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BODY FAT: THREE THINGS (PLUS ONE) TO KNOW...




#1 YOU TOLD YOUR BODY TO STORE IT:

Our bodies respond to the signals we give them. One of the most obvious signals we can give our body to store fat is overeating…consuming more energy than we need or use. But there are other inputs that signal our bodies to store fat. Chronic stress with little or no recovery, eating late at night when our body is starting to repair from the day and prepare for tomorrow. Not getting quality sleep. Eating when you’re not hungry, snacking all day, eating processed foods with limited nutrients and no satiety factor.

Our bodies trust us to know why, when and what to eat. They respond to the signals we give them. Your body stored fat because you told it to…probably unintentionally.

Solution: Get some sleep and sunshine. Eat whole, unprocessed foods. Eat a protein-dense breakfast. Have some fun. Stop snacking. Close the kitchen 2-3 hours before bed. Take a walk or two.#2 IT DOESN'T USUALLY ACCUMULATE QUICKLY:

You didn’t gain weight because of the cake you ate yesterday. It might seem like the pounds you want to lose arrived overnight, but they didn’t. If you are being honest, those pounds have been sneaking on one or two at a time for a few years now. Your metabolism is a resilient, flexible system that responds to consistent behaviors built up over time and can absolutely handle a one-off. When you eat, sleep, relax, and move to support your metabolism MOST of the time, that will be enough. If you shoot for a lifestyle of 85% metabolically supportive behaviors, your body senses you’ve got things under control.

Solution: Stop thinking you’re going to drop 20 pounds in 8 weeks. It’s not going to happen, and if it does, it will be back in a flash. Be patient with fat loss. Drop the deadline and fall in love with the process of becoming a healthy version of you. Leave the notion that eating dessert on your birthday will derail your progress.

#3 YOUR BODY ISN'T IN A HURRY TO GET RID OF IT:

Thankfully, our wise, wonderful bodies want to protect us. We are wired for survival. This includes the miracle that is fat storage. We store fat to protect us from hard times. Once we have a nice reserve of fat on us, our body isn’t too eager to let it go. Our bodies need to feel safe to begin dipping into our rainy-day savings account of fat storage. Contrary to the popular fitness narratives, we don’t send “it’s safe” signals when we drastically restrict calories and ramp up intense exercise. We need to calmly coax and nudge our bodies out of fat storage mode and into fat-burning mode.

Solution: Send safe, calm, compassionate vibes to your body. Reassure it you are going to care for it out of respect and appreciation. Think kind thoughts about your body and stop stressing about its perceived imperfections.

BONUS #4) You can’t measure it on a bathroom scale:

How much you weigh on a scale says nothing about how much body fat you have. Our bathroom scale measures bones, muscle, organs, fluids, ligaments, tendons and yes body fat. Do you see the problem with relying on the scale as your primary source of information? You and I both know our bathroom scale has never made our day or told us anything we didn’t already suspect. We know perfectly well when our favorite jeans feel snug. 

Solution: Stop stressing about the number on the scale. Throw away your scale, tuck it in a cupboard, break up with it. Instead, focus on how your clothes fit and feel, how well you’re sleeping, your energy to do life, your hunger signaling system, your quiet (or loud) cravings. These are all more important indicators of a well-functioning metabolism poised and ready to shed stored fat.


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