hard to love your body sometimes. Especially when television and
magazines try to show you “perfect” bodies that seem miles tinier than
you could ever hope (or want) to be.
Sure, you want to lose some
pounds to be healthier and to perhaps stop huffing and puffing when
walking up a flight of stairs. But, why even try, when it seems
like you have to work out for hours a day, eat nothing but lettuce and
generally not enjoy your life (or body) at all.
What if you
could take some small steps which could not only help you drop a few
pounds, but could help you love yourself in the process? Each of
the following steps helps keep you focused on your body in a very
positive way. If you wish to add a specific diet plan, or extra
workouts to your day, that’s up to you. But this is about going
back to the basics and beginning to truly love your body, just as it
is, one day at a time.
Just for today, try these steps:
deep breaths. Stress is detrimental to our mind, our body and our
sense of well being, yet we often feel powerless against it and let it
take over our lives. Often without realizing it, we spend our
time shallow breathing. Not enough oxygen gets to our brain and
other vital organs, and it begins to limit us mentally and physically.
Therefore, today (right now) forget everything else for a moment and practice deep, diaphragmatic breathing.
Begin your breath by breathing OUT, and emptying your lungs
completely. Blow all air out through your mouth until you feel
your lungs are empty.
2. Breathe IN completely through your nose.
Notice your diaphragm as you are breathing. (This is an area
approximately by your naval). Does your diaphragm push OUT or in
when you breathe in? Your diaphragm/navel should be pushing OUT
when you breathe in! Most people do not breathe properly, and do
what is called “chest breathing”, where they only use their upper
lungs. This is the shallow breathing I referred to earlier.
It is not a complete breath, nor does it relax and fully oxygenate the
cells in the body.
4. Hold the IN breath for a few seconds to let it fully expand the lungs
5. Breathe OUT completely, though your nose or mouth.
6. Breath IN again, once again making sure you are breathing from your diaphragm.
7. Repeat this for seven to ten breaths or until you feel relaxed and more alert.
more water. Of course you know how helpful water is to the body,
and to losing weight. You know it keeps you feeling fuller,
washes toxins out of the body and even keeps you younger looking.
you may wish to look up online studies which indicate the many other
attributes that healthy water consumption provides. For example,
if you have a lot of mental work to do and are not feeling particularly
coherent, grab a full glass of water and drink it down. You will
find that water has replenished your mental capacities and will allow
you to complete your work. Your brain needs lots of water
to function properly.
Therefore today (right now)
Resolve to drink at least one full glass of water in between any other
beverages you drink, or at least one full glass of water every 2 hours
(preferably every hour).
2. The next time you have a choice of beverage, try choosing water instead of coffee or soda.
Before your meal at a restaurant, make a point of finishing a whole
glass of water before you place your order, and ask that more water be
brought to your table.
4. Have a
filtered water pitcher at your desk, and drink from it often during the
day, refilling it in the morning, and at lunch.
Isometrics. You know, of course, that physical movement
will help you in your weight loss goals, as well as in how well you
feel. I have worked up from couch potato to marathon walker
myself, but if you feel you can’t do any of those “sweaty, traditional”
exercises, at least promise me you’ll do some Isometrics at your desk
or in your vehicle on your commute.
Therefore today (right now)
Tighten up your bottom. That’s right, as you read this, squeeze
your butt cheeks together and hold it. No one will even notice,
trust me. Hold it for a minimum of 60 seconds, or as long as you
can stand it. Release for a bit, and then go at it again.
Pull in your tummy. Pull it in hard. Feel as if a string is
coming from your back, through your navel, and pulling your entire
stomach area all the way to your back. Hold it tight for at least
60 seconds or as long as you can. Release for a bit, and then do
3. Hold your legs straight out
in front of you and tighten up your leg muscles, especially your
thighs. People might notice this one, so only do it in the
privacy of your office. Hold them tight, tighter, tighter,
pushing your kneecaps closer together, then release.
For saggy neck muscles, you may of course do the exaggerated vowel
sounds. You don’t need to repeat them aloud, but this is still an
exercise best done in the privacy of your own office (if you do them in
your car and someone notices, who cares really? You’ll never see
these people again). Simply over-exaggerate each vowel and hold
your chin up high and tight as you say Aaaaaa, Eeeeeee,
Iiiiiiiii, Ohhhh, Uuuuu.
There are many more which can be
found online. The point is that your body will feel more alert,
and more taken care of, when you devote even small amounts of time to
tightening it up.
Stretches can also be done anywhere, and I
would suggest sitting up tall at your desk (or in your car) and putting
your chin to your chest to stretch your spine, and any other stretches
that come to mind.
Here’s another suggestion which may sound
odd, but try it. The next time you’re about to reach for food,
massage your hands instead. Use lotion if you like, but just
deeply massaging your fingers and hands, one at a time, is a
reflexology exercise which can not only take your mind off of food, it
can relax your body and bring your focus to something more positive.
Affirmations! Of all of the ideas listed here, I would rate this one the highest.
• The way we talk to ourselves determines what we choose to believe
• What we believe determines what we will create
• What we create is what we experience! It becomes our reality.
self-talk is not just some new-age, unfocused bandage. It is a
daily (hourly) reminder of what we are choosing to create and
Therefore today (right now)
Catch any negative self-thoughts and turn them around. If you
hear yourself thinking “I’m fat and will always be”, change that to “I
love to treat myself well and now choose to make a healthier body”.
2. Start each day with positive self-talk.
Do affirmations in your head during your lunch time, bathroom breaks,
and any other time when you usually just let your mind wander.
4. Do positive self-talk before you go into any meetings at work, or in any traffic on the highway.
Repeat positive self-talk affirmations when you are about to eat
something that wouldn’t be in your best interest.
6. Do affirmations when you feel you’re too lazy to do the workout you have planned.
Buy my book, “The Book of Affirmations”, which contains over 5,000
categorized, positive self-talk statements. They are specially
designed to work quickly and effectively.
I’d like to say a
quick word on visualization as well. Remember, the more often you
see and feel yourself at the weight and size you desire, the quicker
you will create that as your reality. Saying affirmations WHILE
you are visualizing yourself at your ideal size and wearing clothes you
are excited to wear, will heighten their effectiveness.
Only you have the power over:
• What you put in your mouth
• How much exercise you give your body
• How much water you drink
• How you talk to yourself
• How you see yourself in your own mind
• How much you love yourself
don’t look to others to get the job done. Look within and begin
with these simple improvements to your daily life, and you’ll find your
body more than happy to work with you to make a healthier you.
have a new Weight Loss Adventure group starting up on September 1,
2009. Come to my web site and check out the details. I hope
you’ll join us! http://www.unleashedminds.com