The "On the Right Track" Slide - Advice to a New Client


Everything is cruising right along. I can see the changes in your bodies. By your own accounts, your clothes are fitting better, spouses are commenting and even your kids are getting on board with encouragement and occasional participation at home. I am confident in your workouts and all the extra time you're putting in outside of time spent with me but BE WARNED - this is exactly the time that you'll be most tempted to slip off our little party bus!


According to Dr. Daneil Kirschenbaum, PhD, director of the Center for Behavioral Medicine and Sport Psychology in Chicago, you are most likely to relapse back into sedentary lifestyle and bad eating habits in one to three months. And I quote "lapses tend to occur once people start seeing improvement. Your pants fit better, and suddenly you think that you can afford to indulge in Nutella. That is, until your pants start to fit like shrink-wrap again."


I have certainly experienced this inconvenient phenomenon in my own life and I don't want you to be taken by suprise! Here are a few tools that I share with clients for coping with the slide.....


For some of us, traveling and/or eating out is part of life.... meals should be planned out and accounted for. Have a plan in place - don't "wing it". If you are eating out that evening, cut some calories during the day. True you may end up arriving hungry, but then you can enjoy the meal while staying in your calorie allotment. If you feel control would be an issue, plan a healthy filling snack pre-dinner, preferably within an hour and a half prior. This way, arriving with some food in your tummy and can then make rational, reasonable choices. Use techie help like My Daily Plate to track & monitor your nutrition.


Acknowledge that you're still a newbie. We all feel good right now. The workouts I'm giving you are tough and you've learned a wide variety of new techniques. Using and tracking your weight/food was cool when you first started - getting all set up was fun but now....its time for a gentle, loving reminder that you've only been at this for a few weeks. We all still need to rely on accountability, purposely place ourselves on the top of our daily to-do list. Many many times I have been in a perfect eating and workout zone and feel like I have the world on a string. "I don't need to track my food - I could calculate this meal in my sleep". "I worked out so hard yesterday- I can take today off if I just watch my diet". WHAM. A day off turns into a week off and I"m watching Grey's reruns with an empty bag of salt N vinegar chips. We are all on a journey and still need our training wheels.


Don't fear the scale. While I'm not a fan personally of weighing myself daily, I do use a BMI scale for myself and my clients. Its good to remember on average, sedentary people put on about a half pound a month - 6 pounds per year all adds up to 20 extra pounds in three years. If you avoid the scale and never see the "half pounds", its 100 times harder to right the ship when the weight gain becomes too obvious to ignore. And lastly, few things are more encouraging than to see your BMI and weight loss on the scale. While we all agree that your health is the most important thing AND that the fit of your clothes is a great indicator of success - Gaining, holding steady or losing - the scale is a useful tool.


If you feel yourself slipping in any department - just call me - I'll do my best to get you back on solid ground. - J

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