I wish I could sell you that weight loss pill

If you're on social media, you are undoubtedly seeing a few friends posting how an amazing weight loss supplement has really helped them shed the pounds, lose belly fat and get shredded, all without having to change their diet! Your friend insists these all-natural pills/shakes/bars/superfoods/drinks speed up metabolism, keep hunger at bay and melt fat.

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Not only does your friend love these supplements, she knows you'll love them so much that you'll want to sell them, too! And if you do join her sales team, then you can buy these great supplements from her at a special discount. What a deal! 

I wish I could sell you weight loss pills that would do make weight loss so effortless.

Only catch is that these pills don't exist.

If they did, we'd all be on them, we'd all have lightning fast metabolisms, and we'd all be super shredded. 

You know what does work for weight loss? Building healthy habits. You know, eating nutritious food, moving your body, sleeping well and controlling your stress level. There's no magic to it, but these habits take time and consistency to build. Save yourself time, energy money and angst and get to work on building those habits now. 

Need some support?  Please be in touch to schedule a one-on-one consult or with your questions! 

 

Fall Group Health Coaching

The holidays are coming! Will this be the year that you finally avoid the annual holiday weight gain? If you're ready, not just for a happy holiday, but to lay the foundation for long-term health, greater energy and lasting weight loss, I'm excited to announce my fall group health coaching program:

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During this four-week program in Towson, participants will…

  • Learn what a healthy diet is
  • Identify the habits and environmental factors that impact the way we eat
  • Acquire practical skills for shopping for, ordering and preparing healthful meals
  • Master the skills for planning healthy meals and snacks
  • Share recipes and strategize for eating healthfully to make progress towards health and fitness goals through the holiday season.

The greatest benefit of the program is support and accountability, not just from your health coach, but from the other members of your group. 

Full details and registration coming next week, but complete the form below, and I'll forward those details to you directly:

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Are our genes our fate?

My grandmother Shappy partying hard on her 99th birthday, July 2017

My grandmother Shappy partying hard on her 99th birthday, July 2017

This is a strange time of year for me: Over a span of less than three weeks, I celebrated my maternal grandmother's 99th birthday, observed the 14th anniversary of my dad's death, and I'll soon celebrate (celebrate?!) my 40th birthday. 

At this time of year, I can't help but think about that age old question: Are my genes my destiny?

My maternal grandmother was sharp as a tack right up until she was about 97, when she had her driver's license revoked, began losing her memory and started showing signs of dementia. She was always tiny and slim, and looked fantastic dressed up for her 99th birthday dinner. My father, on the other hand, was a giant man, literally and figuratively, who was obese for most of his life, yo-yo dieted for decades, developed type 2 diabetes, and died very suddenly at 57 (which was all at the same time a huge shock and yet wholly predictable).  

Surely genetics play a role in the health and lives of my dad and my grandmother. My grandmother smoked for decades before quitting sometime ago after a health scare. But she also has habits that support her longevity: She's always eaten like a bird. No meal is complete without a pile of tomatoes on her plate. Up until she was no longer able, she was mobile, loved to travel. And she kicks the butt of any fool willing to play her at Scrabble. 

My dad was a Division One football player in his youth but was completely sedentary in adulthood. His diet was lousy despite my mom's attempts to serve the family "green stuff." The cause of his obesity was no mystery, though the reasons he leaned so hard on food are sadly complex. 

I may have genes from my dad's side that make me X% more likely to become obese or to develop type 2 diabetes. I may also have genes on my maternal side that protect me somewhat from the damage of long-term smoking or otherwise promote longevity (alas, I can confirm I did not get the Scrabble gene). 

That said, there are habits I can practice today to support my long-term health: I can move my body regularly. I can fill my diet with nutritious whole foods: Vegetables, fruit, beans, whole grains, nuts and seeds. I can make sure I get enough sleep (still not as consistent as I could be here--work in progress!). I can limit risk factors like consumption of red meat, processed meat, added sugars and refined carbs, and I can avoid serious risk factors like smoking.

My genetics are my floor and my ceiling, but I have the power to determine how high off the floor I can rise. I have no plans to hang out on the floor. 

An open letter that big chain store about your checkout area

Dear big chain store containing items for the bedroom, bathroom and other areas beyond those rooms:

I came to your store to purchase a couple kitchen items, and found exactly what I needed! Here is what I did not need: The gauntlet of perfectly organized, brightly colored, carefully arranged snacks lined up along the line to the cashiers. There were gummies, chocolate(ish)-covered pretzels, tins of weird little candies, combo packs of crackers + Nutella, chocolate truffles, and even crap-filled "energy" bars to make me feel like I was making a virtuous choice in the midst of all the junk.

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You forced me into a maze that required me not just to walk past said food, but to stand in the midst of it as I waited in the slow moving cashier line. I felt the strong pull to snack, even though I'd had a perfectly reasonable meal not an hour before I came to your store. I watched as a couple women and one college-aged young man stood with their carts and basket, at first just glancing over at the racks, then casually picking up items, then loading up several items.

Thanks again for the great selection of organization tools in your store, but can't I just buy our "As Seen On TV" items without having to dig in and use all my willpower to make it through the checkout? 

Sincerely,

Lauren Shafer