Eat more vegetables, control your portion sizes, and exercise regularly. Those are proven steps for losing weight that you’re probably tired of hearing about. But there’s a critical component missing from that tried-and-true weight-loss to-do list—mastering the mental game of becoming the healthiest version of you.
“Eating healthy food, drinking water, getting enough exercise and sleep—that’s the easy part,” says celebrity weight loss coach Autumn Calabrese, author of the new book Lose Weight Like Crazy, Even if You Have a Crazy Life. “So why do we struggle so much? It’s because we’re battling our mind, heart, and emotions, which are all very powerful. The traumatic experiences you endured in life are there to help build you into the person you are meant to be, but you have to choose how they define you. Do they fill you with self-doubt, self-hate, and self-sabotage or do they build you into a warrior?”
Calabrese, a Beachbody Super Trainer who has helped hundreds of thousands of people live heathier lives, both physically and mentally, stresses that the first step toward positive life change is recognizing that the only opinion about you that matters is your own opinion.
‘To set yourself free from the chains that have bound you, [you] need to admit to yourself that you are brave, you are beautiful, you are worthy, you are smart, you are capable, you are strong, and you are enough just the way you are,” says Calabrese. So you can have a better understanding of Calabreses’s methods, she has shared with us what she calls “Autumn’s Attitude Adjustments,” which have been powerful agents of change in her own life.
Read them below and get started on your journey. And while you’re starting to make healthier life choices, check out What Happens to Your Body When You Drink a Smoothie Every Day.
It can be hard to eat healthy foods instead of junk foods and make time for exercise when you’re not feeling good about yourself. It can be hard to push yourself to sweat and be out of breath. It also can be hard to feel uncomfortable in your own skin. It’s hard to feel bad physically and emotionally. It can be hard to look in the mirror and not recognize yourself.
But you have a choice. I want you to choose the hard of health.
Choose to practice self-care, exercise, and eat right. When you choose that hard stuff, all the other hard stuff goes away. You’ll feel strong, proud, and confident in who you are. Check out 15 Ways to Break the Bad Eating Habits Behind Your Weight Gain for more insight.
Motivation is hard to sustain. There are days when I’m not feeling motivated, but I am always disciplined. I have days when I want to have a few more glasses of wine than I should or I want to sit on the couch with a tub of ice cream, but I don’t do that because I’m disciplined about taking care of my body for my health. Instead, I enjoy the one to two glasses of wine that I’m allowed or a few scoops of ice cream. I don’t deprive myself, but I don’t overindulge either. That’s discipline.
Let this sink in: Every single thing you put into your body is what your body becomes. So, don’t be fast, easy, cheap, or fake. Change your attitude about what food truly is—fuel for your body.
When you look at it through this lens, it becomes much easier to make healthy choices. Learn more about how food impacts your body by checking out what happens to your body when you skip breakfast.
When you were first learning to walk, you didn’t fall down and think, “Well that’s it, maybe this isn’t for me.”
No, you got back up and eventually learned to walk.
Success doesn’t always happen on the first try. When you face defeat—and you will—remember your younger self, the child inside of you who didn’t know the meaning of failure. Rise up and try again and again because the only time you truly fail is when you quit. Good thing our younger selves never quit or there would be a lot of crawling adults out there!
Repetition is powerful. The more reps of dumbbell curls you do, the stronger your biceps become. Same goes for strengthening your resolve. Make a practice of repeating a motivating mantra every day whenever you need to tap its power. Need help? Try this one on for size:
“I’m doing this…
Not for him/her, but for ME
Not for today, but EVERY DAY
Not to feel good in a dress, but to feel good in my SKIN
Not for the beach, but for my MIND
Not for a competition, but for the competition I’ve created for MYSELF, BY MYSELF to become the best version of MYSELF, EVERY SINGLE DAY.”
Looking for more helpful tips? Well, your ultimate restaurant and supermarket survival guide is here!
Some people quit because they’re frustrated by slow progress. You need to recognize that slow progress is still progress. Stop looking at the weight scale for validation that your healthy habits are working. Look for the “non-scale” victories in your life: You have more energy; your clothing feels and looks better on you; you sleep better at night; you are more optimistic; your skin is clearer; you think clearer. That’s real progress. When you celebrate those victories, you’ll find the motivation to overcome even the hardest of days.