Get inspired (by reality)

I had two Get Inspired sessions this week for people taking the Nutrition for Weight Loss series at Nutritional Weight and Wellness. Amazingly enough, people come to hear my story and get some tips for the weight loss journey they have embarked on.

What is so interesting is that the hour is spent with me talking about the realities of how I lost 90 pounds and how I continue to keep it off. Rather than sound bites that basically say, “I am so awesome and have such a complete, awesome life now that I have lost the weight,” I get very real about what it takes–the tedium of planning meals, the day in and day out forethought that goes into eating well in a less-than-ideal food culture, and on and on. I also share mundane tips about how to choose a salad dressing and how to be OK when you “fall off the wagon” of healthy eating.

And you know what? People leave smiling and inspired–by reality. They thank me for my frankness and real approach. They are SO TIRED of the ads for one-size-fits-all diet plans featuring before and after pictures of people who have lost weight and “all is awesome.” They are so tired of the promises that they can “lose 20 pounds by (fill in the blank with a season or holiday).”

They know they need to get real. These fellow weight loss travelers are at the end of a long road, filled with diets and gimmicky weight loss plans. When they hear some realities from the journey, it is comforting. When all you are used to is seeing someone at the end of the journey flashing a bright smile and wearing a sleek new dress (think Jennifer Hudson in her Weight Watchers ads), you get a distorted view of what reaching your weight loss goals and getting thin really means. That is, a day-by-day effort that continues for the rest of your life. All of your problems are not magically solved because you've lost “the weight.” But with more energy and a greater sense of well being, those problems are easier to manage. It's not about glamour and infinite awesome-ness now that you are thin. It's about getting real and seeking well being. That's inspiring.

 

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