The cost of DIY

Be aware of the DIY trap!

I remember what feeling stuck felt. Looking back into the mirror and not recognising my body.

I was still me, but, at the same time, person looking back at me did not feel like me. Even energy about me was different.

To make things worse, my actual energy seemed to have abandoned me too, went MIA. There was none at any point of the day. How is that even possible?

For someone who never even thought of weight before and has all her life felt really comfortable in her skin, this was a new territory.

And I wasn’t loving it. Far from it.

This was me, after giving birth to my first son (Yes, the one that is leaving home this month to go to Uni). I was 30 years old at a time.

Of course, having my first child was magical, but I also wanted to feel good in myself and about myself. Extra pounds were not helping my health, my back was the first casualty, and it did nothing for my confidence. Like I had put a body suit on, and I was hot and uncomfortable and very aware of it.

My son was 18 months old when I finally had enough and felt ready to take care of the weight that I accumulated in pregnancy and post birth. It wasn’t much, but it was too much for me.

I have always had such great relationship with food and health, thanks to my mother, who, from my early age, taught me to value health. Because there was a point when I was around eight years old when we almost lost her to breast cancer.

Boy, did she fight! Yes, with chemo, but also with blenders, juicers, plants (and in the 1980s) and, above all, with an unshakable will to live and see me grow up… and beyond.

And she did.

So, having found myself at a place where many women are after giving birth – I was overwhelmed and confused and did not know where to start. However, I was a smart cookie 😉 as research took me to a nutrition coach who helped me start on my journey and, in a few months, with her help, encouragement and a solid plan, I was at my goal weight, getting really educated about nutrition and the science about metabolism, feeling amazing and even training to help others with their weight management.

Because it is hard not to get excited when something important happens and you find a solution to something that you struggled with knowing that you can make a difference.

It is a human in us all. Some recommend a movie they loved, I changed a career path 🙂

That was my apple falling from a tree and hitting me on my head. Eureka! I have found my calling!

That was 17 years ago this September. And well over 2000 happy clients in the process (“well over” as I stopped counting few years back – really no need to count any longer as I have put in my 10 000 hours).

So, this month is my 17th Anniversary and I have nothing less than an immense gratitude for everyone who was and/or still is part of my journey and allowing me to be part of theirs.

It is an honour. Truly.

And, boy, isn’t it a journey!

What I wanted to share with you this week is that the best lesson I learnt from my clients who came to me after years of trying on their own is that “I will figure it out myself!” is a path that can cost you:

  • Being even more hopeless, lost and confused
  • Gaining even more weight, putting further risk on your health
  • Having existing beliefs, patterns, habits even more ingrained & much harder to break
  • Going in circles and feeling frustrated
  • Spending more money on buying clothes in different sizes.

However, the biggest cost is a social isolation when you stay stuck and not fulfill your greater calling, miss out on the opportunities, relationships, etc. due to lack of confidence and joy of life.

Not to mention living in unnecessary pains and poor health.

There is a better way, and you deserve to be the best version of you so that your body can move, feel great, enjoy life!

I was glad I did not fall into the trap thinking I know it best and “I will figure it out!”. Well, I might have figured it out by myself eventually, some do, I have a friend who did it all by himself after suffering a heart attack, but not without trials and errors, and seriously hat off to him, but majority does not.

Because you never know what you don’t know. And staying stuck is costly.

And losing weight is not easy. Because it is so much more than just “eating less”. It is a whole science. If it wasn’t, everyone would be at their ideal weight shortly after they wish for it.

Mainly because of the food addiction that is hard to break without knowledge, help and support. More about it next time. This is the most exciting subject for me.

Going back to DIY – I have truly nothing against the DIY – like to build something you have never built before; you develop a new skill and it can truly be fun. We should do more DIY stuff! It is good for us!

But our biology is complex and DIY-ing your health without skills and sound knowledge can cost us further our health.

That is why crash diets can run havoc to our metabolism and general health.

I sometimes wonder where life would take me if I did not take that leap and got help when I needed it.

Certainly, I would miss out having all my dear clients in my life. So many friendships and connections. Meeting so many people who are so special in my life today and will be for a long time.

And, one thing is true now as it was then – most people struggle to achieve their health and weight loss goals because they do not how to do it safely so they can lose body fat, maintain their lean muscle and metabolism, and achieve energy and shape that makes them feel good about themselves. Not crash diet. Not start, stop, start again, then stop, etc. and off we go in circles, forever on.

If you recognise yourself in this, I encourage you to give yourself a permission to show up for yourself. If you don’t, nobody else will.

Think about reasons why you should start (or continue with your efforts).

It could be so you are able to stay active around your children or grandchildren, or because it is a time you start loving yourself again in the photos (You are beautiful already, but why not also loving who you desire to be?), perhaps because you need a confidence to get back dating or looking for a dream job. All you need is one great reason to start and keep going.

Perhaps you just want to feel good in your skin!

Because now more than ever it is essential to invest in a healthy mind and body.

That includes foods you eat, wellness daily practices, how you feel and talk to yourself and practice self-care – isn’t it a time you look and feel your absolute best?

Because you are worth it.

I would like to invite you to take a leap and book a Discovery Call with me and we can take it from there. It may be just the best thing you did, and I cannot wait to accelerate your success so you can stop going in circles and finally get you losing weight in a healthy, sustainable way.

See you at the other end or, until next time,

Stay safe, healthy and nourished!

Yours in health,

Sanela

P.S. Choose yourself, always!

30 Day Reboot

What Influences our Eating Habits: Are we (or not) fully in control of our choices?

Having spent over a decade helping clients improve their eating habits, it fascinates me how everyone has different eating patterns and behaviours and motivations as well as how different they all respond to even the same eating plan.

Because we are all wired differently, which is part of the issue as, according to the research (Wansink/ Sobal, 2007), we make, on average, close to 230 food decisions every single day and close to 95% of those decisions are completely unconscious, believe it or not.

This means, we may not be in control of our food choices as we would like to believe. The point of this article is to bring to your awareness what those factors are as, once you have an awareness of them, it may be slightly easier to be more mindful about food choices you make and make alterations to your lifestyle in order to accommodate healthier eating patterns.

And once you practice mindfulness for a certain amount of time – new patterns start appearing with new eating behaviours. So, we feel more in control as a result. And results follow too.

Influences on our eating behaviours can be due to social factors, our own physiology, psychology, hormones, visual factors such as food marketing, olfactory (influenced by the sense of smell), etc. It gets even more complicated when it is not just the single factor as, most of the time, it is more factors at once influencing our decisions and food choices. Here are some of the factors and I have left the most fascinated one for the end, so, stay tuned.

Take SLEEP as a one single massive influencer. There are numerous studies linking sleep deprivation with weight gain. University of California, Berkeley study concluded that lack of sleep made us desire food more and, at the same time, made our brain incapable of evaluating our appetite, whether we were hungry or not. Sleep deprivation has also been shown to increase stress hormone CORTISOL and higher cortisol levels – higher the fat and sugary food consumption, as another study at University of California concluded.

It is all linked to STRESS, which leads to an increased appetite and brain’s inability to make right decisions and controlling our emotions. So, managing stress and improving our sleeping pattern could mean improving the amount we eat and choice of food we eat. Aim for 7-8 hours of good quality sleep.

healthy active lifestyle

Think Yourself Slim – The Psychology of Weight Loss

I have been helping individuals lose weight for over a decade and a half now and, my belief through my experience is – even the best of the specialists in the world will not be able to help one lose weight and get them to their wellness goals if client is not mentally not ready for it, i.e. if they do not believe and see themselves there already with the burning desire to be at their goal weight or peak health.

The best of specialists would work on psychology first before they can even attempt to help clients with their diet.

I have observed many client’s behaviours over time and, in my experience, if you are one of those struggling to stay on track of your goals, here are just few simple solutions that may help you get on with your wellness plan:

Find your reason WHY

Sounds like a cliche, however, if your mindset is not geared up towards making healthy decisions, you will not be able to stick with any diet or exercise regime. No one can really force you to change anything, and no one should. This needs to be voluntary. Even your doctor may tell you that your health is at risk, but it is you who needs to make a decision to change. Good start, perhaps, is to think how your life would be different if things were different; what would you be able to do if you had more energy in a day, how would it feel if clothes fitted better.

Figure out the way so that pain of staying the way you are is higher than the pleasure that certain foods give you. Think of your why until it makes you cry. Dig deep to find internal motivation that would be a daily reminder and keeping you on track. Then stay with that feeling and a healthy vision of you believing it is possible. See yourself as healthy and at your ideal shape. Then start making health choices as the person who already is healthy and at their ideal shape would. The rest will follow.

Set Realistic Goals

It is almost impossible to transform your diet in one day. It took years to develop bad habits and Rome was not built in one day. When you start with a smaller goal, like drinking more water or eating a healthy breakfast every day or exercising twice a week for a number of weeks, there is a better chance you will reach it. Having all or nothing attitude and wishing to change everything in one go is setting yourself to fail as you do not yet have habits to support all that needs to change. Not YET!

Celebrate Small Wins

Setting smaller, more realistic goals helps you to achieve them. Achieving small goals on a daily basis reinstate your self-belief that YOU CAN DO IT. Celebrate small achievements, raise the standards slowly, keep repeating the process and slowly but surely you will build many new habits that support your healthy, active lifestyle. You would have built them over time and there is more chance they will stick.

Become more Mindful

Many of us eat out of boredom, sometimes when we are stressed or when we are feeling down. Emotional eating is a reality of many of my clients. Next time you reach for a drink or a snack– get in a habit of taking first a moment to decide whether you are actually hungry or thirsty. If indeed thirsty – have water instead. When having a main meal, make sure your portion sizes are right and put as much on your plate as you should be consuming in balance. Think twice before putting extra on your plate. Remember that it takes 20 minutes for the signal to get to your brain to say that you are full. So, eat balanced meals slowly, savour your meal, it will help digestion too. Being mindful goes a long way.

Find Some Support

It is well know now that joining a community of people who share like-minded goals will work out to be more successful. Whether it is a group support or an accountability health and/ or fitness coach, you will stand a better chance reaching results rather than going it alone. University studies show that of those who embarked on a program of losing weight or getting fitter with friends & within community: 95% completed the program compared to 76% who went solo and, after 10 months, 66% of the group had maintained new physique compared to only 25% of those who were on their own. So, you are THREE times more likely to succeed with support!

Commit to learning

Knowledge has a huge power. At this time of Information Age, any piece of information we need to help us make the right choices, whilst conflicting at times when it comes to health issues and what works and what does not, is readily available for us to find it, research it, study it, see what agrees with us and apply it. I believe that education is the most important component and that is why it is such a huge part of my business and how I chose to work with clients. I have seen my retention be the highest with those valued clients that are also committed to the process of learning because they get the best results. Only with learning we develop awareness and awareness is the first step to sustainable change. Always remain a student!

Be Accountable to someone

I have personally seen over the last decade that those of my clients that keep coming to see me regularly either on a 1-2-1 basis or those that keep coming to the classes, like our CobraFIT HIIRT  or past Weight Loss Challenge classes, will always get better results than those that come occasionally, then stop and then try to re-commit again and the cycle continues. All of my clients would have their meal plans & nutrition personalised, so they all have the same tools and mechanics, but regular accountability and support hold the magic key. I now have clients who have been with me for 10 years and they still see me at least once every one to two months, if not more often when they feel they dropped the ball. And they do. We ALL do. And that is OK. It is not about never dropping the ball, but how quickly we pick it up again.

Master Your Inner Game – Stop Negative Talk

While we all know now that 80% of your weight loss is nutrition and only 20% is exercise, I would totally agree that, on top of having the right mechanics and tools in place – your psychology is a whole other 100%. Work on your attitude and mindset daily. DAILY. Listen to the inspirational videos, audios or read books. Set aside at least 15 minutes a day on your personal growth, ideally first thing in the morning. Get up 30 minutes earlier to set yourself right for the day ahead. Set the right intention before the day takes over. Have a picture of yourself when you were at your best (or someone who inspires you) and let it be your daily reminder where you want to go and why making new healthy habits will be worth it in the end. That is what successful people in different areas of life do… work on their vision daily. Start as a winner, think as a winner, talk as a winner. Be impeccable with your word. No negative self talk! Only think in positives…

So, work on yourself more than you work on your weight loss, hence – Think your way to a slimmer, healthier You!

And please feel free to reach out if you would like advice or support! I hope this has been useful.

Herbalife Nutrition Healthy Hydration

11 Tips on Generating Health in Your Life!

Being healthy could be incredibly easy, if one possesses the right knowledge and is ready to make the necessary changes in their diet and habits without resorting to fad diets and quick fixes as they clearly do not work.

Here a few tips that I have learnt over a decade from the leading doctors and nutritional experts in their field and that is a basis of how hundreds of people that came to me for help and advice got great results:

1. FREQUENCY. Start eating 5-6 SMALLER meals per day! Frequency is one of the keys to stable blood sugar levels! So, do not eat like a Sumo Wrestler! Breakfast Skipper (Or  Any-Meal/Snack-Skipper) – this is for you!

2. PROTEIN. Every meal and snack MUST contain Protein OR Protein + Complex Carbohydrate (Think FIBRE) for a stable blood sugar level that, remember, is THE KEY to a fast metabolism. 1 gram of protein per 1 lbs of lean muscle is about right (1.2-1.5 grams if exercising, up to 2gr if building muscle)! I measure muscle mass for my clients.

3. PLANT PROTEIN. We do not have enough of it in a diet! I get it through my Herbalife Formula 1 Shake. The best meal on the planet. How are YOU going to get it? I don’t know if you are ready for solutions that are already available. You can go my way, I would be the happiest to oblige, or you can figure out your way, it is your choice, just REDUCE the amount of animal protein in your diet. Eggs/ bacon for breakfast, chicken for lunch and beef for dinner and perhaps fish in between is a sure way to weaker bones and kidney problems due to the acid nature of animal produce that leaches Calcium out of your bones, not to mention links of animal protein to cancer.

4. FIBRE. Most of you don’t have enough, research shows around 15 grams per day, so no wonder so many suffer from digestion related problems! Minimum 25 grams per day for women and 35 grams for men and you will not have as much digestive issues. Can help with eliminating fat too.

5. SUPPLEMENTATION. It is a general knowledge now, so please also don’t believe your so called expert friend that we can get everything from food. We can not and there is a growing (and sufficient) body of evidence to support it. Also, don’t just go for your cheap local store supplement. Unless it is a Pharmaceutical Grade, you indeed are wasting a few pennies you are spending on them! Naturally, I take Herbalife’s Formula 2 Multivitamin, XtraCAL and RoseGuard, our powerful antioxidant. You get what you pay for!

6. WATER. Minimum 2 litres a day! Many need a lot more! Around 350ml for every 10kg of body weight is a good guide! Know how much you drink! Tea and coffee do not count! Water on it’s own or with some fresh lemon juice! If you do not like water – start liking it! It is a BASIC human need after AIR itself! We are creatures of habit – you CAN do it!

7. FRUIT. Limit to 2-3 servings per day and try not to have it on its own, add a few nuts, seeds or some natural yoghurt, especially if you are overweight as insulin will be sensitive and you need to offset sugar from fruit with some protein. Ideally 10 grams of protein per snack and 20-25 grams or protein per main meal, without blowing your calorie ceiling.

8. 5 A DAY MYTH. You need MORE, basically! Japanese believe they need 17 a day (although their servings of fruit and veg are 60 grams per serving, not 80 grams – that makes it 13 A Day here in the UK). They supplement on top too! Can you beat that? I personally would trust Japanese. They are one of a few nations that have their health figured out!

9. BREAKFAST. THE most important meal of the day, as your mother must have told you! Each time you skip it or have toast or cereals – you contribute to FAT STORING or, even worse in my opinion – causing nutritional deficiency! My family and I have Formula 1 shake instead. 20+ grams of plant protein and all the nutrients our bodies need. If this is not your cup of tea – happy for you to go and figure! Just DITCH your Cereal (Killer).

10. EXERCISE. Last for a reason, but not THE LEAST! Your weight loss results will be result down to 80% above mentioned nutrition (following every single tip from above, not just one or two) and only 20% exercise. Of course, benefits of exercise outweigh its benefits just for weight management, but as long as you don’t think you can out smart your body by eating junk and exercising! Because – you won’t! Nutritional needs of your body for Protein and Fibre as well as Vitamins and Minerals increase when you exercise, so, you need a great support from above! Stick to 30 Minutes per day, 5 Days a Week. Mix of Cardio, Resistance and Weight Training.

11. 100% MENTAL ATTITUDE. Yes, there is 11 and THIS is a magic ingredient. It is a First AND Last ingredient. A bad attitude is like a flat tire. You can’t go anywhere until you change it. Work on yours daily.

There is a lot more I could have mentioned, like serving sizes, Omega Fats, importance of keeping your Cortisol levels in control, taking rest, talking about the importance of keeping your body in an alkaline or PH Balance state for weight management/ health, alcohol, coffee, foods for heart health etc… But, I think the above does take care of it.

See how great you feel with “just” the above and you will want more!

Hope it was simple enough and, if in any doubt, just ASK!

In the mean time, be happy and healthy.

Generate happiness and health through making a daily decision that you will be exactly those two things!

That is a healthy attitude to start you off!

Salut!

CobraFIT Bath Community

No need to diet… EVER AGAIN!

The four main factors that influence our weight and how we feel are*: Nutrition: 75%, Environment: 11%, Hereditary: 8%, Stress: 6%. (*Source: www.euro.who.int), so, good news is – we can change a lot through a change in lifestyle!

Through science, we have learnt that Nutrition plays a major role when it comes to not just Weight Management, but also our Heart Health, Energy Levels, Immunity & Aging process, Skin Health and so on.

Losing weight does not always equal health if balanced nutrition is missing!

Most diets you may hear about will usually restrict calorie intake or types of food you can consume. This means, your body may still not be receiving the nutrients it needs – not just for a healthy weight, but for a healthy life – strong immune system, healthy bones, healthy digestion, healthy heart, healthy skin and so on…

Losing weight can be hard. Right? It is a FACT, actually!

Statistics show that among those who succeed in losing weight, two-thirds return to their original weight within a year.

Within 3-5 years only 3% of those who have lost weight maintain this weight loss. Of the remaining 97%, 15% return to their original weight and the majority (82%) put on even more weight.

These statistics may alarm you. Furthermore, contributing factors to these statistics are:

Group of people running in field.

The Power of Accountability for Weight Loss and Fitness Goals: one key missing ingredient

After 13 years of working with clients on their personal journeys to a better health, weight loss, as well as fitness in the last few years, one thing is for sure – it can be a bumpy ride for majority and hardly ever a straight line.

Many times, despite having the best mechanics for weight loss, it is the psychology that fails us, which makes me believe that 80% is the psychology and having the right mindset to reach our goals. This is probably true for everything in life, not just our health efforts.

Once we have a great plan and a strategy, it is our mindset that needs the most support.

20% of Your Success – Having A Great Plan

Hrbalife Nutrition Formula 1 Healthy Breakfast Independent Herbalife Nutrition Member Bath UK

How to turn your day around?

Some mornings are just better than the others. Even for me, one that believes in getting up and greeting each day with smile and gratitude, there are mornings when I could just wish I could put a pause button… so I can freeze time and everyone around me whilst I snooze for another hour or more, then, when fully rested, I then get invigorated and energised after I first take a shower, do at least ten minutes of meditation, give my thanks, do twenty something minutes of exercise, plan the day (oh, I did that the night before, right?), make breakfast before everyone is up, … then unpause at 6:30AM and “voila” – happy days, everything is ready for the day, no morning rush and I feel like million dollars!