If you kept breaking your right leg over and over, would you just sigh and wearily head over to the nearest emergency room for yet another cast? Or would you question how you keep having these accidents, so that you can prevent them in the future? Maybe you would even visit a specialist to make sure you don’t have a condition that makes your bones overly brittle.
That sounds like a logical course of action. And yet, people usually don’t take the same approach when it comes to their fitness and weight management. They might gain and lose the same 10, 20, or 50 pounds repeatedly, without ever asking themselves what causes the weight gain in the first place.
As you progress toward your optimal health, investigating how you became overweight is a worthwhile endeavor. Otherwise, you could risk re-gaining the weight later because you haven’t solved the original problem. This isn’t to say that you should live in the past or inflict harsh blame on yourself, but understanding your past behavior is the key to changing it in the future – for good!
For instance, if over eating is an issue, you might need to look deeper at the reasons this occurs.
Some possible causes of chronic overeating include (but are not limited to):
- learning poor eating habits in childhood, or poor education about nutrition
- eating because you’re bored
- eating for emotional reasons – depression, anxiety, etc
- chronic dehydration and failure to recognize the difference between thirst and hunger
- failure to “feel full” when eating
- lifestyle factors such as a busy schedule
- low self esteem
- a sabotaging romantic partner or even a friend
As you pursue your optimal health, remember to investigate the reasons you have struggled with your weight in the past. It could be that you read over the above examples, and the answer jumps right out at you. Or, your weight gain may have been caused by multiple factors. In some cases, people bury their feelings and are unaware for the deeper reasons behind their behavior.
Once you get to know yourself better, you can develop a strategy to change your behavior in the future. Once you’ve reached your weight loss goal, you should find that keeping the weight off is now much easier than ever before!