Friday, September 19, 2008

Do You Really Want to Lose Weight?

Focusing on losing weight is very counterproductive. How many people have you known who've focused on losing weight and they did lose weight for a short period of time (using fad diets, starvation, or other quick methods) only to gain the weight back in the long term. In many of these cases, they end up heavier (and in worse shape) than they were before they set out to lose weight. If you are one of these people, it is time for a paradigm shift. How many times are you going fail using the same approach before trying a different approach? It's time to stop approaching it with different fad diets, quick-fix pills, starvation, and other short-term-gain methods. It has been said that approaching something the same way again and again while expecting a different result is mere insanity. It is time for a new focus or a new approach as I am offering here, as unconventional as it may be.

It begins with your mind. The first step is to put your mind on the right focus. What is the right focus? That depends on what it is that you want and this is exactly where we begin. Get out a notepad and write down what you want. If you write that you want to lose weight (as most of my clients do), your should also write why you want to lose weight. In most cases, my clients realized that losing weight is not really what they ultimately want. Here are some common examples from my clients:

1. "I want to lose weight because I want to look slim and look attractive…"

2. "I want to lose weight because I am afraid for my health. I am overweight and I have a family history of diabetes and coronary disease. There have been deaths in my family from these diseases…"

3. "I want to lose weight because I want to be a better basketball player…"

Example 1 represents many of my clients where they want to look slim and attractive. In these cases, it is best to first focus on increasing the body's metabolism (measured by BMR). The second focus would be decreasing the size of the waist (as measured by waist-to-hip-ratio). It has been supported in psychological studies that individuals with slimmer waists (regardless of weight) are perceived by most people as being more attractive. The third focus is decreasing the body-fat percentage. The last focus is weight. It is last because just "losing weight" does not differentiate between the types of weight you are losing. For example, you should not lose bone weight but you definitely should lose fat weight.

Priority of Focus
1. Increasing metabolism (BMR, or RMR)
2. Slimming down the waist (waist-to-hip-ratio)
3. Decreasing body fat percentage
4. Weight

As you can see here, I am not really discouraging people from losing weight, but I am teaching you that weight usually should be the last focus. First, you have to clearly know what you want. Most people who say they want to lose weight actually have a different root desire, such as wanting to look more attractive. In that case as you can see from the above "priority of focus" list, it is more effective in the long term to focus first on increasing your BMR (or the rate of which your body burns calories.) Please feel free to contact us to learn how to increase your BMR (or RMR), and for a more in depth explanation of why BMR should be the first focus in this case. Also, we may in the future teach you on this website the simple things you can do to increase your BMR. Regarding how to slim down your waist and decrease your body-fat percentage, we can teach you in our consultation or seminar if you contact us, which may be free in certain cases. (For example, we provide free seminars to churches.)

Feel free also to contact us for a consultation regarding other fitness goals and we will teach you how to attain them. We may be contacted at