“Battle of the Bulge! All’s Fair in Love, War and Weight Loss!”

Well, day three of “project resolution.” It’s really a little too soon to say, but so far so good. I tell you, I’m determined to make it happen, only time will tell. Speaking of resolutions, do you know what the number one resolution is again this year? With over 65% of American adults being overweight or obese it should come as no surprise that the top resolution is working out and losing weight.

This is the time of year when gyms, fitness centers and diet programs like Weight Watchers and Nutrisystem, prosper. I’m sure weight-loss clinics and weight loss surgeries like the Lap Band also do well. The triple holiday period beginning with Thanksgiving, through Christmas and ending with New Years is notorious for causing people to gain weight, on average many people gain from 8 to 12 pounds! Consider yourself lucky if you managed to maintain your weight or only gained a pound or two, very lucky.

After the first of the year the mad dash begins as we try to shed that unwanted weight by walking, running, exercising, biking and hitting the gym. Many fitness center memberships more than double after Christmas, but a month or so later, those numbers dwindle down to  the truly committed which are few.

If you are anything like me you could stand to lose some weight and you’d really like to, but motivation is a big problem. No matter what you do, you just can’t seem to get started or maybe you manage to get started for a short time and then burn out. A lack of motivation  is my problem, and it’s not a holiday season thing, my weight loss struggle is year long. I don’t need to make a resolution to loss weight. Hell I resolve to lose weight countless times throughout the year. I just can’t get in the exercise groove and stay there.

So what can we do to keep the flame burning and the pounds melting off? What do we do when the tried and true weight loss methods just aren’t cutting it? Well I went searching on line yesterday looking for some new weight loss tips that might be inspirational  in my pursuit to shed pounds and slim down. Oh, I found several. How about this one. Next time you sit down to a meal try eating using your non-dominant hand. That’s right just switch hands and you’ll eat about 30% less. Research shows that when using your non-dominate hand you slow down your eating style. Maybe it’s fumbling around with your fork or spoon, maybe missing your mouth,  I’m not sure, but it works.

This one is my favorite. It’s the one of the same technique quit smoking clinics use. Try eating while sitting in front of a mirror and watching yourself eat. It’s a psychological reaction. Again consumption drops by about a third. Perhaps seeing yourself stuffing your face triggers a motivational guilt trip or simply serves as an in your face reminder of  your diet or health plans.

Here’s a good trick, nothing magical or tricky about it. Next time you go out to eat or even eat at home wear tight fitting clothes. That’s right. When we’ve gained extra weight we tend to cover it with loose fitting clothing like a sweatshirt, pants with waistbands that stretch or bulky sweaters. If we wear tight clothes instead, as soon as we begin overeating the tight clothes will be a constant reminder that we’ve had enough. Hey, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it! I probably will. Believe me I’ve got plenty of tight fitting clothes!

How about this one? Instead of eating, next time try sniffing your food. Uh huh, sniff it. A study of 3000 volunteers conducted by the appropriately named, Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago found that if you sniff a banana, apple or peppermint you’ll lose weight! The more often you sniff these aromas, the more weight you can lose. Participants in the study who sniffed most frequently. lost an average of almost 30 pounds during the 6-month study. Some participants lost up to 18 pounds in a month. Somehow sniffing these scents tricks the brain into thinking we actually ate the food.  I’ve got to try this one!

We all know about keeping food journals or food diaries documenting the things we eat each day, but what about keeping a photo food journal instead? Most of us have cell phones with cameras that we can use just about anywhere. Keeping a photo of the bagel covered with cream cheese you had for breakfast and the turkey sandwich and green salad drenched in ranch dressing you had for lunch instead of simply writing “bagel w/cream cheese” or “turkey sandwich and salad,” might pack more of a punch when we look back at them and make us think twice about over-eating.

I came across several other weight loss tips, ideas, tricks and gimmicks we can try in our pursuit to shed pounds everything from devices you wear to bed at night to shed pounds while you sleep, fad diets like the “toothpaste diet”, to something as simple as eating in silence and savoring every bite. Supposedly eating in a noisy environment is said to cause us to eat faster and our brains don’t register that we’re full until we’ve already over-eaten. Most of the places we frequent are pretty noisy take Chili’s or B J’s for example. I guess we’ll have to start eating out at quiet, more romantic restaurants, my wife would like that!

If you truly want to lose weight use your common sense when deciding your course of action.  Obviously commitment, exercise and proper diet are the key factors. But hey, some of us need a little extra incentive and if we find something that works for us, that’s fine. If you come across something that works, please share. I have to tell you I really like the food photo journal idea and will probably try it. In combination with some exercise and good food choices it might actually help. I may even give that sniffing idea a try. Why not? What could it hurt? Besides, all’s fair in love, war and weight loss!

Just Saying…

JS



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