Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Some of the Fitness Industry is feeling excluded!

So today I noticed on my fitness information stream, that there's quite a flap going on in an (admittedly) small corner of the world.  It seems that George Washington University's Department of Public Health and Health Services has published a white paper on "Improving Obesity Management in Adult Primary Care" (sounds sooo interesting, right?).

The paper itself wasn't the cause of the flap in my fitness professionals' world -- the cause was that no fitness providers were consulted in the writing of this paper.  --Wow!  Big, huh?  Well...big enough that it has collegues of mine all over the nation fussing over it.

In the interests of full discloser, I have to admit, I haven't read the white paper yet.  It's in my bag and next on my task list -- but what I can say for sure it this:

No matter who was consulted on this paper -- YOU are the only one that can actually do anything about your weight management.  Your doctor can't do anything about your weight management. I can't do it for you, either -- because if I could, it would be done (I just hate tasks hanging over my head!).   And neither can the Weight Watchers consultant down the street.

Each of these professionals can help give you tools.  That's it.  (Sorry to disillusion you)

Your physician can offer you education, prescriptions, some motivation (usually in the form of "you need to take care of yourself and here's why...).

I can give you a set of Mindfulness tools.  Email you each day and encourage you to pay attention to what you're putting in your mouth, make choices about what goes in and what stays out, and teach you how to figure out if you are eating because of physical hunger or emotional hunger.  I can even work with you every week to offer accountability and reinforce the habits you are trying to develop.

Your Weight Watchers consultant can teach you to count points, educate you about good and bad fats, teach you the difference between "good" carbs and "bad" carbs.

But the important thing to remember is that all of that is just the prep work.  They are great things to know and great support to have -- but they (the tools) or we ( the professionals) can't DO the work. 

You are where the rubber meets the road.  You are the one that can pick up the tools and use them.

When it comes right down to it, it doesn't matter who was consulted in the writing of the report.  It matters who decides to pick up the tools and put them to good use.  We can all help each other take better care of our physical selves -- but ultimately, you decide how you want to use the abundant resources your are lucky enough to have access to and each day you have plenty of opportunities to improve.

So the question remains:  what are you doing about your weight management today?

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