I specialise in helping people lose weight and I was working out that about 80% of my clients whose goal is to lose weight, are women aged 27-35. All seem to be hard workers and from chatting to them over the years, seem to excel in their profession. They put in the hard work – in work, but as soon as they get home some use food and occasionally alcohol, as a reward in their stressful busy lives.
Their own health, body image and sometimes confidence suffers as a result. Their success in their career, can cause them to become victims at home. A hugely confident, smart and successful woman in the office, can become shy, reclusive or have low self esteem at home. Stress at work seems to sap the self-belief at home and the weight begins to creep up, as the hours in work and their age starts to increase.
Is this a result of advertising, conditioning from childhood where we get rewarded for good behavior with sweets, bad habits while watching TV or have we become addicted to sugar? Is it partly that sometimes women need to work harder in their early career to get ahead, in a male dominated workplace? For some it might be a combination of lots of things.
I think no matter how busy a person is, there’s always ways to eat healthily. The Spar even sell premade salads and they take as long to buy and eat as a sandwich, and cost the same. You can buy pre-chopped stir frys in the supermarket, that’ll be quicker to make than a pizza in the oven & be ready quicker than it takes a fast food delivery to arrive. Time or lack of it, is no excuse to eat unhealthily. If you have time to eat anything, you have time to eat healthily.
If you can meet a deadline your boss sets in work, you can meet a deadline your own boss (you) sets at home to go exercising. Even interval training for 30mins, 3-4 times a week will be enough. If you’re awake 17 hours a day, that’s just 1.6% of your waking week. In work if your boss asked you to work 1.6% harder to achieve a target, you would. So why not at home?
Losing weight isn’t necessarily about the number you reach, it’s about the journey to it. For example if I have a client that was 20 Stone and has lost 5 stone so far. They will feel amazing, they’ll be in the best form of their lives and will be full of confidence, smiling, have new clothes, full of energy and will be beaming. They will still be overweight however. The very next person that comes through my door on their first day meeting me, could be 15 stone and feel terrible about their body shape, have little or no self-esteem, wear clothes they don’t like or fit and be very unhappy. And yet, they are both 15 stone?
What’s the difference between the 2 clients? They are both physically the same, but emotionally and psychologically they are worlds apart.
Losing weight isn’t about the weight or body fat % you’re at. It’s about doing something to change your self-image and emotional state and how that makes you feel. It’s about the daily or weekly rewards and boosters to your state of mind, that you get from the sense of satisfaction knowing you exercised to the best of your ability, knowing you worked hard at your diet, knowing you didn’t take the easy option when you could have.
The improvements to your self-image will come from the positive comments others give, the new clothes you can now wear, knowing you don’t have to dread social situations anymore because you “can’t find anything to wear”, being able to tangibly see how much fitter you are, being able to attract a partner more easily, having more confidence, being the head turner at your Christmas party, feeling sexy for your partner, being able to play football with your kids, living long enough to see your kids get married, being able to wear something other than black, being able to go to the beach on holidays – the list is endless.
Being fit and healthy feels great, getting there is hard work sometimes but it is so worth it.
Don’t be a victim, find the balance in your life and get your confidence and self-belief back. You excel in work, so there should be no stopping you at home.