While watching TV last night, I was bombarded with the usual weight loss programs and weight loss product ads. In each different commercial, during the parade of before and after photos, a common theme emerges: the disclaimer of ‘results not typical.’
Three Little Words
There’s a big message in those three little words, which are barely readable in its tiny print at the bottom of the screen: odds are you won’t lose weight! So how did those lucky few significantly reduced people do it? Well, there’s another hint in the fine print: "product should be used in conjunction with exercise and a healthy diet."
There’s No Getting Around It: Exercise and Healthy Eating
In a thought-provoking blog post from "Things I Learned the Hard Way," Sandra Dalka-Prysby writes:
When I embarked on my weight loss journey…I expected to lose all the weight in a year. No problem. After all, “real people” lost this amount of weight in this short period of time, according to the ads. I’m a “real” person. This would be fast and easy. Then I learned that this real person—me—was somehow different from all of those touting their success via their advertised stories. My weight loss was neither fast nor easy! It took hard work and consistent effort.
When I finally got smart and realized that the only “right way” to reduce weight is healthy eating and regular exercise (and you know this too!), I no longer needed those costly diet things. And when I realized that I didn’t need to go fast or wear a size 2, I stopped comparing my success to all those “untypical real people.”
All of us have either experienced failed fad diets, tried less than wonderful ‘wonder’ pills, or gimmicky exercise products. Yes, it may be a hard – and costly – lesson to learn, but the good news is that you’re not at fault for not losing the weight. Losing your faith in a weight loss product doesn’t mean you have to lose all hope or faith in your ability to lose weight. What it truly means is that you now have the opportunity to start empowering yourself for a real, lasting healthy lifestyle change.
Believe in yourself!