Why The Best Weight Loss Strategy Starts With Understanding Metabolism (1 of 3)

Greetings friends!

Have you ever taken a really long road trip that took more than one tank of gas?  Perhaps to visit your relatives for the holidays or to see something scenic like the Grand Canyon.

How did you prepare for the trip?  You probably researched and planned everything like which route to take, how much gas you needed, where to take pea breaks (unlike our friend Kevin in the cartoon <– ), the outfits you were going to need, etc.  Maybe you also threw some fluffy pillows in the car and got your best book of Mad Libs ready so that you could be comfortably entertained.  In the end, you likely felt pretty excited to top off your gas tank, empty your bladder, and hop in the Family Truckster like Clark Griswold heading to Wally World.

Now imagine if you didn’t know how to operate your car.  Imagine if you didn’t understand how to read the gas gauge, let alone how to put gas in the tank.  What if you couldn’t reach the pedals and see over the steering wheel at the same time.   Would you still be excited for your trip?  Would you really expect to make it to your destination?  Of course, not – that’s ridiculous!

So why don’t we make the same preparations when we consider other journeys we might take – like when we decide to travel down a life path that includes losing weight in a significant way, forever?  Why can’t we prepare the same way and ensure that we actually reach our destination?

All too often I see, meet, and help people who desperately want to lose weight but that don’t know how to “operate their car.”  Simply put, they don’t know their own body well enough and it keeps them from losing weight, transforming their body, and staying lean for life.   We can fix this but we need to learn how to “operate our car.”  We need to learn a few powerful facts about how our bodies work.

Our lesson could start with many topics, but I’m going to start with Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR), which could also be described as your metabolism at rest.

Forget the science stuff for a minute unless you’re truly interested.  What you need to know is that your metabolism is a key process your body uses to convert food into usable energy.  In my mind, it helps when I think of and relate my metabolism to a car engine.  You know, one of the key parts of the car that makes it go “Vrrrroooooom!”  The engine needs gas (among other things) to make it work.

If your metabolism is like an engine, then food is (like) gas.  Taking the lesson a step further, BMR can be related to the capacity of the gas tank or how many gallons of gas the car holds.  My car holds fifteen gallons.  Anyway, to be clear BMR is the minimum units of energy (minimum calories) that your body requires each day.  Not how much your tummy wants it to have; BMR is how much is required, necessary, or essential.

Did you catch that?  Like the capacity in a car’s gas tank, BMR tells you how many gallons of gas your tank holds – specifically, BMR tells you how many calories you need each day to keep your lungs breathing, heart beating, brain functioning, and your eyes open.  Simple enough – right?

So, if you’re serious about losing weight in a significant way you need to embrace the concept of BMR.  You need to understand that your body has an engine that requires only a certain amount of gas.  Just like filling up your car’s gas tank isn’t a guessing game, getting just the right amount of food every day shouldn’t be either.

Stay tuned!  In the second and third installments of this three-part series we’ll dive deeper into why this “BMR-thing” is so important and how we can easily use it to make sure we reach our destination and transform our bodies successfully.

What do you think?  Let me know your thoughts, frustrations, questions.

Until next time,

Doug

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