I've learned a thing or two about health, fitness, and weight loss in my years as a trainer and having experienced weight battles myself.
Now, I approach the podium with microphone in hand. Here it is: What I've Learned about Weight Loss.
1. I've learned (as a former fatty) that being healthier quickly translates into being happier. Life becomes better, and that's a strong emotion. "I'm healthy" is the sweetest trophy to carry around.
2. I've learned that gyms are great, but you don't need a gym. Some walk the dog, others prefer tennis… some require the gym, and others just need a little space to do full body movements at a high intensity. Do what you love and have time for – it all works.
3. I've learned about gluten free, paleo, corporate diet plans, dial-1800 weight loss, Atkins, and more - it's big business and a big yawn. Inherently, we all know what to do for a healthier life.
4. I've learned to ignore the 'weight loss is 80 per cent food, 20 per cent exercise' school of thought because people will disregard exercise. People who exercise lose more weight. They look better and feel better. People who exercise have more energy and sleep better - they build muscle. Humans are designed to move with passion.
5. I've learned the battle of bulge is a mental game first, then physical. I've written it countless times as it echoes on these walls: "Weight loss is like a waterfall – it starts in the mind, then flows down to the rest of the body."
6. I've learned negating calories is simple. An example… cutting two soft drinks per day and two wines at night is 4,000 calories per week (16k kilojoules) / 204,000 calories (855k kilojoules) per year – that's life changing.
7. I've learned weight loss is simple. It's the right mix of portion control, fresh-healthy-tasty food, exercise, easing off the booze, and staying committed. If you know of another way, I'll learn something new.
8. I've learned to respect my body because without your health, you have nothing.
9. I've learned the most underappreciated elements of weight loss are commitment and patience. It's not what you do on Day 1 or Week 1 of lifestyle change. It's about the sacrifice, commitment, and patience you apply during Month 1, Month 2, and beyond. With patience, weight loss goals (from 5kgs to 50kgs) become a reality.
10. I've learned cardio and weight bearing movements are equally important. Everybody should do both for a healthy, lean body.
11. I've learned that average is unacceptable. Childhood obesity has doubled since the 1980s. Amongst adults, diabetes, heart disease, etc … all increasing. Psychologically, we now see 'overweight' as 'average', and we accept it. I refuse to accept the unacceptable – we need to lose weight, yesterday.
12. I've learned nothing changes if nothing changes.
13. I've learned that being hungover, looking like crap and feeling worse is a dangerous, unfulfilling way to live year after year.
14. I've learned being healthy makes sex a lot more fun.
15. I've learned that change is possible. And change is rewarding.
16. I've learned to not count on the government. Don't look to the government for weight loss / lifestyle change answers. Look in the mirror. Look at what's in your fridge and cupboard. What you put in your mouth, and how much time you allocate to being active isn't a government decision – it's up to you as a mother, father, and as a family to live a healthier life. Own your health.
17. I've learned the importance of fruit, vegetables, and sleep.
18. I've learned fitness and weight loss supplement pills, powders and potions only lighten your wallet.
19. I've learned the choices you make in your 30s, 40s, or 50s dictate whether you're living with vibrancy and health into your twilight years. Whether you're traveling. Whether you're running with your grandkids. Or whether you're limping to the doctor for more diabetes and heart medication.
20. I've learned to tolerate Zumba. Whatever gets you moving? I'm a big fan.
21. I've learned a lot of people need to cut the bulls**t. Instagram, selfies, and facebook likes on the latest smartphone aren't important. The umpteenth party of the month isn't important. Excuses. Processed food. More hipster hamburger with more fries. The 15th drink. It's all bulls**t that's killing you. Cut the bullshit and get your health in order.
If you fancy implementing what I've learned and are ready to 'Cut the BS', then great. For 2016, my October lifestyle project is called Droptober – Cut the BS diet. Got it? Drop weight in October.
This year Droptober starts after the long weekend / sporting finals on Monday, October 17th. There's a shopping list. There are exercises. There is harsh-with-a-hug motivation and a coaching plan (yes, I'll call you). Just grab my arm, and I'll show you the way. It's 30 days, and you will lose weight just as many others have done. You will feel better. You will look better. Check it out HERE to sign up.
I've learned these final words as I put down my glass of wine. One should never forget about balance. It's life, so be naughty yet healthy, and enjoy it.
Passion for lifestyle change is the cornerstone for everything Michael Jarosky does. A Sydney-based personal trainer, he cajoled thousands of Executive Style readers to undertake his 'Cut The BS' diet, and champions a charity weight-loss event, Droptober.