Do you still think the reason you’re not losing that last 10lbs. of fat around the middle is because you’re eating too much and/or not exercising enough? Has your doctor told you that you’re obese or overweight? One of my constant refrains is that it’s not about “calories in/calories out.” I’ll skip the session on thermodynamics and open and closed systems for now. Calories count but not in the way most people think – the subject for another newsletter.
At the risk of repeating myself, when it comes to exercise and nutrition, it’s about quality not quantity. However, let me be clear – most people do not work hard enough in their workouts. You WILL NOT achieve your goals on one workout per week. That, too, is a rant for another newsletter.
It’s Probably Not Your Fault Unless…
If you’re buying a Starbucks specialty drink every day (don’t get me started on MAC makeup and Chanel handbags!) and you pay more for your hair than you do for your groceries every week, please don’t tell me that you don’t have enough money for an extra training session or for grass fed beef.
But that’s those other people. You’re one of the people who is doing everything right and you still can’t get to where you want to be. You may be a victim of the Shadow Reasons.
The Shadow Reasons for weight gain and fat retention are:
childhood sexual abuse and other trauma
Stress and Cortisol
Chronic stress leads to unmanageable levels of cortisol. Cortisol is critical to our survival but it needs to follow a natural rhythm. Cortisol is highest in the morning and is supposed to be at its lowest just before bedtime. This rhythm is disturbed by too much stress, too much caffeine, and too much late-night electronic stimulation (no, the other kind).
Too much cortisol suppresses growth hormone, DHEA, and testosterone and increases fat storage and insulin resistance. Abdominal fat is increasingly sensitive to cortisol’s fat storage process.
This takes up a whole module of our Grateful Living series. Food substitution, natural hormone optimization, social support, and stress management are all key to addressing this cause.
While the mechanism is unknown, several have shown that physical and/or sexual abuse during childhood may lead to the development of obesity later in life (Physiol Behav. 2009 Dec 7;98(5):543-6. Epub 2009 Sep 3).
So, yeah, you can keep counting your points (does that company still do that?), weighing your food, deprive yourself on a fad diet, prepare to be amazed by the latest fecal matter that is produced by your colon cleanse, believe the lowfat myths, and crank out the miles in the joint-destructive, inflammation-producing manner of your choice.
We think we have a better way at Brownstone Fitness. We start by treating you as an individual and asking you to consider yourself as an n=1 experiment. If you need it, we’re also available to love you at those times when you’re unable or unwilling to love yourself. So for now…
Who loves ya, Baby?
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