Kicking Back in the Name of Weight Loss
The Right Mindset for Smart Decisions
It is no surprise that you are at your best when you are rested, relaxed, and confident. That goes for almost every aspect of your life, and it holds true for weight loss. Thinking clearly lets you “weigh” the consequences of the hard-boiled egg versus the French fries for a snack so you can see the benefits of choosing the egg for weight loss outweigh the benefits of choosing the fries for a few minutes of pleasure.
Self-confidence also lets you make the right choices. When you are confident, you know that you have the power to choose. You realize that are not a victim of circumstances, and you do not need to eat something just because it is available to you. You know that you have the power to say no to the things you should not eat, and the power to find the things you should.
Better Sleep, Better Choices
Sleep is not just a luxury to feel guilty about. Adequate sleep may be the missing key to your weight loss program. When you get enough sleep, you have lower levels of a hormone called ghrelin. Ghrelin makes you hungry, and less ghrelin helps keep hunger in check. Getting enough sleep also lowers carb and sugar cravings and gives you the strength to make rational decisions. Think protein and veggies, not potato chips and cookies.
Stress, Hormones, and Your Weight
In addition to your daily choices, there are behind-the-scenes factors that can cause weight gain when you are stressed. Hormones affect your metabolism and can cause weight gain when they are not balanced. Too much stress, for example, raises levels of a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol increases raise your hunger levels, which can lead to you overeat. It also affects your fat storage. You might gain more fat in your abdominal area, which is a health risk for diabetes, heart disease, and more.
Tips for Chilling Out
The first trick for relaxing is to get over your guilt. It is not only okay to kick back, but it is healthy. It may be surprisingly tough when you are out of practice, though. Here are some ideas for stepping back from your busy life and giving your mind a chance to recover for a healthier body.
- Set aside 10 minutes for yourself every day. Meditate, take a bath, read, or do something else that is just for you.
- Get more sleep if you find yourself waking up tired or struggling to get through the day.
- Exercise most days. A quiet stroll on the beach or a hike may seem like out-of-reach dreams, but any exercise helps clear your mind. Restorative yoga, a cycling class, and home exercise DVDs all do the trick.
- Stretch. It loosens your muscles and gives you a chance to think through your day.
Weight loss surgery success takes a lot of hard work, but there are some ways to get more bang for your buck without working harder. Take a chill pill, and you might find that the extra relaxation gives you the strength and stamina to lose more weight.