Ah, the tribulations of physicality, the ever pertinent topic about a woman’s weight. What causes our obsession with it, how do we get it, how do we lose it, and how in the world do we keep it off?
Why do we gain weight?
Many factors influence weight gain. It’s an undefinable mixture of things that lead to its gain, varying from person to person, personal experiences and periods in life. A simple fact: Food plays an important role in our daily lives, related to celebratory events, sad moments, unmanageable loads or just as a past time.
- Enjoyment of it and times of celebration,
- Unhappiness and the periods that lead us to comfort eat,
- Lack of self-discipline when we may indulge or when the opportunity poses itself,
- A sedentary lifestyle,
- Sitting at a desk the entire day,
- Stress, etc.
We could each pick one or our own special concoction of reasons at varying parts of our lives.
So how to get it off and keep it off?
It really is both an easy and challenging endeavour. Consistency is the key, really. And doing a little consistently is the answer, rather than one huge effort with very little motivation to repeat. Start somewhere.
Low impact exercise: It is a great way to start. This could mean walking, light brisk walks, or gentle cycling through the neighborhood. For instance, if walking is your exercise of choice, slow 30 minute walks about 3 to 4 times a week could be a solution. Gradual and eventual weight loss is healthier than dramatic dieting or over-exerting exercises.
Personally, I found walking out in the open after sunrise, before the streets choke with the traffic of those rushing to work, a rewarding, calming and seriously enjoyable experience. The sound of birds and rustling leaves, babbling streams, and the fresh smell of the open air intertwined with floral scents- and the occasional bad odour from litter- really is an experience to be enjoyed. What becomes fun too is the appreciation and anticipation of it. Even admiring the beautiful architecture of homes en route tends to add to the charm.
And just as important as consistent exercise, is the attempt at a balanced diet. This doesn’t mean one can’t indulge. If done correctly, one could manage to sneak in a little treat every so often, but it is important to cut down ones that are regular doses of unhealthy, deep fried, sugar -laden options.
For instance, instead of an ice-cream, try frozen yoghurt. And indulge by adding a touch of a sweet topping. Dark chocolate is a perfect healthy treat, without harmful sugars and full of antioxidants. Smoothies instead of milkshakes; tea, water or juices instead of soft drinks are some other options to consider. A little substitution goes a long way.
Main meals should follow suite. Again, cut down on deep fried foods and substitute it with grills. Curries are fantastically healthy surprisingly. They contain a large amount of cooked tomatoes, which are high in vitamins, and in its cooked state activates lycopene, an anti-carcinogenic. Onions, a good-for-you vegetable is just as important an addition.
Grilled chicken, homemade burger patties and tomato sauces, a healthy dose of salad and sautéed greens still retaining its crunchiness are amongst what one should include in a healthy diet. The main dishes of most cuisines can be modified to remain healthy but still retain the delicious identity of those dishes. Have fun and experiment. Eat less. Drink more water- hydration is key to the body’s cells functioning.
Attitude of gratitude
Above all, try to develop a healthy positive attitude. Understand that our bodies are not meant to look like they do in airbrushed magazines. We are individuals with different body types, sizes, bone structure, height and physical capabilities. Love the body you have, and try and treat it with respect, and care, trying to appreciate it for its miraculous structure.
It’s yours. Love it for the beauty it is.