Train Your Brain To Lose Weight

train your brain to lose weight

Ever wonder what makes you hungry or crave certain foods? Why you always have enough room for dessert even though you just finished a big meal? Or why you might stand in front of an open fridge full of food and then say, “We have nothing to eat!”? Such is the power of neurotransmitters.


The human brain is composed of roughly 86 billion neurons (nerve cells). These nerve cells communicate with each other via chemical messengers called neurotransmitters. There are two types of neurotransmitters: inhibitory and excitatory. While inhibitory neurotransmitters calm the brain, excitatory neurotransmitters stimulate the brain.

Neurotransmitters affect sleep, mood, motivation, memory, focus, energy, libido, weight, and can cause adverse symptoms when they are out of balance. It’s been estimated that 86% of North Americans have sub-optimal neurotransmitter levels. Stress, lack of sleep, poor diet, addictive substances, and genetic predisposition are all to blame for poor neurotransmitter levels.

How Do Neurotransmitters Affect Weight Loss?

When most of us think of weight loss, we don’t usually think of the brain. The brain, however, has a dramatic impact on body composition. Your appetite is not only a product of your physiology, but also your psychology; it’s a complex interaction of hormones and neurotransmitters.

So which neurotransmitters are the biggest players in weight management? While all neurotransmitters are important, the big “four” are dopamine, acetylcholine, GABA, serotonin, and melatonin. In this article, we will discuss Dopamine!


In terms of weight loss, dopamine is the most important of the four brain chemicals. Dopamine is a unique neurotransmitter in that it can be excitatory or inhibitory, depending on the receptor it binds to. It’s derived from the amino acid tyrosine and is released during gratifying activities, such as food consumption, sex, exercise, and several drugs. The function of dopamine is diverse as it plays a role in pleasure/reward, mood, attention, and motor skills.

Those low in dopamine often use foods and stimulants to get them through the day. The problem is that most of the foods and stimulants people crave – chocolate, candy, diet sodas, coffee, or energy drinks – lead to unhealthy eating habits and obesity. Each of these substances actually does boost dopamine production. So in a sense, you are self-medicating correctly, although dangerously. Research shows that dopamine-induced behaviour leads to repeated cravings and overindulgence. Without the right amount of dopamine, you’re never physically and emotionally fulfilled by food, no matter how much you’ve eaten. So you keep eating and eating and eating.

While not enough dopamine can leave you fatigued – craving food and stimulation – too much can cause addictive behaviours. Dopamine is one of the reasons why foods can be addictive. Not surprisingly, almost all abusive drugs and addictive substances, such as alcohol, nicotine, cocaine, and even sugar, influence dopamine production.

The goal for weight loss is to have a dopamine signalling system that regulates and balances your body with sustained energy and motivation. Besides the many pleasures dopamine brings, healthy levels of dopamine naturally suppress appetite and aid weight loss. Just be aware that dopamine does decrease with most weight loss attempts.

To Positively Influence Dopamine Levels

  • Limit your sugar intake: sugar alters brain chemistry by disrupting dopamine levels. That’s why people experience a “sugar-high” shortly after eating sweets. In fact, sugar stimulates the exact same euphoric pathway as alcohol and drugs.
  • Supplement with l-tyrosine: since tyrosine is the building block of dopamine, supplementing with tyrosine can help increase dopamine production. An even better choice is acetyl-l-tyrosine, which is a more bio-available form. 
  • Eat foods high in tyrosine: bananas are an exceptional food for regulating dopamine because they have a high concentration of tyrosine. Other foods known to boost dopamine levels include almonds, apples, beets, watermelons, cherries, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, yogurt, beans, eggs, fish, and meats.
  • Limit caffeine: just like sugar, coffee offers only temporary relief. After experiencing the initial kick caffeine offers, dopamine levels in the body decrease. So, go for a cup of decaf instead if you have already had your morning fill.
  • Avoid stress and relax: Neuro-slim CBT tools, meditation, self-reflection, hot bath, or a massage are all activities that increase dopamine levels.

To learn more about how Neuro-Slim CBT tools can increase your dopamine, leading to sustainable weight loss results, watch my latest webinar: The Neuro-Slim Solution!

Weight Loss Coaching For Women

weight loss coaching with Jill Bunny

Have You Struggled To Lose Weight?

Weight loss can be a complex experience for many women. Being bombarded with different diets and struggling to lose weight can make us feel deflated and exhausted.

You may want to lose weight to feel healthier, improve your energy levels and prevent or manage illness. You may dislike your body shape and struggle with poor body image, and want to lose weight to feel more comfortable within yourself.

It is important to consider your reasons for wanting to lose weight and the steps you can take to ensure that you lose weight in a healthy and sustainable way.

In this post, you can find out more about the psychological and nutritional reasons why you may be struggling to lose weight, and how 1-to-1 CBT-Fitness coaching can help you achieve your weight loss goals and lead a healthier and happier life.

The Low Down On Weight Loss…

Feeling fat and heavy, struggling to lose weight, a sense of deprivation when you diet, and poor self-worth are the reasons why many women come to seek coaching. For many women it is not so easy to just follow a calorie-restricted diet and exercise more. We have so many emotional, relational and behavioural associations to eating, which can make it feel impossible to lose weight. Our headspace, habits and emotional soothing are all connected to how and what we eat.

Do any of the terms below resonate with you? How long have you struggled with your weight? For some,  weight issues start in adult life, but for many weight has been a struggle for most of their life. Together, I will help you unpack the associations, messages, decisions, patterns and beliefs that keep you trapped in a continuous struggle with your weight.

  • Habits
  • Poor Sleep
  • Social Eating
  • Negative Thinking
  • Poor Nutrition
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Self Sabotage
  • Emotional Eating
  • Time Management
  • Low Self-Worth
  • Stress

Psychological Factors Related to Weight Loss

Sometimes our relationship with food and eating can affect our weight loss journey and hold us back from achieving our goals.

Inner Critic

When we have unsuccessfully tried many times to lose weight, we may start to internalise our failures as being a part of our personality.

Over time, we may have developed an inner critical voice, which tells us that we are useless, worthless and will never succeed in losing weight. We may think to ourselves ‘what is the point?’ and lose motivation to achieve our goals.

This inner critical voice might cause us to self-sabotage attempts to lose weight. We may find ourselves overeating on sugary foods, or eating secretly away from other people. This forms a vicious cycle of self-sabotage, moving us further away from our weight loss goals.

Emotional Eating

Sometimes we turn to food to escape from challenging emotions, and this can affect our weight loss journey.

Stress, anxiety and low mood can affect our food choices. After a difficult day at work or an argument with a loved one, we may find ourselves comfort eating. We may choose to eat foods that soothe us, such as chocolate, cookies and wine.

Emotional eating can make us feel numb or ‘happy’ in the short-term, but inevitably leads to feelings of guilt and shame, and the emotions we wanted to avoid feel more challenging and overwhelming.

I can support you in working through your emotional triggers and help you build new ways to work through your feelings without reaching for food. Many of my clients find this an important exercise that supports long-term weight loss and maintenance.

We believe that you can reach your weight loss goals with the right support. We offer different treatment options, depending on your needs, to help you achieve long-term weight loss and optimize your wellbeing.

CBT-Fitness For Weight Loss

I am here to support you in redefining your relationship with food and eating.

CBT-Fitness Weight Loss Coaching can help you explore what may be holding you back from achieving your weight loss goals:

  • Breaking old habits and updating broken thinking
  • Understanding the emotions you may associate with food
  • Building self-esteem and confidence
  • Finding practical ways of reaching weight loss goals

CBT-Fitness Weight Loss Coaching can support you by exploring deeper psychological themes that have defined your relationship with food:

  • Exploring the origins of unhelpful thinking patterns, feelings and behaviours
  • Resolving and updating food scripts and our beliefs around food and eating
  • Processing experiences or events from our past that have influenced our relationship with food
  • Promoting emotional resilience and regulation, and finding ways to cope with difficult situations

I believe that taking a holistic approach to weight loss is the best way to achieve long-term positive outcomes.

If you are ready to start your 1-to-1 weight loss coaching experience, contact today!

Get Control Over Food With The Regular Eating Method


When wanting to make changes to your eating habits, the best advice I can give is to start with “The Regular Eating Method.” This is the most significant change you can make when it comes to tackling the unhelpful eating habits you want to kick to the curb.

Over 30 years of research in the field of food psychology concludes that introducing patterns of regular eating will help diminish unwanted eating habits. To get started on “The Regular Eating Method” follow the guidelines below:

Plan Ahead

At the beginning of each day (or the night before) plan in advance when you are going to eat your meals and snacks. If you are working with me 1-to-1 we can use your monitoring worksheet.

At all points in the day you should be aware of when you are going to have your meals and snacks. There will be times where your day will be unpredictable. When this happens, plan ahead as far as you can.

Adopt The “No Choice” Phrase

No Choice, eat each of your planned meals and snacks and nothing in between.

Do your best not to skip any of your meals and snacks or add in extra nibbles when not planned. Try to break long periods of time into more manageable chunks of no longer than 3 to 4 hours. This will help with reducing unplanned eating or giving into those pesky cravings.

Make Your Plan Should Be More Flexible Than Rigid

It’s important that you adjust times of your meals and snacks to suit your day to day schedule. However, do try to establish as regular a pattern as possible.

Do Not Leave More Than 4 Hours Between Meals and Snacks

Long gaps between mealtimes create psychological and physiological pressure to eat that can eventually throw you right off track. Therefore, it would be wise to eat at regular intervals, with a 4-hour gap being the maximum.



Now that we have the guidelines set, how can we monitor progress with implementation of The Regular Eating Method?

Each week ask yourself the following questions:

  • Each day, am I planning regular meals and snacks?
  • Am I trying to stick to the set plan?
  • Am I skipping any of the meals and snacks?
  • Are there gaps between my meals and snacks longer than 4 hours?
  • Am I eating between my meals and snacks?
  • Am I getting back on track when things don’t go to plan?
  • Am I adjusting the timing of my meals and snacks to accommodate events and circumstances?

Most people that start The Regular Eating Method will spend quite a few weeks following the guide and using the reflection questions before moving onto what to eat. This method will help you prepare for upcoming dietary changes, that will help  you think gain control over food. The added bonus? Your body will change, and you will be able to maintain the fit, healthy physique you are desperately wanting!

Since you may have had unwated eating habits for quite a while it is really important that you make the most of this opportunity to change, otherwise the problem is likely to persist. Making changes will be hard work but it will be worth it. The more you put in, the more you will get out.

This September, I have opened up 3 spots for the exclusive 1-to-1 coaching. If interested please send a message to inquire about reserving your spot.


Stop Spending Money on a Fitness Coach Until You…

Ok, I know the title is a little over the top but I needed to get your full attention.

Have I got it?

Great, let’s kick things off!

Listen, I know you have some hefty fitness goals.

I know you want the most rocking summer bod, that will turn heads. (Ok, at least the heads of your husband or that unsupportive friend who never thought you could lose the weight).

I know all this because I have worked with many women just like you, over the past 15 years.

A big dream, and you’re ready to make a life changing transformation. But it’s not happening.
You’re still not achieving the results you really want.
Something is sabotaging your efforts.

You feel like the skinny jeans and crop top tanks are against you!
Not enough weight has been dropped and you’re certainly not happy with the results thus far.
That makes you sad and frustrated.

Most days, you feel like you’re spinning your hamster wheel, not getting very far. I hear ya….it’s a BIG pain in the arse! So you think, “I will get some help!”

You may have thought to yourself:

“I’ll hire a fitness coach, someone who can really help me drop this weight once and for all.”

You google and come across some eye-catching websites, read some FB posts and see a ton of IG “before and after” photos – and you invest.

You invest and you’re ready for the big transformation. Then… week after week, nothing happens.
Crickets – Zero – Nada. Okay, Maybe a couple of inches and pounds are lost. But not what you wanted and certainly not what you had hoped for. You feel so down; as if there’s something seriously wrong with you. If others can get great results, why not you? Maybe you’ve even kicked yourself for falling for another magic plan once again.

If you’ve ever felt like this, you’re not alone!

And after hearing this from one too many women, I knew I had to write about it. You see, I’ve been in the training and coaching field for over 15 years.

I’ve worked my socks off to get experience, knowledge and qualifications and helping my clients get results and nothing pees me off more than seeing really great women like you get sucked into hype, magic pill syndrome.

Good Old Social Proof!

But here’s what I want I want you to know.

Fitness coaching is in crisis right now and I don’t want you to pay one more penny to a coach until you read the next bit (it won’t take long, pinky promise!)

As someone who works with women who want to level up their fitness day in day out, as someone who has worked with athletes, business executives, shift workers and front line staff, I know the power of a health and fitness coach (IT’S HUGE!) but right now, you need to know the top 3 reasons why fitness coaching might NOT be for you… just yet!

Now remember, this is just my take on it but judging from the many women I’ve spoken to and worked with …. This is a problem! But I’m also not a downer so I’m not just about to unload a whole lot of crap into your brain. I will also share how you can make coaching work for you!

1. Every Tom, Dick & Harry is a Fitness Coach

Yep, Tom, Dick and Harry have made an appearance and they are flipping everywhere!

The problem we see is that there are many excellent coaches out there doing their thing.

But, there are a ton of people who see fitness coaches doing really well and think ‘I’ll do that.’ Please know I am not knocking anybody… that is not my style.

But what I do have a problem with is people who are not qualified putting themselves in a position to guide others in their health journey. (This is NOT something to take lightly).

And that is not cool, especially when it comes to someone else’s health. As much as I hate to say this, yes there are unscrupulous people out there who use fake testimonials to bring you into their business and then boom, you’ve spent money on them. That is not right.

To make sure fitness coaching helps you achieve your goals, please do your due diligence and make sure your coach is excellent. It doesn’t have to be about tons of certifications but actually talk to the people featured in their testimonials.

Before you spend your hard earned money on someone, make sure it’s well directed.

I’m scrupulous about making sure women know why they’re hiring me. My strength is in helping women get clarity about what they could be doing to get fitter, helping them define the right nutrition and training protocol, how to implement, and then hold them accountable.

I love helping my women create the mind and body they have always dreamed of.

That’s what I do and if you need something different, then I’m not your coach and I am comfortable with that.

Beware the ‘fitness coach’ who says they can help you with whatever you need!

2. Beware the Snake Oil Charmers

Yes, obtaining a fit-toned body can be hard.

It can be a struggle especially when you’re not clear on how to actually do it. It can be a big pain when you have no plan of action and you are are literally watching weight slowly creep on month after month.

But when you’ve been spinning that wheel for too long and you’re about to give up, that’s when you want the knight in shining armour.

The magic pill. The special snake oil.

The “plan” that will make all your weight disappear. You invest. You do the work (or some of the work if you’re really honest). And you get some results but nothing major.

And you start to wonder if you’ll ever lose the weight.

Let me be the first to say… there is nothing wrong with you; it’s just that you’re looking for something that doesn’t exist.

The truth is there is no magic pill.

And if you’re still looking for it and you’re still investing in coaches to find it, you’re going to spend a whole lot of money and a lot of time still looking. For nothing. There is no magic pill.

What works is consistent action.

Let me qualify that….what works is consistent RIGHT actions.

Focusing on the right things at the right time.

That is the magic pill.

Build consistency in your fitness routine and watch your fitness results appear.

Yes, invest in the skills and knowledge so you are armed with what you need to make sure your results last long-term. The most important thing is you commit to your program and you stick with it!

What makes the difference is you showing up every

day and being consistent and persistent.

3. Hype Never Tells the Full Story

Did you know there is no such thing as overnight success? You probably already know that but yet, we still fall into the trap of thinking it!

I am really tired and fed up of hearing women talk about how they lost weight in matter of weeks. Do you know why I’m tired of hearing it? Because it just isn’t the truth.

Too many important details are hidden in the small print.

I recently did a podcast on how one of my clients reached her 100lbs weight loss goal! I was so keen to emphasize was how long it took her….how long it took to refine the nutrition plan, create a consistent workout routine, and of course how to re-set after a set back etc.

“So, how long did it take? 2.5 years! Now, we are on a one year maintenance-coaching phase. So that his 3.5 years of coaching! Not something that is a big sell to the fitness industry – but it is the truth.” 

Now I dont want to be a Debbie Downer. Yes we know weight loss and transformations can be done quicker but the reality is, it can take a substantial amount of time to instil the necessary habits.

Yes, there are many who seem to have dropped substantial weight in no time at all.

But this is when our comparison-monster rears her head and tells you there must be something wrong with you if you can’t get the same weight-loss results.

But here’s what you need to know….you have no idea as to what that person has done to achieve those results. You do not know their plan, how much weight they had to lose, if they took extra “supplements,” had cosmetic surgery, (or just used a photoshop app) etc.

I know, it’s crazy! Trust me, many of the women I work with fall into this trap. My best advice?

Create a safety word when you start indulging in the comparison monster!!

It is a great way to diffuse that horrible energy! (Mine might totally be Richard- stole it from my bestie hehe). 

It’s NOT Doom and Gloom. Coaching is Actually Amazing!

OK, so by now you know that I believe fitness coaching  is very worthwhile and a great investment for your health… (Heck this is my career).

Fitness coaching can be tremendously transformational and exciting. It helps you take the necessary leaps and bounds in your health and fitness transformation. It stretches you (not like Yoga), and pushes you out of your comfort zones so you start to believe in yourself.

As long as:

  • You don’t just hire any Tom, Dick or Harry
  • You’re not taken in by snake oil charmers
  • And your BS radar is part of your operating system so you can filter out the hype.

I hope this has been helpful…now go forth and be awesome in your fitness journey! You are making strides in optimizing your health and happiness and it’s so important to get the right support for yourself and your fitness goals.

If you’d like to connect with me, I’d love for you to join Team Bunny – if you are ready for a no BS approach to obtaining fitness results!

Lots of Love

Jill Bunny


What I Wish You Knew About Dieting…

There is misinformation everywhere

There’s always a new trend on the block. A new machine, a new exercise, a new pill, a new method. Look into them. Double check them. Reach out to the individual “testimonials” that are on those specific sales pages… oh wait… you can’t, because they are likely fake. (But Jill, it’s a screenshot from a Facebook post! Hate to tell you, but there are apps that create “real looking testimonials.“)

Everyone’s claiming to be experts. Everyone has some kind of certification & credential, but a lot of them don’t know what they’re talking about.

I get it though, both sides of it.

From the business side, that’s what you want to hit on, right? You want to strike at the vulnerabilities, the insecurities, and make promises that are either impossible, or possible but sacrificing something else.

From the woman that wants to lose weight, you take the other side … I want it. I’m desperate. You tell me you have a one month program that will lose me 20lbs and you have some certification and testimonies to back up the claim? I’ll throw money at you. I’m desperate.

If it’s too good to be true, it almost always is. Look deep into the facts. The scientific facts. They’re there, they‘re just not as loud as the diet pills and ab machines. Keep digging, they’re there. Trust them.

Trust the numbers, the body will follow.

The diet and training will be hard at times. There will be days where:

  • It’s tempting to binge.
  • You feel like an absolute train-wreck.
  • You feel like it’s just not worth the suffering.
  • Blaming genetics feels more true then all weight loss programs out there.

And that’s OK. Change isn’t going to be easy; but you will get there. As long as you work towards it every single day. As long as you don’t quit.

You will get there. I am here to help guide you – whether that is through blogs, secret emails, or 1-to-1 coaching. I will make sure that you do not fall into the diet trap EVER AGAIN!

Interview with SickKids Nurse COVID-19


COVID-19 Nurse Talks About Health + Wellness

In the “Hot Seat” with Karen Charpentier

Karen Charpentier has been part of Team Bunny since the fall of 2018. She has been one of the most active, supportive members of our community – from attending our CBT Retreats and social events, to setting up coffee dates with our other members that needed support and a listening ear. Karen completed her 1-to-1 coaching program, with new found confidence to get back into Triathlons. Currently, Karen is crushing The At-Home Training Program, in addition to our Private FB Group “100 Rep Daily Challenges.”

Karen’s Hot Seat Interview couldn’t come at a better time – for she is a front-line Nurse at SickKids Hospital. 

Tune in and listen to Karen’s interview where we talk about:

  • Karen’s back story
  • Her divorce
  • Her experience working at SickKids during COVID-19
  • Her suggestions on how to stay safe and healthy during COVID-19

Karen’s Facebook Handle:

Resources Karen recommends:


CTV News:

5 Ways to Stick to Your Diet Plan!

5 Ways To Stick to a Diet and Enjoy it!

Do you struggle to stick to a diet plan? Follow these 5 simple steps to help ensure the next diet is one you can maintain for life!

1. Think Positive thoughts.

“I have to go on a diet,” is not the best way to start any weight loss program, because it’s negative thinking right from the beginning. When you begin a diet with that kind of mindset, you think that you must give up your fav foods and you have to suffer. Please, do your self a favour and don’t go there! Begin a diet by thinking “I can do this” or “I’m going to have so much more energy.” These are positive thoughts that are REALISTIC! How you think is going to impact your success.

2. Know WHY You Want To Diet.

What are you trying to accomplish? If you think losing weight will make you happy, that’s NOT realistic. If you think it will improve your health and give you more energy, that’s a GREAT reason to diet! View yourself as healthy. Then think about what you enjoy: treating yourself to a day at the beach? Shopping for a new dress? Playing soccer with your kids? Focus on positive – but realistic – outcomes to keep yourself motivated.

3. Give Yourself A Little Love.

If you’ve been avoiding mirrors because you are overweight, spend some time looking into one. What do like about yourself? Is it your beautiful eyes? Long hair? Maybe, you have an hourglass figure, even with the extra pounds. Now, go a step further. What are the things you are good at doing? Realize that your weight doesn’t define you – look past the negatives and feel good about yourself.

4. Be Realistic & Patient.

Fast-start dieting is a great way to get motivated, but if you have a considerable amount of weight to lose, it’s still going to take time.  Be realistic. Know that you’re looking at sticking with your diet for as long as it takes (and then having to stick to it to maintain your progress!) Be patient with yourself. Be patient when your weight loss slows down – it will pick up again. It may be a long run, but you’ll love the end result!

5. Admit You Need Help.

Dieting isn’t easy. If you need help, ask! When you get professional help, you’re going to find someone who can help you find the right diet for your lifestyle, give you a better understanding and, at the same time, help keep you on track. There’s no failure in getting help. It makes dieting easier. It gives you someone to share both your failures and successes.

Start your diet on a positive note. Get help if you need it. Be realistic. Be patient, and remember it will all add up to getting the body that you WANT!


What Type of Food Craving Do You Have?

There will be times when you want a cookie, when the only thing you are hungry for is fast food, when you feel like licking the spoon from the almond butter jar, or eating ice-cream right out of the carton. Sometimes you might choose to do those things, other times you might chose not to; but always remember that cravings are an expected part of life.

Four Types of Food Cravings:

  1. Hunger cravings for quality food. This is when you are feeling sensations of true hunger and you feel driven toward something that will satisfy that hunger in a nourishing way. You are craving a decent meal or a snack. This is a healthy desire from your body and brain, and you can simply follow this type of cravings.
  2. Non hungry cravings for quality food. This is when you don’t truly feel a sense of hunger, but you are craving something that’s (mostly) healthy. For example, out of the blue, you want a big, juicy apple. These cravings are rarely problematic and usually indicate that the body is in need of a nutrient that the food contains, so it makes sense to follow these cravings in a what that feels good to you. (or have it with your next scheduled meal).
  3. Hungry cravings for unhealthy food. This is when you feel true sensations of hunger, but when seems most appetizing is the box of cookies in the cupboard – not the leftover chicken, veggies and rice in the fridge. When you have these cravings, you have a choice. You can follow your cravings as they are, or you can steer yourself in a more nourishing direction. Having cookies during the day is not a big deal, but overtime, it can become problematic.
  4. Non hungry cravings for unhealthy food. This is the type of craving most likely to be problematic and the one that my clients the suffer from binging or recovered binging become concerned about. Wanting something that isn’t good for you when are aren’t even hungry can cause anxiety in some people, and if followed, these cravings can eat lead to thoughts like, “I’ve blown it, I might as well binge and start clean tomorrow.” Indeed, these cravings are the most similar to binge urges, and just like with binge urges, you can chose not to act on them.

How to Get Through Hard Times in Your Weight-Loss Transformation!

In my work, one of the first things I let my clients know is this: When you start out, dieting/training may be fairly easy because you are highly motivated, and then as you practice certain skills more and more, dieting/training gets easier. But at some point, it will get more difficult.  This is normal and inevitable and it happens to everyone.

I let clients know that when this happens, it doesn’t mean that you are doing anything wrong, and if you keep pushing through it will get easier again, 100% of the time.  The problem is that most of us don’t know that dieting is supposed to get hard at some point and when this happens you might panic, think that something has gone wrong’ that it will continue to be hard, and it’s just not worth it.  And then what happens? You give up.  But this giving up is entirely unnecessary because dieting and training will get easier again if you keep doing what you are doing.

What you can do when dieting & training gets hard:

1. Create an Advantages List & Make Sure The List Doesn’t Feel Stale. 

During hard times it’s usually more difficult for us to remember just why it’s worth it to put in the necessary time and energy, so it’s important that you frequently remind yourself by reading your Advantages List. It is also important for these lists to resonate with you and to feel fresh and inspiring.  If you have been reading the same list over and over again, it may start to feel robotic.  To help with this, try strategies like rewording your list, add new items, read just the top three each day, take a few minutes to really visualize some of the items, etc.

2. Think About Past Experiences.

 When you are going through a harder time, you often forget how good it feels when you are in control of your eating/training. If you take time to really think about a recent experience when you stayed in control and remembered not only how good it felt, but also simply the fact that you were able to do it in the first place, it can help remind you that dieting/training is not always so difficult and that, most of the time, it feels worth it.

3. Focus On The Basics.

When dieting/training gets rough, it can be helpful for you to take a few steps back and concentrate just on some of the most essential dieting skills, like reading their Advantages List, reading Response Cards, eating everything sitting down, and giving yourself credit. Doing so can help you regain your focus and also feel more confident about what you are doing because you already know you can do these things.

4. Respond To Unhelpful Thinking. 

Often when you are going through a hard time, you have lots of unhelpful thoughts like, “This is so hard, I just can’t do it,” and, “It’s not worth it to me to continue trying to lose weight.”  If left unanswered, these thoughts can lead you to give up so it’s critical that you take time to identify what unhelpful thoughts you are having, make Response Cards, and practice reading them every day.  For example, you can remind yourself that:

  • The things on my Advantages List are worth fighting for so just because it’s hard doesn’t mean I should give up. I’ve worked hard and accomplished other things in my life that weren’t immediately easy, and I can do this, too.
  • Hard times always pass. This is temporary and as long as I keep doing what I’m doing, it will get easier again.  Just keep working!

5. Give Yourself Credit. 

Sometimes when dieting/training gets difficult, you forget to give yourself credit for all of the good things you are still doing.  This is particularly likely to happen if you are only focusing on how hard or bad things feel. When going through a hard time, it’s critically important for you to give yourself credit because you often begin to lose your confidence and sense of self-efficacy and question whether or not you can really do everything. By recognizing the things that you are still doing, and doing well, you can fight against this and regain (or maintain) a sense of pride and achievement.

Why Are You Gaining Weight When You Don’t Want To?

How often have you noticed that formerly normal weight people have gradually gained weight throughout the years? Or people who have lost a significant amount of weight, gain it back rather quickly? Should people even try to lose weight at all? The answer is YES, if they are already having weight-related health problems or if they are putting on extra weight every year and are likely to have health problems in the future.

On the other hand, studies that have examined how much weight people are able to lose and how much they are able to keep off long term are fairly poor. Most people gain weight back. Wonder why?

5 ways To Gain Unwanted Weight:

  1. You lose weight too quickly.
  2. You go back to your old eating habits after you have lost the weight.
  3. You continue to eat and exercise exactly the someway despite you getting older.
  4. You feel entitled to eat the same way as “everyone else”.
  5. You make excuses for why it’s okay to eat when you shouldn’t.

Each of these items is explained below.

  1. You lose weight too quickly: One of the best ways to gain weight quickly is to drastically cut your calories. Research shows that the faster people lose weight, the faster they tend to regain it.
  2. You go back to your old eating habits after you have lost the weight: It’s plain biology. If you lose weight on 1200 calories a day, for example, and then your weight plateaus, you will start to gain weight back once you go up to 1300 calories a day. That’s the equivalent of one good sized apple or 1 tbsp almond butter. And if you return to eating 2,000 or 3,000 calories, as perhaps you did before, of course your weight will increase.
  3. You continue to eat and exercise exactly the someway despite you getting older: It seems unfair, but it’s true. Metabolism tends to decrease with age. If you don’t start eating less and/or exercising more, you’ll gain weight. Now it’s reasonable to gain a little weight, especially if you’re eating in a healthy way, but those pounds can really add up as the years go by.
  4. You feel entitled to eat the same way as “everyone else”: It’s possible that you know the rare person who can consume a great number of calories a day and not gain weight. But it’s more likely that the people you know (especially if they’re over 35), are either restricting their eating in some way or are themselves gaining weight each year. In any case, it’s irrelevant. If you don’t want to gain weight, you’ll need to figure out what’s right for you to eat; which isn’t necessarily right for another person.
  5. You make excuses for why it’s okay to eat when you shouldn’t: Your body processes calories in exactly the same way, regardless of circumstances. It doesn’t care if you’re stressed, tired, or celebrating; if it’s a special occasion; if no one is watching you eat; or if the food is free. It may be reasonable to plan in advance to eat a little more in some circumstances but understand that if you don’t compensate by exercising more or cutting an equivalent number of calories another time, you will gain weight.

It seems unfair. It’s so hard to lose weight and so easy to gain it back. But once you learn the foundational skills grounded in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) that you need, the process of losing and maintaining a weight loss (it’s the same process!) becomes much easier.

If you are ready to look at your weight loss in a NEW WAY & learn CBT Food & Fitness skills to go along with a custom diet and training plan; then send me a message today! Limited spots available for the CBT coaching program!

Lots of Love,

Jill Bunny