New Year’s Resolutions

      96 Comments on New Year’s Resolutions

It’s the first Monday in January, which means a lot of people who didn’t write out their New Year’s resolutions over the weekend are probably doing it now. If you’ve made a list of resolutions and it looks something like

  • I’m going to start saving 10% of my income
  • I’m going to stop wasting my evenings watching reality shows about people who can’t throw anything away
  • I’m going to lose 35 pounds

… then I have a piece of friendly advice for you: scratch that last one right now. The first two are fine, but the last one has to go. Replace it with something like:

  • I’m going to buy the latest Atkins book and follow the program exactly
  • I’m going to stop drinking alcohol except on rare occasions
  • I’m going to stop eating all sugars and grain foods

If you adhere to the resolutions on the second list, you may indeed lose 35 pounds. Or you may not. But what matters is that the goals in the second list are the kind you can definitely achieve if you want to.

Over the years, I’ve learned there’s a right way and a wrong way to make New Year’s resolutions. Well, actually, there are two wrong ways. The first wrong way is to wake up on January 1st suffering from a hangover-and-guilt combination, and then attempt to treat the guilt by proclaiming lofty goals you’ll never actually pursue once your head clears … such as “I’m going to quit my meaningless corporate job and spend the rest of my life feeding and educating the poor in Tanzania,” or “I’m going to discover what happened to my pants and apologize to whoever has them.”

The second wrong way is to wake up on January 1st and proclaim lofty goals that depend on specific outcomes you can’t actually control. I could, for example, declare that I’m going to sell 5,000 copies of Fat Head this year — and of course, I’d love for that to happen. But ultimately, I can’t control how many copies are sold. Only the buying public can. All I can do is promote the film to the best of my abilities. In other words, I can control my actions, but not the results of those actions.

The same principle applies to losing weight. Now and then, I hear from people who ask me something like, “I’ve lost 25 pounds and feel great, my doctor is pleased with how much my triglycerides and blood pressure have improved, but my weight loss has stalled and I’m still 20 pounds heavier than my goal weight — what should I do?” My answer: whatever you’ve been doing. If you’ve lost weight and feel great, you’re on a good diet. Don’t obsess with reaching a goal your body may resist for its own reasons.

Don’t get me wrong; I think it’s great to have a target in mind. As countless motivational speakers and authors have pointed out, if you don’t decide where you want to go, you’re going to end up somewhere else — probably someplace far away. The trouble is, many of them preach about the wonders of writing down goals without distinguishing between actions and results. They mean well, but focusing too much on results is a prescription for feeling like a failure. As any coach, CEO, or battlefield commander will tell you, things rarely work out as well in reality as they did on the drawing board.

That’s why out of all the motivational books I’ve read, I found the ones by Tony Robbins (you know, the guy who looks like a handsome version of Andre the Giant) to be the most useful. His programs are all about taking action. In fact, he discourages people from defining success in terms of a specific outcome.

In his book Awaken the Giant Within, Robbins recounts dealing with a client who was lean, muscular, happily married, and financially well-off, yet considered himself a failure. Why? Because the guy had set personal targets for an extremely high level of income and an extremely low level of body fat, but couldn’t meet either. Mentally, he’d set himself up to fail. Once you decide you’ve failed, it’s tempting to just give up.

That’s why Robbins encourages his readers to define a goal, create aΒ plan for meeting the goal, but then — this is the important part — define success in terms of faithfully taking action and following the plan, not in producing specific results. He calls this setting yourself up to win.Β  If you feel like you’re winning the game, you’re more likely to keep on playing.

Of course, that doesn’t mean you should keep blindly following a plan that isn’t working. If you’re not getting good results, it’s time to re-evaluate, do some research, and then perhaps choose another plan. If you want to lose 35 pounds and stall after losing six or seven pounds, or if you feel lousy even though you’re losing weight, there’s a good chance you’ve picked the wrong diet — I certainly did more than once. But if you are getting good results, don’t set yourself up to feel like a failure by confusing good with perfect.

I know from experience that if I define success as having a narrow waist with washboard abs, I’m going to fail. I don’t have the genes to reach that goal, short of outright starvation. Ten or 12 years ago, I managed to semi-starve myself down to 165 pounds — nearly 35 pounds less than I weigh now. The number on the scale looked impressive, but I still had little love handles and some belly fat, and my muscles were starting to shrink noticeably. Family and friends began encouraging me to try to put some weight back on, or at least stop losing.

I understand now that body fat is an active and necessary part of our metabolisms, that we accumulate extra body fat partly to compensate for insulin resistance, and that there’s a limit to how much fat each of us can lose before our bodies will elect to digest muscle tissue instead of more fat. As Gary Taubes says in his new book, the proper diet will help us become as lean as we can be, but not necessarily as lean as we’d like to be.

That’s not a reason to give up and start eating Twinkies, of course. It’s a reason to define success as taking the right actions, not achieving specific results. So if your goal this year is to lose weight, I’d discourage you from picking some arbitrary number you think you should reach. But I’d heartily encourage you to

  • Decide how you’re going to lose weight
  • Write down your action plan
  • Keep a food journal so you know if you’re actually following your plan
  • Pat yourself on the back every time you do follow your plan
  • Pick one or two days per month to eat whatever you like without any guilt or recriminations afterwards — but only one or two days per month
  • Accept what you cannot change

The real point of adopting a better diet is to become healthier and to feel better. If you define success as doing the right thing and then do it, trust me, you will feel better. Losing weight is just a nice side benefit.


If you enjoy my posts, please consider a small donation to the Fat Head Kids GoFundMe campaign.
Share

96 thoughts on “New Year’s Resolutions

  1. Jason Sandeman

    Tom, love it. I recently wrote that NYR are stupid. I like the goals and action plans better. My goal is to be able to fit in the jeans that I wore when I met my wife. I am going to do that dropping grains and legumes from my diet, exercising less, and reading more of your blog! (time has come to do another guest post as well!)
    I want to review Gary’s new book, but it is a bit of fun getting it here. Quebec has a funny demographic, and I guess there is not much call for it.

    No, no, no, you’ve got to start with a goal you can easily achieve. Resolve that you you’re going to fit into the same hat you wore when you met your wife. Then put it on. Bingo, you win.

  2. Elenor Snow

    Happy New Year Tom, and thank you for the pep talk. It’s a good reminder to plan the journey, draw a map, FOLLOW the map, and don’t look only at the end point. I just finished Gary Taubes’ new book. As with _Good Calories, Bad Calories_ (and your movie, which I’ve watched more than 20 times!), it’s motivational just by the weight of sheer facts. It’s hard to ‘cheat’ or eat something with bad stuff in it when your *functioning brain* keep flashing on the facts of the health damage that results.

    I had an idea the other day, listening to a podcast by some strange guys talking (crazy wrong stuff) about simple carbs and complex carbs. I thought — since people use those terms incorrectly (as against their scientifically accurate use) — maybe we need to start using the terms: grain carbs, veg carbs, and sugar carbs. As in: “avoid all grain and sugar carbs, and control your veg carbs.”

    I like your terminology better. I don’t care if grain carbs are simple, complex, or merely confused, I don’t want them in my diet.

  3. Darrin

    Wow… As a goal setter myself, I’ve felt a bit of disconnect in that the things I really want often involve outside forces that aren’t under my direct control. Brilliant workaround here.

    Nothing wrong with wanting those things, of course. Just a matter of accepting what you can control and what you can’t.

  4. Rebecca Latham

    Great article, Tom. Great thoughts. There are so many people I see who say, “My goal is to lose 1.7 pounds per week for the next 9 weeks so I can fit in my wedding dress.” Or “I’m going on a cruise in 3 weeks and I need to lose 23 pounds fast!”

    I feel like a bad guy telling them that they are setting themselves up for disappointment.

    Now, I can just show them your article. Thanks! You’re making my life easier!

    I’ve been one of those people. If I knew then what I know now, I could’ve saved myself some grief by choosing the right kind of goals.

  5. Jason Sandeman

    LOL @Tom – Yah, that might be a problem, as I just don’t even have 1/4 the hair I used to… some things are outta control there. I do think cutting the grains is a good one though.
    Tom, out of curiosity, where are you in terms of diet style? Paleo, Primal, Low-Carb?

    Ignoring Christmas/New Year’s week, which included (of course) a stuffed pizza in Chicago, I’m close to Paleo. No grains, no sugar, no diet sodas. Mostly meat, eggs, seafood, green vegetables, and nuts. If my wife puts a sweet potato in a stew or makes some of her awesome sweet-potato fries (fried in bacon grease!), I’ll eat some. My one non-paleo indulgence is dairy. I still like a little cream in my coffee and dishes that include cheese or sour cream.

  6. Jason Sandeman

    Ohh yes, bacon grease! Second only to Duck Fat…. (I smell blog post… mmm Duck Fat Sweet Potato Fries!)
    I agree about the dairy. I want to adopt the paleo lifestyle, but the lack of dairy just kills me. I love my cheese, heavy creams and stuff. I of course can’t eat/drink the “low fat” stuff because I’m diabetic, but put a triple cream brie in front of me, and you’d draw back a bloody stump if you tried taking it from me! :grin
    I guess I like the primal thought on food.

  7. Jason Sandeman

    Tom, love it. I recently wrote that NYR are stupid. I like the goals and action plans better. My goal is to be able to fit in the jeans that I wore when I met my wife. I am going to do that dropping grains and legumes from my diet, exercising less, and reading more of your blog! (time has come to do another guest post as well!)
    I want to review Gary’s new book, but it is a bit of fun getting it here. Quebec has a funny demographic, and I guess there is not much call for it.

    No, no, no, you’ve got to start with a goal you can easily achieve. Resolve that you you’re going to fit into the same hat you wore when you met your wife. Then put it on. Bingo, you win.

  8. Clark

    I think adding some regular exercise would help; I do not mean doing long duration cardio. I mean more along the lines resistance training. If weights are not available, than doing push-ups, pull-ups, and squats are good even though they are not good for building new muscle if your own body weight is too light. Still, they will at least keep you in shape. That along with the low carb lifestyle is killer.

    I’m with you on that.

  9. Jo

    Hi – great post. For those who want to control their alcohol consumption, may I suggest Allen Carr’s “Easy Way to Control Drinking” (I think in the US it’s called Easy Way to Quit Drinking). I had no intention of quitting drinking when I started reading it, but I haven’t had a drink for 3 years! LOL. Not saying you should do the same, but I found it very motivational and easy to do.

    I so agree with Taubes about losing the weight you can rather than what you want to. I could do with losing another 20lbs, but I feel great and look pretty good now (modesty eh?). My self esteem has sky rocketed which is the best result of all. And I’m never hungry.

    My urge to drink to excess went away when I gave up sugar and starch. I agree with Nora Gedgaudas that alcohol addiction is often just another form of sugar addiction.

  10. Elenor Snow

    Happy New Year Tom, and thank you for the pep talk. It’s a good reminder to plan the journey, draw a map, FOLLOW the map, and don’t look only at the end point. I just finished Gary Taubes’ new book. As with _Good Calories, Bad Calories_ (and your movie, which I’ve watched more than 20 times!), it’s motivational just by the weight of sheer facts. It’s hard to ‘cheat’ or eat something with bad stuff in it when your *functioning brain* keep flashing on the facts of the health damage that results.

    I had an idea the other day, listening to a podcast by some strange guys talking (crazy wrong stuff) about simple carbs and complex carbs. I thought — since people use those terms incorrectly (as against their scientifically accurate use) — maybe we need to start using the terms: grain carbs, veg carbs, and sugar carbs. As in: “avoid all grain and sugar carbs, and control your veg carbs.”

    I like your terminology better. I don’t care if grain carbs are simple, complex, or merely confused, I don’t want them in my diet.

  11. Darrin

    Wow… As a goal setter myself, I’ve felt a bit of disconnect in that the things I really want often involve outside forces that aren’t under my direct control. Brilliant workaround here.

    Nothing wrong with wanting those things, of course. Just a matter of accepting what you can control and what you can’t.

  12. Rebecca Latham

    Great article, Tom. Great thoughts. There are so many people I see who say, “My goal is to lose 1.7 pounds per week for the next 9 weeks so I can fit in my wedding dress.” Or “I’m going on a cruise in 3 weeks and I need to lose 23 pounds fast!”

    I feel like a bad guy telling them that they are setting themselves up for disappointment.

    Now, I can just show them your article. Thanks! You’re making my life easier!

    I’ve been one of those people. If I knew then what I know now, I could’ve saved myself some grief by choosing the right kind of goals.

  13. Jason Sandeman

    LOL @Tom – Yah, that might be a problem, as I just don’t even have 1/4 the hair I used to… some things are outta control there. I do think cutting the grains is a good one though.
    Tom, out of curiosity, where are you in terms of diet style? Paleo, Primal, Low-Carb?

    Ignoring Christmas/New Year’s week, which included (of course) a stuffed pizza in Chicago, I’m close to Paleo. No grains, no sugar, no diet sodas. Mostly meat, eggs, seafood, green vegetables, and nuts. If my wife puts a sweet potato in a stew or makes some of her awesome sweet-potato fries (fried in bacon grease!), I’ll eat some. My one non-paleo indulgence is dairy. I still like a little cream in my coffee and dishes that include cheese or sour cream.

  14. Jason Sandeman

    Ohh yes, bacon grease! Second only to Duck Fat…. (I smell blog post… mmm Duck Fat Sweet Potato Fries!)
    I agree about the dairy. I want to adopt the paleo lifestyle, but the lack of dairy just kills me. I love my cheese, heavy creams and stuff. I of course can’t eat/drink the “low fat” stuff because I’m diabetic, but put a triple cream brie in front of me, and you’d draw back a bloody stump if you tried taking it from me! :grin
    I guess I like the primal thought on food.

  15. Sigi

    LOL – how big a hangover would you need to be suffering to suddenly find yourself overcome with a desire to bestow your benevolence on the (no doubt rather bemused) citizenry of Tasmania?

    Far better indeed to follow a Tom-style action plan! Here’s wishing a successful and satisfying 2011 to all.

    I apparently just flunked world geography. It should’ve been Tanzania. I knew something didn’t look right, but when it passed the spell-checker, I moved on.

  16. Clark

    I think adding some regular exercise would help; I do not mean doing long duration cardio. I mean more along the lines resistance training. If weights are not available, than doing push-ups, pull-ups, and squats are good even though they are not good for building new muscle if your own body weight is too light. Still, they will at least keep you in shape. That along with the low carb lifestyle is killer.

    I’m with you on that.

  17. kelebek

    I have ordered my new Atkins book and while I am waiting for it to arrive (it got lost in the mail they’re sending me a second copy) I am doing induction. I have been splurging while I am waiting for the book to arrive telling myself “Oh I won’t eat pizza once the book comes.” And promptly put on 5 pounds. After that I smacked myself over the head and went back to induction, which I know how to do new Atkins book or not!
    Oh and, as American expat living in Australia I would like to remind you that Tasmanians are a bit touchy about getting confused with Tanzania. Speaking from experience here!

    Yikes … I updated the post. Tell the Tasmanians to recall the hit squad.

  18. Jeanne

    I know cardio is no longer seen as essential (or even helpful) for weight loss, but I wish people would start thinking of doing activities for fun, again. Not “I’ve got to spend so many hours on the treadmill,” but “I’m going to have fun by going out with my spouse and dance” or “I’m going to hike along the ocean with my family,” or “I’m going to learn how to horse back ride, or ice skate, because it looks like FUN, and, now that my new way of eating makes me feel so much better, I want to do something!”

    Before the weight loss mindset hijacked activity for weight loss, and “cardio” we used to do things for FUN.

    Excellent point. Run, jump, play like a kid … that’s fun. People have pointed out that my evenings walks don’t do much for weight loss, and I agree. But I walk at night because I like it.

  19. Jo

    Hi – great post. For those who want to control their alcohol consumption, may I suggest Allen Carr’s “Easy Way to Control Drinking” (I think in the US it’s called Easy Way to Quit Drinking). I had no intention of quitting drinking when I started reading it, but I haven’t had a drink for 3 years! LOL. Not saying you should do the same, but I found it very motivational and easy to do.

    I so agree with Taubes about losing the weight you can rather than what you want to. I could do with losing another 20lbs, but I feel great and look pretty good now (modesty eh?). My self esteem has sky rocketed which is the best result of all. And I’m never hungry.

    My urge to drink to excess went away when I gave up sugar and starch. I agree with Nora Gedgaudas that alcohol addiction is often just another form of sugar addiction.

  20. Tammy

    Tom it’s funny several weeks ago I decided to give up grains for January to see what happens. I’ve been low carbing since 2002 (Atkins) anyway so sugar has not been a big problem, but I’ve know for a long time that I definitely have issues with wheat. I’m proud of myself this time because I usually give myself the green light for food during the holidays and this past year I didn’t even eat one cookie or candy. I ate alot of food in general, but no sweets other than fruit and I didn’t even want any. I’m with you on the pizza though, I did have it once over the holidays πŸ™‚

    Sounds like you were more disciplined over the holidays than I was. I used to wish I could find Giordano’s stuffed pizza outside the Chicago area; now I’m glad I can’t. That makes it a twice-per-yer treat.

  21. Kent Cowgill

    Fantastic post as usual!

    I wish I could produce bacon grease as fast as (or faster than!) I tend to use it, but I just don’t have time to cook that much bacon πŸ™ So I don’t think I’ll be able to enjoy sweet potato fries fried in bacon fat. I’ll still saute some potato cubes in a little bacon fat and/or butter πŸ™‚

    I tend to think of Paleo + Dairy as just “Primal” AKA Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint, which I’ve been mostly following. I tried cutting out dairy one week but couldn’t stand my coffee without the cream. Have been toying with trying to cut it out again now that I’ve gotten used to drinking it black.

    If we cut out all the sugars, grains, and unnatural vegetable oils, that probably produces the vast majority of the benefits of going paleo. Some people, of course, are allergic to dairy, so for them it’s important to go dairy-free, but I’m not convinced the rest of us reap any big benefits from giving up, say, cream in the coffee or some raw-milk cheese on the burger.

  22. Galina L.

    Somehow you just described me with my 26 lb lost and somewhat stall for 2 years with 20 to go. It is comforting to know there are more people like me. My easy NYR is to continue motivate myself with your blog and other appropriate reading.

    I like your resolution. Losing 26 pounds is an accomplishment, so pat yourself on the back.

  23. Lori

    Re: paleo, I think it’s a great diet for a lot of people, but if you don’t have any sensitivity to dairy or artificial sweeteners, I don’t see what the point is in giving them up if you enjoy them. And if you MUST keep your carbs very low, paleo become even more restrictive. I’d have a hard time adhering to it.

    Someone named Matt Lentzner has challenged people to go gluten-free for the month of January. Just doing that would be a big enough challenge for most people.

    Yup, I mentioned to a friend that I don’t eat wheat anymore, which produced a wide-eyed look followed by “But what do you eat?!” Grains have become so central to our diets, some people can’t imagine a meal without them.

  24. Marilyn

    Jason said: “Ohh yes, bacon grease! Second only to Duck Fat…. ” To which I would add “goose fat.” I just roasted a beautiful goose last week. Yummmmm.

  25. Sigi

    LOL – how big a hangover would you need to be suffering to suddenly find yourself overcome with a desire to bestow your benevolence on the (no doubt rather bemused) citizenry of Tasmania?

    Far better indeed to follow a Tom-style action plan! Here’s wishing a successful and satisfying 2011 to all.

    I apparently just flunked world geography. It should’ve been Tanzania. I knew something didn’t look right, but when it passed the spell-checker, I moved on.

  26. kelebek

    I have ordered my new Atkins book and while I am waiting for it to arrive (it got lost in the mail they’re sending me a second copy) I am doing induction. I have been splurging while I am waiting for the book to arrive telling myself “Oh I won’t eat pizza once the book comes.” And promptly put on 5 pounds. After that I smacked myself over the head and went back to induction, which I know how to do new Atkins book or not!
    Oh and, as American expat living in Australia I would like to remind you that Tasmanians are a bit touchy about getting confused with Tanzania. Speaking from experience here!

    Yikes … I updated the post. Tell the Tasmanians to recall the hit squad.

  27. Jeanne

    I know cardio is no longer seen as essential (or even helpful) for weight loss, but I wish people would start thinking of doing activities for fun, again. Not “I’ve got to spend so many hours on the treadmill,” but “I’m going to have fun by going out with my spouse and dance” or “I’m going to hike along the ocean with my family,” or “I’m going to learn how to horse back ride, or ice skate, because it looks like FUN, and, now that my new way of eating makes me feel so much better, I want to do something!”

    Before the weight loss mindset hijacked activity for weight loss, and “cardio” we used to do things for FUN.

    Excellent point. Run, jump, play like a kid … that’s fun. People have pointed out that my evenings walks don’t do much for weight loss, and I agree. But I walk at night because I like it.

  28. Tammy

    Tom it’s funny several weeks ago I decided to give up grains for January to see what happens. I’ve been low carbing since 2002 (Atkins) anyway so sugar has not been a big problem, but I’ve know for a long time that I definitely have issues with wheat. I’m proud of myself this time because I usually give myself the green light for food during the holidays and this past year I didn’t even eat one cookie or candy. I ate alot of food in general, but no sweets other than fruit and I didn’t even want any. I’m with you on the pizza though, I did have it once over the holidays πŸ™‚

    Sounds like you were more disciplined over the holidays than I was. I used to wish I could find Giordano’s stuffed pizza outside the Chicago area; now I’m glad I can’t. That makes it a twice-per-yer treat.

  29. Amy Dungan

    You’ve made great points Tom. We can have dreams and goals, but we also have to be realistic. Darn… there goes my goal of becoming rich and famous by next month. Guess I’ll just go back to the goal of being healthy.

    Goals are great, but only if they’re realistic. I could set a goal of playing linebacker in the NFL, but unless a disease comes along that wipes out all the big, fast, strong males in the country, I’ll never make it.

  30. Hilary Kyro

    Tom, Thanks for the smile. I’ve been forcefully depressed with dope and hospital food because I was really happy and enthusiastic on the Fathead lifestyle. I am stunned that my liberty and my wallet have been seized by educated pigs who believe bacon and personal film projects are insane. Any paleo lawyers in the Toronto area looking for an interesting (paid) gig please call 416-971-8700 and ask for Hilary.

  31. Kent Cowgill

    Fantastic post as usual!

    I wish I could produce bacon grease as fast as (or faster than!) I tend to use it, but I just don’t have time to cook that much bacon πŸ™ So I don’t think I’ll be able to enjoy sweet potato fries fried in bacon fat. I’ll still saute some potato cubes in a little bacon fat and/or butter πŸ™‚

    I tend to think of Paleo + Dairy as just “Primal” AKA Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint, which I’ve been mostly following. I tried cutting out dairy one week but couldn’t stand my coffee without the cream. Have been toying with trying to cut it out again now that I’ve gotten used to drinking it black.

    If we cut out all the sugars, grains, and unnatural vegetable oils, that probably produces the vast majority of the benefits of going paleo. Some people, of course, are allergic to dairy, so for them it’s important to go dairy-free, but I’m not convinced the rest of us reap any big benefits from giving up, say, cream in the coffee or some raw-milk cheese on the burger.

  32. Susan

    My NYR is to not spend as much time on these great blog sites. I have benefited greatly from all of the LC/Paleo and Primal site. But I find I would rather keep reading about all the new info out there than actually doing anything physical. That said, I think I will go back outside to do some more sledding! Winter isn’t going to last forever you know! LOL!

    Susan

    Well, I’d urge people to avoid resolutions they can’t keep. Surely, you will be drawn back to the blogs …

  33. Galina L.

    Somehow you just described me with my 26 lb lost and somewhat stall for 2 years with 20 to go. It is comforting to know there are more people like me. My easy NYR is to continue motivate myself with your blog and other appropriate reading.

    I like your resolution. Losing 26 pounds is an accomplishment, so pat yourself on the back.

  34. Lori

    Re: paleo, I think it’s a great diet for a lot of people, but if you don’t have any sensitivity to dairy or artificial sweeteners, I don’t see what the point is in giving them up if you enjoy them. And if you MUST keep your carbs very low, paleo become even more restrictive. I’d have a hard time adhering to it.

    Someone named Matt Lentzner has challenged people to go gluten-free for the month of January. Just doing that would be a big enough challenge for most people.

    Yup, I mentioned to a friend that I don’t eat wheat anymore, which produced a wide-eyed look followed by “But what do you eat?!” Grains have become so central to our diets, some people can’t imagine a meal without them.

  35. TX CHL Instructor

    Maybe I should do a NY resolution to not get all wound up about people who spread dietary disinformation, but I wouldn’t be able to keep it for long. Check out http://skeptoid.com/episodes/4239 where the blogger tells everyone that unless you have celiac, gluten is a perfectly healthy protein.

    And he has a lot of followers praising him for his wonderful insight.

    If I made a resolution to stop getting wound up about dietary disinformation, I’d have to stop blogging.

  36. Marilyn

    Jason said: “Ohh yes, bacon grease! Second only to Duck Fat…. ” To which I would add “goose fat.” I just roasted a beautiful goose last week. Yummmmm.

  37. Kat

    how about this article? http://www.idealsweet.com/blog/?p=125 it acutually lists margarine as good for you!!!! LOL kinda scary too at the same time

    Yegads. That’s why we have to keep fighting. Lumping saturated fat with trans fat is like lumping vodka together with water because they look the same.

  38. chmeee

    I made my last NYR some years ago ( more than I care to remember ) and I’ve kept it. Simply, it was not to make any more resolutions. Ever.

    But I like your idea of actions, and on reflection that tends to be what I’ve done e.g. keep to a low carb diet so I hopefully lose the gut ( I have ), do a couple of hours exercise a week ‘cos I enjoy it – mostly – and it makes me feel better ( it does ) and just keep on doing these things. The initial motivation is gone / no longer necessary – I do them now because they are part of my life; it is ‘what I do’. Of course, having two young children who like running around with me, playing ball, fighting etc, and who are merciless teases and very observant does help. ( You’d know about that Tom I guess. ) I’m not sure I’d recommend this to everyone though ! πŸ™‚

    Works for me.

    That’s the approach that works: focus on doing the right thing.

  39. Roberto

    Here’s an idea…

    Decide you are going to feel better from the inside out. Set aside your weight and appearance, for the time being. Visualize the sort of life you want to be living, the sort of life a person who “feels good” should be living.

    For me it is: Sleeping well. Engaging in fun, exhilarating exercise like hockey, yoga and golf – not repetitive drudgery like treadmill running and weight lifting. Feeling engaged socially. Being optimistic about the future. And, as Tom said, accepting things I don’t like about my appearance that may never change.

    Now…Eat the diet that best enables you to live that life, whatever it may be.

    Pay attention to what makes you FEEL GOOD. Its a very simple strategy. What could make more sense. Anyone can do it.

    If you FEEL BETTER eating grains and potatoes, go nuts. If you feel like shit on a low-carb diet, get the hell off of it. Don’t cling to some half-baked ideology because “Good Calories, Bad Calories” made so much sense.

    Eliminate the flagrant offenders from your diet like sugar, vegetable oil, white flour, hydrogenated fats, and processed food in general. Eat a whole foods diet.
    Consider how unfathomably complex and mysterious our bodies are, then close your ears to nimrods who still bicker about carbs and fat. If eating low-carb makes you feel good do it, if it doesn’t don’t do it. So simple.

    Once you’ve established that, as I said, listen to your own body and sense of well-being. Gary Taubes and Robert Atkins can’t help you there.

    That’s what I tell the vegans who email me about the wonders of their diets: Hey, if you feel good eating that way, please continue. I tried living as vegetarian and felt awful, so I gave it up.

  40. Roberto

    And on a side note…Did anyone else catch that post at Whole Health Source about the guy who saw a drastic improvement in his health eating nothing but potatoes, or in other words, 95% of his calories from high-glycemic carbohydrate?
    Seemed kind of neat. I really liked how his blood sugar improved amazingly.

  41. Amy Dungan

    You’ve made great points Tom. We can have dreams and goals, but we also have to be realistic. Darn… there goes my goal of becoming rich and famous by next month. Guess I’ll just go back to the goal of being healthy.

    Goals are great, but only if they’re realistic. I could set a goal of playing linebacker in the NFL, but unless a disease comes along that wipes out all the big, fast, strong males in the country, I’ll never make it.

  42. Hilary Kyro

    Tom, Thanks for the smile. I’ve been forcefully depressed with dope and hospital food because I was really happy and enthusiastic on the Fathead lifestyle. I am stunned that my liberty and my wallet have been seized by educated pigs who believe bacon and personal film projects are insane. Any paleo lawyers in the Toronto area looking for an interesting (paid) gig please call 416-971-8700 and ask for Hilary.

  43. Susan

    My NYR is to not spend as much time on these great blog sites. I have benefited greatly from all of the LC/Paleo and Primal site. But I find I would rather keep reading about all the new info out there than actually doing anything physical. That said, I think I will go back outside to do some more sledding! Winter isn’t going to last forever you know! LOL!

    Susan

    Well, I’d urge people to avoid resolutions they can’t keep. Surely, you will be drawn back to the blogs …

  44. TX CHL Instructor

    Maybe I should do a NY resolution to not get all wound up about people who spread dietary disinformation, but I wouldn’t be able to keep it for long. Check out http://skeptoid.com/episodes/4239 where the blogger tells everyone that unless you have celiac, gluten is a perfectly healthy protein.

    And he has a lot of followers praising him for his wonderful insight.

    If I made a resolution to stop getting wound up about dietary disinformation, I’d have to stop blogging.

  45. Kat

    how about this article? http://www.idealsweet.com/blog/?p=125 it acutually lists margarine as good for you!!!! LOL kinda scary too at the same time

    Yegads. That’s why we have to keep fighting. Lumping saturated fat with trans fat is like lumping vodka together with water because they look the same.

  46. chmeee

    I made my last NYR some years ago ( more than I care to remember ) and I’ve kept it. Simply, it was not to make any more resolutions. Ever.

    But I like your idea of actions, and on reflection that tends to be what I’ve done e.g. keep to a low carb diet so I hopefully lose the gut ( I have ), do a couple of hours exercise a week ‘cos I enjoy it – mostly – and it makes me feel better ( it does ) and just keep on doing these things. The initial motivation is gone / no longer necessary – I do them now because they are part of my life; it is ‘what I do’. Of course, having two young children who like running around with me, playing ball, fighting etc, and who are merciless teases and very observant does help. ( You’d know about that Tom I guess. ) I’m not sure I’d recommend this to everyone though ! πŸ™‚

    Works for me.

    That’s the approach that works: focus on doing the right thing.

  47. Ricardo

    Losing weight is not just about controlling Insulin in fact you can get insulin levels all the way down to fasting levels with having any fat being released from fat stores turns out what you really need to do is keep insulin levels low while increasing Growth Hormone levels growth hormone promotes the use of fat as a fuel or thats just one of the many wonderful things it does but ya there’s this popular guy name Brad Pilon who talks about this and has a book called Eat stop eat where you fast once or twice a week while exercising to burn fat and dispells the myths that dieiting will slow your metabolism down in short fast periods he says the only way to lose weight is caloric restriction and healthy eating

    That’s the longest single sentence I’ve ever read. Yes, other hormones are necessary to burn fat. The trouble with a high level of circulating insulin is that insulin can effectively block the actions of those hormones. I know Richard Nikoley has had good success with including intermittent fasting in his program. I may try it someday.

Comments are closed.