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Our bodies are nothing if not reflections of our respective lifestyles.

We are shaped by what we eat and what we do in the gym. It is that simple. Our current lifestyles support our current body shapes and sizes.

Often, when new clients come to me, I observe crash diet mentalities. They think that they will diet and lose the weight, and then just go back to their old lifestyles. They believe that the new healthy habits that they will develop are just temporary. This is one of the most common barriers I see with clients, when it comes to maintaining results year after year. Permanent changes are required for long-lasting results.

Food is not entertainment or comfort; it is fuel. You fuel your body with healthy foods, so that you have the energy to do the things that you love. After losing weight or inches, you cannot go back to eating a box of cookies in front of the TV every night, for example. These habits have to be replaced with others that bring you comfort and happiness.

I cannot emphasize how important it is to find activities that you love that don't revolve around food. You don’t have to give up having a social life in order to maintain healthy habits over time. There are many enjoyable things that you can do that will support your new physique: Go dancing, play at ping pong bars, go bowling or grab coffee instead of cocktails.

Another issue I often see with these same clients is that they don’t know to make healthier versions of their favorite recipes. They think of their diets as weight loss-driven punishments rather than opportunities to nourish themselves.

In order to lose weight and maintain those results longterm, you have to like your diet. There is no way around that. If you don’t, you won’t stick with it. That may mean that you have to get creative in the kitchen, trying new dishes. But, there are so many great ideas and recipes out there, if you are willing to put a little time and work into food prep. This makes all the difference in the world.

Ultimately, if we want different physiques, we must adopt new lifestyles permanently. We need to embrace this change wholeheartedly in order to be our healthiest and happiest selves. It is not a punishment to treat our bodies well; it is a gift.

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