12 mind tricks to help you lose weight
Losing weight. It’s the obsession of our lifetime. Currently, two in three adults in Australia are classified overweight or obese and 48 per cent of young people worry more about their body shape than overall health.
While we can’t wave a hand and instantly think ourselves slim, simply tweaking our thoughts can help us reach those fit goals.
Read on for easy tricks from top health and fitness experts that’ll have you thinking clearly, and more likely to lead a healthier life.
1. Create a visual reality
“Reach goals by visualising what you’ll look like when the weight comes off,” says Veronica Wallington, PT at the P.E. Dept.
“Picture what you’ll wear, how smoking you’ll feel when you’re at the beach, how you will look in that dress (or jeans) you’ve been dying to fit back into. It’s a tool that top models, actors and athletes use to reach a goal – if the image of success is so real, then not achieving it isn’t even an option.”
2. Fake it til you make it
“The inner critic in our head can make us feel like the worst version of ourselves. So just as you believe negative talk, flip it around and start telling yourself what a health goddess you are,” says Lee Sutherland, PT and health coach at Fitness in the City.
“Tell yourself how much you LOVE yoga/running/burpees or how you are totally a morning person. It may be a lie to begin with but if you continue telling yourself this over and over, soon you too will believe it.”
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3. Drop the numbers
“Don’t focus on the numbers on the scale, instead, soak up the benefits you begin feeling when the weight comes off,” says Wallington.
“How much clearer does your skin look? How shiny is your hair? How much energy do you have? How much easier it is to run and jump and move? Think of it as enjoying the journey, not just the destination.”
4. Calculate your lifespan
“The average life span for Australians is 80, so if you calculate using 80 as the field goal: 80 – your age x 365 days in the year, it gives you that many days left to live. For example – I am 37 years old, so 80 – 37 = 43, then x 365 = 15,695 days left to live.”
Istomin says this spurs him on to be productive for every one of those days. “We sleep for eight hours a day, so if you take a third off that sum (i.e. 15,695 x 0.66) you only have 10,358 actual ‘full’ days left to live. Suddenly every session becomes important and you appreciate how little time you have left on the planet.”
5. Weigh yourself down, literally
“Do a session wearing a weighted vest (anywhere from five-30kgs). After an hour you can imagine how exhausting it gets,” says Istomin.
“Now realise – that’s how hard your body has to work every single hour of every day that you carry around those extra kilos. Your joints, internal organs, respiratory system are a far more functioning unit when you’re not carrying around excess weight.”
6. Think of your body as a pet
“A fun concept is to think of your body as a pet – you must feed, exercise and lovingly care for it,” says Kristin Fulton, in-house nutritionist for Pressed Juices at The Galleries.
“It’s well known if you overfeed it, underfeed it or give them foods not consumed by their ancestors, then behavioural problems or illness will arise.”
7. Put it in writing
“Write down all the meals and snacks you are going to have for the day and then eat accordingly,” says Sutherland.
“If it’s not on there, you can’t eat it – especially that 3pm Mars bar you tend to go for. It’s also a great tactic for type A’s who need structure.”
8. Master mindfulness
“Commit to eating in a calm environment and think of each mindful, mouthful as an act of self-love,” says Tabitha McIntosh, in-house naturopath and nutritionist for Body Mind Life and Awaken Your Health.
“To practise eating mindfully – have breaks during your meal, put down your cutlery, breathe, tune in to your body and gage how much more food you need to be satisfied and satiated.”
“Also experiment with colourful veggies – eating a rainbow every day can help you feel vital, as well as ensuring you get a cross-section of nutrients and antioxidants to support every cell in your body,” says McIntosh.
9. Fight the emotions
“Eat out of hunger and intention to care for your body – not because an emotion or social construction is driving the activity,” says Fulton.
“Let go of restrictions and eat a diet predominantly from the earth and you will be better equipped to receive intuitive wisdom telling you what’s best for you.”
10. Become the master of distraction
“Meditate, go for a walk or have a nap whenever you crave something or are hungry, because chances are you aren’t really hungry,” says naturopath Anthia Koullouros of Ovvio Organics.
“If you can find other things that make you feel satisfied and comforted, then it helps break the cycle of food addiction.”
11. Tap into your body
“Your body is talking to you all the time – look and listen intrinsically for your body’s cues,” says McIntosh.
“Take time to learn what works for your body. Understand that all your experiences are completely unique, there is no one diet that fits all. Decide to be friends with your body and work with it.”
12. Ditch the victim mentality
“Believing or thinking you are fat will make you just that,” says Fulton,
“The old saying is true – ‘what you fear will appear and what you resist will persist’. Let go of wanting to look like someone else and appreciate all that your body is capable of right now.”
- Get fit and healthy on Bodypass
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