobs out there. Want to be fatter? Talk about diets and weight problems.
Think about the words "lose weight." Lose is not a happy word. How much can you associate with "lose" and be happy? I'm going to lose my job. I've lost my family. Lost my home. Lost my dog. Lost my keys.
There are other negative associations for weight loss:
- I'm going to lose 20 pounds.
- I'm going to work on my weight.
- I'm going to beat this.
- I can't eat that.