The other day as I was working out in my humid basement, sweating to the tune of a fitness instructors DVD, the message really struck me. As a nutrition professional, I know without a doubt most people will not get a ripped 6-pack or thin thighs by working out for 30 minutes a day. This body “evolution” involves so much more (diet, genetics, etc). The main reason for my “suffering” through the endless droning about transforming your body is that I actually really like to workout. Over the years I have seen a great improvement in my fitness, however, with that has come inevitable aging changes & the reality that I do enjoy eating.
Very few of us can say we have never struggled with our weight or body image. And messages like “get ripped in 30” certainly do not contribute to body acceptance. (i.e. accepting your genetic blueprint). While I certainly don’t believe that body acceptance means a sedentary lifestyle and stuffing yourself silly, dieting does not work and there are countless studies supporting this conclusion.
So what is the long-term solution? Of course, I am a proponent of movement, not simply exercise, but minimizing our daily sedentary activities. I also believe that knowledge is power, so educating yourself about the basics of nutrition is another key piece of the puzzle. In addition, I am a huge fan of Intuitive Eating principles and the 3 main principles are a great starting point for changing your lifestyle and step away from chronic dieting
1. Unconditional permission to eat when hungry & what food is desired.
2. Eating for physical rather than emotional reasons
3. Reliance on internal hunger & satiety cues to determine when & how much to eat.