Body Wisdom 101

guruThere are so many weight loss  “experts” out there that it can all get very confusing . And there is so much conflicting information out there too that it can set our heads in a spin! We find ourselves questioning which expert (or piece of research) is actually “right”.

 I’m not suggesting that we ignore the research and ignore the opinions of “experts”. What I’m suggesting is that all that “stuff” out there can undermine our confidence in our own ability to make the right choices for ourselves.

The thing is ~ you know a great deal more about your body, your appetite and your emotions than you think you do . All the wisdom you need for achieving and maintaining a healthy body-weight and a healthy life- style is right at your finger tips . In fact, it’s IN your finger tips . All you have to do is learn to listen to your body and to your emotions.

Developing confidence in your body’s innate wisdom provides a robust foundation for assessing the validity of all that “outside” information. This confidence helps you to make choices that support your own unique journey to health.

So maybe it’s time to turn to the “inside” information, so that a deeper wisdom can emerge ~ a wisdom that can be synthesised with the “outside” information in a way that serves you . And maybe it’s also worth remembering, that just like the “outside” information , the “inside” information is changing all the time ~ there’s no better time for you to keep your finger on the pulse 🙂

If you want to know who the perfect weight loss guru is for you ~ just take a look in the nearest mirror!

© Jane Talbot 2013

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How To Stay Upright On The Wobble~Board Of Life!

THBC Blog Wobbleboard

Anyone who has been to a fitness class in the last decade or so has heard the term “core  stability” thrown about as frequently as the ubiquitous kettle~bell 🙂 You may have heard fitness professionals talking about which exercises are particularly good for your physical core – and why core strength is important for sports performance, for long-term health ~ and for the way our bodies look. And I’m not arguing with the validity of all that. It makes perfect sense.

But why stop there? For me, health and well~being goes beyond the physical. The principles of core training can be usefully applied in both the psychological and emotional realms of our lives too.

When life throws a curveball at us, it’s good to know that our physical body can support us. And it’s also good to know that we can rely on our core psychological and emotional stability too. The ability to maintain equilibrium whilst honouring challenging emotions ; the ability to maintain an attitide of loving kindness and compassion towards ourselves and others in difficult times; the ability to maintain hope, to stand up and be who we really are, to hold supportive beliefs about ourselves and the world around us; the ability to engage with life as it really is, rather than as we crave it to be ~ this is true core stability.

True core stability is what keeps us upright on the wobble~board of life! And when you have developed the ability for this kind of stability, you’ll no longer need to rely on food (or any other kind of crutch) to keep you upright ~ you’ll be too busy enjoying the wobbly nature of full-on living 🙂

© Jane Talbot 2013

Be The Terminator!

Are you ready to celebrate how far you've already come?

Are you ready to celebrate how far you’ve already come?

Today’s post is all about exploring the process of change and celebrating how far you’ve already come :).

You may not have found it easy to change your eating or exercise habits  in the past. You may not have found it easy to love and appreciate your body.You may have been on or off diets several times in your life. You may even have bought all the kit to exercise, gone to one class and then not continued. You may not even believe it’s  possible for you to change completely and have the body you want with a healthy lifestyle to go with it. If any of this rings true for you, here’s the good news : in terms of your moving towards a healthy relationship with food and your body, you may be much further along the road of change than you think!

Where Are You In The Process Of Change? Prochaska and Di Clemente (1983) describe a model of change comprising 7 key phases :

  1. Pre-Contemplation.
  2. Contemplation.
  3. Preparation.
  4. Action.
  5. Maintenance.
  6. Relapse.
  7. Termination

Pre-Contemplation In this phase, people are not seriously considering the possibility of change. An example of a person in this stage could be someone who is overweight but does not have any real desire to lose weight, eat healthily, get fit, process their emotions in a healthy way or tackle their inner “Cookie Monster” (actually mine was a Pringles Monster but that’s another story!). You might hear someone in this phase say “So, I’m overweight. That’s just the way I am and I’m kinda used to it. There’s more to life than exercise and mung beans.”

Contemplation During this phase, people become aware , or acknowledge the existence, of a problem. They are seriously considering the possibility of change but need to weigh up whether to take any action or not. In terms of weight loss, many people remain in this stage of contemplation for years! (Sound familiar?!) You might hear someone in this phase saying something like “I know I need to do something but I just don’t know where to start. I’m not sure whether I have the time or whether I’ve left it too late. I’m not sure about paying for a gym membership but I do know that if I don’t do something now, it could have consequences for my life in the future. Can I really change what I eat? Do I really want to eat differently? Is this change really important for me? Is it important enough? Why do I really need to change my relationship with food and my body? Can I go on like this for much longer? What will happen if I don’t change?”

Are you preparing for a change?

Are you preparing for a change?

Preparation As soon as you get to the Preparation phase, things start to look good! Procheska and Di Clemente suggest that if you find yourself at this stage, it’s very likely that you will make a change within the next 3 months. During this key phase, you might find yourself collecting information about what is required to start the change process. You might be Googling about the best way to lose weight, you might be finding out about the cost of membership at a local gym, you might be on Amazon checking out all the diet books, you may be asking about local therapists and weight loss coaches. If you’ve asked for more information about my live Thigh High Boot Camp events or my coaching packages, then you are already at this stage in the change process! (Even reading this blog means that it’s likely that you’re at this stage :))

Action This is the stage when people actually start to make changes. If you have signed up to my upcoming weight loss boot camps or to my coaching programme, then you are at this advanced stage already! If you’ve joined a gym and booked your induction, you’ve arrived at this stage. If you’ve started to read about an approach to weight loss which may work for you – and you’re implementing the recommendations –Woo-Hoo! Go you, Action Adventurer! If you’ve started attending a local weight loss support group, full-on Action Alerts all around!

So you can congratulate yourself already for getting this far – did you realise how far you had already come? As you engage fully with the process of taking action -and start to make sustainable psychological, emotional, spiritual, dietary, exercise and life-style changes- you will move further into this stage.

Maintenance This Maintenance phase is all about your sustaining the progress made during the action phase. For you, this stage might represent the period directly after completing one of my weight loss events or coaching programmes. It could be the stage when the novelty of going to an exercise class or a weight loss support group has worn off and it’s beginning to feel like a regular part of life. It might be the phase where the eating approach you have selected is definitely getting you results and all you need to do is just keep following the approach.

Some people will stay at this stage for a matter of weeks – others for a considerable period of time. During this stage you may not be totally confident about your ability to avoid relapsing into old habits. After the initial “success highs” have worn off, you may become increasingly aware of old unhelpful patterns which may require resolution. This is all good news : it means you are gaining more insight into who you are and how you work. It’s all part of the process of learning to “stay on track naturally” in a way which works for you

Relapse This is the stage when people are not able to keep and maintain new psychological, behavioural and emotional patterns or don’t stick to their plan of action. This can happen for any number of reasons – but if relapses occur, there is still hope! Just because you don’t “stay on the wagon” (and it really is worth challenging what this phrase actually means!) doesn’t mean you can’t get back on! Actually, it might hearten you to know that it is recognised that relapses are vital to any successful change process. Although it is helpful to avoid relapsing into old behaviours, it should be emphasised that you can learn a great deal about how to change your behaviour (on a permanent basis) from your relapses. (It was only when I relapsed that I learned that the emotion driving my eating behaviour was anxiety. That was a really useful insight for me and helped me to shift my focus to resolving my own anxiety so that my hunger was driven by genuine physiological appetite rather than an emotion).

If you become aware of your “triggers” for relapse, you have a much better chance of resolving the trigger-response relationship once and for all!

Be the Terminator!

Be the Terminator!

Termination (doesn’t sound great but it’s the best bit!) At this stage the old psychological, emotional or behavioural response is gone for good – it is the stage we all dream of! When you reach this stage,  your new psychological, emotional ad behavioural responses will happen automatically, unconsciously and naturally. (Termination sounds pretty cool, right?)

Something For You To Chew Over! Even though you might be busy “being good” right now and avoiding popping to the local “Take-Away” restaurant, here’s a healthy “Take Away” for you. Wherever you’re at in this process, you’re in it! Whether you know it consciously or not, you’re on the road to change 🙂  Congratulations!

Useful Resources If you’ve enjoyed this post and would like to learn more about my take on “staying on track” and “relapse”(I call this phase “wiggling”), please check out my 12 Days of Christmas series of posts. These 2 posts will be of particular interest :

https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/18/welcome-to-the-12-days-of-christmas-project/

https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2013/01/02/act-in-a-response-able-way/

You can also find out more about my live weight loss boot camps (in Northern Ireland, Scotland and England) and my 1-1 and group coaching programmes here http://www.thighhighbootcamp.com

I’ll be back – and, until then, gotta run 🙂 !

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013

Terrier-ist Brokers Peace Deal!

So – back to my Jack Russell Terrier, Sparky 🙂  (Did I mention how much I love my dog?) As I said in my last post, I’m pretty green when it comes to dog ownership and I’m learning new stuff everyday. I’m learning stuff that’s not just about dogs either. I’m learning more and more about me (and my relationship with myself) as a result of building a relationship with him.

I'm a terrier-ist : I'm loaded with love and I know how to use it!

I’m a terrier-ist : I’m loaded with love and I know how to use it!

Before picking Sparky up from the rescue kennels, I did quite a bit of research about JRTs and how to handle them. The first thing I learned was that this breed is a working dog and is really good at sniffing things out and then “dealing” with them (if you know what I mean :)). It is for this very reason that JRTs rarely spend time off their leads outdoors because, if they catch a scent, their whole focus is to get to the end of that trail and then “deal” with whatever they find. No amount of calling or treat-offering will deter them. They are .. um .. like a terrier 🙂   They will not rest until the job is done.

3 months into my relationship with Sparky (did I mention that he’s also very handsome? :)), I realise that he is good at sniffing out all sorts of things – and very skilful at dealing with what he finds at the end of the trail.

What I am learning is that my dog can “smell” an emotion a mile off. If any one of us is not feeling so great, Sparky jumps up for a cuddle and stays until the emotion subsides. It’s incredible how he does it! He seems to use his presence to heal : he exudes love!

As I observed consistent patterns in his behaviour as he constantly monitored the family’s emotions (and attended to them where necessary), I thought I had just about got the hang of his “top skill”. I thought he had shown me his best cards.

No. The best cards so far were laid on the table about a month ago. My partner and I were having a row behind closed doors early in the morning. Not a regular row, of course : it was one of those advanced Clint-Eastward-in-a-poncho versus Lee-Van-Cleef-with-a-steely-glint-in-the-eye rows. A deafeningly silent tumbleweed row. The Good, The Bad and The Ugly music playing in our heads. Hands on holsters. Roll-ups hanging from the corner of our mouths.

That morning there was little time for a shoot-out as there was work to be done and Sparky needed his walk too. Sparky knows the routine by now and as soon as the bedroom door is opened, he wags his tail and turns in circles because he knows he is getting to go for a walk.

But not on this morning. As I stood all wrapped up and ready to go, Sparky refused to get out of his basket. I lifted him out and he climbed straight back in. He was going nowhere.

Sometumes a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do!

Sometimes a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do!

My partner then emerged, dressed and ready to go out to sort his van out for a day at the farm. As my partner approached the front door, I deciphered the thought bubble above Sparky’s head as he leapt in front of the door to prevent my partner from leaving. “You ain’t going NOWHERE. Sometimes a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do.” He definitely had that whole John Wayne thing going on 🙂

Sparky herded us both into the front room and sat between us. First looking at one and then the other. Head on one lap and then the other, until we started to speak (at which point, Sparky left the room to let us get on with making peace.)

All of this taught me that Sparky is not only able to sniff out emotions, he is also present to them (no matter how uncomfortable those feelings may be) and knows how to “deal with”, or attend to, them (he lends his love and he encourages healing for individual members of the family and for relationships within the family).

So,here’s your food for thought. If you want to resolve your emotional relationship with food, if you want to stop swallowing your emotions and start processing them in a healthy way, I wonder if you could consider the following questions within the context of your relationship with your body and with food?

When you experience hunger, are you able to “sniff out” the difference between an emotional signal and a genuine physiological hunger signal? How prepared are you to follow the scent to find what’s really at the end of the trail? As you consider following the “trail”, which (if any) emotions come up? How ready are you to be present to the emotions and associated structures (such as unhelpful beliefs, attitudes, values and identity “labels”) you may discover? How prepared are you to “deal with” what you might find at the end of the trail? How prepared are you to offer love to yourself to encourage healing? How ready are you to re-build your relationship with yourself,with your body, with those around you and with life?

If you can learn to identify an emotion, sit with it (no matter how uncomfortable) and process it in a healthy and respectful way, whilst continuing to hold your full self in unconditional positive regard (Phil Collins would recognise this to be a particularly “groovy kind of love” :)), then you’re well on your way to healing your relationship with both food and your body. And sooner or later, you’ll be doing all this naturally ~ and unconsciously. Just like Sparky.*

(* If this posts resonates with you, and you’re ready to follow the trail, you might really enjoy my 12 Days of Christmas series of blog posts. You can find more out here https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/18/welcome-to-the-12-days-of-christmas-project/ It’s okay to dip in and out : engage with the parts of the process which draw your attention! Or you may even enjoy coming along to a live weight loss bootcamp event or experiencing 1-1 weight loss coaching. You can find more out here http://www.thighhighbootcamp.com )

Gotta run :)! #DogWithABone #BeATerrier-ist!

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013

Personal Training Works Best When It Gets Really Personal!

Today's the day!

Today’s the day!

My Facebook newsfeed is jam-packed with folks declaring that today marks the first day of their 2013 “health kick”. Local gyms are starting fitness and weight loss challenges as I type. Personal trainers in every global nook and cranny are reminding me about their services to support the achievement of our weight loss and fitness goals, so we can (at last) be the proud owner of that “dream body”.

As a fitness professional myself, I think that the fitness industry offers valuable support to those of us who want to lead a healthier life. Being physically active is a really important aspect of our journey towards a healthier relationship with our body and towards achieving (and maintaining) our optimal weight .Being physically active encourages us to spend more time in our bodies and gives us the opportunity to develop exquisite levels of body awareness. Bottom line : exercise definitely supports your getting the “bottom line” you really want :)!(That’s just me being “cheeky” :)! Ooops!)

Are you an active fan yet?

Are you an active fan yet?

If you’re on a weight loss journey, you probably agree with everything I’ve just said. And whilst you might be an “intellectual fan” of exercise (and you could probably give a lecture on everything you “should” be doing to get the body of your dreams – and keep it), chances are you’re not an “active fan” (yet :))! Chances are, you wish you didn’t have to do that whole exercise thing – or that someone else could do it for you! Chances are, you might not find it easy to get motivated to move your body. Chances are you might even sense some resistance every time the word “work-out” is mentioned (and chances are, you’re not even sure why that should be the case .. especially because you intellectually acknowledge that working out can move you in the direction of that dream body!).

What often happens at this point is that people decide to engage the services of a personal trainer. Sounds ideal, right? Well, there are some really useful things to be gained from working with a personal trainer. Firstly, they know stuff about physiology; they know what “good form” and good technique looks like; they know about training frequency, intensity and volume. They know the latest thinking on the best ways to achieve your physical goals. The really good ones also know a thing or two about nutrition. Add to the mix that you’re spending time with people who are just “oozing” vibrant energy, body confidence and health (that’s contagious and you might be at serious risk of catching some of that if you spend enough time in their company!) and it all looks incredibly appealing. And all of this is both valuable and important – and, if you take regular training sessions (and eat what they tell you to), sooner or later you get to see physical changes in your body.

Sounds perfect, right? Or can you see where this might be heading? Does this remind you of anything? Like the diet you really didn’t enjoy but you forced yourself to do it anyway to get the results? Did you manage to stay “on track” for good? What happened when your emotional appetite shouted louder than the diet rules? Did going on a diet resolve your relationship with both food and your body? Did going on a diet resolve your emotional issues once and for all? Did you eventually get to love that strict diet in the end? (I’m guessing it was unsustainable and didn’t work out the way you’d hoped, right?)

Are you plugged into your own motivational power source?

Are you plugged into your own motivational power source?

So what am I trying to say here? Here’s the thing : working with a personal trainer can definitely improve your relationship with your body and bring massive physiological benefits. The personal training process can help you to develop confidence in new ways too. But, what if after weeks or months of personal training you still don’t feel motivated to exercise? What if you rely on the personal trainer to take responsibility for your motivation in the longer term? What would happen if you stopped working with the personal trainer? How will working with the personal trainer have contributed towards your developing a life-long love affair with physical activity?

For some lucky people, resolving their emotions, beliefs, values, attitudes and identity around food and their body can be the piece of the puzzle that transforms everything. For these lucky people, once they have been able to stop emotional eating and to start relating to their body and food in healthy ways, they find it easy to do the whole exercise thing. Things just fall into place. They’re enjoying being in their bodies again, enjoying exercise as an end in itself rather than as a means to an end. Motivation comes easily.

For some of us, however, even when we’ve resolved our emotional eating patterns, the exercise piece still doesn’t fit naturally with us. And this is the crux of it all. Until you’ve worked out why you don’t enjoy working out and why you don’t find it easy to access powerful positive motivational forces , you’ll just have to work out how you’re going to pay your personal training bill in the long term! (The minute you “break-up” with your personal trainer, the divorce courts will let them walk away with all the motivation. After all, it was theirs on the first place).

Personal training can be transformational!

Personal training can be transformational!

My view is this : your personal trainer’s responsibility is to help you to become your own best personal trainer. Their intention shouldn’t be to have you as a client as long as they can! Instead, the relationship should exist for a sufficient time – enough time to get to the a point where you are ready to fly solo (in touch with your own motivation and really enjoying a positive relationship with physical activity). In order to get to that point, your personal trainer needs to be skilful at working out what’s really going on with you. Over and above training your physical body (and teaching you how to do that for yourself), they should also acknowledge the all-important mind-body relationship ~ so that all of you is lined up for “effortless” success within the context of physical fitness. That’s right, I actually said effortless and I meant it! I’ll go one step further. What if you were to break out of the “Exercise is hell” paradigm and break into this one “Exercise is a true reward for both me and my body : it is a joyous communion my deepest natural self.”? Are you shouting “Get real!” at the computer screen? (Get real? I just did :)).

If you are considering the personal training route to help yourself get back into regular physical activity, my advice is to ascertain just how personal the experience is going to be! When interviewing a prospective personal trainer, it’s really worth checking out their philosophy. If you meet one who is capable of helping you to explore how your emotions, attitudes, values, beliefs, identity (and even your life purpose) are impacting on your current relationship with physical activity (and food!) – that’s what I call personal! If you meet one who is qualified to help resolve unwanted emotions – that’s what I call personal! If you meet one who knows how to help you to develop supportive beliefs about yourself and physical activity – that’s what I call personal! If you meet one who knows how to help you to get in touch with your most powerful, positive motivational forces – that’s what I call personal!

If you walk into a personal training studio with a mindset that isn’t totally supportive of your fitness / health journey (or supportive of you as a whole for that matter!) then just make sure that, one day, you’re able to walk out of that studio with a whole lot more than the body of your dreams. Just make sure that you’re able to leave all that no longer serves you (physically, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually) behind. For good.

Make sure it's more than cosmetic!

Make sure it’s more than cosmetic!

Just like forcing yourself to go on a strict diet does little to heal your relationship with both food and your body, personal training that does not acknowledge your unique psychological, emotional and spiritual make-up is at best only that – make-up : a cosmetic that makes the surface look good for a little while and then wears off.

In my experience of the fitness world, fitness professionals are genuinely committed to helping people to develop, and maintain, healthy lifestyles. If you are hoping that getting a personal trainer will help you to resolve your relationship with food and your body, do satisfy yourself that they can support you in this way. I am really thrilled that more and more personal trainers are becoming qualified in the psychological aspects of weight loss and fitness – I’m a huge fan of the holistic approach. And if you meet a personal trainer who you think can help you achieve your fitness goals but may not be qualified in the emotional and psychological side of things, my advice would be to make sure that you find a way of resolving the emotional/psychological spiritual stuff too. I’d suggest finding a qualified coach or therapist who is fit to work out this side of things with you 🙂 This way, every inch of you is headed in the same direction : your body is taking action and your mind will be wired up to support your success!

Here’s the take-away : Only when personal training seeks to explore the deepest truth of who we are, is personal training personal enough.

 Gotta run :)!

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013

Helping Your Growing Connection!

Woo-hoo! We made it! Welcome to the 12th day of the 12 Days of Christmas project! (If you are just joining the project now, you can get the full low-down here: https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/18/welcome-to-the-12-days-of-christmas-project/  and I really recommend that you start the project at Day 1 to get the full benefit!)

Help is at hand!

Help is at hand!

Today’s post comes in the shape of a short video and it’s all about supporting your continuing success in developing a positive relationship between mind and body, a nourishing relationship which will support your weight loss journey! The video is about the importance of support and offers some suggestions about where to find helpful resources.

Here are some of the resources I mention :

1. My Live Events And 1-1 Coaching Packages

You can find out more about my approach and my live events here http://www.thighhighbootcamp.com  Keep an eye on my website for up-coming tele-seminars too! If you’re interested in 1-1 coaching via Skype, telephone or face-to-face, just get in touch via email or phone and we can take it from there. You can find all my contact details here : https://thighhighbootcamp.com/how-to-contact-jane/

2. Find Me On Facebook And Twitter

Facebook : http://www.facebook.com/ThighHighBootcamp

Twitter : http://www.twitter.com/TheBodyWizard

3. Kate Trafford ~ Cruise Control For Life

Kate’s a goal-setting guru and a muse for effortless success! You can sign up to her FREE  blog ,and find other useful resources,  on her website here http://www.katetrafford.com/

4. Tiffany Kay ~ Your Life Two

You can sign up for Tiffany’s FREE three-part video series to help you to re-discover your mid-life mojo here http://www.yourlifetwo.com/

5. Jevon Dangeli ~ Coach , NLP and Hypnosis Trainer

There’s a real treasure trove of free resources to be found here http://jevondangeli.com/ and you can find Jevon’s weight loss CD here http://jevondangeli.com/effortless-weight-loss-or-your-money-back/ (you can listen in to an excerpt too!)

Peace On Earth!

Peace On Earth!

And finally…… It’s been an absolute privilege to share the last 12 days with you all. I appreciate your comments and your emails and I really hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know your body and your appetite in new ways. When you’re deeply connected to your body;  when you’re deeply connected to yourself in a peaceful, joyful and loving way…  you might find yourself connecting to others , to the world around you and to your own life purpose in new ways too.

Imagine what might happen if we all were able to connect in ways like this. Well… I think there would probably be PEACE ON EARTH 🙂 (Did you get the message in the end?!)

Gotta run 🙂 !

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013

Trust Transforms!

Welcome to the 11th day of the 12 Days of Christmas project! (If you are just joining the project now, you can get the full low-down here: https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/18/welcome-to-the-12-days-of-christmas-project/  and I really recommend that you start the project at Day 1 to get the full benefit!)

Yesterday’s post was all about gaining more insights and reviewing progress. And today? Well, today’s the day. This is the big one. If you can crack this, you’re pretty much well on your way to staying “on track” for the long term (and enjoying it!).

Trust is the key!

Trust is the key!

Today’s post is all about learning to trust your body again. And it’s not just about your learning to trust your body, it’s all about your body learning to trust you too! If, in the past, you trusted  “outside” information to determine what/when/how to eat and if you  stopped trusting your real appetite, if you stopped respecting and processing your emotions .. well, it might just be time to start relating to your body in a new way.

Trust is a crucial element of a mutually respectful, loving relationship. If the trust has been broken between you and your body, healing this trust can transform your relationship.

Chances are, you’re in a relationship right now with another person or you’ve experienced relationships in the past. And you may have had experiences of broken trust too or know people who have experienced it. And that means, you’ve probably got a fair bit of expertise in this field already. If you were to give advice on how to build trust in a relationship, what would it be? Can you think of at least 5 different ways to build trust in a relationship and then apply them to the relationship between you and your body?

Here are the 5 ways I came up with :

Take small steps!

Take small steps!

1. Start small You can build confidence and trust in your body by handing over “responsibility” for small things to start with. Whilst your body is a powerful, intelligent organism capable of both managing your appetite and regulating your weight, “you” may not be able to fully trust its capability yet. What is one small thing, one small responsibility you could give back to your body to show that you are beginning to trust it?

Idea : Every time you eat, check in with your body to see if you can gauge how hungry you are. Check whether it’s physiological hunger or an emotion. What’s important to start with, is not how good you are at determining how hungry you are – it’s the act of checking in the first place. The message to your body is “ I am genuinely trying to listen to you. I trust you are giving me some helpful information here. I may not know what that information is but I know it’s important.”

If that feels too much to start with, think of other body signals that you may not always respect, like a sleep signal. Do you ever get to the point in the evening when your body says sleep and your mind says “let’s stay up an watch the film”?. Do you think you could respect that signal and go to sleep? Again the message to your body is “I’m starting to listen. I know you are doing your best to maintain optimal health. I trust your judgement and I’m acting on it.”

Look for the things you can trust!

Look for the things you can trust!

2. Look for the things you can trust, rather than the things you can’t trust yet Often in relationships where trust has been broken, the “wounded” party wants to build trust again but finds themselves always looking for evidence of the behaviour that broke the trust in the first place. For example, if a partner had an affair, the “wounded” party is constantly on the look- out for all the signs of another affair (rather than on constant look- out for all the evidence that their partner is remaining faithful). So, within the context of your relationship with you body, make a list of at least 10 things that you totally trust about it. Consider this question every day and notice how quickly the list grows!

Idea : Write down your list, starting with the phrase “I totally trust my body to ….” Example ~ I totally trust my body to regulate my heart rate. I totally trust my body to grow my finger and toe nails. (Get the idea?)

3. Be honest, be open and be prepared to have the not-so-easy conversations Learning to communicate with your body in an honest way, and being prepared to “stay in the conversation” when things get tough, is key to building trust. The message to your body is “I’m not running away. I’m not just going to switch off the trust. By learning more about you, and by seeking to understand your needs and your motivations, I’m in a better position to build a trusting relationship with you.”

Idea : Have a regular “date” with your body. Set a period of time to one side every week for just you and your body. Get things off your chest (both of you!) and talk about the real stuff. You can use the process I described on the 4th Day of Christmas (that Barry Manilow is a very helpful guy, you know! :)) Using this process also helps to build empathy (something that can really support trust-building). https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/28/connect-communicate-and-collaborate/

Become a cheerleader!

Become a cheer-leader!

4. Acknowledge your partner’s strengths : become a cheer-leader! We’ve probably all been to dinner parties where we’ve met a couple who quite obviously aren’t getting along. They pick and dig at each other, constantly undermining their relationship. And they even do it in public! (Woo-hoo! Hello! Wake-up call coming straight at ya!) How would you feel if someone did that to you? How do you think your body experiences your digs and prods (in public too!)?

If you’re serious about re-building your relationship with your body, and about establishing a climate of trust, then it’s time to start acknowledging your body’s strengths – and then RAVING about them (even in public!) The message to your body is something like this “ I may not have been so good at letting you know this in the past but I want to be with you. Just you. I admire you. You’ve stuck by me through thick-and-thin – literally. I’m in it for the long haul. I want us both to feel really good about being in this relationship. You can trust the fact that I genuinely admire you. I’m proud of you. And to build that trust, I’m going to keep reminding you that I’m on your side. Just like you’ve been on mine.”

Idea : Every day, look at your body and find one thing you love about it. Now go for it with the gushing! Really get yourself into the “I really love this” feeling (you know how to do this now, right?) .A brilliant example of this feeling is in Saturday Night Fever when Doreen says “I love to watch you dance, Tony!” She adores him and when she says these words, we totally believe her because her whole body is giving that message too. So get your Doreen on and get going with the adoration 🙂

Here are some ideas to get you started :

“I just LOVE the way my eyes sparkle when …….”

“It’s incredible how I can let other people know what I’m feeling without having to say a word. What an amazing thing!”

“I adore how my eyebrows tell the whole story by….”

“I’m in awe of my own heartbeat. When I feel it, it makes me realise ……”

Advanced Method 🙂 After I’ve done this exercise, I usually share an Austin Powers moment with myself in front of the mirror : I give myself a wink and say “It’s good to be me!”. This step is completely optional ~ although, I can’t recommend it highly enough. It really makes me giggle 🙂

Be predictable in new ways!

Be predictable in new ways!

5. Be predictable If your partner says they will be at home at 7pm and they always are, it builds trust. Now, thinking in terms of the relationship between you and your body, can your body predict you and can you predict it? I bet, in the past, your body may have been pretty confident that if it gave you a loud and clear “stop eating now!”signal , you wouldn’t stop at all! So now, you’ve got the opportunity to show your body how predictable you can be in a new way, so trust grows between you 🙂

Decide on one thing you can do every day (something that will support your weight loss journey) which will let your body know that it can rely on you. Make sure this behaviour is so regular, that it becomes predictable.

Idea :  (I’m saying this in a very quiet and gentle voice 🙂 and I’ve just winked at you too in an Austin Powers way). Do something physical (your body will love you for it!). 5 minutes a day will do the trick as long as you do it every day and become predictable.

You could stretch, you could dance, you could go for a walk, you could… (well you’ve got the general direction I’m headed in, right?)

Phew – so that’s us done for today! It’s really worth journaling your journey towards a trusting relationship with your body : it’ll probably be a deeply moving experience! And if you’re reading this, wondering whether it’s worth building a trusting relationship with your body, all I can say is that it’s the best thing I ever did for myself.

It's true love!

It’s true love!

I feel privileged to own my body. I am in awe of its strength and tenderness. I love the way it supports me and communicates with me.I love the way it moves. Most of all, I feel that I always have “someone” on my side .. and now, I feel there is no gap between me and my body. We are close, inseparable and deeply connected : walking each other home 🙂 (That’s right, I’m crying : it’s a true love story and it’s okay to cry at those!)

Here are what some of the women who’ve experienced the Thigh-High Boot Camp programme say about their journey with Trust :

Julie is more than 2 stone lighter since boot camp!

Julie is more than 2 stone lighter since boot camp!

Julie (attended Thigh-High Boot Camp in Portrush, Northern Ireland, June 2012) “I spent such a long time in my life not being in touch with my body and hating it. At boot camp, I began an exciting journey to get me back in touch with my body again and what an exciting journey that is! (I’m well on the way to reaching my final destination of overall fabulousness :)). One of the key things I’ve learned is that my body is actually a pretty amazing thing and knows what it’s doing. I’m beginning to trust my body to do the best for me and it’s giving me fabulous results. No guilt, losing weight in an effortless way, getting excited about exercise and generally feeling so much better about myself, my body and my life. Drop the conscious control and guilt and trust your body. The great thing is that when you tune into your body and actually listen to it, it’ll tell you LOUD and CLEAR exactly what it needs. I’m certainly excited about what 2013 will bring!”

Kate

Kate

Kate (attended Thigh-High Boot Camp in Drymen, Scotland, October 2012) “Tuning in to my authentic appetite has been a revelation. It turns out that the part of myself I believed I could trust the least is the part that most deserves my trust and respect.”

Stephanie

Stephanie

Stephanie (attended the programme in Scotland, August 2010) “It’s been a journey… Now I don’t think, I feel. And I feel pretty darn good. And when I’m feeling, I’m not analysing : I am not focusing on losing weight/ body fat. It is just happening. And I’m having what I want when I want. What I want has changed a lot, what appeals to me has changed.”

Gotta run 🙂 ! (#Predictable :))

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013

 

 

Ready For The Next Epiphany?

You're getting even more enlightened!

You’re getting even more enlightened!

Welcome to the 10th day of the 12 Days of Christmas project! (If you are just joining the project now, you can get the full low-down here : https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/18/welcome-to-the-12-days-of-christmas-project/  and I really recommend that you start the project at Day 1 to get the full benefit!)

Yesterday’s post was all about learning how to be a pilot 🙂 so that you can be confident that you are heading in the right direction – and be aware when you’re wiggling 🙂  (That word makes me giggle!)

And today? Well, it’s already Day 10 and that means that the 12 Days of Christmas project is nearing its end. I thought that today might be a lovely opportunity to check in with what you’re learning as we did on the 5th day. As you continue to check in, I hope you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the progress you’re making, the changes that are occurring and the insights you are gaining. How much more have you learned since the last “Epiphany” on Day 5?

What are you learning that's of value to you?

What are you learning that’s of value to you?

Activity 1 : Your Second Epiphany! As you look back over the whole project , what are the 3 most significant gifts (in terms of learning, insight and awareness) that engaging with this process has brought to you ?  What is changing as a result of your learning? What have you learned in the last 5 days that’s different to what you learned in the first 5?

Activity 2 : Complete The Following Statements

1.Right now food means __________ to me.

2. I would describe my relationship with my body as ______________

3. I know I’m present in my body when ________________________

4. When I look in the mirror I say to myself _____________________

5. Considering the future, in terms of my relationship with food and with my body, I feel ___________________________________________

6. The thought of processing my emotions without the help of food is ____

7. I could support myself on my weight loss journey by ______________

8. My body is ___________________________________________

9. I am becoming more _____________________________________

10. It’s now time for me to stop __________ and to start _____________

The best way to do this exercise is to be as honest as you can! Let whatever comes up, come out 🙂 And as you consider how you’ve completed each of the statements, what are you noticing? What’s changed? What’s new? What would you like to resolve? Are you heading in the right direction for you? (You may sense more statements coming up naturally : let ’em out and learn!)

If anything comes up that you’re not comfortable with, ask yourself this question: “So, this is how/what I’m feeling/thinking/talking/experiencing right now. How do I want to be different?” (Just a wee nudge – remember to answer this positively. Not how you don’t want to be BUT how you DO want to be!)

Remember to fuel the flames!

Remember to fuel the flames!

As you ask this question, you might want to revisit my post on goal-setting and how to get in the mood for action!  Here’s the link : https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2013/01/01/energising-action/

As soon as you feel the powerful, positive state emerging, just ask yourself what’s the next smallest step I could take to help me to keep heading in the right direction? (Then take it 🙂 and use your pilot’s licence :)).

Please feel free to share your learning :sometimes what you’re learning can be a fabulous gift for others (and can really help pennies to drop!)

So that’s us for Day 10 (oh and if you are playing the Get The Message game, we are already on the 3rd and final word..Just 2 more letters to go – but I’m sure, even with a few letters missing,  you’ve got the complete message already!)

Gotta run :)!

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013

 

Act In A Response-Able Way!

Welcome to the 9th day of the 12 Days of Christmas project! (If you are just joining the project now, you can get the full low-down here: https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/18/welcome-to-the-12-days-of-christmas-project/  and I really recommend that you start the project at Day 1 to get the full benefit!)

Yesterday’s post was all about setting goals, harnessing the positive energy attached to your goals and taking your first small step towards success. I wonder how well it went for you?  More importantly, I wonder how you will recognise whether it’s going well for you now and in the future!

Your ability to recognise whether you are “on track”, heading in the direction of your outcomes, or not “on track” is really important. If you recognise that you are not “on track”, then it’s really important to be able to take appropriate action, to make fine adjustments, to make sure you’re heading towards success.

Be like a pilot!

Be like a pilot!

I remember someone telling me once about training to be a pilot. I was fascinated to learn that if you track an actual (as opposed to “planned”) flight-path from A to B, it never turns out to be a straight line : it’s always a wiggle! I learned that planes spend quite a bit of time “off- track” and that the pilot’s job is to pay attention to all the dials in the cockpit, so that he can see when the “wiggle” starts and take action (increase speed, lift the nose, bank slightly and so on). So, it’s not only about knowing where you want to land, it’s also about checking that you are always headed in the right direction and taking appropriate and timely action should you “wiggle” :).

If you spent yesterday setting or re-setting weight loss, wellness or fitness goals, the most helpful thing you could do for yourself right now is to:

1. Decide which “dials” you can pay attention to that will help you determine whether you need to take action or confirm you are “on-track”

2. Turn up your “sensory acuity” so you can pick up / interpret the information from the “dials” as soon as there is any change.

3. Be ready to take action, make adjustments and re-check the dials to make sure the adjustment had the desired effect.

Learn how to read the dials!

Learn how to read the dials!

The Dials : If you take a look at the answers to the questions I asked you yesterday, you’ll find some of the key dials for your cockpit. What will you be tracking? Your weight loss? Your body fat percentage? The size of the clothes you are wearing? Your resting heart rate? How comfortable you are feeling in your body? How much you recognise yourself in the mirror as “the real you”? How much energy you’ve got? How well you’re listening to and respecting your appetite? Your relationship with your body?

Look at your answers to yesterdays question and decide what’s best for you to track.

Sensory Acuity This bit is really all about your response – ability. It’s all very well having dials but you have to know how to read the dials and interpret the information in a way which will inform intelligent action.

Let’s take an example dial of “your relationship with your body”. In order to “read” this dial, you might engage a range of senses :

1. When you look at your body, how do you feel (are you feeling more or less positive)?

2. When you look at yourself in the mirror, what are you saying to yourself (are you hearing positive self-talk or not so positive self-talk?)

3. When you sit down to eat, how much attention are you paying to your physiological appetite (To what degree are present when you’re eating? Are you becoming more skilled at recognising the difference between emotional signals and genuine appetite signals? Are you more or less connected to the physiological feelings? Are you respecting the feelings or not? Are you stopping when you are satisfied or are you continuing to eat? Do you know the feeling of satisfaction? How much better are you at recognising the feeling of satisfaction? Are you only eating when you are physiologically hungry?

4. Do you trust your body? (How do you know? What are you feeling, seeing, hearing or experiencing that lets you know that you’re trusting your body – or not?)

Response-Able Action Having interpreted the dials , you now know the degree to which you are “on track” or not! If you are heading in the right direction : great ~ just keep an eye on the dials! If you’re “wiggling” a little, make an appropriate adjustment! Let’s say, for example, I realise that  I’m not moving in the right dial direction with the relationship with my body because I’m not fully present when I’m eating. A response-able action might be to renew my Day 1 “Pleasure Permit” (I forgot to mention that your Pleasure Permit is valid for life, by the way!) or I might use my Entry Permit from Day 2 to re-connect with my body.

Top Tips!

1. When assessing the validity of your adjustments, you might find this question helpful : “Is the action I’m about to take going to move me towards or away from my outcome ?”

2. “Wiggling” is part of the journey : it can give you new insights and new perspectives (all the best pilots do it :)). In fact, you might even want to giggle when you wiggle because when you’re wiggling, your learning – and the more you learn, the more intelligent the subsequent action will be!

Additional Resources If you’d enjoy some more top tips for “effortless success” in 2013, you might like to join the brilliant Kate Trafford over at Cruise Control For Life. Yesterday, she launched a series of posts which you’ll find really helpful if you are in “New Year Resolution” mode! There’s a feast of learning to be had (and she’s a total goal-setting guru and a muse for effortless success!)  http://katetrafford.typepad.com/cruisecontrol/

Gotta run :)! (#Giggling-While-I’m-Wiggling :))

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013

Energising Action!

Welcome to the 8th day of the 12 Days of Christmas project! (If you are just joining the project now, you can get the full low-down here: https://thighhighbootcamp.com/2012/12/18/welcome-to-the-12-days-of-christmas-project/  and I really recommend that you start the project at Day 1 to get the full benefit!)

First things first : a very happy New Year to you and I hope this post finds you in fine fettle! Yesterday’s post was all about developing your own nutritional philosophy and today’s post acknowledges what many of us may be doing today : setting intentions for 2013. We’re going to be taking a look at how to set outcomes and take action geared towards achieving your outcomes, geared towards helping you to “stay on track”!

Learn how to fuel the flames of action!

Learn how to fuel the flames of action!

Last night, I spent a wonderful evening in front of a roaring fire. The Christmas tree sparkled in the corner .The dog stretched out in bliss. My partner, Ian and I sat all cosy on the sofa. I felt a deeply satisfying sense of “home”. (If Barry Manilow had been playing on the stereo and my partner had been wearing his Indiana Jones hat, it would have been the icing on the Christmas cake :)).

As you and I have known each other for 7  full days, I feel I can be open with you. Truth be told, last night I was so in the mood. Conditions were perfect 🙂

If you are blushing whilst reading this, relax! I was in the mood for setting an intention, for setting a goal of moving into,and making, a new home in 2013.And the conditions were perfect for setting that intention because I was already experiencing what it would be like to feel completely at home. Let me explain a little more…

Feeling completely “at home” last night was a really big deal for me because it has been a very long time since I have felt at home. I moved from Scotland to Northern Ireland in Summer 2011. I moved from my own home into someone else’s. I thought I would soon feel at home but I didn’t.Even with the prospect of my partner and I moving into a farmhouse that we could renovate and “make our home”, I just couldn’t get excited about it. I couldn’t even talk about it without feeling quite distant and totally disconnected. I didn’t unpack a lot of my belongings (they, like me, just didn’t seem to belong!) and I often thought about Scotland. Ian kept taking me to the farmhouse, asking for layout suggestions, colour schemes and even oven specifications (he knows I love cooking and hoped that would get me interested in the house move). None of it lit any kind of flame at all in me.  So, here we are right now in January 2013 and we are still not moved in. And, until last night, I felt like we were still living in a “stop-gap” house in Limbo, County Antrim. Nothing felt permanent. It didn’t feel like home at all.

Positive energy can be a powerful force!

Positive energy can be a powerful force!

Last night it all changed.  Feeling the intensely satisfying feelings of connection, love, belonging and home, I heard myself set an intention to move into the farmhouse. That’s right – whilst I was feeling all those good feelings, the words just popped out! Ian and I talked the house into life as the embers warmed our imaginations. I could see it right in front of me, I could smell the food from the farmhouse kitchen, I could hear my son playing teenage music in the tree-house nearby and I could feel myself belonging to that place. I could feel myself in the bricks and in the roots of the orchard trees and in the soil which would provide us with food. I was in a state of utter connectedness.

When Ian realised that I had “moved in” right in front of his very eyes, he asked me, “What’s one small step we could take, to get the wheels in motion for our move?”

After I’ve published this post, I’ll be checking out internet coverage. That’s my next small step that will take me closer to my outcome. And guess what state I might want to be in while I’m taking that step? That’s right, I’ll be getting myself into the “feeling at home” state, the feeling of “utter connectedness”. That way, I’ll be feeling really good while I’m taking the action and any following small steps I plan will be pulled along by the positive energy attached to my goal (to make a new home). My focus is clearly set on making Northern Ireland my home, rather than on a wistful ache for Scotland.

So, if you’re sitting there, scratching your head and asking “what’s this got to do with me making a New Year’s resolution about weight loss ?” Well, if you think back to times in the past when you’ve resolved to lose weight once and for all – and then found it an incredible struggle to keep your resolve, chances are that you may not have been in the optimal state for setting your goal / intention or for taking action. And the chances are that when you considered the steps to achieving your goal, it suddenly looked huge and overwhelming because you felt pressure to do it all at once!

Keep your attention and energy heading in the direction pf your outcome!

Keep your attention, energy and action heading in the right direction!

Today, I’m going to share with you a process for setting your intentions for 2013 which helps you to focus on what you do want, rather than what you don’t want. So, I was focused on not feeling at home, feeling disconnected and Scotland ~ rather than focusing on feeling at home, belonging and Northern Ireland. People who want to lose weight often focus on how bad they feel about their body instead of how good they’d like to be feeling about it, for example. Is the penny beginning to drop about what happens when your focus, attention and energy is not fully aligned with your outcome? Achieving your outcome may turn out to be less than easy, right? The process I am about to share with you will also help you to identify and access the powerful positive states attached to your outcome, so that you can use this energy to plan and take the next step. And the invitation is to take small steps : this way change will be evolving gradually and it will feel more manageable as you experience regular small successes that keep you heading in the right direction.

Here’s How To Do It Ask yourself the following questions (I give some example answers just to help clarify the process). Go into the changing room of life and try the questions on fully 🙂

1. What do you want? (State your outcome positively and in the present )

A : I am feeling comfortable, healthy and confident in my body. I am living a healthy for-lifestyle.

2. How will you know that you’ve got what you want? (What are you seeing, hearing, feeling that lets you know you’ve achieved your outcome? Engage all your senses!)

A : I am enjoying shopping for clothes. I am looking in the mirror and recognising myself for the first time in a very long time. My skin feels as though it fits perfectly. I feel like this body is me. I feel at home 🙂 I am taking real pleasure nourishing myself with food that my body enjoys. I am physically active.

3. When do you want it?

A wee tip here, if you’ve struggled with your weight in the past, you’re probably answering this with something like “tomorrow” or “yesterday” 🙂 . I understand that  AND I also know that very short time frames can pile on the pressure. So give this question some consideration, knowing that while you’re losing weight you are probably going to be in a much more positive state this time and you might even enjoy the process of becoming healthy! (And you know what happens when you give yourself permission for pleasure and you take all the pressure off, right?) When I took action to lose weight, I decided that I would achieve my goal at the perfect time for me and I would just concentrate on enjoying the “getting there” bit. I was clear about my outcome, I kept it in mind and I literally took one small step after the other until one day I realised I had “arrived” !

4. Having achieved your outcome, how will you be BEING different as a person? (This is the powerful positive energy that you can ride towards your outcome. The idea here is to actually experience this state of being now. The additional questions I ask help to bring the state of being to life.).

A : Unstoppable

What’s that like? Where do you feel it in your body? Does the feeling have a colour? Is it moving or still? Is it warm or cold? Where does the feeling start in your body?

A : Wow. It’s hot, red and really high-energy. It feels like it’s pulling me along. I can barely contain it. It’s right in my stomach and in my chest.

5. When you feel the positive state of being emerging (so you’re actually feeling the feelings), ask what’s the next smallest step you could take TODAY to move towards achieving your outcome?

A : I’m off for a 15-minute stroll.

(Reminder : evolution requires much less effort than revolution. Small steps soon add up as long as the small steps are heading in the right direction 🙂 )

And that’s all there is to it. We’ll talk more about achieving your outcomes tomorrow. In the meantime, I hope you really enjoy getting into some deliciously positive states that will energise your action! Oh – and do take the next smallest step and share your experiences in the comments box!(I’ll ask you how it went tomorrow :))

All this talk of being unstoppable has brought on a sudden urge! Are you in the mood for a change too?

Gotta run 🙂 !

JT

© Jane Talbot 2013