Will you be one of the lucky few who are able to maintain a high level of fitness and avoid gaining weight during the holidays? How are these individuals different from those of us who have repeatedly tried and failed to change our eating habits or add exercise to our routine? And how are they able to skip lightly through the special temptations of the holidays?
The answer resides in a quality that I call innergy. Innergy is the place inside us that provides the motivation and will to change our habits. Other people can inspire us, educate us and train us. But to succeed, we have to self-manage our way through a maze of daily decisions. And only inside our hearts do we find the innergy to guide our decision making and make our vision a reality.
I discovered my own innergy just in time—before my body was irreversibly damaged by surplus pounds and a sedentary lifestyle and before I suffered chronic or fatal medical problems. Armed with this newfound strength, I moved steadily toward fitness and weight loss. Since then, I’ve made it my mission to help others make similar decisions—before it’s too late.
In the course of this work, I’ve talked with many individuals who are struggling to lose weight and become fit. I commonly hear despair in the stories from people who have tried and failed to make changes, just as I had tried and failed for over 40 years.
As I did, they mistakenly feel that the problem of excess weight arises from overeating. If they could just stick with a diet, they reason, they could lose weight. Moreover, these individuals believe I succeeded because I have willpower.
They are mistaken. I am not blessed with abundant willpower; however, once I tapped into my innergy, I became a good student. I discovered that overeating was not the problem. Rather, overeating was my solution to the stress and discomfort of everyday life. I learned more healthful ways of coping that reinforced my commitment to living more healthfully.
Here are three ways to tap your own innergy to lose weight and get FIT:
F: Figure out and list the different ways you can comfort yourself—from taking a hot shower to walking outdoors to escaping into a good book. Create a personalized buffet of coping options from which to choose when you feel discouraged, fatigued or out of sorts.
I: Invent yourself anew. Learn new ways to cook that are healthy and less fattening. Discover fun ways to exercise that you thoroughly enjoy. Experiment with tennis, dancing, Pilates, swimming, walking, bodybuilding, yoga or other forms of exercise until you find one or two that make you feel like a kid again.
T: Tell everyone about your heartfelt dream to nourish and care for your body. Enroll your friends and family to support you and to tackle their own fitness goals. You can inspire others just as they can inspire you. Fortunately, our bodies are wonderfully forgiving. They can respond magnificently and quickly when we adopt healthful habits.
In contrast to the approximately $33 billion a year Americans spend on diet products—from diet books to unregulated supplements promising magical weight loss—these three tips are practical and inexpensive to implement.
And innergy is free. No one can sell it to you, nor can anyone take it away from you. The very quality that allows you to set your lifestyle change in motion resides within you and is connected to your deepest values.
As writer Maria Robinson said, “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
The New Year is only a few weeks away. Are you ready to tap into your innergy and trigger an authentic commitment to well-being? One that will inform your daily decision making in 2013 and allow you to realize fitness and weight loss beyond your wildest dreams? That dream is yours for the taking.