Thursday, May 19, 2011

Don't worry, be happy, lose weight

I come from a long line of worriers.  Anxiety, worry, and panic could easily be names of my family members.  I don't  know if it is learned behavior or if it is in our DNA, but constantly being stressed out is a normal way of being for me and everyone in my family.
I am not proud of this fact but it has been positively reinforced most of my life.  If I was stressed out my parents felt that I was working hard enough at school and they would tell me how proud of me they were.  My college professors loved me for it.  They always commented on how  hard working and conscientious I was due to my stressed out behavior.  And, I always excelled at my jobs due to the same thing.  I learned the lesson well that the more you worried and stressed out the more people somehow respected me for being hard working.  I know this sounds odd but it is true.  Even now my neighbors all have me house, pet, and baby sit for them because they say I take better care of their homes, pets, and children then they do.  Again, this must be due to how stressed out I act at times.

The problem with all this stressed out behavior is that cortisol and adrenaline comes with it.  These two hormones really work against weight loss.  So, my  stressed out default behavior is ruining my weight loss efforts.  Over the last few weeks I have done some experiments.  The days that I have decided not to care about what I eat as long as I only eat when hungry and stop when full have been the days I have lost weight.  That is as long as I felt relaxed that day.  It has always resulted in a 2-3 pound weight loss the next day.  If , on the other hand, I ate and felt stress or anxiety the scale immediately went up.  So, it is now clear to me that it is finally time for  me to give up my stress habit.

This is not easy for me but I am instituting some new habits to counteract the cortisol and adrenaline.  Exercise is great for all of that.  Yoga, walking, and even kata really help fight anxiety.  I am also taking a few deep breathing breaks every day.  I go to my bedroom, relax, and listen to relaxation CD's.  I am particularly in love with the CD's that come from a company called Lifescapes.  They seem to really help.

So, if you are having problems getting  your weight off give relaxing a try and see how it goes.

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