Do you have one or do you want one, but don’t think you’ll be able to keep it?

Do you have a target? How much weight do you want to lose, or do you just want to change your body shape?

What timeframe have you set to make those changes?

Those things, on December 31st, are critically important to know. But making those choices are the easy part. The real challenge comes from every day when you are faced with the choices within your life and you choose the option that follows the path to achieve this goal.

This is why so many people fail at keeping their New Years resolutions. They make the resolution easily, but doing what’s required is too hard.

Don’t be one of the people that are unable to stay with their goals alone. Join us in the Butterfly Transformation 30 day Program. We can help you choose, start and stick with your goals!

The reason we fail

December 24, 2009

The new year is almost on us. With the coming new year comes the inevitable new years resolution. Will this years be the same as last years?

So are we set up and are dedicated to losing weight in 2010, just like we did in 2009, and 2008, and maybe even 2007. How come we failed? What are the chances of failing again this year? Maybe you won’t even bother this time because you expect to fail. What a shame that is.

If we find our goals difficult, be they new years resolutions or just a daily goal to get some exercise it’s because we under estimate the time it will take to achieve and over estimate the ease of achieving it. Think back to the goals you didn’t achieve and I’m sure you’ll discover this.

The only reason you can fail a goal, is to set a timeframe. Isn’t having the body you want worth spending the rest of your life for? You have to spend it in your body, what better way than in a body you enjoy being in? Imagine how good it will feel when you can look at yourself naked in the mirror and smile? Or how good it might feel when someone else looks at you in just that way when you’re dressed up for a party?

As the Butterfly Transformation Program describes, setting goals doesn’t have to be difficult. To set a realistic goal, and sticking to it, only takes effort to do one step or one day at a time.

The purpose of exercise

December 17, 2009

There are many little bits of knowledge I teach to those that will listen. One that comes up again and again is the purpose of exercise.

The purpose of exercise is not to burn calories. Life is not meant to be an endless struggle to expel the more calories than you take in.

The purpose of exercise is to enjoy moving your body.

Suddenly, the idea of exercise stops being about the joyless fight against calories and becomes actual fun. Something you want to do, not something you should do. (In the Program, I talk a lot about things that we ‘should’ do, and how destructive they are to your goals)

As you move your body, your body naturally adjusts to help move your body in that way. If you ride a bike, your body shapes itself to help you ride a bike. In addition, the more active you are, the more active you want to be.

Exercise is a side effect of being alive and healthy, not something that’s tacked on when you’re in the mood and have the time. It’s something that you want to do, and feel lacking when you skip it.

The question then becomes; what’s stopping you from being active?

In a post some time ago, I talked about the difference between setting goals and achieving them.

There is a bunch of research that shows that everyone, when setting a goal, underestimate what they can achieve in 5 years and over estimate what they can achieve in 1 year.

What does this mean for you?

It means set your goals, but realise you might fail on your short term goals, but achieve your long term goals sooner than you expect. Remember this next time you set a goal to lose weight in a few months and don’t reach your goal. Relax and acknowledge your failure, but keep moving towards your goals.

As I discuss in my program, you will fail in your goal sometime. You will cheat on the diet, skip an exercise day, eat that extra piece of cake. Knowing this in advance allows you to plan for it, and not throw out your entire goal just because you’re human.

Even more on exercise

November 26, 2009

After this last post, I got a few emails. One in particular stood out.

I won’t post it here, but the basic idea behind it was that doing these small things makes no difference to weight loss.

First off, there’s a bunch of research that suggests that doing a lot of exercise, sweating buckets and exhausting yourself doesn’t make much of a dent in your weight, but that’s a different thing.

Yes, doing 20 leg lifts while sitting at your desk when compared to a 30 minute workout means there is very little calories burned. Can’t argue with that. I can however argue with the reasons for these simple things throughout the day.

I’m in no way suggesting you’re doing these simple and easy things through your day to burn calories. That’s not the intent at all. First of all, the intent is to keep your body active and moving. To keep in your mind your goal. As I discuss in The Program keeping your goal in mind at all times helps you achieve it.

Secondly, doing many simple and easy things throughout your day can add up to burning more calories than a 30 minute gym session. Do you think, if you’re on your feet the whole day you need a 30 minute workout? Maybe for some toning and shaping, but unlikely for overall fitness.

If you happen to sit at a desk for 8 hours, or on a couch for 12, even doing a little extra movements helps. EVERY little bit helps.

Finally, doing these small things also helps with your motivation. For a 30 minute gym session, you need to find the time, get changed, and travel to the gym. This can be hard sometimes. Yet standing on one leg while you’re waiting in line is instantly available. You can just do it, no planning required. This means you can feel good because you did something rather than the usual ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’.

The present day human adult is the only being in creation that takes time out of their day to head to the gym and workout. Babies, children, and animals never do exercise just for the sake of exercise. They move and play as a normal part of their day.

So, guess who is healthier: modern adults who try to work out every day, or pre-technological people who only moved their bodies for work or fun?

Your body is built to move. In fact, you can’t be still. Your heart beats, your chest rises and falls as your breathe. So I encourage everyone to fully embrace the joy of movement. Moving should be a pleasure, not something to be avoided because it’s ‘too hard’.

So next time you think of doing some exercise, just do _something_. In fact, do something easy right now. Stand while you read the next blog post, lift your legs off the ground a few times, take a walk around the house. Go on!

If I had to carry this home?

November 19, 2009

As part of the Butterfly Transformation Program (completly free to join!), I get members toplan their shopping even before they leave the house.

Sometimes we all end up at the supermarket without a list or a good plan. In that case, here is a very quick and dirty method to help you make a better decision while shopping:

If I had to carry this home with my own hands, would I still buy it?

Walk it off…

November 12, 2009

If you’ve ever played sport in school, or watched a team sport you might have heard the term “Walk it off”.

The ‘it’ they talk of is pain. A slight sprain, jar or other event that causes pain, but (usually) no lasting injury. Walking it off help to activate the body, get the hurt part moving and overload the pain sensations. It works wonders.

Going for a walk helps for all kinds of ills. My father, in his 80’s, still walks every single day. It’s about the only regular exercise he gets, and he’s still fit and healthy. You don’t have to walk fast, or long, just remember that every little bit counts.

More on exercise

November 3, 2009

If you’re part of the Butterfly Transformation Program you’ll know that I encourage all kinds of exercise. Not some horrible, hours long, sweat covered and tiring jym session, just plain old simple movement.

These movements might be just standing in line on one leg, or leaning against a wall on more of an angle than usual. Simple things, easy things. I’m not a big fan of a huge requirement to exercise. The more that’s needed to get started, the less you do.

Some of my most common suggestions for a little extra exercise every day are things like:

Parking the car further from the office.
Walking to the shops rather than driving.
Using a carrier rather than a trolley when shopping. (this also stops buying too much)
Taking the stairs instead of the lift.
Sitting on a swiss ball rather than chair.
Sitting without using the backrest.
Watch TV standing up. (Also helps cut down on TV!)
Watch TV and stretch at the same time.

What are other methods that you can do almost anywhere?

All you can eat…

October 24, 2009

There has been some interesting research of late looking at the relationship between BMI and eating behaviours in all-you-can-eat Chinese restaurants.

In short, the research hints at some interesting observable behaviours that we can use to help us with our weight.

Some of the behaviours observed in the overweight group were using larger plates, using a fork instead of chopsticks, and just serving themselves rather than first observing the buffet. While there is no direct relationship between these behaviours and being overweight, we can use this knowledge to help us lose weight.

Whenever you go out, do all of these three things:
1. Select a smaller plate. That might mean you order entree sized meals or even tell the staff to make you a smaller portion.
2. Use chopsticks in an Asian restaurant. If you don’t know how – what better way to learn!
3. Look over the menu or buffet first. Consider your choices before making your decision.

And as an added extra, leave more food on your plate than anyone else at the table. If you think you’re wasting food, you’ll be waisting food either way (I love a good pun ;-)).

Are there any other behaviours that you’ve observed in yourself or others that might be useful?

restaurant

It’s somewhat old news now, but here is the link to the Time article describing the research. Exercise doesn’t make you thin, and might actually be making you eat more.

Sure exercise helps you in many different ways; however as a method to lose weight, it makes no difference. Think of your own life, how do you feel after a big gym session? Do you justify eating that extra dessert with a longer gym session? Or the other way around, justify extra dessert because you had a longer gym session.

Read the article. Then become more curious about how that affects you.