Sometimes it just seems impossible to get to your goal weight, doesn’t it? Like everything (including menopause, your coworkers, society and your body!) is conspiring against you. But I’m here today with some fantastic news:
YOU CAN LOSE WEIGHT.
And I’ll show you how! On today’s episode of the Fitness Matters podcast, we’re picking apart this (erroneous) idea that you can’t lose weight, and I’m sharing a couple of simple truths that will put you on the path to success.
WHAT YOU’LL LEARN:
👉 What’s HOLDING YOU BACK (it’s not what you think)
👉 How the very word “can’t” is STALLING YOUR PROGRESS
👉 Where this problem showed up in MY LIFE (even after I became a Life Coach!), and
👉 The super simple SOLUTION that you can implement today
Let me say it again: you can lose weight. Are you ready to learn HOW? Let’s go!
If you enjoyed this episode of the podcast, SHARE it! 💛
You Can Lose Weight (full transcript)
You’re listening to the Fitness Matters Podcast with Pahla B, and this is episode number 246, “You Can Lose Weight”. Welcome to the Fitness Matters Podcast where every week we talk about the fitness matters that matter to you. I’m Pahla B, YouTuber, certified life and weight loss coach, soon to be author, and your best middle-aged fitness friend. Are you ready to talk about the fitness mindset that matters to you? Me too. Let’s go.
Ready to read, and better yet, talk about another great self-help book? Join the Pahla B Wellness Over 50 Book Club in partnership with Chirp Audiobooks. Our July-August pick is “The Untethered Soul” by Michael Singer, and you can grab it at a great discount with no monthly subscription fees at chirpbooks.com/pahla. That’s P-A-H-L-A. And while you’re there, be sure to click the follow button to get exclusive access, updates, and information about our live event. See you there.
Hello, hello, beautiful bee. How are you today? I am so excited to be here with you, and I have a really interesting topic today. This is one of my favorite things to talk about, because I’ve noticed in my own life where I am either stopping myself from doing things or slowing myself down from doing things, from getting the goals that I have for myself because of this idea of I can’t.
I want you to know that this is something that I hear from you very frequently on Facebook, on YouTube, on Instagram. This is a word that we throw around as though we are describing reality. I can’t lose weight. I can’t record my podcast, which was something I was thinking to myself this morning.
I was throwing up this weird barrier to myself. Not vomiting, sorry, but I was putting up my own barrier to getting this done by thinking that I can’t because I had a couple of other things going on. I’ve got an appointment to get to this morning. I don’t have enough time, blah, blah, blah. This was all a problem of my own making.
And having said that, let me just be really clear. When I tell you that you are creating your own problems, I want you to hear that the way that I mean it. I mean, yes, you’re creating your own problems, but not in like a blaming way, in a way that empowers you to understand that you have the ability to do anything you want, like truly anything you want. You can lose weight.
You Are Capable!
That’s what I wanted to talk to you about today. Feel free if you have another goal to change the word lose weight to create a million dollar business or write a book or have the relationship of my dreams, like whatever it is that you are trying to get and you are putting up, rather than throwing up, you are putting up your own obstacles with this word can’t. I want you to know that you can. Here’s what I mean really specifically in the case of losing weight. I mean, first of all, that you are capable. And whether or not we’re talking about losing weight, even though we are really specifically today, because that’s what I do. By the way, I’m a weight loss coach. This is what I do.
I help you find a healthy weight, move through the world in ways that feel like self-love so that you can make peace with your menopausal body. The thing about… I was thinking about this actually. Let me take a real, just quick I promise, digression over here, left hand turn. I was thinking about this phrase, finding a healthy weight, and there is so much to like untangle with this. For some of you, finding a healthy weight is not even necessarily going to be about losing weight. It really is about making peace with your current weight and being able to see it as healthy. That is really a whole conversation for another day, but I was thinking about this about how I call myself a weight loss coach.
The fact is, it’s not always about losing weight. For lots of us it is. I mean, for lots and lots of my audience, it definitely is. But it isn’t for everybody. I want you to hear me talking about a healthy weight in a way that is broader than just losing weight. It’s something that we will at some point be talking about on the podcast and more than likely in my workout videos as well, because I’ve been thinking about what this means for lots of you. That a healthy weight might be something that you’re already at or already embodying, but don’t feel it the way that you could through managing your mind, moving your body, really making peace with where you are with where your body is with this time of life.
Having made that left hand turn, let’s come on back because I have committed to the whole you can lose weight. Therefore, if a healthy weight for you does involve weight loss, let me tell you that we, all of us, every single one of us have put in our own minds that we have some kind of I’m going to call it a mechanical barrier. In the case of losing weight, it tends to be we think about like, “My body can’t lose weight. I have like a genetic predisposition, or my family is all overweight, or I have so much trouble losing weight for this reason or that reason.” We use this phrase can’t to describe something that we think is outside of our control. That’s why I call it like a mechanical barrier, meaning like outside of us.
And even in that case, I mean, this is such a funny thing when we talk about like our bodies. You do have a modicum of control over your body. What you control though is the inputs. You control what you do with your body. You don’t control what your body does with those inputs. Your body’s going to do what your body’s going to do every single time. It’s going to make decisions based on its standard operating procedures.
And boy oh boy, does your body have a lot of them, like literally millions of standard operating procedures based on all of the different kinds of inputs that you might give it in terms of how much you eat, how little you eat, what you eat, when you eat, all of those kinds of eating, fueling things, how much you sleep, when you sleep, the quality of your sleep, whether or not it’s broken and whether or not it’s continuous, how much you drink, whether or not it’s too much too little, the right amount, whether or not it’s all water or sometimes it’s sparkling water or soda or whatever else, like the air you breathe, the lotions you put on your skin.
Every single input you could possibly give your body, including and not limited to the upwards of 60,000 thoughts that you have every day, those are all inputs too and your body is affected by them. Like literally affected by them. You have thoughts, it creates feelings. It creates a cascade of chemicals and hormones that is individual to you. 60,000 times a day. Your body is dealing with a lot of inputs and it has a standard operating procedure for all of those. Yes, thinking that your body can’t lose weight is what I would consider like a mechanical barrier, something that you think of as outside of you.
Efficiency Isn’t Always What’s Good for You
Here’s what I want you to know really specifically about your body though and about losing weight/finding a healthy weight is that your body, one of your body’s main, like a primary biological directive is to be efficient. This shows up in a lot of different ways. It shows up when we create for ourselves a movement pattern that actually isn’t good for us. Here’s the example that I think of all the time. When I think about movement patterns that aren’t good for you, I think about how every single time I sit down, I tuck my left leg underneath me. Almost never my right leg. My right leg is not nearly as comfortable. And you know why? Because my body has become efficient at a movement pattern that is not good for me.
Sitting with my left leg tucked underneath me has done a couple of different things. First of all, it has loosened my left hip in a way that… I mean, it’s good for flexibility, but it’s not great for strength. It has also tightened my right hip, which therefore has to carry a lot of the load. My right hip tends to be stronger anyways. I’m very right-handed, very right bodied, right legged, right armed, probably right brain. I guess that would be left-brained. Anyway, my right hip is very tight. My left hip is very loose. My knee joint bends outward very easily on my left leg and inward very easily on my right leg. The way that I sit affects my hips, my knees, my ankles, my shoulders, my core, my neck.
It affects everything. This movement pattern has become very efficient, even though it is very ineffective for me. This is something I have done to myself. It was a habit. It felt comfortable the first, whatever, couple hundred times I did it. And now it’s this habit that I do that my body has become efficient at. Your body becomes efficient at all kinds of things that are not necessarily good for you, and it can also be efficient at things that are good for you.
Because it is your body’s prime directive to be efficient at things, this means that your body actually wants to be a healthy weight. Your body would prefer above all else to be efficient. The most efficient your body can be is at a healthy weight.
Further… I mean, if we’re going to give ourselves some almost impossible standard to meet, but here’s where I’m going with this. To be the most efficient, your body would prefer the healthiest foods. Your body would prefer an optimal amount of hydration. Your body would prefer an optimal amount of rest, recovery, and sleep, which by the way, are different in their own ways. T
hat’s a conversation that we could have, but rest and recovery are more about like your daily activities and sleep, of course, is really specifically talking about sleep. Your body would prefer to be efficient and effective all across the board. Having said that, you can give your body the best inputs that you are capable of and your body will get as efficient as it can with those inputs.
But because your body wants to be efficient, it means that your body wants to be a healthy weight, which therefore means that your body, if you have weight to lose, would prefer to lose weight. It is therefore capable of losing weight to get to a healthy weight. And just really quick, another left hand turn, because this is what I do. I often make enough left hand turns that we come right on back around. It’s almost like making a U-turn twice so that we can come back around to the main topic. But let this be just a quick little caveat about your body wants to lose weight up to a certain point. There is at any given time for any given thing that is good for you, there is a point at which you could be underweight.
At which point, you would be operating at less efficiency. If your body is working significantly harder to… For example, the first thing that came to mind when I’m thinking about being underweight is that you’re probably going to be pretty frequently cold. It’s just one of the ways that your body becomes kind of maladapted to being underweight is that it has to work harder to warm up because you don’t have enough body fat and possibly don’t have enough muscle to keep you warm. Your body would be less efficient at holding onto your body heat because of being underweight. There is an optimal window and you can be on either side of that. Your body would prefer to be in the most efficient and most effective window.
That was a really long way of saying don’t lose too much weight. That’s really all I was saying there. The other thing about being capable of losing weight, the thing that I hear with real, real frequency is that you are perhaps dealing with some kind of physiological issue. Thyroid is the first thing that comes to mind. I know that there are other types of things that can affect like your metabolism and your body’s efficiency and some medications that you might be on that really specifically have a side effect of like weight gain, things like that. Again, I’m thinking of like antidepressants or even birth control pills. There are lots of different physiological reasons that you tell me means that you can’t lose weight and I will tell you that it still doesn’t mean you can’t.
It does possibly mean that your weight loss journey will look different because of these factors, but it still doesn’t present an insurmountable barrier. Your body is physically, biologically, chemically capable of losing weight. You might have to be extraordinarily patient. You might have to be I’m going to call it extraordinarily consistent. Generally speaking, I mean, hey, let’s take another left hand turn. Are you ready for this one?
I apologize if you get motion sickness, but just really quickly, the older we get, the less efficient our bodies are. I don’t mean that to say that you are going to be inefficient, but just you had a peak optimal efficiency of your metabolism somewhere in your like late twenties, early thirties.
Here at a certain age, our bodies are just slightly less efficient at metabolizing things in general. That doesn’t necessarily mean you personally. It means like generally speaking, we are slightly and sometimes significantly less efficient than we were when we were younger. What this means for most of us is that we have to be really careful to be extremely consistent with our caloric intake at that slight deficit. What I recommend with the 5-0 Method, which by the way, if you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s my free… Hey, there’s another left turn. It’s my free ebook that explains literally everything you could possibly need to know about how to lose weight. There will be a link for you in the show notes or the description.
The thing about being consistent is that as we get older, we need to really, really hit our calorie target like right on the money. As opposed to when we were younger, we could be off by 100, 200 calories either direction and probably still lose weight. Nowadays, we have to be a little bit, possibly a lot more consistent. If you have some physiological thing going on like a medication or like, again, for example, a thyroid issue or something like that, you might have to be even more consistent than that. Not just hitting it on the money, but hitting it like on the money every single day. Yes, your weight loss journey might look different, but it doesn’t mean you can’t. None of these things are actual barriers.
None of these things relate to being incapable. You are capable of losing weight. You are. When you tell me I can’t, I don’t believe you. That’s where I’m going with this entire conversation today, and yet I still actually have more about this. Because the other thing about that word can’t, and I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about it this way, I didn’t use to think this applied to me until I totally realized that it does. You have permission. You can lose weight because you have permission to lose weight. Here’s what I mean by this. You don’t need permission from anybody ever for any of it. We all kind of, sort of, a little bit think that we do. We all kind of, sort of, a little bit, and there could actually be like I’m going to say biological reasons for this.
There’s some theory that we all have like kind of hardwired drives that you might consider innate about like wanting to belong. It makes sense that we would want to belong. Way, way, way back in caveman days, if we didn’t belong, if we were cast out of the tribe, we would definitely die.
However, whether or not that is nature or nurture, I used to kind of stick my flag in the ground that that was nature, that that was innate. I’m kind of changing my mind about that. We have a lot of thought patterns that we think feel innate that might simply just be so passed down because of how we all behave. We all don’t think about our automatic thoughts that maybe it’s nature, maybe it’s nurture.
I will never know. You might never know. You are welcome to create your own theory about whether or not this is something you were born with or something that is just so pervasive that it feels like you were born with it, but we all want to belong at least a little bit. Some of us… I was thinking about this, about how the new belonging is to act like we don’t belong, like doing interesting things with our hair or having a lot of tattoos, like things that young people do that they think they’re being rebellious with it, except that so many people do it now that it’s not really rebellious anymore. Not belonging is the new belonging kind of a thing. That was another left turn. Don’t mind me here.
I’m really riffing today. You’re welcome. But here’s the thing about wanting permission is that you really truly don’t need it. In every sense of the word, you do not need permission to do what you want. And yet we all so frequently that it feels innate really want permission. We want other people to approve of us. We want to belong to our group. We want to feel included, connected, like we belong, like we are lovable and likable, like we are at least in some ways like other people. And that sometimes means that we might think that we need to stay overweight. We might need to stay underachieving. We might need to stay kind of in our safe little box, because truly you look around, the average of humanity is average.
It’s the average of humanity. If you look at your immediate family, your friends, your coworkers, your town, something relatively small, it might really feel like you are the only one who wants something more for yourself, who wants to be efficient at a healthy weight, who wants to accomplish something like achieving your dreams, writing your book, creating a business, whatever it is. And that might feel really role really outside the norm and therefore, for whatever reason, nature or nurture, scary. Here’s perhaps the most important thing about this you have permission thing, the only person who can truly grant you permission is yourself ever. I know you know this because people tell you stuff all the time.
You know how people will give you compliments or tell you’re beautiful or smart or good at something? But if your own thought inside your head is, “I’m ugly. I’m dumb. I’m terrible at this,” whatever it is, no matter how many times somebody else tells you something contrary to what you personally are thinking, it just doesn’t sound true to you. Somebody else granting you permission, me telling you on a podcast, “You don’t need permission,” might not feel true to you. But if you grant yourself permission, it will. This is me advising you, suggesting to you lovingly to please grant yourself permission.
When you hold yourself in and hold yourself to I’m going to call it the normal standard of doing what maybe everybody else in your family does, or maybe what everybody else in your town or your friend circle seems to do, you are holding yourself back. We would love all of us, I’m including myself here, I would love to blame other people for this. I hold myself back because my parents said this or did that. I hold myself back because my family this or that. I hold myself back because blah, blah, blah. The real truth of it is that I hold myself back because I didn’t grant myself permission to go for what I want. You have implicit permission from me, from society, even if it doesn’t feel like it.
You know society loves people who are extraordinary. Society loves people who stand out and go for what they want. We hold them up as examples. We call them inspiring. As much as there is that either nature or nurture drive to belong, we also love it when people don’t. You can be that person.
Grant Yourself Permission to Be Extraordinary
Here’s the thing, you can lose weight. You can lose weight because you are capable. You can lose weight because you grant yourself permission. You can lose weight. Here’s the thing about both of these mechanical barriers or emotional barriers that we might think that we have, like mechanical of my body can’t, or I can’t because my family won’t love me anymore, kind of a thing. This is what I mean by a mechanical or an emotional barrier.
These are your barriers to discover. This is where, of course, I’m going to refer you to journaling, to finding your thoughts about this. Here’s what I was saying about, I didn’t realize I was waiting for permission until I started journaling about how I can’t do stuff. I recognized in my journal how much I was holding myself back with my thoughts.
My friends, you have thoughts about your body. You have thoughts about the medications that you are taking. You have thoughts about maybe your physical abilities in terms of your mental ability to calculate calories, how smart you are, your faculties, that’s actually the word I was trying to come up with, your ability to count calories, your ability to exercise, your ability to get to sleep.
You have thoughts about your abilities, about your permissions, and the only way to do something about those to find them and recognize them as being unhelpful if they’re unhelpful. Here’s where I’ll refer you to episode 89, mind management, the way you overcome these mechanical and emotional obstacles that are truly only in your mind, because they are only thoughts that you have is to find them. Find those thoughts and recognize them as being unhelpful for where you want to go. You guys, you can lose weight. You can write your book. You can create the business of your dreams. You can have the relationship you want. You can have the job you want. You can have the house you want.
You can have the body you want. Your journey might, because of your alleged physical and alleged emotional barriers, might look different than you would love for it to look. We would all love our journeys to look like a linear path, straight up the hill. Boom, I made it. Ta-da! Your path is probably going to look like a bumblebee in flight going neither and yawn.
Hey, you know what? Your path to your goal might look a lot like this podcast with lots and lots of left turns so many that we got back on the path, going directly up the hill. You can have what you want. You are capable and you have permission. My friends, thank you so much for listening. I love you, and I hope today was really helpful for you. I’ll talk to you again soon.
If you are getting a lot out of the Fitness Matters Podcast and you’re ready to take it to the next level, you are going to love to Get Your Goal Coaching and Accountability Group. We take all the theory and knowledge here on the podcast and actually apply it in real life on your real weight loss and fitness goals. It’s hands-on. It’s fun, and it works. Find out more at pahlabfitness.com/get-your-goal and let’s get your goal.