Friday, June 20, 2008

Are You Ready To Step Off The Weight Loss Merry-Do-Round? Part 4

For most people, dropping fat and getting healthy is a challenge, especially in non-supportive environments. A sabotaging friend or spouse, a workplace that's consistently a calorie laden minefield or a social life that revolves around food can definitely make sticking to a healthy lifestyle more difficult. An often overlooked (or downplayed) factor in a successful fat loss process is...

Social Support

Find a like-minded friend and exercise together. Create a "Biggest Loser" style competition at work. Ask some of the regulars at the gym if they'd be interested in forming a fat loss group.

If you're a follower of Turbulence Training, make sure to take advantage of the forums; members are extremely supportive of one another and are full of helpful suggestions. If you're not a TTer, check out free forums like SparkPeople or

Prefer face to face support? Join Weight Watchers or Overeaters Anonymous.

There are plenty of options.

For most people, trying to go it alone is hard. It's good to have someone to be accountable to and someone you can reach out to if you hit a rough patch.

Social support can mean the difference between success and failure so it's important to be selective.

Choosing a teammate or group:

* If you need to talk someone into joining you, ask someone else. You do not want a partner who expects you to be their motivator. Each person needs to be self motivated. Some days you might boost your partner's spirit or talk her down from the Dairy Queen drive-thru. :-) Another day, s/he might get you moving when you just feel like collapsing in front of the TV. The point is to be supportive of each other but both people must be committed to the process for their own reasons. Otherwise, it won't work.

* If you join a group, make sure its members are positive and who are interested in helping you find solutions to the challenges you encounter. If you find yourself in group sessions that are simply whine-fests about how members hate their bodies or how hard it is to eat healthy or exercise, find another group fast.

Ultimately, getting fit and dropping fat is up to you. No one in the world can help if you're not ready but if you are ready, social support can be a lifeline when things gets challenging.

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