Weight Loss Tip Booklet - 151 Simple Ideas

When it comes to food prep, no one would mistake me for a gourmet chef. I mean I can find my way around a kitchen, even prepare a nice meal or two if needed; but if my life hung in the balance, I still couldn't tell you the difference between broccoli and Gai-lohn nor when to use a Dutch oven instead of a stock pot. Most times, if a recipe involves more than a quarter turn in a microwave oven, I'm on to something else.

That said, when I do take the time to prepare a meal, I am conscious of how it looks and of course, how healthy it is. So, I was knocked flat-footed by a relatively new phenomenon sweeping across the good ol' U.S. of A. called the "Gross Food Movement."

This trend, supported by websites such as ThisIsWhyYoureFat.com, sports foods such as the Monster Sandwich Pie, which includes half a roast ham and half a roast turkey, a tub of sour cream, a tub of cream cheese, and a full pound of cheddar and Swiss cheeses, all stuffed inside a King's Hawaiian round bread loaf. As near as I can calculate, this "sandwich" tops the scales at around 12,000 calories - enough to fuel the average body for the better part of a week. No need to wait all those days to get your energy needs; in our rush-rush, gotta-have-it-quickly society; you can carb-load to a brand new level and consume everything you need (and a lot of what you don't) in one meal. (Antacids available separately.)

Looking for something to help wind down at the end of a hard day clogging your arteries with Monster Pies? How about the McNuggetini? This festive drink (?) consists of a chocolate milkshake mixed with vodka, rimmed with barbeque sauce, and garnished with half a chicken nugget. "Hey bar-keep! Gimme a double will ya?"

Finally, for dessert, how 'bout a Hot Beef Sundae? Yep, mashed potatoes smothered in brown gravy and cheddar cheese, with a cherry tomato on top. Please, no whipped cream, I'm on a diet.

Some might say the Gross Food Movement (if one can even move after eating such foods) is a playful, fun, fat-laden, extremely greasy, hyper-caloric backlash to the "obsession" we have with healthy eating. They might be right.

Others might say that it's just, well, gross.

I know I am about to come across to some as a stick in the mud. That said, maybe it's my upbringing; maybe it's years of watching my weight (or maybe it's just looking at the photos of the concoctions I described); but I find the whole thing to be extremely wasteful and somewhat sad. Don't get me wrong, I am not advocating food police be established or that new laws and regulations be enacted to restrict such culinary catastrophes; I am just expressing an opinion. In a world where half the population is desperately trying to scrape together enough food to make it through the night, our society is so affluent that we have competitive eating contests and recipe books containing Bacon-Wrapped Pigs In A Blanket Wrapped In Bacon.

If someone wants to cook up an Upside Down Mac & Cheese Pizza (a layer of macaroni and cheese sandwiched between two cheese pizzas), I won't stand in the way. But at the same time, especially this time of year, it would be nice to stop by a shelter and help feed those who would be thankful for what we throw away.

About the author: Scott "Q" Marcus is a THINspirational speaker and author. Since losing 70 pounds 15 years ago, he conducts speeches, workshops, and presentations throughout the country.  He can be reached at scottq@scottqmarcus.com or you can follow him on twitter at twitter.com/bestdietingtips
At the very first session I had with my therapist oh so many years ago, the opening question out of my mouth was, "How long will this take?"

Being ever the smart aleck, he replied, "About 50 minutes."

"No," I responded. "How long will it take until I am fixed; you know, healed; normal?"

I am not alone when it comes to asking that question. One of the first items we want checked off our "to do list of change" is a date specific that we can mark on our calendar alerting us to the face that - voila - goal achieved! Like a prisoner sentenced to hard labor, we want to know how long until we are free.

From a logical point of view, the process of getting from "here" to "there" is actually pretty exhilarating. We find out about ourselves. We discover what we're capable of doing. Others compliment and admire us. Life is new; every sunrise provides the option for multiple new adventures, unwrapping more of whom we really are. It would seem that with so much to gain, we would rather linger luxuriously in the progression instead of charge hell-bent for leather to the other side.

So, what's with the big rush?

I'm not naïve, I am more than aware that it takes work and is, at times, prickly; yet most of our goal-driven society touts reflexively, "anything worth having is worth working for." If I want a good marriage, I will work for it. Raising healthy, happy children is certainly an effort at times. Advancing my career and maintaining my house require expending resources. Certainly the best ME possible is a worthy objective, and therefore stands to reason that it also is worth the elbow grease necessary to achieve it.

We might not always be keen on it, but we are not a people afraid of hard work. So that cannot be the reason why the sprint to the finish line. I believe we are in such a hurry to "get there" because we are terrified of waking up with the realization that we have "lost our motivation."

Like the despondent lover, we plead, "Don't go; please stay. I'll be good. What will happen to me if you leave?" If we can arrive at the altar before being jilted by our fickle paramour, everything will be OK.

Being a student of change (aren't we all?), I am enthralled by our choice of words. After all, words reflect our thoughts. Thoughts determine actions. Watch what you say, it could become your life. Therefore, when we say, "I've lost my motivation," it presupposes that motivation is some foreign entity residing in a distant land. Yet, we are the source of our motivation. We gin it up, and we turn it off. We control it; no one else does. Others can inspire us, coerce us, or force us - but motivate? Not so much. (Ever try and "motivate" a lazy teen? Get my point?)

The premier adjustment on the road to stable, long-term change, is to accept that the locus of control - where decisions are made - is internal, not external. Sure, "stuff" happens, and luck (or fate) can be players. Yet, they are bit parts. I own my spotlight. Once I accept that, the only thing in my way is me.

About the author: Scott "Q" Marcus is a THINspirational speaker and author. Since losing 70 pounds 15 years ago, he conducts speeches, workshops, and presentations throughout the country. He can be reached at scottq@scottqmarcus.com or you can follow him on twitter at twitter.com/bestdietingtips
When my mother celebrated her 70th birthday (I was a mere lad of 40), I asked her if she felt any different from when she was in her thirties. She pondered the question for a moment and replied, "No not really. I look in the mirror and it's obvious I'm not who I was - and the parts don't always work they way they used to; causing me to slow down. I've got some annoying aches and pains. But, big picture? Inside, I feel like I always have."

I've since queried other seniors about whether they feel "elderly." Whether the respondent was 70, 80  - I even got to ask someone who was 99 - the answer was almost always identical, "I pretty much feel like I always have.'"

This begs a question: At what point do we accept that we're "old" - or at least "older?"

This somewhat gloomy line of thought has been prompted by the realization that if we come with a warranty, I fear mine lapsed recently. Since I hit "double nickels," seemingly all at once, my parts are sore, not working well, acting quirky, or just plain out of sorts. I have pains in places where I did not even know I had places. I am continuously complaining about some dang cramp or soreness, which I do not like doing, and I assure you that is definitely NOT me. My foremost fear is that I shall soon devolve into a cranky, wrinkly, grey-haired, curmudgeonly man-creature, who brandishes his cane at the clouds and rants at the heavens about the unfairness of life.

This is even more troublesome because I'm doing my bit to forestall that unhappy outcome. I walk regularly, eat well, take vitamins, don't stress (except about this), attend Yoga classes, ride a bike; and - I might point out - I'm a heck of a nice guy! One would therefore assume with such a powerful curriculum vitae of healthy habits and proper outlook, I should easily surpass 125 years before I even go so far as to pull a muscle.

My loving wife has (gently) pointed out that I'm "not as young as I was," and these symptoms could be interrelated. However I refuse to accept it's the aging process. I'll age gracefully (whatever the heck that means) but will not go gently, so off to the doctor I go where I inventory everything that's sore, bruised, inconsistent, nasty, gnarly, gross, inflated, swollen, hot, cold, flat, red, or black and blue. He types and listens; studies the computer; clarifies a few details; and then says, "I've got good news and bad news."

"What's the good news?"

"There's nothing serious; no need to worry."

Sigh of relief... "What's the bad news?"

"Your wife is right."

"But Doc," I proclaim, "I take good care of myself," as if that argument will cause him to reverse the prognosis.

"Yes, you do. But at your age, things don't recover as quickly. It would be worse if you weren't doing what you're doing."

So, that's it? Sounds like an attitude adjustment might be in order.

They say this is a "normal process" and I'm obviously I'm in it. In all honesty, I do enjoy the peace, self-confidence, and serenity at this stage of life. My marriage is wonderful. My friendships are close. And, overall, I am happy with where I am. That's what really matters.

Placed in that perspective, I can handle a few bumps, bruises and a periodic cramp, as long as it's "nothing serious." I really do think I'm fine with that.