Something To Do: Warm Up for Creating Your Fitegic Holiday Season Plan

Up most of last night working on a project for a business client & tired as sin.

Those waiting for First Steps for creating your Holiday Fitegic Plan Mission Statement – promise it will be up tomorrow.

In the meantime, we’re going to get a head start by “warming up”. Take out 4 pieces of paper, title each with one of these headings:

Strengths; Weaknesses; Threats; Opportunities.


Brainstorm each by writing for at least 3 mins and no more than 10 mins, without censoring, or worrying about complete sentences, spelling, or what you are saying in each section. Write fast, write down anything that comes up.
Don’t limit yourself to any one area of your life (such as weight loss) – anything goes (As the heading relates to things like family; career; health; finances; spirituality; home; friends; hobbies; children; relationship.) Just let it flow.

Save these (start a file or binder)


Trick of the Trade: Some Tricks for Handling Treats on Halloween

I just posted on how Halloween heralds the start of the dreaded Holiday Season when it comes to losing or maintaining our weight and keeping to an active lifestyle.

This post is to give you a few “Tricks of the Trade” for handling Halloween (isn’t it cool how this just gels with “Trick or Treat”?)

So, let’s get down to business.  This is a no frills post – I’m just going to bullet suggestions.

  • When taking your kids out to Trick or Treat bring massive amounts of sugarless gum in your FAVORITE and chew, chew, chew.   I know that consuming massive amounts of sugar substitutes isn’t all that great – but it beats consuming an additional 3,000 calories and God knows how much real sugar!
  • When you get home with your kids the FIRST thing you do is break out the little snack baggies and have them place 3 pieces of candy in each one.  This is what they get to eat per day.  What a beautiful way to teach them portion control so they don’t grow up with issues about food that lead to obesity.
  • Any “left over” candy not handed out is also placed into the snack packs.
  • NO candy is eaten until it is placed in the snack packs.  Once that is accomplished place the candy in bags or containers you CAN’T see through and place them in the freezer behind other things to they are OUT OF YOUR SIGHT.  You may be surprised that after a few days your children can actually forget it’s there – which means so can you.
  • Now, let your kids have 2 snack packs instead of one just on Halloween night.  They’ll think they’re getting away with something (which they already have by “eating as they go” when Trick or Treating.)
  • You have to decide what your goal is.  If your goal is not to eat ANY candy, when it comes time to hand out the kids their candy snack packs make sure you have a snack that you LOVE.  Maybe your favorite smoothie or health bar.  This way you won’t feel deprived.
  • If your goal is to have a reasonable amount of candy – you need to work this into your food plan for the day.  If you don’t – but still have a couple pieces of candy a day for 20 days – that turns into an additional 200-300 calories per day – an easy 2 pounds.
  • If you are eating a small amount of candy – do so at the SAME TIME each day.  You don’t want to train yourself to think you can have “just a little bit” when the urge shows up on your radar screen.
  • If you don’t have kids and hand out candy: give it ALL away.  Once the doorbell slows down become the most popular house on the block by placing a handful in individual bags.  If you have any candy left follow the instructions above if you will be eating it.
  • If you have no children and your goal is to eat NO candy and you have leftovers take the candy to your neighbor who does and give it to them.  If they say the kids have too much already ASK THEM TO THROW IT AWAY FOR YOU.  Yes Virginia, there have been times I wasn’t too proud to take a wrapped piece of candy out of my kitchen wastebasket – TAKE NO CHANCES.  If it is not in the house you can’t eat it.


Something To Do: Does My Why for Losing Weight Have Meaning to Me?

Why do you want to lose weight and keep it off?

In my last post we talked about the relationship between reasons, goals, meaning, and value. Reading posts is great – but DOING posts is better.  This exercise is designed to help you discover the meaning behind “the why” you want to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight.

You can complete this exercise alone, or with a partner.


Answer these questions in order:

1. What are the major “whys” (reasons) you want to lose weight now.

2. Have you lost weight before and then gained some, all, or even more back but then went on to lose it again?  What was your “why” at the time(s) this happened?

3. Can you see a difference in the whys? Did they change over time? Even it seems you had the same reason why (“I want to look better”) is there a change in the quality or the quantity of your desired result (Looking better when we are 20 might mean in a bikini, at 51 it might mean fitting back into expensive business attire). You are not interested in the why when answering this question; you are looking to see how your whys have changed over time.

4. What other circumstances in your life had changed? Did you get married? Have children? Get divorced? Graduate college? How did these different circumstances contribute to perceived changes in the reasons why you wanted to lose weight?

Drilling Down to Meaning

1. Now, go back to the reason(s) you listed in question 1.

2. List your reasons (or reason) on a separate piece of paper.

3. Now, here comes the fun part:

a. Read your reason aloud and then ask “Why?”

b. Write your why down, read IT aloud and then ask “Why?”

c. Write THAT why down, read it aloud and then ask “Why?”

d. How do you know when to stop? A few clues will be: You feel pretty choked up writing the why down; you feel a sense of relief writing the why down; you feel great joy writing the why down; you get it, there will be a deep and significant emotional response to the “why” that has meaning for you. Keep doing thisfor as long as it takes. Believe me, all of the sudden you will spontaneously write down a why for losing weight NOW that has meaning for you.
Here’s an example of what my answers might have looked like if I’d completed the exercise before that my first trip to Hawaii:
“I want to lose weight for my trip to Hawaii.”


I want to look good in my bathing suit.


I like walking on the beach and I don’t want people staring at me.


Because it reminds me of getting made fun of in high school when I walked by those girls.

Why (did that bother you)?

Being fat kept me from doing fun things like they did.

Why (did that stop you)?

Because no boy would ask me to dance and I LOVE to dance, and I was a better dancer than most all those girls, but I never went to the dances because I was fat. I was always last to get picked for teams in gym, even for sports I liked like softball because I couldn’t run very well and got out of breath easy. It was so embarrassing, so I just pretended that sports were stupid and that I didn’t evenwantto play.

(I’m feeling pretty choked up here, feel like I want to cry) and I write down:

The reason I want to lose weight now is so I can participate in physical activities that I love, like dancing, sports, and hiking. I’m tired of being on the sidelines watching others do the things I want to do.

Once you have completed this part of the exercise, you may want to do it again with a partner.  If you do, make sure it is someone youtrustand can be COMPLETELY honest with (no holding back). Combining “talking it out” in addition to “writing it out” is very powerful and can bring great clarity.
Remember, go through this process for ALL the whys (reasons) you have listed  for Question 1 of Something To Think About. It is very likely that you will find there is a common theme, therefore a common meaning, that your whys share.

It is also likely that you will find that some of your “whys” aren’t your whys at all. They may be expectations that others have for you that have absolutely NO MEANING for you (looking “hot” in a bathing suit when I went to Hawaii was an expectation set for me by pop culture and that didn’t mean enough to me to get me through the “hows” of losing that weight). Either way, your meaningful why(s) will become clear to you as you go through the process (but, again, no holding back, be completely honest and transparent).

It is OK to have more than one “why” for losing weight  or maintaining a healthy weight. I’m not concerned that you’ll have so many meaningful whys that you won’t know which to concentrate on because this process will  drill down and direct you to what is most meaningful to you NOW.

I’d love your feedback on this exercise as it would be very helpful to others for me to be able to post experiences other than my own using this technique.  I look forward to your comments.

copyright 2010 Fitegic Planners All Rights Reserved
You are free to share this information via a link to this page and/or website as well as the share buttons provided.  If portions or quotations are used author must cite: Annie Kile

“I want to lose 10 pounds before I go to Hawaii”

Be patient with me here – I’m going to start off talking about something that will, at first, appear to have absolutely nothing to do with losing weight or keeping off.  I promise you it does – trust me and read:

In case you haven’t noticed – I LOVE to write.  So you might be a bit surprised when I tell you I truly hated diagramming sentences in school.  It seemed like such a colossal waste of time.  Why sit around dissecting sentences when that time could be much better spent WRITING them (and reading) them!

It wasn’t until I got into college that I came to appreciate the fact that knowing how to diagram a sentence meant that I knew how to PLAN a sentence.  Sentences are meant to communicate specific ideas.  Knowing how to plan how a sentence should be constructed goes a long way to successfully communicating specific ideas.

In fact, knowing how to plan how a sentence is constructed is the key to communicating what you mean when writing.

Of course you’re probably wondering what any of this could possibly have to do with attaining and maintaining a healthy weight — and then you remember that this blog is called Fitegic PLANNERS.

If you’ve read previous posts, you also know that we’ve been talking quite a bit about meaning.

Lose weight by planning

Perhaps  reading my posts is helping you to come to understand that living a meaningful life might be enhanced if you know how to plan.  I hope so, because this is absolutely true.  You are reading this blog because, for you, living a meaningful life includes attaining and sustaining a life-long healthy weight.

OK – so maybe that’s really NOT what brought you to my blog.  It’s more likely the thought that brought you here was more along the lines of “I want to lose weight.”  Or, “How do I lose weight?”

Do me a favor and humor me for a few more minutes and I promise I’m going to be able to tie in diagramming a sentence with “I want to lose weight.”

First, read this sentence:

“I want to lose ten pounds before I go to Hawaii.”

Now, let’s take the sentence apart.  We’re not going to diagram it per se and we’re not going to analyze it according to rules of grammar.  Instead, we’re going to use the concepts of Fitegic Planning.

Here are the concepts:  Reason, goal, meaning, and value.

First, let’s identify if there is a “reason” in the sentence.  The reason in the sentence is “go to Hawaii.”  The reason the weight is to be lost is the act of going to Hawaii.

Second, is there a goal in the sentence?  Actually there are two  – “before I go to Hawaii” and “lose weight.”  A goal is a finite thing, meaning it has a beginning and an end.  In this case “before” can start any time prior to the trip but definitely ends when the trip starts.  “Lose ten pounds” obviously begins the moment you decide you want to lose them and ends the minute you do.

Now, can you find anything in the sentence that communicates what might make both the reason and achieving the two goals meaningful?  I don’t.

Finally, can you find anything in the sentence that lets us know what value might be attached to losing ten pounds before going to Hawaii?  I don’t.

And that, my friends, explains how it is that, while it is very likely the weight will be lost before going to Hawaii, it is much more likely that those ten pounds will be regained once that trip is over.

Fitegic Planners understand how to plan losing weight and maintain a healthy weight because they are able to identify and incorporate meaning and value specific to them at any given time in their lives.

And I can teach you how to do that.



copyright 2010 Fitegic Planners All Rights Reserved
You are free to share this information via a link to this page and/or website as well as the share buttons provided.  If portions or quotations are used author must cite: Annie Kile


Try This #1: Meaning and Weight Loss Exercise

“For the meaning of life differs from man to man, from day to day and from hour to hour.  What matters, therefore, is not the meaning of life in general but rather the specific meaning of a person’s life at a given moment.” — Viktor E. Frankl

Meaning changes over time.

This is a fact.  A “core truth”.

It’s easy to see that this is true when thinking in terms of our childhood:   what was important to you when you 5 years old wasn’t so important to you when you were 12 years old.

It’s harder to see that this is true when it comes to our self concept , desires, and goals as an adult.

We’ve already talked a bit about how “losing meaning” can put the kibosh on both losing weight and keeping it off.

This idea is so important I know it’s likely unless you fully “buy in” to this concept you won’t be able to buy in to using Fitegic Planning’s strategic approach – it will seem like just another gimmick in the weight loss game.

So here’s a little exercise that will help demonstrate that meaning does indeed change over time.  It will also help you to see how central meaning is to achieving and maintaining goals – in this case a healthy weight.

(NOTE:  If you don’t have such a time in your life as needed for this exercise  —   have “always” been overweight, use your imagination and come up with an imaginary time in your life when these things were true.)

Do the exercise all at once – don’t stop and read what you answered until you’ve completed the entire exercise.  Here goes:

FIRST: Think of a time in your life when you successfully lost weight.  The further back in time you can go the better.

Specifically  think of a time when, although it might not have been exactly enjoyable, following your chosen method (“Diet and/or  Exercise Program”) seemed not to take very much effort – you “wanted” to do it.

What was the “reason” you wanted to lose the weight? (For example: an event, health reasons, you wanted to be more attractive, etc, etc, etc)  BE SPECIFIC.

After you identified the reason you had at the time ask yourself (and then answer) the question: “Why was that important to me?”

SECOND: Fast forward to the present time.

Is the reason you wanted to lose weight now the same as it was then?

If yes, ask yourself “Why is this still important to me NOW?” and make a list of those “whys”.

If no, ask yourself “What has changed in my life that makes my former reason for losing weight not as important to me?”  Make a list of the changes.

No matter which question you answer, when you go back and read your entire response, you’ll see how meaning does, indeed, shift and change over time.


copyright 2010 Fitegic Planners All Rights Reserved
You are free to share this information via a link to this page and/or website as well as the share buttons provided.  If portions or quotations are used author must cite: Annie Kile



Trick of the Trade #1: The Proper Use of a Napkin

This is a Tricks of the Trade post.

Tricks of the Trade are exactly what you think they are: behaviors (meaning things you can do) in pretty specific situations that help you attain/sustain a healthy weight. Let’s begin with my telling you how the proper use of a napkin makes it easy not to go over eating reasonable portions of food when attending social or work related meals.

In the course of my work as a VP at a local Chamber of Commerce I was required to attend quite a few (usually at minimum 2-3) luncheon or dinner meetings per week. Now, I know that the food at these events would not usually be covered in Gourmet magazine, but, in my case, putting food in my mouth often has very little to do with either how good it is or how hungry I am — put food in front of me an I’ve got a tendency to eat it.

So, there I am, sitting and making nice with the fellow next to me as the waiter plunks down two chicken breasts drenched in some sort of sauce with a zillion calories, veggies drowning in butter sauce, next to a mountain of mashed potatoes.

But I know the drill: I scrape the sauce off the one chicken breast closest to the size of a deck of cards that I intend to eat; I drain as much butter as I can off the veggies; form a portion of my potatoes into what I estimate to be the size of ping pong ball — and proceed to eat my dinner.

After I’m finished eating my dinner, I first make sure I have some coffee in my cup (to give me something to do after I’ve properly used my napkin), and then reach for my cheesecake; take a bite, AND THEN:

Place the remainder of my cheese cake on my now used dinner plate, wipe my mouth one last time with my napkin, AND THEN:

Shake out my napkin, cover my plate with it (here’s the trick):


Now, if I want to eat more than the reasonable portions I’ve already eaten, I must first lift the napkin off –which now has food stuck to it and where would I put that?– plus I’d have to eat smooshed cheesecake mingled with cold mashed potatoes, yuck!!! — AND, I need to do this in front of everyone at my table.

I am happy to say that I have never done that.

Looking forward to hearing what tricks YOU might have up your sleeve.

“Do the best you can, with what  you’ve got, where you’re at”

copyright 2010 Fitegic Planners All Rights Reserved
You are free to share this information via a link to this page and/or website as well as the share buttons provided.  If portions or quotations are used author must cite: Annie Kile