I just read another Facebook post by someone who has been injured and has been unable to exercise. I get it; I’ve been there. Using injury as a crutch to be fat was a specialty of mine (I’m not implying that the person making the Facebook post was doing this. I used to do that!). What made me sad was that this person still believed that exercise was the key to weight loss.
90% OF WEIGHT LOSS IS WHAT YOU PUT IN YOUR BODY. 10% IS EXERCISE.
I know this is a fact because I lost 110 lbs in one year without exercise. You read that right. I did nothing. Sure, I dabbled here and there with some physical activity, but nothing regimented and definitely nothing that would make me sweat. I only recently began doing push ups daily, but that’s a far cry from an exercise regimen. I’m working up to it, and I’ll get there someday (soon, I hope!), but for now, I’m still living an exercise-free life and still losing weight.
If you’re putting off losing weight because you think you need to exercise, stop. Stop buying into the hype and marketing that losing weight means sweating. It does not. Not even a little. “But I know people who have lost weight by exercising!” you’re thinking, and you’re not mistaken. People who exercise tend to eat better and pay attention to the quality of the food they are putting into their bodies. My sister is phenomenally fit, and she eats foods I would never even consider eating, but she eats them in very small quantities and she also exercises more than 90% of exercising people I know. Not only is she limiting her caloric intake, but she’s exerting far more than the average gym rat.
“So you’re saying that I can lose weight just by eating certain foods?” YES I AM! I did it. Look at this picture of me before and after. Bear in mind that the only difference between the two photos is 10 months and a different diet.
No, I’m not skinny (yet!), but I’m no longer obese. Also, I didn’t do some sort of weight loss diet like Adkins or the Cabbage Soup diet. I changed my eating habits and adopted the Paleo Lifestyle after doing a Whole30.
You can lose weight without exercise. You can have two broken legs and lose weight. You can be a paraplegic and lose weight. All you have to do is eat right.
I’m not taking anything away from those who love to exercise, or who use exercise to be fit. I just don’t want anyone to believe that if you can’t exercise, you can’t lose weight, or worse, if you don’t exercise you won’t lose weight. That’s complete BS, and I’d be very incredulous of any fitness “Expert” who tells you that working out is the only way to lose weight. I’d stay very clear of anyone who spews that BS.
Take it from a guy who lost 110 lbs in one year without exercise: change your diet, eat healthy, and just get up and move a little, and you will lose weight.
So, apparently if you adopt the Paleo lifestyle or diet, you’re going to become a cannibal. That’s what this stupid article implies. I’m not calling it stupid because I disagree with it, or because I’m offended that someone doesn’t think Paleo is a good idea. I think it’s stupid because it’s poor journalism, absurd, and sensationalist.
The title leads with news about the diet: “Stomach Churning News About the Paleo Diet.” Notice, it doesn’t say, “Stomach Churning News About the Diet Neanderthals Ate” or anything more accurate. It’s clickbait. It says “…News About the Paleo Diet.” That implies that the article addresses the diet and not what anyone in the paleolithic age ate.
I don’t think I need to mention that cannibalism is nowhere on the list of any Paleo lifestyle adherents’ menu. At least I hope I don’t have to mention that. OK. I DON’T EAT PEOPLE. There. I said it. Can we move on now?
I get it. People don’t want to do something that is even remotely restrictive in the types of foods they can eat. As Americans, we love freedom, and freedom to choose any food we want and to put any food into our mouths is a freedom many of us enjoy. I don’t want to take anyone’s freedom away; I want you to make smarter, more informed decisions about the types and quality of the food you’re putting into your body. Some foods just aren’t good for humans and we need to avoid those.
Seeing anti-Paleo articles are funny because so many are based on outdated or fraudulent data that they are easy to dismiss, but implying that adopting a Paleo lifestyle can lead to cannibalism is just plain stupid. Stupid, stupid, stupid. Shame on you, Sophie Krietzberg and refinery29.com.
The following post is a rant. It’s meant for those who make excuses or who think they can’t live without bread, pasta, carbs, or sugar. I’m warning you now: I’m not pulling any punches on this one and will likely hurt someone’s feelings.
The biggest complaint I hear from people who want to get healthy or lose weight but never get around to it is that while they really want to do it, they just can’t seem to get around not eating sugar, carbs, beans, or grains anymore. They can’t imagine life without their bread or pasta. How can they eat chili without beans? A life without cake?
I get it. I was there. I know the excuses; I used them all. But at some point, the excuses need to end and you need to get serious and stop fooling yourself. Here is where my Marine Corps mindset comes into play. (Remember, I warned you.)
Suck it up, buttercup, and do whatever it takes.
If you want to get healthy and lose weight, there are some things you’re going to have to give up. There’s no way around it. Anything short of 100% effort is setting yourself up for failure. If you’re not going to commit fully, why lie to yourself and everyone else and even try? Why not just forget getting healthy? Go ahead and eat all the foods you want, but make sure your will is written, witnessed, and notarized as proscribed in your state, because if you’re not going to set your mind to it and do everything in your power to succeed, you’re wasting your time and the time of everyone around you and you will likely pay for it with your life.
It’s harsh, cold, and unfortunately, the truth.
I get it; it’s hard. Sugar addiction is powerful. I had it, and I know others who are going through kicking it, and they are having a hard time with. Sometimes, we stumble and fall and eat something bad. That’s not what I’m talking about here. What I’m talking about is people who want to get healthy but won’t do the work. They want to lose weight but are constantly looking for the easy way to do it without giving anything up. Well, guess what? There’s no such thing, and there never will be.
Eating right is the only way to lose weight and be healthy.
You can’t eat all the crap you want and exercise it away. You can get strong, but you won’t get lean and your body will be hurting on the inside. You can’t eat bad foods and expect to eat well for one or two meals a day while ignoring that one meal with all the carbs and sugar.
If this offends you, maybe you really need to take a look at your priorities and decide for yourself if this is something you want. Do you want to take back your health? Do you want to be active and have more energy? Do you miss doing active things with your friends? Do you not want to feel embarrassed when you go outside, to the mall, or to a restaurant? Do you want to travel on a plane without having to ask for the extra belt? Do you want to see your children grow up, or maybe your grandchildren and be able to play with them and pass on the wisdom you learned from your grandparents?
If the answer to any of those questions is yes, then stop fooling yourself, realize that change isn’t easy, and that dedicating yourself to a healthy lifestyle is necessary. The good news is that it doesn’t have to make your life miserable. There are a lot of foods that are good for you that are delicious, and no, I don’t mean kale, baked chicken, and salad. I eat a multitude of amazing and delicious foods that allow me to feel full and are good for my body. For a good set of recipes, I recommend you look at my wife’s blog where she posts the most delicious recipes of foods we’ve personally made and enjoyed. The down side to eating healthy is the preparation time and planning, but that’s it. You don’t need to run 100 miles a week. You don’t need to do videos. You don’t need to pay me or buy pills, vitamins or products. You can do all that stuff if you want to, and some say it may even help them, but I didn’t. I can only speak from my own experience, and my experience has been just eating right.
I don’t want you to hurt inside anymore. I don’t want you to feel embarrassed in your own skin like I used to be. I want you to live the life you want to live, on your own terms, and with delicious and healthy foods. Make the decision to commit to the change in your life. It’s so worth it. I know bread is delicious. Cocaine is amazing to those hooked on it, too. But it doesn’t make it good for us.
I am not using any super powers to succeed at my weight loss, nor am I using any mind control tricks on myself to keep from eating foods that are not Paleo compliant. I use the same tools you have: delayed gratification. Do you have a college degree? A certification? A trade, skill, or career that took more than a few days to earn? Then you know what’s required, and you can do this.
Short-term gratification (eating foods that are bad for your health) versus long-term gratification of living a longer, healthy life at a weight that doesn’t limit you. The choice is up to you. The fee is commitment, some time and effort, and ultimately, giving up some tasty things that do far more harm to you than good. If you want to go for it, do it with all your heart. Anything less is cheating yourself. You owe it to yourself to give it your all.
I am tempted to apologize for the tone of this post, but I can’t bring myself to do it. Some people learn through love while others learn from harsh reality and pain. I said in my very first post on this blog that I won’t sugarcoat any of my advice or my thoughts. While I try to be congenial and tactful, there comes a time when the only way the truth can get through to someone is to be blunt.
If you have questions, need answers, or just someone to bounce some ideas off of, feel free to email or message me. I really want to help. But do yourself a favor, and get your head in the game and really commit to the lifestyle changes necessary to make this work forever. There is no quick fix, and there is no short-term diet that will get you skinny and then keep you that way.
Trigger warning: this article may trigger cravings in some who are still new to Paleo or are in their first Whole30. If you are one of these people, you might want to skip this article.
Sometimes, after eating well for the first time for a few weeks, or even a month or so, we long for the unbridled and unrestricted eating patterns we used to be in. It’s only natural; when we didn’t really concern ourselves with the quality of the food we were eating, we just crammed anything that we found delicious into our mouths. When we didn’t concern ourselves with the amount of calories, we ate as much as we wanted to. When we didn’t consider the effect that these foods had on our health, it was easy to just eat, eat, and eat some more.
But a crazy thing happens when you do start considering these things and become concerned with the quality of your food and its effect on your health; you change what you eat and you start watching what you eat. However, you might also begin to miss all these delicious foods you used to be able to eat with wanton abandon. What’s worse is that most of these foods probably had carbs or sugar in them, and as such, the cravings you have for them are as strong as (and science suggests it could even be stronger) than a drug addiction. You want that pizza, pasta, chocolate cake, milk shake, or peanut butter cup. You want it so bad you start fixating on it, even considering the “small hit” it will make in your new eating plan and any progress you’ve made so far. You start to justify the “cheat,” begin to make excuses, even commiserate with others who are also eating well and getting them to agree with you that, “A little cheat here and there won’t hurt anything.”
And then it happens; you go off-plan and eat some pizza. Or fried food. Or dessert.
As a reward for this cheating, your stomach rebels by giving you horrible pain. Your body feels sluggish, the energy you’ve been feeling lately is suddenly sapped. Then the guilt kicks in. You feel horrible, both physically and emotionally. You let yourself down, and this depression could lead to more bad food decisions. Many people cite this point as the departure from their healthy eating plan. This is where most people fail; the proverbial fall off the wagon.
Do you know what I have to say about that?
WHO CARES. You went off-plan. It happens. It’s not the end of the world. It won’t kill you, and it won’t stop you.
What do you do next? Just get back on that horse at the very next meal. Don’t just give up for the day or the weekend or the rest of the week. So you slipped and had a pint of ice cream? After you get off the toilet, make your very next meal a good one that’s back on-plan. Yes, it’s that easy. You can do it. You’ve been doing it for countless weeks or month(s) already, so it’s not a foreign concept. Just get back on that horse.
I know; the foods you’re not supposed to eat anymore are delicious and you miss them. I won’t argue that point. However, you have to accept the concept that it’s short-term gratification with no real benefit to you. Besides, with so many good Paleo alternatives out there, you can eat good, delicious, and healthy foods without the negative effects and emotional baggage. It just takes some self-control, discipline, and motivation.
I define bad foods as those with added sugar, beans, pasta, breads, foods fried in vegetable oil, or foods made from grains. That means pizza, ice cream, candy, desserts, and just about everything from fast food. For a better/more comprehensive list, see Whole30 or the Paleo website.
It seriously hurts my head when I see people who are on “Diets,” taking weight-loss prescription medication, have had surgery (lap band, gastric bypass, etc), or on these grueling workout plans post to social media about the bad food they’re eating or recipes for foods that I can only describe as decadent. I can understand the treats every once in a while. Heck, I will likely eat something that’s not so good for me tonight, but it will be half a portion, and I haven’t done anything like that in months (and likely won’t again for a long time). But to do so meal after meal is like someone with a broken leg deciding to walk to the mailbox every day just once to get the mail. The leg will never heal properly. If it does heal, it will take much, much longer, and will likely not heal as well as it would have had it been rested and not used. It’s the same with losing weight and getting healthy.
Why gimp your progress? Why take a step back after taking two steps forward? I just don’t get it. Maybe some people are just gluttons for pain. Me? I want to make progress with as few back steps as possible.