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April 2013 Issue

 


Fitness Article:

Don’t Call It a Comeback
By Frank Gigante (GYMFACE Pro Sponsored Athlete / Trainer)
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Life happens. At some point, we all end up having to put our workouts on the back burner for a short time. This may be due to an injury, a relocation of jobs and home, or the greater need to care for a sick family member. Whatever the reason, it is important to keep in mind that the layoff from the gym is only temporary and it does not erase everything you have worked for or change your goals for the future.

The key to getting back into a fitness routine, whether it is hardcore bodybuilding or just general health and exercise, is to not allow the time off to become the excuse for not starting again. Plan to get back to your program as soon as possible. Timing will never be perfect, so once you are ready and able to begin again, you must have a plan for success. Here are some strategies to guide you back on track to a successful return and moving forward.

Get Back to Routine
After a layoff, the best thing you can do is get back into your routine. If you had been working out 4 days a week, set a schedule to do that again. Sometimes the first week or so is still hectic as you are trying to get back into your routine. Take that into account; don’t dwell on the negatives if you only get in 2 or 3 of your scheduled workouts that first week or so.

The important point is that you are back in the gym: you are working your muscles again, and have made it past the toughest obstacle which is getting back in there in the first place.
The satisfaction of knowing you are putting that unplanned break behind you and moving forward by returning to the gym, will drive you to quickly get in all of your scheduled workouts in the following weeks and you will continue to build momentum.

Awkwardness Goes Away
Those of us who return from the gym after a short time off can attest that those first few workouts feel like we have never picked up a weight before in our lives. The movements are awkward and not as smooth as we remember, the weights feel heavy and off balance, and our stamina is definitely not what it should be. Know this ahead of time and accept that it is part of returning to the gym, but it is also a temporary condition.

Most times, muscles will remember the motion and “feel” of a workout within 2-3 sessions. The “groove” will quickly come back and with that the weights go up, stamina increases, and movements start feeling natural.

The awkwardness is part of the process. Accept it, know it when it happens, and work through it. Do not use it as an excuse to stop, or put off another workout for another few weeks. Regardless of how long it has been, the first workout or two will be awkward. In order to get back from this layoff and make even greater progress, it is essential to push through this short, but real, phase.


Start slow, but be persistent
Given everything mentioned in the strategies above, how do you make the first workouts back productive and positive? Rather than feeling like you are banging your head against the wall and feeling weaker than when you started, adjust your workout plans and goals. Do not expect to start with the same weight, number of reps, or distance/time as when you left. It’s realistic to get back there quickly in most cases, but to avoid hitting the wall of disappointment and losing your motivation, be aware that you most likely won’t start there.

If you are going to pick up with the same workout program, adjust your weights and other variables so that you are getting the most out of each workout. For example, if you were doing sets of 12 reps on a particular exercise, lighten up the weight so that you can still get sets of 12 reps for the same exercise. If you were running for a cardio workout and could run a specific number of miles, either keep the distance and do a combination or running and walking to reach the same distance or keep the pace and run less miles.

Make the adjustments to your program so that you still have attainable goals, still make progress, and don’t get frustrated or lose motivation.

Build upon each workout
Accomplishing just a single workout after a layoff often feels great; it makes you want to keep going. Yes, it is awkward and you will be sore after, but the endorphins were awakened and you felt revived. You want to keep going. You want to get back on track with your fitness program, your eating habits, and your cardio routine. That first workout builds the momentum you need to keep going and then it steamrolls from there. You will begin to feel that excitement as you put all the pieces together again.

Eat to meet your goals
Lastly, many times when our workouts take a detour, slowly but surely, our eating habits may also begin to slip. Now is the time to re-examine your eating plan and be sure it is aligned with your fitness goals. By optimizing the fuel you are putting into your body, you will also reap greater rewards in your workouts.

Much like training, do not beat yourself up over a period of not- so-great eating and food choices. You did what you did, and in some cases maybe needed to, and that phase is done. Time to regroup, stock up on the healthy food items you usually consume and get right back in to a healthy nutritional plan. Even this may have a few minor setbacks as you get back to your normal routine, but apply the same concepts mentioned above to successfully return to a healthy eating regimen. Forgive yourself, get right back to healthy meals, and build off of each meal or day of healthy eating.

Conclusion
When layoffs happen, for whatever reason, do not beat yourself up or punish yourself because you are not able to maintain your fitness workouts and programs. Understand that more important events and situations do arise and that time off is not always a bad thing. By adapting the mindset that each layoff is temporary, you train your brain and body to not only be ready to get back to it as soon as you can, but also accept each layoff as a time to rebuild and refocus. Using the keys mentioned above you can get back on track and into a new routine that will have you reaching and exceeding your previous top form.

We Invite You to Visit GYMFACE.com for more info about their great company >>>


Health Article:

Chiropractic May Soon Be a Leading Health Care Option
by: Dr. David Moore DC (Chiropractor & Owner of On Track Chiropractic)

The Lancet published research this month from a worldwide study that indicated that musculoskeletal conditions are the second leading cause of health disabilities all over the world. This is a huge news flash for chiropractors, their patients, and for everyone!

The study, consisting of seven scientific papers, was a collaborative effort by international researchers, who called their report “The Global Burden of Disease Study (2010).” The study project was led by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington with six other contributors: the University of Queensland, Harvard School of Public Health, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the University of Tokyo, Imperial College London, and the World Health Organization. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded the study, which involved over three hundred health institutions in fifty nations and included almost five hundred scholarly authors. The study covered worldwide health trends since 1990. The findings were also announced at the Royal Society in London in addition to being published in The Lancet.

The results of the study had great implications for chiropractic: Whereas dying young was once humanity’s greatest health foe (children under the age of five used to die by the millions) nowadays people live longer but they suffer more over a longer period of time from chronic conditions such as musculoskeletal disorders. The study found that child mortality has dipped significantly, although infectious diseases still take far too many young lives. Yet years of pain, all over the world, centered in the lower back and the neck subtract from the quality of life and also contribute to other health setbacks as people live longer. Musculoskeletal problems keep people from living full lives by immobilizing or impairing them and adversely affecting their vision, sense of hearing, and clarity of thought processes.

Researchers examined more than three hundred diseases, injuries, and risk factors. Lower back pain and road injuries stepped into the top ten leading causes of death and disability in the world.

What is more, worldwide economic problems mean that health educators and scientists are looking for the most cost-effective as well as treatment-effective remedies. The fact that this distinguished body of researchers found low back pain and automobile injuries a leading cause of not only death but lifelong health disabilities means that chiropractic may be given a more serious and searching look as a cost-effective health and pain management tool.

Visit Dr. Dave's Website: http://www.ontrackchiro.com/


Professional of the Month:

Gary Larcenaire
President and CEO (Valley Mental Health)

For more than two decades, Texas-born behavioral health executive Gary Larcenaire has dedicated his professional life to addressing and advancing the challenges facing the mentally ill, their families and their caregivers.

A dynamic leader fascinated by organizational development and change management, Larcenaire is President and CEO of Salt Lake City-based Valley Mental Health, presiding over $56 million in revenue and more than 700 employees, operating in three counties with more than 62 programs serving those with mental illness and substance use disorders.

Less than one year after his arrival, he has achieved a radical fiscal turnaround, bringing the financially beleaguered organization from a $1-million per month loss to a break-even position. This has been realized through increased efficiencies, providing a similar volume of service with far fewer employees, and decreased reimbursement. Larcenaire has also established clinical risk profiling to identify those at risk for higher levels of care (i.e.: hospital and jail), thus implementing community based services to decrease those risks.

Larcenaire has held several non-profit C-Level positions, most recently as CEO of El Paso Mental Health and Mental Retardation (MHMR) where his greatest impact on the underserved mental health population was achieved through partnerships with legislators to craft and monitor legislation and project impact, while managing a $42-million budget, 450 employees and nearly 200 contractors. During this time, he also acted as Founding President and CEO of Sun City Behavioral, a wholly owned subsidiary of El Paso MHMR and highly-profitable insurance company that manages a network of 180 providers serving 45,000 covered lives.

Prior to joining El Paso MHMR, Larcenaire was COO of Permain Basin Community Behavioral Health Centers, where he increased overall performance from “average” to “exceptional” in three years. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, and a Master of Public Administration, both from Angelo State University.

Named the 2009 Humanitarian of the Year by the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) in El Paso, Texas, Larcenaire is a past Chair of The Healthcare Council the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce, and served as Treasurer for the El Paso Symphony Youth Orchestra. A 20-year member of Rotary International, Larcenaire has been a Rotary Youth Leadership Award Counselor since 2004.

An avid lover of the outdoors, since moving to Salt Lake City, Gary has enjoyed hiking, biking and mountain climbing with his family and Golden Retrievers.

Who is Valley Mental Health?
Since 1987, Valley Mental Health has provided comprehensive treatment and services for people of all ages who are experiencing serious mental illness, substance use disorders and behavior problems. We believe people are best served in the least restrictive setting where care is tailored to the individual's needs. Families and community partners play an important role in a person's recovery. Valley Mental Health is a not-for-profit organization serving residents in three counties.

Visit the Valley Mental Health Website: http://www.vmh.com/

Help support the Valley Mental Health Foundation: http://www.vmh.com/Donations.aspx


Workout of the Month:

Yoga for Athletes - 15 min Advanced Workout!

By Sean Vigue Fitness

 

Yoga for Athletes is an advanced, flowing routine to help athletes excel in their fitness endeavors. It moves fast so always use control and modify as needed. Enjoy!

Sean Vigue is a certified Pilates, Yoga, Spinning, Nutrition, and Personal Training instructor (over 5000 classes taught), winner 'Best Male Workout' (Pilates for Men) by Pilates Style magazine, Master Core Specialist, TV and Film star, and professional singer/actor having appeared in over 70 opera, musical theater, and non-musical productions.

FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/seanvigue
TWITTER: http://www.twitter.com/seanviguefit
WEBSITE: http://www.seanviguefitness.com
BLOG: http://www.seanviguefitness.com/blog


Kids Health & Fitness:

KIDS' ORAL FITNESS KEEPS THEM HEALTHY AND HAPPY!
by: Joy V. Poskozim DDS PC

Reports show that American students miss 51 million hours of school every year because of oral health problems. And students who are absent miss critical instruction time—especially in early grades where reading skills are an important focus and the building blocks of future learning. And students who have experienced recent oral health pain are four times more likely to have lower grade point averages than their counterparts who have not.

Dental disease is the most common chronic disease of early childhood. Cavities and decay in baby teeth can also spread to permanent teeth, causing painful and costly damage.

But you can prevent this! Regular preventive care and a healthy diet can help prevent decay. Remember to schedule your child for an oral health screening by the first birthday.
Healthy baby teeth:
• Allow your child to chew and eat properly.
• Help your child speak clearly.
• Shape your baby's face.
• Guide adult teeth into place.
Dental decay in baby teeth affects your child's overall health.
• Cavities can be painful.
• Cavities can interfere with your child's ability to eat well.
• Dental disease can affect your child's overall health and development.

So, what is considered a healthy diet for your children? NO PROCESSED SUGAR! Please stick to milk and water only for your children at all times. Apples instead of apple juice. Oranges instead of orange juice. And, for sweet snacks, if ever, should be natural whole chocolate only. Worst case scenario I recommend Hershey's Kisses. Why? Because one Hershey's Kiss = three handfuls of Skittles by the time they open the Kiss up. And, chocolate melts. Skittles and other "fruit chews" sticks to the teeth all day, causing bacterial invasion of the teeth, which are cavities.

Make brushing a family event! If you have children that can't spit yet, pick a toothpaste that has Xylitol instead of Fluoride (Fluoride under the age of 3 can cause tummy upset if ingested). Xylitol is a natural plant-based sugar-alcohol which tastes sweet to us, has natural anti-cavity properties, AND is safe for family members of all ages. Whole Foods has a significant number of these types of toothpastes, such as JASON. ARBONNE has recently come out with a Mint Xylitol toothpaste that is safe to use and enjoyable for every person in your family. Brush and floss together twice a day to show your children how important it truly is.

"Oral health is an important part of overall health, and good oral health starts with baby teeth. If your baby's mouth isn't healthy, then your baby is not going to be healthy."
Dr. Russell Maier Family physician, University of Washington professor, and Washington Dental Service Foundation Board Member

Joyful Dental Care
(6314 N Cicero Ave. Chicago, IL 60646 / Phone (773) 736-7767 / Website: http://www.joyfuldentalcare.com)

Dr. Joy V. Poskozim is proud to serve Lincolnwood and the NW side of Chicago through integrative family dentistry. At Joyful Dental Care, they understand that dentistry is more than just fixing teeth; it is building relationships and creating an environment where everyone can feel comfortable receiving dental care. They have incorporated oral appliances for mild and moderate sleep apnea, dental laser therapy, quality dental care and patient compliance; creating a positive dental experience for the entire family.

Email: office@joyfuldentalcare.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JoyfulDentalCare
Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/joyposkozimdds
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/jvpdent/


Recipe of the Month:

Three Bean Minestrone Emilia Romagna Style

(Yield: 2 Quarts / Watch the Video Demo of this Recipe)

(Recipe provided by The Culinary Institute of America)

Ingredients

Olive oil - ½ cup
Butter - 2 oz.
Onions, small dice - 2 cups
Carrots, small dice - 1 cup
Celery, small dice - 1 cup
Mixed Beans, dried, soaked* - 1 cup
Stock, chicken or vegetable - 2 quarts
Crust from Parmigiano 3 X 3, cleaned - 1 ea.
Yukon Gold potatoes, small dice - 1 cup
Zucchini, small dice - 2 cups
Tomatoes, plum, canned - 1 cup
Spinach, shredded - 4 cups
Kosher salt and fresh ground - to taste
Black pepper - to taste
Parmigiano, grated - 1 cup

Method
1. Melt butter with olive oil over low heat, add onions, and sweat until wilted and soft, about 10 minutes. Add carrots and cook 3 minutes. Add celery, soaked beans, stock, and Parmigiano rind and cook for about 45 minutes, or until the beans are al dente.
2. Add diced potatoes and zucchini and cook for another 20 minutes. Add tomatoes and their juices.
3. Partially cover and cook at low simmer for at least 30 more minutes. Add more broth as necessary.
4. Add spinach and a splash of olive oil; season with kosher salt and black pepper.
5. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and some of the grated Parmigiano
Note: *Beans need to be soaked overnight in a container with cold water to cover by 3
inch. Drain the water and use in the soup. Mixed beans can be pink, pinto, kidney,
white beans, butter beans or cranberry.

Watch the Chef Prepare of this Great Recipe!!! >>>


The Culinary Institute of America
The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) is a private, not-for-profit college dedicated to providing the world's best professional culinary education. Excellence, leadership, professionalism, ethics, and respect for diversity are the core values that guide our efforts. We teach our students the general knowledge and specific skills necessary to live successful lives and to grow into positions of influence and leadership in their chosen profession. (Support the Culinary Institute of America)


Campus Corner:

BUYING HEALTHY ON A BUDGET
By: Kirsi Paalanen

How can I eat healthy on a budget?

This was a recent question that I answered as an expert member on Dr. Oz's Sharecare site. Here are my top tips:

1. Have some flexibility with your shopping list where it counts. It’s good to keep to a list to make sure you don’t end up buying on an impulse and only notice how it adds up at check out. Keep a list on what you definitely need and want but be flexible around items where prices fluctuate. For example fruits, poultry and seafood can have great deals and be easy on your pocket book.

2. Buying organic is great but can have an impact on your pocket book. There are some fruits and veggies that do not need to be organic to be healthy because of their thick outer skin or peel and the minimal use of pesticides used on them. The following fruits and vegetables are great picks: Fruits: cantaloupe, watermelon, mango, kiwi, bananas Veggies: onion, avocado, corn, cabbage, asparagus

3. Buying online can help keep you in check on how much you are really spending and can help you stay within budget. You can also avoid the uncomfortable situation of tossing the extra “too expensive” stuff off to the side when it tallies up to too much at the cash register. There are some great sites like freshdirect.com even amazon.com where you can buy food items. There is the added delivery charge but sometimes these retailers offer good deals on shipping and handling. For example at freshdirect they’ll take 2 bucks off your bill if there is a delivery already in your area. On amazon you can get free delivery if you have amazon prime membership or order purchases $25 and up on selected items.

4. Go for basic brands. They can be just as good as the premium more expensive brands on basic items like oatmeal or salt. Insider tip: in some cases the big brands may even manufacture the same stuff for the lesser known or store brands.

Kirsi Paalanen is a Health Coach and the founder of My Orange Villa, whose mission is to help you look and feel your best on the inside and out! Kirsi is very passionate about helping others achieve their best health - emotionally and physically. She helps her clients lose weight for good, cook healthy foods, reduce stress and feel more energetic. She most recently made a guest appearance for a cooking segment on a famous doctor's talk show. Her health coach training is from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

WEBSITE: http://www.myorangevilla.com
PINTEREST: http://www.pinterest.com/myorangevilla
FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/myorangevilla
TWITTER: http://www.twitter.com/myorangevilla
WEIGHT LOSS: http://myorangevilla.com/promo/


Health & Fitness Business:

How online video marketing with Pintrest will boost your SEO ranking
by: Robert Weiss

Is your marketing department ignoring Pintrest in hopes that it will be just another fad??? Did you know that Pinterest is retaining and engaging users as much as 2-3 times as efficiently as Twitter was at a similar time in its history. Not only is it the fastest growing social media site today, but because of its video SEO value, it is a great way to gain higher ranking for your business video advertising and web video productions.

The way Pintrest works is that each ‘pin’, ‘board’, and user profile receives an unique URL. So each ‘board’, (category of videos) you create, can be titled and tagged with targeted keywords, which Pintrest uses to create a keyword rich URL. This means that each and every ‘board will include your targeted keywords and be indexed by Google so searchers can find your online video production content.

This may get a bit technical, but their file structure is created specifically to managing and categorizing video content so that Google will index the titles and descriptions for your individual boards as key metadata for its own search results.

Pintrest increases Video SEO rankings
Pintrest knows that online video content is important to consumers because it helps them make informed decisions and is a the most valued type of online content available. And because consumers love for online video marketing brands are responding with more and more internet video marketing.

Major national retailers and e-commerce sites such as the The Home Depot, Whole Foods, The Gap, The Vitamin Shoppe, and Target, are just a few of the 200,000+ brands that use Pintrest to publish online content that includes video, images and descriptions.

Getting started with Pintrest
Pintrest is pretty easy to get started with. First, create separate boards for product / service categories you want to target consumers with. Even if you only have a small grouping, try to be as granular as possible and use long-tail keywords to help your SEO strategy.

Next, use as much of the 500 character-length keyword rich description. Include your company’s brand name, the name of the product or services and as many long-tail targeted keywords as possible.

Include more than your online video marketing content
Even if it is your first time on Pinterest, you will quickly see that the site is very visual. So think about other visuals your company may already have – such as, graphs, charts, website images, front pages of brochures, eBooks, pictures from your facility or company outing. Tagged with appropriate keywords, all this content could be found on search engines and drive traffic to your website.

If you really want to get detailed, you can create dedicated landing pages for each of your Pintrest boards. This way you can track and analyze the traffic you get to better plan your marketing resources.

Robert Weiss
President | MultiVision Digital Productions

Subscribe to our YouTube channel for business video examples --> http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=MVProductionsNYC
Connect on LinkedIn - http://www.linkedin.com/in/robertweissnyc
Phone - 646.319.8609
www.nyccorporatevideomarketing.com


Did You Know?

Super Speedy Spring Shape-Up
by Kristin McGee

Tank top season is just around the corner! Soon, we will be storing our winter clothes and bringing out cute, flowy dresses and short sleeve tops. Here’s one of my favorite yoga and weights combo to get you in top shape in no time at all. The entire workout will only take you 10-12 minutes and it will target every area of your body.

Boat Pose in to Canoe with weights

Start seated with both knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Grab one weight and place it between your feet, grab another weight and hold it in your hands. Lean back with your upper body (without sinking in to your lower back) as you lift your legs in the air knees bent calves parallel to the floor coming in to Boat Pose. Engage your lower abdominals and press your shoulders down away from your ears. Inhale as you lower your upper and lower body towards the floor until your hovering a few inches off the ground like a Canoe. Exhale, and lift your body back up to Boat Pose. Repeat 12-15 times. Perform 2 or 3 sets of 12-15 reps.

Superman or Locust with Weights


Lie on your belly with both legs straight and your arms out to your sides at shoulder height. Holding a weight in each hand, inhale and engage your entire back body as you lift your torso, legs and arms up off the mat. Exhale as you lower back down to starting position. Repeat 10-12 more times. Make sure to keep the tops of the shoulders down away from the ears. Keep your head in line with your spine (don’t overarch your neck) and imagine you are lengthening from head to toes so your body stays long and active. Squeeze an imaginary grapefruit between your shoulders blades to lift the arms up and contract the rear deltoids (great for fighting bra bulge!). If the weights are too challenging, you can do this without any weights or drop them after a certain point. Do 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps.

Downward-Facing Dog


From all fours tuck your toes under and lift your knees up off the floor straightening your legs and coming in to an upside down triangle position. You may need to walk your feet and hands a little further apart once you are in the pose. Make sure to press between the index and thumb of each hand and lift up out of your wrists. Bring as much weight as you can back towards the legs and press your torso back towards your upper thighs without letting your front ribs splay open. Engage your quadriceps muscles and feel the hamstrings, lower back and shoulders opening up. Stay and breathe for 5 to 8 full breaths in and out of the nose.

Chaturanga


From Downward-Facing Dog pose roll out to plank pose or start from a plank pose with hands directly beneath shoulders and the body in one straight line. Keeping the abdominals engaged, on an exhalation, lower the body down towards the floor. Pull the elbows straight back towards the sides of the waist like a narrow arm triceps push-up. Make sure your shoulders don’t round forward (again squeeze that imaginary grapefruit between the shoulder blades) and keep the entire body active. You can push back up to plank or move in to Upward-Facing Dog pose from here.

Upward Facing Dog


From Chaturanga, inhale and press your arms straight to lift your chest as you roll forward over your toes. Keep the body from touching the floor and use your abdominals, legs and arms to carry you forward in to this pose. If you have lower back issues you can keep your feet flexed in Upward-Facing Dog. Spread through your collarbones as you engage your rear deltoids and lat muscles. Press firmly through your thighs and scoop your lower abdominals in and up. Exhale, press back to Downward-Facing Dog or drop your knees and rest in a child’s pose.

Repeat Downward-Dog through Plank/Chaturanga in to Upward-Facing Dog 5 to 8 times.
The first two moves with weights preps the body for the Flow cycle of Downdog, Chaturanga, Updog so you can keep good form with the shoulder blades together and tops of the shoulders down away from the ears and the abs actively engaged the whole time. Do this mini workout whenever you can on it’s own, at the end of a cardio session, or before a longer yoga class. Aim for 3-5 days a week and keep it up throughout the spring, and come summer you’ll be psyched to wear your swimsuit!

BONUS MOVE
Tree Pose with Biceps Curl Triceps Press Combo


Stand with your feet together and both weights in your left hand. With your right hand reach down and grab your right foot and place it high on your upper inner left thigh. Once you feel balanced, transfer one of the weights to your right hand. Extend your left arm up above you arm bent overhead as if you’re scratching your back so the weight is between your shoulder blades. Extend your right arm straight down to the floor in front of your right knee. On an exhalation, press your left arm straight up to the ceiling (using the left triceps muscles) as you curl your right hand to your right shoulder with your right biceps muscle. Inhale return to starting position. Continue for 10-12 more reps and then switch sides. Repeat 1 to 2 more times on each side. Works the entire body, your balance and your mind, which will have to fully concentrate to do everything at once!

Visit Kristin McGee's Website: http://kristinmcgee.com/


QUESTION & ANSWER:

QUESTION & ANSWER:
How can I get off this weight loss rollercoaster
?

Answered by: Michelle Lewis, LCSW

How many of you have lost weight only to gain it back and then some? As we look at the history of structured diet programs, there is also a history of increased rates of obesity. Coincidence? I think not! There is well published research indicating that when people engage in a weight loss program and experience success, they tend to gain all of the weight back plus about 10%. That is pretty significant! Why is this? I think it boils down to a few things:

1. Most commercial diets are way too restrictive. This can easily lead to binge eating behavior. When we feel too restricted, we almost become what I describe as an oppositional teenager. The more you tell me no, the more I want to do the opposite. This sets us up for a cycle of self-sabotage. Once we take that first bite, all or nothing thinking kicks and we think we have already blown the diet, so we may as well throw it out the window and eat everything we've been denied.

2. They aren't generalizable. It is easy to have structured eating during the week when we have a structured schedule. Most people fall apart over the weekend when the rules go out the window. You eat out more. You spend time in social situations when you can't eat the items prescribed for you. When it is difficult to eat your allowed foods, you fall into the same trap described above.

3. There isn't enough variety. Many diets are one dimensional. Often there is a short list of acceptable foods or they are prepackaged. We need variety. That is why we have so many types of food available in grocery stores or restaurants. We need it from a physical standpoint and we need it mentally. We cannot get all of our nutrients from a handful of foods and we get bored when we don't have options.

4. We tend to think of weight loss as having an expiration date. We want to lose weight for an event, vacation or some deadline like a birthday. Once that passes, it goes back to business as usual. This leads to the y0-yo effect. We go down just to go back up. This can destroy our metabolism and it usually leads to more weight gain. Which is why the typical dieter gains back all of the weight lost plus about 10%. If we look at weight loss as a piece of our overall health and wellness, it becomes more about a choice in our lives long term, not just until you aren't obligated anymore.

Stop the yo-yo dieting! By looking at weight loss and balanced eating in terms of a lifestyle, you are more likely to be successful. If you take a step back and stop thinking about food in terms of should and shouldn't, it can be a tremendously liberating experience. Allow yourself to eat foods that are currently "forbidden." As soon as foods aren't off limits, they lose their power. When you actually take the time to enjoy your food without guilt, you will find that you don't feel the need to eat as much. You will begin to lose weight and actually experience long term success maintaining your weight loss.

Michelle Lewis, LCSW
http://www.slweightcounseling.com
http://www.facebook.com/MichelleLewisCounseling
http://www.twitter.com/LewisCounseling


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