It has been a good week
It’s time for me to tell you about the podcast I’ve been listening to. It’s called Inside Out Weight Loss and it’s by a lady called Renee Stephens. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s working wonders for me. I’m only 12 episodes into the podcast, but already I’m feeling SO much more in control.
I listen to it every morning on my bike on my way into work – each episode is around 20 minutes long, which means that it finishes at just about the same time as I leave the quiet, safe cycle path, and hit city traffic, at which point I get to take out the headphones and be safe on the roads. Then on my way home, as soon as I hit the cycle path, I put my headphones back in again and listen to the podcast again.
I’ve been learning things like how to self-correct – building on the idea that there are no mistakes in dieting, only opportunities for feedback. Couple this with her concept of The Re-do, it’s a pretty powerful tool.
This is a fun little exercise. Renee assigns “homework” after each episode, and a few episodes in she recommends this thing called the “Re-do”. Every evening before you go to sleep, you think back on one thing that you would rather have not done that day – be it eating too much, or eating something you shouldn’t have or something. She emphasises that this is NOT to punish or reinforce anything negative about the experience – in fact, NOTHING about her podcasts have been about using negative reinforcement* – it’s been such a glowingly positive experience! So you think back on this thing that you’d have rather done differently and she got us to create a mental movie of the situation, but tweak the scene, so that it played out exactly as it should have played out. Then you play it over and over and over until you’ve got it just right, and the act of going over what you SHOULD have done helps you the next time you’re in that situation.
So the next day, I was faced with a situation at work – I was offered a slice of cake. This happens regularly. I ended up eating the cake, but I made a deliberate choice to eat it. After I ate the cake, I paid very close attention to how I felt physically and mentally. Mentally, a wee bit guilty but also armed with the knowledge that I was providing myself ammunition – more about that in a second. Physically, I was feeling a bit sick. Good. Goooood.
So that evening, it was time for bed, and time for that day’s Re-Do. I closed my eyes and imagined that I was back at work and the cake was being offered to me. Now, we work on the 4th floor and the windows are open most of the time. In my movie, I imagined getting the (large hunk) of cake, wrapping it back up in its tinfoil, and lobbing it out the window (Renee encourages you to be a bit out-there if you want to, with your Re-Do.) I also imagined how much better my belly felt without it.
And guess what? Today, again the cake was being passed around. Hell, there was a freaking TROLLEY of cake. I wasn’t the least bit tempted, really I wasn’t. Because in my mind, I’d bundled up that cake and lobbed it out the window, where it flew down 4 stories before hitting the ground on Princes Street (Edinburgh’s main shopping street). I fear I didn’t think about the safety of pedestrians in my fantasy, so it’s probably for the best that I didn’t actually throw it. But Renee’s method totally worked for me.
I am now confident in recommending Renee’s blog to anyone who doesn’t mind a fairly strong American accent (let’s face it, some Brits find it a bit grating, no offence to my N.American friends. I am, after all, marrying a man with a North American accent – Josh is Canadian).
You can get Renee’s most recent episodes on iTunes, but there’s a full archive of her podcasts on Feedburner: http://feeds.feedburner.com/InsideOutWeightLoss. If you want to download the episodes to listen to later, just right mouse click on the “play now” link for each episode, and select “save link as”. If you’re an iPhone user and want to listen to these as podcasts rather than as music, just import them into your iTunes, select one or more, right mouse-click again and go to “Get Info”. Then go the Options tab, and change the Media Kind from Music to Podcast. It’ll then disappear from your music library and reappear in your podcasts directory, complete with coverart.
If you’re going to start this, make sure you listen to the Prologue first.
Happy podcasting, folks!
* I did a Tony Robbins audiobook a few years ago where he got his listeners to imagine their VERY favorite food, and then imagine it with pubes and maggots and other gross stuff on it. That just DIDN’T work for me. I need positive reinforcement, not negative.