Tag Archives | lose weight

What to do after you overeat.

I'm full. Greedy eaterIf you want to avoid gaining weight,
Don’t eat again until you’re hungry.

It’s that simple.

The minute you notice that you’re eating and you’re not hungry.
Stop.
Note where you are on the hunger scale.
And wait until you’re at -2 (slightly hungry) to eat again.
This may only be tomorrow, or many hours later, so you have to be willing to skip a meal that you usually eat.

It’s worth it because it’s entirely possible to not gain weight from one overeat.
Thin women overeat sometimes.
And they maintain their weight by simply not eating again until they are hungry.

It makes sense, doesn’t it?
Even if you want to talk about calories (which I usually don’t):
Let’s say you eat 500 calories more than your body required during your overeat.
Or even 1000.
I predict you won’t be hungry for a while.
At least one meal.
If your overeat was late at night, you’ll probably wake up and still feel full.
Follow my advice – don’t eat breakfast, even though the experts say you must.
Today, your body is telling you you mustn’t.
It’s still processing what you ate last night and it doesn’t need more fuel right now.
So if you do the math, that skipped meal will equal about the excess calories of what you ate.

In the end, its a wash.
And your weight loss plan is still on track.

Easy huh?

In my experience, we never gain weight from one overeat.

Here’s the reason that overeating leads to weight gain:
We tell ourselves that it’s over.
We’re off the wagon.
We’ve lost control.
We’re never going to be able to do this.
We have no will power. No discipline.

These critical thoughts make us feel despair and hopeless.
And, if your go-to when you feel despair or hopelessness is food…
You can see where I’m going.
More overeating.
To more self-abusive thinking.
To more hopelessness and despair.
And even more overeating.

It’s this cycle that causes you to gain weight.
Not that one overeat.

The good news is that you can stop this cycle
Because you’re the one who started it.
With your thinking.

Don’t make that overeat be a reflection of who you are.
Just tell yourself that you are not going to eat again until you’re hungry.
Don’t do this to punish or restrict yourself.
Do this to take care of yourself. Honour your body.
Tell yourself “taking care of me means I eat when I’m hungry and stop when I’m satisfied’.
‘I’m going to wait until I’m hungry until I eat again’.
‘Everyone overeats sometimes’ (this is true – most naturally thin people overeat sometimes too, then they do exactly what I’m telling you to do)

If you find yourself overeating regularly, and often, you may want to consider whether you’ve made food rules that are feeling too restrictive. I have found that ditching your diet rules  leads to more even controlled eating, and easy, drama-free weight gain.

If you find you can’t stop eating,  email me to see whether you’re a candidate for my weight loss coaching program – I can help you stop. Forever. It’s hard work. And it’s so worth it.

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The many (unhelpful) ways we use food

Vegetable peelingsIf you’re an emotional eater, like me,
you may have noticed that you use food for reasons other than nourishment.

I’m five years into my recovery from emotional eating, thanks to coaching,
and I’m still learning about all the games I play around food.
I’ve (largely) stopped using eating as comfort, company, distraction, sedative and anesthetic.
But this week, I discovered that I use cooking to procrastinate and distract myself.

I had lunch with a supersmart friend this week.
She told me she’s been cooking a limited number of foods very simply for the past year.
This has freed both her time and her mind enormously.
I perked up, because I’m always looking to create more time in my day.
When I told her I prepare multiple meals from scratch every day,
She asked me “What does all that cooking do for you?”.
“I love it”, I told her.
“I like nourishing my family with high quality fuel foods.”
“I’m a foodie.”

She let it drop (realizing that I was in hopeless denial – told you she was smart),
and the conversation wandered to different topics.

But the rest of the week, her question kept popping into my head.
As I was cooking instead of…
tidying my house, marketing my business, sending difficult emails, cleaning the kitchen, writing copy for my new website (superexcited – to be launched in April!!), folding laundry, having difficult conversations, sitting down at my desk, helping my kids with homework…

Wow.

I use cooking to procrastinate.

I used to eat to procrastinate.
I’d feel overwhelmed, and, instead of working through my To Do list, I would work my way through the pantry.
That’s a rare occurrence now.
I find that, once an unconscious pattern is made conscious,
as long as I remain mindful, I notice the urge and can choose to lovingly redirect myself.

But this one. I did not see it coming.
Cooking is such a legitimate way to spend your time right?
And it is, if that’s what you truly want to be doing.
But if I truly want to be doing all the other stuff I’m not doing because I’m cooking,
that’s when it becomes unhelpful.

It got me thinking about all they millions of ways we ‘foodies’ use food.
Yes, food tastes amazing.
Yes, transforming raw ingredients into a dish is thrilling.
And yes, sometimes it’s just about that.

But when doing the activity doesn’t feel peaceful,
then it’s really worth asking yourself:
“What is this doing for me (that it was not designed to do)?”

Be curious.
Don’t try to force the answer – your mind will trick you.
Just let the question be there, and be open to the answer, which may be quiet and soft.
When you find it, don’t try to change it.
Don’t criticize yourself for it.
Let that be exactly what it is.
Open yourself to the understanding.
And see what happens.

When an unconscious habit become conscious, 
change often happens organically. 

I’m noticing that I’ve streamlined my meals and my food prep these past few days.
Not because I told myself to,
but because I don’t want to be a procrastinator.
I want to be a person who gets it done.
I’m still preparing our meals from scratch,
but I’m offering less options.
And  everyone is finding something to satisfy them.
Or they’re finding something else in the kitchen that has nothing to do with me.

Cleanup is simpler.
Shopping is simpler.
I’m moving into those things I want to do that scare me a bit.

All because of one magical question, softly asked “What does this do for you?”

If you want help exploring this question,  email me to set up a free mini laser focused coaching session!

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Burgers don’t make you fat. Overeating makes you fat.

10922357_10152626433857455_9055204819038075501_oI had lunch in heaven last week.
Four Seasons Santa Barbara – outdoor patio table, facing the ocean,
a beloved friend and colleague on either side of me.
As Karen was telling us that she’s losing weight,
the server brought our orders.

Hers was a burger and fries.
“Well I still eat burgers” she said apologetically.
As if her lunch order made her a liar.

“Burgers don’t make you fat” I told her.

“Overeating makes you fat”.

Here’s what I mean.
If you eat only according to your body’s hunger signals,
and you eat a burger and fries, you won’t eat again for many hours,
because you won’t get hungry again.
A burger and fries is a  very filling meal,
that takes a long time to pass through your digestive system.
Whereas if you eat a salad, like I did,
you’ll be ready to eat again in 2 hours, like I was.
So I ate a protein bar,
and then a banana and yogurt a couple of hours after that.

I don’t count calories,
but I’m guessing that if we added up all the calories from my day’s eating,
and Karen’s burger and fries,
we’d be pretty equal.

Of course, the nutritional benefits of our food will be quite different,
but I find that, when we allow ourselves to eat whatever we want, we choose nutritional food often enough to balance out our  burgers and fries.

Karen was quite relieved to hear this
because this woman really loves her burgers!!
My hunch is that if she tried to lose weight using a regime that told her she couldn’t eat burgers anymore, she would last as long as her next lunch date.

So stop telling yourself that you have to eliminate food you love in order to lose weight.

Here’s all you have to do –  pay close attention when you’re eating:
1. Make sure your body wants food i.e. are you physically hungry?
2. Make sure what you’re eating is really what you want to eat i.e. are you going to truly enjoy it?
3. Make sure you stop eating when your body is satisfied i.e. is your stomach feeling about 3/4 full?
4. Don’t eat again until you are physically hungry again i.e. back to step 1.

Follow these four  steps, and you’ll lose weight eating whatever you want.
This is a skill that many of us  lost as we dieted and binged our way through our teens and adulthood. I encourage you to try this out, starting right now (no need to quickly eat everything you love before you start, because you can eat whatever you want anytime). If you have any difficulty with any step,  email me to set up a free mini laser focused coaching session!

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People-pleasing can be hazardous to your waistline

IMG_2274
Losing weight my way means you connect to your body
and you learn how to nourish yourself with foods that truly fuel you.
Foods that feel vitalizing and energizing.
And you learn to choose to say no to foods that don’t.

You will discover that you no longer want to eat foods that you used to eat
or drink drinks you used to drink.

Some friends and family may not be happy with this change.
They may encourage you, repeatedly, to
‘have just one’ or ‘don’t be a party-pooper’ or tell you that ‘you’re boring’.
Your fellow diners may question you, publicly, about what you’re eating and why and when and how much.

You may feel disconcerted.
Pressurized.
Uncomfortable.
Your resolve to honour yourself may start to weaken.

Look behind your feelings of discomfort.
You may find that you have people-pleasing beliefs.
They may sound a bit like
“don’t make other people feel uncomfortable”
“be nice”
“don’t draw attention to yourself”
“keep the peace”
“don’t rock the boat”

Sound familiar?

Let all those familiar voices be there.
Notice them entering your head.
Notice how they make you feel.
Decide if you still want to believe them.
Decide whether you want to live your life by these mottos.
Consider whether these beliefs are leading you towards the life you want to create.

The good news is that, as adults, we can change the scripts that govern our behaviours.

First, we must find them.
And trust me, when you decide not to eat or drink in tandem with your fellow diners,
You will find them.

Second, we must be willing to sit with the discomfort these scripts are causing as we explore them and evaluate whether they still work for us.
(For example, as a child, it may have been imperative that you pleased the people around you,
Now, this habit may be making you fat)

Third, we must choose.
If we choose to change our scripts, we must be willing to lovingly allow them to have their discomfort,
Understanding that it’s caused by their thoughts about what you’re eating/not eating,
not by what you’re eating/not eating.

How do I know this?
When I choose not to have any alcohol at dinner,
some people are uncomfortable, and other people don’t care or even notice.

Hmm.

I’m doing the same thing.
So if it was me causing the problem, everyone would have the problem right?
But it’s only the people who think I need to join them in their drinking that are upset.
Those who think it’s irrelevant to their fun aren’t upset at all.
Which proves to me, that the only thing causing their displeasure is their thoughts about my not drinking.

Make sense?

Once you internalize this,
you’ll be able to give up your fat-inducing people-pleasing habit.
While still keeping all your friends, and enjoying your dinners even more, as you eat and drink exactly what you want,
and watch your waistline shrink while you’re doing it!

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Your body knows how to lose weight permanently – all you have to do is listen.

Little girl and puppyWe all know we must eat less in order to lose weight, right?

There are two ways to do this:
We can eat what someone else tells us is the right amount for our body’s needs,
or we can eat what our body tells us is the right amount for our needs.

Problem with the first option is that it doesn’t work long term.
So the only way to lose weight permanently is to learn, and respond to, the signals from our bodies: ‘time to eat’ and ‘time to stop’.

Since I wrote about losing 5 pounds in one week using this simple method,
I’ve had queries about how to do it.
So read on, because I’m going to teach you right here.

It requires rediscovering the connection between your stomach and your brain.
For many people, this connection is hard to find.
Many clients tell me they don’t have it.
I assure them that they do – it’s a biophysiological reality.

I ask them how they know when they need to pee.
They tell me they ‘just know’ – they ‘feel it in their bladder’.
I ask them how they know they’re done.
Same answer ‘I just know – I feel it’.

There’s a direct connection between their bladder and their brain.
You have that connection between your stomach and your brain too.
Naturally thin women give me a similar answer when I ask them how they know when to start and stop eating: ‘It’s a feeling – in my body’.

Maybe you’ve ignored these messages for so long that you don’t hear them?

A hunger scale provides structure and language:

Imagine that +10 means you’ve eaten so much that you’re physically ill.
And -10 means you’ve been starving for a week.

Now imagine what +2 would feel like – it’s subtle and quiet, so you have to listen closely – it could be ‘no longer hungry’ or ‘¾ full’ or ‘enough’.
Time to stop eating, even though it may be less than you usually eat.
Your body’s satisfied, and you feel light enough to go walking.

Now imagine what -2 would feel like – it’s also subtle and quiet, and you have to pay attention to catch it – it could be a sudden hollowness in your stomach, or slight tightness, or mild lightheadedness or irritability.
Time to eat. Now. Even though it’s probably sooner than you usually eat.
But if you wait any longer, you’re going to overeat.

There. You have it.
The most important tool for permanent and deprivation-free weight loss.

Initially, you’ll have to check in often throughout the day, to find out where you are on the hunger scale, and you must respond immediately to your -2 and +2, just like toddlers who are toilet training. It’s a new skill you’re learning.

But eventually it becomes habitual. Just like you don’t listen for the ‘pee’ sensations, you’ll notice your hunger and satisfaction sensations in the same way.

And your work will be to respond to them in the same way.

In order to reach your natural weight.

Permanently.

Eating whatever you want.

To my readers who are celebrating New Year with me tonight, Shana Tova. I wish you a sweet, healthy and fulfilling year, and many opportunities to practice listening to your body over the next few weeks!

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I chose crying in a restaurant over eating the entire menu.

Couple wearing bags.
Last week, I told you how I had lost five pounds by eating only when I was hungry and stopping as soon as I was satisfied.

For a recovering emotional eater like me, this means being willing to allow my emotions to surface instead of stuffing them down with food.
I told you about how messy and loud it can be.
When I was alone. In my car.

This week, I had a harder choice to make.
I went out with one of my best friends for dinner.
Trendy new restaurant – been wanted to go all summer.
My friend works long hours during the year, so summer dates are a rare opportunity to connect and enjoy each other.

As we walked in, she saw people she knew, and went straight to their table to talk to them.
For twenty minutes.
As I sat at our table, I could feel my unease growing.
And I noticed that I wanted to order the entire menu.
Including the meat.
Which I don’t eat.

Normally, I’m pretty comfortable being alone in busy restaurants,
so she would have expected me to simply have enjoyed the atmosphere while she was catching up with her friends.

Not now.
Not since I lost my mother.
I felt very alone and vulnerable.
When she finally joined me at our table,
I told her how upset I was,
and she reacted in a lighthearted and defensive way,
and I started to cry.

So much that we needed to leave the restaurant.

Seriously.

Those of you who know me will know that this is very unusual behaviour for me.
My friend was pretty shocked.
She didn’t believe me at first.

But I knew that I had 2 choices here:

1. order and eat the entire menu in order to stuff my emotions so far down that I could stay there and pretend that I was okay,

or

2. dissolve into a puddle.

So we left.

And I dissolved in her car.

And we drove around and talked,
and connected on a deeper and more intimate level than we ever have
in our 20 years of friendship.

And then I came home and ate dinner.
Because I was pretty starving by then!

This feeling your feelings work can be pretty messy sometimes.
And hard.
But it’s soooo worth it.
And it beats eating food you don’t even taste every time.
Hands down.

Not all of us would eat the whole menu to avoid feeling pain.
I have clients who would have ordered six pairs of shoes from Zappos,
or drunk a bottle of wine
while waiting for their friend to join them.

We have all developed our own ways to numb our pain so that we can pretend we
are okay
when we’re hurting inside.

It really helps to have a safe space to share your messy
when you finally decide you don’t want to numb anymore.
I can stand by you.
I’ve helped so many women find peace.
I would be honoured to be your safe space.

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Why can’t I just do the cleanse on my own?

raw vegetables in wicker basket isolated on white

You absolutely can.
For sure.
Here’s a class I taught all about how to follow my cleanse program without paying a cent.
It’s a few years old, and I’m always impro
ving my classes as I learn more, but you’ll get a good idea of how to detox your body, mind and soul.

So why pay for a class with me?
Great question.
I asked four of my repeat mindbodysoul cleanse clients why they were coming back (which I’m sooooo thrilled about!!).
I’m sharing their thoughts with you, because I have two spots left in my morning class
And I know this will be the best gift you’ll give yourself this year
You can sign up here.

Yael from Israel (you’ll see her gorgeousness on my cleanse info page) describes what you get from my class that you won’t get from a cleanse book or box of supplements and shakes: “For me doing the actual cleanse was just a side part to the whole process I went through during the cleanse. The classes we had weren’t even about the actual cleanse, it’s all about changing our mindset and our way of thinking.
The cleanse was an opening to a whole new world only because of the material in the classes. The ideas I learned about in the classes, are tools for a whole new lifestyle and they are in my thoughts every day. Last but not least, a very important part in this cleanse is the support from others who are in the same bout. The Facebook forum is the perfect thing for you to feel like you belong and are not alone in the way you think about food and your body.”

Tina, an artist and life coach from Vermont, said “I’ve tried cleansing on my own and I haven’t been able to stick with it the way I can in one of Bev’s classes. The energy and support of the group is so helpful and the weekly calls with Bev are absolutely inspiring. The structure provides the direction I need to stay focused — and I gain (and I hope share) strength with others in the class.”

I’ve cleansed both ways – with and without coaching.
I’ve been cleansing every spring and fall for 12 years now.
For the first six years, I would lose weight, my hair and skin would glow, my energy would soar, I’d get compliments…
And I’d promise myself that I was going to maintain this clean way of eating for the rest of my life…
Which lasted about 2 days after the cleanse.
Every time.

That’s because I was only addressing physical garbage removal.
I had no idea that I also needed to do some spiritual and mental cleansing.
And even if I’d known, I would have had no idea how to do so.

When I discovered causal coaching,
(the kind of coaching I do, which eliminates the desire to overeat by addressing the cause and not the symptom)
The cleanse became an opportunity to examine all the reasons I wasn’t living the clean lifestyle I so craved and enjoyed.

Connecting with my soul and my mind became just as important as connecting with my body.

Now, when I cleanse, it’s not so different to how I live my life –
It’s like a tune-up for a very well-functioning car –
Going great, I want to go even greater.
Every time, take it to a higher level,
More insights, more connection, more gifts.

That’s why Suzy and Nancy are doing it again.

For Nancy, a life coach and nurse practitioner from California, “the cleanse kick started my weight loss, led me to weight coach training and it did lead to permanent changes. This year I hope to eliminate something new from my diet. I have not had a diet soda in over a year! And I never missed it.”

Suzy, a life coach, and artist from Toronto, said I had never done a cleanse before.  But I really wanted to try it and I knew that the support of other women would be helpful.  I was right!  It was amazing! I learned a lot about myself and what I was capable of.  I want to do it again because it felt so good and I have more to learn.

Still have questions?
I’m around today scouring new recipes and meditations for our class, and I’m happy to chat or email. Mindbodysoul cleanse class starts tomorrow at 12pm EDT, 9am PDT!
Just tell me when.
Or, be brave and dive in wholeheartedly – this is the signup link!

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Are you ready to renew and recharge yourself?

Fotolia_60746941_XSEvery spring and fall, I gift myself with an inner tune-up.
I love that I can do this for my body,
And I attribute my high level of energy and clarity to my bi-annual cleanses,
which help me remember who I want to be and how I want to live.

I choose foods that are designed to repair, rejuvenate and revitalize me.
I recommit to daily meditations that are designed to awaken my inner knowing.
I examine my thinking to find remaining thoughts that are limiting me.

For the past few years, I’ve invited clients to join me on this mindbodysoul cleanse.
This year, I invite you.
We start next Monday – June 2.

Please accept my invitation – I’m confident that it will kickstart the best spring cleaning you’ve ever done, because it’s from the inside out, and you’ll be learning how to do it yourself.

If you’re ready to release some weight, some heavy thinking, and reconnect with your unique guidance, and learn how to continue the journey for the rest of your life,
meet me on the phone and online forum on June 2 (did I mention – that’s next week!).
Morning and Evening class available.
Click here for everything you need to know!

If you’ve cleansed with me before, and just want to sign up, click here!

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What would your Inner Hero eat for breakfast?

Superhero kid. Girl power conceptDo you know?
Can you find it?
It’s a subtle message.
That you only get when you’re really paying attention.

Early this year, I weakened my connection to my body,
And I would have had difficulty telling you what my inner hero would eat.

I remembered what it wanted last year, when I was very connected.
But this year I’m a different person and I hadn’t found out yet.

The best and quickest way for me to reconnect with my body
is to do a mindbodysoul cleanse.
It’s a program I developed from a variety of sources,
where I  detoxify my body by eating clean foods,
my mind by releasing outdated beliefs,
and my soul by regular meditation.

I finished my cleanse a week ago,
and achieved my goal.
My cleanse experience is always different, and I always get exactly what I need.

This cleanse, my body woke up to how it feels when I treat it like a hero.
I’m thriving on the cleanse and have decided to continue,
with a few modifications (read: chocolate),
as long as it feels amazing to me.

This morning, my daughter was eating a cheese bun for breakfast.
I remember loving the taste.
But as I looked at it, my body sent me a clear “NO” message.
I considered having a tiny taste.
And then I decided to honour my body’s recoil.

That’s how it works, this mind-body-soul connection
Your body sends you a message.
But it’s very subtle.
You really have to be paying attention to hear it.
And then you get to decide whether to honour it or not.

I honoured it today.
And while I was preparing my egg, avocado and spinach for breakfast,
This thought popped into my mind
This is what heroes eat for breakfast”.

Truly.
I have no idea where it came from.
I almost looked around to see who said it.

Me.
My mind.
In sync with my body and my soul.

Confirming for me.
This is what it feels like to live in sync with yourself.

A hero.

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What will I gain from this?

almond milk latteMy mindbodysoul cleanse client was deciding what food she would give up permanently after this cleanse.
She cleansed with me in spring, and never returned to caffeine or diet soda,
and she feels really good about this.

I suggested she reframe her question.

My question, every time I cleanse is, “what will I gain this time?”

I’m so happy to report that this cleanse, I’ve reconnected with my creativity.
For years I’ve been advised, by various healers and coaches, to reconnect with my creativity.
Writing this blog for you feels creative and soul-filling for me.
I’m also taking Brene Brown’s art journalling class with some artist friends, and the glee I felt when I picked up my first paintbrush since school hinted at the joy that creativity would bring to my life.

This cleanse, I’m finding it in cooking.

I’m a serious cleanse nerd. And a recipe nerd.
I follow stuff to the fine print if I choose to do it.
I’ve been known to drive to 5 stores for the ingredients for one recipe.
And I’ve always marveled at my sister-in-law, who makes up delicious dishes based on what’s in the kitchen.

I need marvel no more.
I’m one of them now.

For the first time in my life I’m creating fantastic dishes based on the huge pile of fresh veggies overflowing from my fridge, and I’m sharing them with my class.

So much fun.
Creativity.
Soul-filling.
Nourishing.
Community-creating.

I believe that if I’d gone into this cleanse thinking about all the stuff I had to give up –
Tons – all processed food, sugar, caffeine, dairy, wheat…
I wouldn’t have found this.

I may have made up some new recipes, sure.
But I wouldn’t have connected this action with my intention to find what’s new here for me
And I wouldn’t have related it to my soul’s quest to connect with my creativity.
Something new every cleanse.
Always feels very connected to the nourishment of my body, my mind, and my soul.

What if we approached everything we’ve chosen to do with this question:
What will I gain from this?

Especially things we think we won’t enjoy.
What will you gain from this?

Maybe it’s Thanksgiving or Chanukah with the whole warring family in one house.
What will I gain from this?

Maybe it’s Thanksgiving or Chanukah alone.
What will I gain from this?

A separation, a hard class, a tough project, a new baby, marriage…
What will I gain from this?

And also everything we haven’t explicitly chosen.

Being fired.
What will I gain from this?

Someone leaving, someone dying, getting sick.
What will I gain from this?

Next mindbodysoul cleanse class is spring.
Click here to tell me you’re ON the waitlist!

(The picture above is titled “Not your ordinary latte”. I’ve been craving something warm and frothy all week. Week 2 of my cleanse introduces almonds, so I adapted my usual home-made almond milk recipe so it was ‘cleanse-worthy’ and then I steamed it in my cappuccino machine, poured it into my favourite latte bowl, and I am in heaven!!! AND in 4 weeks I look forward to creatively adding a shot of espresso!)

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