One Mom’s Journey from Fat to Skinny to Confident

ELAINES CORNER

Elaine’s Corner: Community

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Elaine’s back and yet again I couldn’t agree with her more! She’s really captured why I blog and what motivated me to start BlogToLose

If you are new to Elaine’s series, click here and scroll down to start at the beginning.

Hello again! Can you believe we’ve been on this journey together for 7 weeks? How are you progressing toward your personal goal? Strong and steady? Some bumps in the road? Now is the time to re-commit for the final 3 weeks of this posting series. Three weeks of dedicated work can turn a chore in to a habit and can completely transform your life for the better! This week, we will have a small diversion from our “regularly scheduled” topic…

As I was outlining this blog series this summer, I came up with ten topics that I wanted to cover related to goal-setting and motivation. For week seven, I wanted to satisfy my inner nerd and discuss brain chemistry – serotonin, dopamine, GABA, TSH, and so forth. It’s a fascinating topic and at the cutting edge of understanding both weight loss and behavior modification. However, after the response to last week’s post about public health, I want to make this post “Public Health Part 2.” Why? Because while brain chemistry is neat, it’s not something we can easily change – public health, on the other hand, is squarely in our control. As a believer of only focusing efforts on those things that we have the opportunity to impact, let’s embark on a discussion of “Public Health Part 2.”

I want to open this discussion with 2 comments in the post to last week. The first comes from Kristen. She writes:

I have incorporated healthy eating and menu planning into my daily and weekly activities to avoid temptations and impulse eating. I also walk 5 miles home every Friday and then catch the metro the rest of the way home. I have rallied up a group of co-workers who have been joining me on my Friday walks. It’s amazing how healthy habits have become so contagious!

The second comment I would like to focus on comes from Lori, who writes:

I choose to keep healthy snacks in my house and keep out the items that I know I will go overbaord on. I also choose to explain to my children about healthy food choices and a balanced diet. I also explain to them the difference between snacks and treats. In teaching them I am reminding myself. It’s a win win.

The reason I wanted to focus on these comments is because they both talk about community – Kristen with her co-workers and Lori with her children. It is my belief that the best way to be healthy (or take up any habit) is to do so within a community framework. Public health seeks to create just this opportunity – such as walking trails around a community or a re-vamp of a school’s lunch menu to include more vegetables.

Community, however, starts with YOU. How can you be the leader in your community, your family, your place of work, your circle of friends? Can you suggest a walk? Exercise portion control at a work lunch and set a good example for others? Suggest sliced fruit instead of bagels and cream cheese during your next morning meeting? Teach your children that they can have a small handful of chips after they first eat some veggie slices? Leading by example helps the people around you – but, most importantly, it helps YOU! They say the best way to learn something is to teach it. How can you put this in to practice in your daily life?



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Discussion

There are 3 comments so far.

    CarolineC

    October 20, 2010

    Being the Mom, I guess I am a leader to my kids :) We definitely stress mindfulness about healthy choices with food and go on a family walk every evening. Also…walking to school. I talk to them about what a great thing it is to start the day with that exercise (they usually ride scooters). But we try to stress moderation, nothing is forbidden. Some things are just for special occasions. With friends, I recently talked a friend who is also doing C25K into run/walking a 5K event with me. She was scared and reluctant, but agreed. And it was awesome. We had a blast and she was so glad. I also recently got another friend to join my gym and we are having fun bodypumping together now. I try to inspire in my community by talking about my weight loss and daily life on my blog as well.

    Kirsten

    October 20, 2010

    I started a “Be Healthy” team at work and have been leading this for the past 7 weeks. We focus weekly on behavior modification, portion sizes, exercise, recipes, menu planning, goal setting, food journaling etc. I also joined a community walkers group in my area, it helps to re-enforce my healthy (and new) behaviors, plus I get the benefits of exercising with like minded people and have another support group!

    Lucrecia

    October 20, 2010

    I couldn’t agree more! This is a HARD task, and hard things are much harder when trying to do them in seclusion! I have a group of 5 friends that have banded together to lose weight. As of this week we have lost 155 pounds! That doesn’t even touch on the healthy benefits to our husbands and kids, other friends and co-workers!