How Can I Get a Handle on My Weight? Six Keys to Weight-Loss Success (Part 1)

Many of us struggle with our weight. And for those who don’t, they probably wish they could gain some weight. When you see others who are walking around without a weight problem, that doesn't mean they don't struggle. Most of them may have to work at it to maintain a healthy weight.

You are not alone in your weight struggles. Many people face the same struggles you do. I Corinthians 10:13 (English Standard Version) says, "No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it."

But what is the way out? There are no easy answers, and there are many components to weight loss we may not even be aware of. We obviously think about how much we eat, what kinds of food we eat, and how much we exercise.

There are other contributing factors that play a role in weight management and are too numerous to name all of them here. Here are a few though:

     * patterns of eating

     * celebrating with food

     * comforting yourself with food

     * giving in to convenience

     * giving in to what tastes good, not what is good for us

     * rationalizing

     * food addictions

     * hormonal imbalances

     * side effects of medications

     * stress

     * lack of sleep

     * not drinking enough water

     * low self-esteem

     * mental disorders, such as depression or anxiety

Let me ask you something. Regarding your weight problems, if you needed to hire a trainer, would you hire you or fire you? I am guessing you wouldn't hire yourself because you wouldn't be in this position if you would.

What do you need to be successful in your weight-loss efforts? There are three  important ingredients to weight-loss success in Part One and three more in Part Two. Let's look at the first three:

Eating Right

It's important to eat a healthy diet. There are so many plans out there - Paleo, Mediterranean, vegan, vegetarian, Weight Watchers, and the list goes on. Before beginning, consider the following:

     * get a good physical from your doctor

     * get a nutritional consultation while you're at your doctor's appointment

     * consider your lifestyle

     * consider foods you do like that would work

     * consider including all the food groups

     * find something you can maintain for the long haul


Exercise is probably not one of your favorite activities, yet it is important for good health. It does more than burn calories. If you need motivation to exercise, consider some of the other health benefits:

     * it lowers your blood pressure

     * it regulates your blood sugar

     * it strengthens your muscles for better movement and functioning

     * it decreases arthritis pain

     * it helps to control additions

     * it improves your mood

     * it reduces stress

     * it improves self-confidence

     * it lessens anxiety

     * it decreases cognitive decline

     * it boosts your brain power/sharpens memory

     * it boosts your creativity and productivity after exercise

Now that we're sold on the benefits of exercise (not just for weight management), find activities you enjoy doing to increase the likelihood of making it a reality. It might mean finding a sport you like, joining a class or gym, or working out at home.

Whatever you choose, make sure you are consistent. It does a body good!

Thinking Right

It's important to have healthy self-esteem to create the results we want. So often we've had negative input in our growing-up years and end up sabotaging our efforts. We play victim to ourselves and settle for much less than we want out of life.

This will take some time to change. Begin by becoming aware of what negative thoughts you're telling yourself. You must challenge them and reframe them more positively. Check out the following:

Example: I think others are critical of me. Challenge: You don't know that they are, and what if they are? Reframe: I know I have good qualities, and I like being me. If the reframe is uncomfortable, you have some work to do.

This will give you a start to begin eating more healthily, exercising, and changing your thought patterns. In Part Two, we will look at the impact of sleep and stress on our weight as well as finding a support system with accountability.

Let's get started!