Saturday, May 27, 2006

Weight loss and religion?!?

Do these things have anything in common? They sure do! The same way we grow in our Christian faith is the same way we lose weight.

From Day 23 of The Purpose Driven Life:

To change your life, you must change the way you try to change your life with willpower: You say, "I'll force myself to eat less...exercise more..." Yes willpower can produce short-term change, but it creates constant internal stress because you haven't dealt with the root cause. The change doesn't feel natural, so eventually you give up, go off your diet, and quit exercising. You quickly revert to your old patterns (pgs. 181-182).

This is our autopilot and the only way to overcome this is to change our autopilot. No matter what happens from here on out with my diet, I'll never go back to eating the way I used to. I changed the way I think. This is no longer a diet; it's a lifestyle. The way I eat today is the way I will eat for the rest of my life. The fact that I feel healthier and have clearer skin is only further proof that I need to eat this way.

I've also changed the way I think about the foods I like but aren't allowed to eat. I may like their taste, but I know what they will do inside my body. Those foods don't love me back, so why should I continue to love them? They make my body unhappy and I want to make my body happy by giving it good food. My health is more important than fish sticks, potatoes, or brownies.

I've changed how I think about exercise. I know that it's good not just for burning calories and improving endurance, but it also raises HDL (good) cholesterol. In fact, I've been getting so into exercise that I've been overtraining and need to cut back! It's ingrained into my life.

And here's where diet and religion meet: Change always starts in your mind. The way you think determines the way you feel, and the way you feel influences the way you act (PDL, pg. 182). Our faith should be as much a lifestyle change as our weight loss efforts. As Pastor Warren explains, all permanent change begins with changing the way you think.

Are you struggling with weight loss? Have you begun to change the way you think?

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