Demystifying the Truth about Weight Loss

So what comes to mind when you think about weight loss? Diets, hard work, restriction, feeling hungry, temptation, frustration . . . am I right?

There are many of us out there who want to look and feel our best . . . me included. The internet and social media are covered with diet plans, workouts, eat this not that, there is so much information and then there are the images and selfies of people doing fancy yoga postures or at the gym, celebrities looking amazing at the beach.

Let me tell you a little secret, I hate posting pictures or videos of myself, I often get caught in the comparison trap thinking that my yoga posture doesn’t look as good as the perfect instagram pose or that I look fat  . . . etc . . . etc . . . we all know that voice inside our head.

But I always return to how I feel, so if I am feeling fat or tired on a particular day chances are I’ve not had a good sleep or I’m feeling a bit stressed or overwhelmed and I take steps to change that.

I used to be a slave to the gym,running, cycling, you name it.  I still love a good sweat session don’t get me wrong and I’m not about to tell you that a journey to losing weight is easy or give you a magic formula but it doesn’t have to be all calorie counting, crazy diets and daily gym sessions.

Since my hip surgery I’ve been on a journey to health . . .  how I looked wasn’t a priority but how I was feeling was so much more important.

 

So how does this all relate to weight loss?

We had an amazing day at the KCR conference a few weeks ago, with great speakers, time to catch up with our KCR family and dance the night away. These days are always a good time to get a fresh perspective on things and learn from other people.

One of the speakers Graham Gilliland, a Personal Trainer & fellow KCR therapist spoke about KCR & Weight loss and confirmed some things I knew deep down but hadn’t fully processed. He gave a fantastic presentation and shared his knowledge and experience of KCR, weight loss and improving performance.

I firmly believe and talk about this a lot in my yoga classes about stress and the relation to weight loss but hadn’t really thought about KCR having such a positive effect on weight loss. That why for me I always come back to yoga, even if I stop for a few days I notice the difference and it’s not that guilt feeling of ‘I should’ be going to the gym it’s more of a need for my physical and mental health.

Weight loss is not just about move more, eat less . . . I always remember my yoga teacher telling me it doesn’t matter how well you eat or how much you exercise if you are stressed it has such a negative effect on the body.

We all know the feeling where you’ve had a bad day,  you come home, have a glass of wine, beer, or a cup of tea and some chocolate biscuits . . . it makes us feel good and then then slowly it becomes a habit, reaching for something sweet to hide that emotion or give a burst of energy. Kevin recognised that for a while he had one particular day in the week which was tough and his first response was to reach for a beer and complain about it. So he decided to make a change and rather than have a beer when he had a bad day and felt unhappy, he created ‘reasons to be beerful’ and decided he would only have a beer when he felt good about the day. Anyone who know Kev knows how much he likes a beer . . . . he didn’t just find something positive so he could have a beer, if it was a bad day he didn’t allow himself a drink.

Through my Ayurveda training we’ve been talking about emotions and eating, we shouldn’t be eating when we’re feeling upset, unhappy, angry, frustrated. Because our emotions have an effect on how we digest our food. There is more scientific evidence now about the mind and gut link.

So weight loss is much more than just eating and moving. You can’t exercise your way to a healthy body and you can’t just eat good food.

You have to make a change to your lifestyle.

I’ve been studying Ayurveda for the past 6 months under an Ayurvedic Dr, training to become an Ayurveda – Diet & Lifestyle Consultant. (more to come on Ayurveda very soon).  Our health is not just about the food we eat or the way we move it’s the lifestyle that can be causing different signs and symptoms we experience, we need to treat the mind, body and soul together.  What we think, who we spend our time with, how we sleep, how we spend our day all have an effect on our health.

There have been studies shown that those who practice restorative yoga lost more weight than those who practice a more physical style of yoga. Stress is also such a major factor. Stress can be caused by physical injuries, illness, it can be mental, emotional and our modern day lifestyle is extremely stressful.

When we are stressed our bodies release hormones called adrenaline and cortisol, cortisol is what stores our fat around our middle and also breaks down muscle. Cortisol can also cause mood swings, high blood pressure and disturb sleep.

 

“When we feel like there isn’t enough time in the day for us to get everything done, when we wish for more time,” wrote sociologist Christine Carter, “we don’t actually need more time. We need more stillness.”

Arianna Huffington,

 

I believe rest and sleep and very much underrated.

Do you find it difficult to get to sleep because your mind is thinking about things you need to do or worrying about events going on in your life?

Do you wake up in the middle of the night and find it difficult to get back to sleep?

We end up in a vicious cycle of relying on stimulants, coffee, wine, chocolate or something sweet or even energy drinks. Anything to give that energy boost to keep you going  . . . . but then what happens is your energy spikes up and down leaving our body exhaustion and burnout. When we’re tired we don’t often think rationally which means we choose the wrong foods.

 

 Kinetic Chain Release (KCR) helps by bringing the body back into alignment which means the rest of the systems in the body can function optimally . . . how does this help with weight loss or stress? Our physical body is then aligned which equals reduce pain, this helps us to sleep better . . . pressure is taking off the abdominal organs allowing our digestion to function better . . . all of which help to reduce stress in the body.

 

That then leads to making better choices . . . maybe having the ability to move more if you’ve been injured or having the energy to move more, returning to walking or other activities which you took part in before your injury / illness. This leads to increase muscle which burns more fat all of which help to support weight loss.

Yoga also has a similar impact, we are not only working the muscles physically but working the internal organs, feel what happens to your body as you twist. Yoga also has the mindful element to it which means it helps us to cope with the stresses of our chaotic modern lifestyle. One of the biggest comments I hear is how well people sleep after KCR or after a yoga class. Getting a good night’s sleep make such a dramatic positive impact to the rest of your life.

 

So what can you start doing today, right now to help really optimise you health?

Right now . . . take 3 deep breaths, drop your shoulders, relax your jaw. Good . . . and again another deep breath in through nose and sigh out through the mouth, relax the jaw and drop the shoulder.

Already you should feel a bit lighter and brighter. Do that regular throughout the day.

NOW  . . . Ask yourself what you’re biggest problems are?

  • If you are in physical pain, book a KCR appointment
  • If you are feeling stressed,book a KCR appointment . . . although you might not feel like there is anything physically wrong, sometimes there is a physical imbalance in the body which puts stress on the body which leads to an imbalance of hormones, which affects sleep and so on.
  • Try sitting with your legs up the wall for 5-10 mins before bed (insert link)
  • Take 10 deep breaths
  • Join us for a yoga class
  • Book a Private yoga class
  • Have a bath before bed

Identify 1 or 2 things that are stressful in your life, how can you change them? If you can’t change them . . . . then take up yoga, meditation or something similar which will give you the tools and capacity to cope with these stresses a bit more.

Identify 1 thing that you could change in what you eat or the way you eat that you can do for 28 days – the time it takes to create a new habit. This could be as simple as not watching TV or looking at and devices which you eat, listening to your body and asking if you are truly hungry / thirsty. It could be cutting out biscuits, crisps but give yourself and alternative and I’m not talking carrot sticks . . . try blending dates and rolling them in coconut as a sweet treat.

Weight loss is more than what we eat and how we move, getting a good night sleep and reducing stress in your life is where you should start.

And remember it’s a process . . . . small steps daily are what least to huge lasting change over time.

If you have any questions please get in touch info@strengthandsoul.co.uk.

 

Love Jo & Kev