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When it comes to losing weight, the conversation is often well, hostile. People define their goals with words including shredded and ripped rather than strong and radiant. You don’t just lose some of your body fat, you have to burn it. You’re not transforming your diet to include more healthy foods that nourish you, you have to cut out the toxic foods that are making you fat and trick your body into thinking it is full.
But what if we changed the conversation? What if we dismissed the ideas that exercise has to be torture? What if changing your diet didn’t have to mean deprivation?
A change in tone might be what we are sorely lacking. Two out of every three adult Americans are either overweight or obese. Excess body fat does more than simply show up on your waistline. It puts your health at risk for problems such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, depression, respiratory disease, musculoskeletal disorders, infertility and even certain types of cancer.
If you are overweight or obese and you want to feel better while living longer, you have to lose body fat. But you don’t have to approach weight loss as a punishment -- being overweight or obese is not a moral failing that needs to be punished. You will have a much more enjoyable time on your weight-loss journey if you approach it out of love for your body.
Love Your Body with Exercise
Look into exercise classes at your local community center or take advantage of the free trial runs at gyms near your. Single parents that may not have the money or time to make it to these places can try out different exercise routines you can find online. Anything that can get you moving that also builds strength and flexibility is great, but what you really want to find is something that you find fun. Enjoying exercise is the only way you will make it a part of your routine.
While it’s important to find an exercise routine where three to five days a week you break a sweat, the things that can really make a difference are all the ways we stay active in between workouts. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Start walking the dog with the kids after dinner as a way to unwind and digest. Look for little ways to keep moving throughout the day and you will reap the mental and physical benefits of an active lifestyle.
Love Your Body with Nourishment
If you want to lose weight, forget about the word “diet.” Nobody wants to diet. For a lot of people, if you tell them they can’t have something it makes said thing that much more desirable. Instead of thinking of the foods you can’t have, reframe your mindset to focus on the wholesome, delicious foods you can have.
- Crisp, fresh vegetables that provide vitamins, minerals, and essential hydration
- Nourishing whole grains like steel cut oats and quinoa
- Ripe, fresh fruits bursting with sweet juices
- Crunchy and snackable nuts and seeds
- Healthy fats like olive oil and avocado
- Lean proteins -- eggs, chicken, fish, and lean beef are all on the table
- Creamy low-fat dairy
- All the herbs, vinegars, and flavorful spices you can handle
- As much fresh, clean water as you want
When you think about it that way it’s not so bad, is it?
More Tips to Love Your Body
Get plenty of rest each night. Not only does a good sleep routine help structure your day, but studies have shown sleep loss contributes to weight gain.
Many of us use food as a coping mechanism we turn to when experiencing negative emotions. Confronting difficult problems and addressing mental health disorders can help curb unhealthy eating habits.
Get in tune with your mind and body with meditation. Just taking a few minutes a day to be still and focus inward cultivates a more positive attitude regarding your overall well-being. This can be a real performance hack also, contributing to better mind management before, during and after a game.
The health risks associated with being overweight or obese are real, but showing your body some love through healthy living can reduce your chances of developing them. Look for fun exercise routines you want to do and fit in movement throughout the day wherever you can. Enjoy a diet full of wholesome, nutritious foods that feed body and soul. Finally, seek holistic health with plenty of rest, counseling, and meditation that promote sound body and mind.
Guest Author Daniel:
Daniel is a single dad raising two children. At Dad Solo , he aims to provide other single dads with information and resources to help them better equip themselves on the journey that is parenthood.