Based on a lot of research and experimentation here is what I learned about one’s weight normalization.
While most people try to lose weight, I use the term ‘normalize weight’, since some people need to gain weight and for many the verb ‘to lose’ creates an unnecessary anxiety, which in turn makes them gain weight.
First here is the TL;DR (Too Long; Didn’t Read) version:
- Don’t give a dime to what other people think about your weight. Especially since most of the time they don’t really think anything of you, as they are too preoccupied with their own life, and it’s you who thinks that they give a dime.
- Each person has a unique normal weight. And this weight will vary with seasons, stages of life and person’s well-being at the moment.
- Loving your body will naturally lead to a normal-for-you weight.
A Joyful Way to Your Normal Weight
- Calorie intake: Eat almost anything but with an awareness (intuitive eating model)
- Calorie burn: Engage in limbic exercise that you love (trance-type exercise, no thinking involved)
If you are intrigued let’s proceed to the detailed explanations and inspirations of the above ideas.
Table of Contents
The best incentive to want to lose weight is when you feel it’s not serving you. For example, if you have a difficult time going up the stairs, your belly is getting in the way of tying your shoe laces, sex becomes difficult, your health is affected, etc.
Most people try to lose weight because they believe they should, after reading a fashion magazine or watching “Baywatch” on TV. If you don’t have your own inner incentive to make a change, your effort will probably not lead you anywhere.
Don’t Give A Dime To What Other People Think
Don’t give a dime to what other people think about your weight. Especially since most of the time they don’t really think anything of you, as they are too preoccupied with their own lives, and it’s only you who thinks that they give a dime.
Love Your Body
Love your body as it is! A person whose body weight is very divergent from what’s considered normal in our society, but who loves his body will appear to others as a very attractive person. A person with with a body that can be easily show on the front page of a fashion magazine, but who doesn’t love his body is likely to not be very attractive to others.
Love your body because it’s yours, not because it fits under a certain imaginary standard or not. Do not wait to normalize your weight before you allow yourself to love your body. The best way to normalize your weight is to love your body – when you love it, you will naturally do things that will lead to normal weight and not the other way around.
Your Unique Normal Weight
Each person has his unique normal weight. It will primarily depend on the body type. And this weight will fluctuate with seasons, stages of life and person’s well-being at the moment.
Skinny isn’t necessarily better. A bit of extra weight leads to better longevity in the long run. Persons, who are of a fire-type (very fast metabolism), may not have enough nurturing fat to support their longevity. Also if you ever get moved to learn how to extend your love making sessions from minutes to hours, a bit of body padding goes a long way to prevent the pain of bone-on-bone grind and it gives you additional physical vitality.
Trust your body to know the best weight it needs to have at any given time. You just need to learn how to hear your body communicating that to you.
A Joyful Way to Your Normal Weight
Unless you suffer from some kind of disease that affects your metabolism, your body weight is a simple function of how many calories you take in versus how many calories you burn on a daily basis.
Intuitive Calorie Intake
If you were to eat with even a little awareness of your body, it would always indicate to you when it’s getting close to satiation. Of course, this is not going to happen if you eat while watching TV, talking to someone or reading messages on your phone, since you are not present with your own body to be able to receive any messages from it. So usually whatever is on the plate goes in and you only stop when the fork scrapes the empty plate, or your hand scrapes the bottom of that savory bag of chips.
In fact, most of us are so used not to be present with the eating process, that even if we don’t have any distraction, we might still not notice the messages from the body because we don’t speak that language. It will take some practice of trial and error to revive that simple body feedback loop.
Emotional eating is another example of unaware eating. When we are distraught, there is no presence of the mind to hear the body screaming: “Stop! You had enough!” And the only reason we engage in emotional eating is that once we overload our digestive system, we become too tired to be anxious, and the anxiety somewhat recedes for a time being.
Special chemicals routinely added to the food is another problems. Normally your body is highly attuned to what nutritional elements it requires at the moment and it’ll make you crave certain things it needs and it’ll also indicate when it received what it needs. For example, if you face a fruit basket with various types of fruit in it and you notice that a banana “has your name written on it”, it usually means that your body needs some Potassium. If that’s the case you’re likely to gobble up that banana in no time. Notice, that if you were to be present with the process and were to go for a second or a third banana, you probably would not eat any more of it, because your body would signal to you that it had enough of Potassium-rich foods. When it comes to fabricated food all kinds of chemicals are added to precisely block this body feedback mechanism. That’s why we usually can’t stop eating those chips, until the bag is empty. Our body can only send signals of fullness, but it can’t send any signals of nutritional value since it doesn’t know what to do with those chemicals. So it just works extra hard eliminating those. And, of course, then there is the GMO…
The bottom line – if you were to eat as unadulterated foods as possible and were to be present with your body while eating, you will never need to worry about taking in more than what your body needs. Over time this will bring your body to a normalized weight, specific to you and your life’s circumstances.
I can recommend an excellent book that covers all the nuances of this approach. It’s “Intuitive Eating: A Revolutionary Program that Works” by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch. It suggests that you can eat your favorite chocolate cake any time and as often as you’d like to, as long as you stay present with your body and listen for when it says: “No more at the moment, please”.
I can attest to validity of this method – when I eat with awareness I tend to drop to my normal weight within about a month or so. When I resist and try to run away from myself and start eating without awareness I start gaining weight. The awesome thing is that I no longer need to weigh myself, I need to watch my awareness level instead. When it’s high I know that even if I have just gained some weight it’s going to drop all by itself, I just need to give my body time. If my awareness is low, I know I’ll be gaining weight.
Limbic Calorie Burn
Regular exercise is important to keep one’s muscles in good shape, eliminating toxins via the lymphatic system (which relies on movement to operate), and many other reasons. Here I will discuss exercise specifically in the context of calorie burning to optimize one’s weight.
First of all make sure to engage in the type of an exercise that you enjoy doing on a consistent basis. If you believe that running is great for keeping your weight in check, but you hate doing it, this is not going to work well. For example, the dislike is likely to cause an unnecessary anxiety which can easily lead to emotional eating and you will end up gaining weight. And if you cover up the dislike with a mental distraction (TV, phone, etc.) during the exercise, you’re likely to cause a physical injury, since you are likely to miss distress signals from your muscles and ligaments.
Next, out of those types of exercise that you like, choose those that allow you to do in a limbic fashion, where your mind is not involved.
in Chapter 3 of the book “The Ghoraa & Limbic Exercise” Majid Ali, MD writes:
From extensive personal experience with limbic exercise, and from the experience of my patients to whom I’ve recommended this method of exercise, I know that exercise done with an uncluttered mind is far more restorative than goal-oriented, competitive exercise. […]
When in a limbic state, a person is free of all the usual thoughts that populate his mind. It is a native state of awareness of life, of energy and of a larger presence around us. It is a nonthinking but not a non-perceiving state. Limbic exercise means just that: exercising limbically. It does not mean that we plan our day while we exercise, nor that we review some past day during it.
The core point is that in limbic exercise an awareness of energy and life and a larger presence around us replaces the usual quota of angry or sad thoughts, […] The limbic condition, instead, cares, comforts, creates images of health and heals. In limbic exercise, it is not our purpose to achieve the health benefits of exercise by thinking more cleverly about its effects on our arteries, heart rhythm, brain waves or liver cell function. Rather, being limbic is to bring about physiologic changes by a no-thinking approach.
Limbic exercises are continuous, non-intense, non-goal oriented, noncompetitive exercises. There is no hyperventilation or perspiration. When done limbically, exercise ends with more energy than that with which it began. The essence of limbic exercises is the absence of focus. When we run limbically, we do just that – we simply run. There is no effort made to run well, to run at some predetermined speed, to run for some defined distance or to run to solve the problems of the day. When we walk, we simply walk. We make no attempt to solve our problems or sit in judgment on how we walk. Limbic exercises are done with abandonment, with total disregard of all the demands of the thinking head.
The chapter goes into many details of why limbic exercise is superior to cortical exercise, all the way to cellular tissue biology, and how it better burns sugars and fat.
In chapter 4 Majid Ali suggests that hiking, cycling and long distance running belong to the limbic-type of exercise if you perform them without thinking, whereas sports like tennis, baseball, sprinting and weight lifting do not.
I have been a swimmer since the age of 9 and my swimming practice has always been comprised of specific preset sets of laps, each set varying in speed, intensity and swimming style. After reading this book, and since I haven’t been doing competitive swimming in years, I have switched to swimming by lengths of time and to checking in with myself to know when to take a break or to stop. I really like this change. My swimming workout has already been a trance-like experience, and now it’s even better because I get to be in tune with my needs while I swim and my body can burn calories more efficiently.
The brilliancy of these methods is that they are very very simple, they work, you don’t need to spend your hard-earned money on magic formulas and training programs, and there is no rebounding with a binge eating when used correctly, since there is no diet involved.
It’ll take a small conscious effort on your part to make changes in how you eat and exercise and after a few months of practice to make it a habit you will be well on your way to an effortless normal weight.
The two books I mentioned in this article and that I highly recommend to you are:
- “Intuitive Eating: A Revolutionary Program that Works” by Evelyn Tribole M.S. R.D., Elyse Resch M.S. R.D. F.A.D.A.
- “The Ghoraa & Limbic Exercise” by Majid Ali, MD
If you have tried these methods and would like to share how these have been working for you, please share with the other readers in the comments section below. Thank you.