I’ll admit. There are just some things I didn’t “get” when I was in school: biology, chemistry, anything past Algebra II. Just last week, I was having a conversation with my husband and my son about the pythagorean theorem and I swear I start getting the shakes. I could still see Ms. Brown with those glasses getting on to me about not being able to show my work. I still don’t know how I came up with the answer. But if it was right, who cared? Just give me a “B”, lady and let me go on with my life.

Well, that is until I would have had to use the formula again. Because having the answer to anything “temporarily,” not knowing how you got there only leads you to a temporary victory. You find yourself asking the question again. And again. And again. And again.

It’s the same thing with weight loss.

Turn on the radio, the television, Facebook, even your phone (they send text messages now) and everyone has the answer for us. It’s quick. It’s a no-brainer. All you have to do is “this.” We chase the dream of never having to deal with “overweight and out of shape” foolishness again. And we chase product after product, promise after promise, only to find ourselves at the blackboard again, staring at that formula, trying to figure out how we got back to the question.

In order to solve the real problem, we have to use the real formula.

Now I am not crazy enough to believe that one thing works for everyone. However, with several years of
magnet school behind me, I think it’s safe to say that, mathematically speaking, if you want to lose weight, you cannot eat 5,000 calories a day, burn off only 300 calories take a pill, wrap yourself up and meditate and lose eight pounds in a week. What I am suggesting is that whatever formula works for you is based around the fact that 3,500 calories equals one pound. It’s not rocket science. It’s math.

But calculus sounds way more appealing and sophisticated than addition. And that’s how we get trapped into going fifty different directions.

If you want to know if you have the right formula for YOU, ask yourself, “Can I do this for the REST OF MY LIFE?” And, yes, that includes the programs you consider “jump starts” because the real “jump start” is walking up the blackboard and having the courage to solve the problem in the first place. When your formula is concrete, you will always have a reference point to refer back to when your answer is off.

My formula is plant based eating (and I have a calorie range that works for me), minimal wheat, with moderate cardio exercise and heavy weight lifting. When my body doesn’t cooperate, I know where I am faltering and I adjust and I am back on track.

What’s the one thing you KNOW works for you? Spend some time this week, digging into your formula and if you have strayed away from it, make a commitment to get back to it. It may not be a short trip but at least you won’t have to keep packing and unpacking.

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