Have you heard about these weight loss camps for adults? What do you think of them?
I understand completely why there are weight loss camps for kids. Kids tend to get their bad eating habits from their parents, peers, and advertising. A lot of what they learn , they do not realize is wrong. This is especially so when learning from people around them either by bad example or through bad practices.
How kids get into bad eating habits
Here are a few examples:
- Parents who both work who buy take out and fast food for the whole family. There will be lots of ready made and microwave meals in the kitchen.
- Households where there is plenty of junk food around to snack on.
- Homes where kids help themselves to food when they feel like it, which in itself is OK, but these foods are often unhealthy snacks.
- Parents who do not have the time, energy or motivation to encourage physical activity in the house.
Those examples were the obvious ones, but here are some that are not so obvious:
- Being forced to finish all of the food that is on the plate with physical threats and emotional blackmail. (E.G. I will spank you if you do not listen, or the guilt trip of “starving children”).
- Being forced to eat when the child is not hungry yet in order to conform with a set meal time. This means that the bodies hunger and satisfaction signals are being ignored.
- Being given “kids food”, food that is designed and marketed towards children, but is highly processed and full of sugar and artificial additives.
- Advertising directed at children by junk food manufacturers. Cartoon tie ups and free toys. Adults have enough trouble trying not to be influenced by advertising. Kids have no chance and we are bombarded by 2000 – 5000 advertisements a day (estimates vary as do lifestyles).
So, if a kid gets a chance to go to a fat camp, where they can feel comfortable amongst other people with the same difficulties, that is fine.
If a fat kid gets a chance to start on some healthy eating habits away from advertising, peer pressure and the routines at home… I say what a great way to spend a school summer holiday.
Now, on to weight loss camps for adults…
At some stage of our lives we all need to take personal responsibility for the day to day decisions that we make…
… We can easily choose an apple over a chocolate bar at break time.
… We can easily choose to buy more vegetables and less processed food in the supermarket.
… We can all schedule some physical activity into our week, even if that only involves 3 brisk 30 minute walks.
We now have the power of the Internet to find out what we should eat more of and what we should avoid. There are plenty of great books available to tell us everything we need to know.
So weight loss camps for adults are not for people seeking information. What about the camaraderie? Don’t we know know that birds of a feather flock together? Don’t we know that we are influenced by the people around us?
I don’t have any evidence for this, but I think that if a fat person made a concerted effort to befriend and spend time with athletic, healthy positive people, they will be more influenced to lose weight than if they spend all their time with people who have the same problem as them.
Yes, I know I said that fat children might benefit from being amongst people like them. Fat children have terrible issues of self consciousness and they get bullied by the more healthy kids.
Q) Don’t fat adults have the same issues?
A) Part of growing up is getting over these types of things. As an adult you can channel ridicule into motivation. As an adult you should be able to get over yourself and overcome these issues that are much more difficult for children.
That is the difference between children and adults isn’t it? Aren’t adults supposed to be able to take control of their lives?
We can all seen the fat camp TV shows where people see rapid weight loss. They eat healthy food and exercise, just as the people in “real life” do when they lose weight.
There is no secret to weight loss. Eat healthier food and exercise more. The fatter you are the more dramatic and easy the weight loss is, especially in the beginning.
So what is the attraction of these fat camp TV shows?
The entrants want to win a prize?
They want to be famous?
They want to get away from their family and friends for a while?
How about fat loss camps for adults that do not involve the possibility of fame and fortune? Why do people go to them and disrupt their lives? Why do they spend a small fortune on what amounts to the result of eating more healthily and exercising more? Things that we can easily do at home?
The main reason and attraction is based on having someone else to “motivate” you. We tend to find drill instructor types that aggressively bully the fat people into trying to run, or lift a few weights.
Anyone who has eaten more healthily and exercised more, and lost weight will tell you that it is really not that hard…
You do not need someone else pushing you, punishing you…
If you think that you need someone to do it for you then you are experiencing learned helplessness, where you have turned a molehill into a mountain in your own mind.
By getting someone else to do it for you you are acting like a child, children really do not know what to do and look to others for guidance. You do not have this excuse, you already know what to do.
Next time you have a choice of a piece of fruit or a chocolate bar, choose the fruit.
Next time you go shopping, write a shopping list at home, write the list when you are not stressed and do not feel hungry. Write a list of healthy and nutritious food. Then when you go shopping stick to the list.
Schedule some light exercise into your diary for the next week. Even just 3 sessions of 20 minutes.
Keep doing these things and you will lose weight.
Now, do you need someone standing next to you shouting in your face to “motivate you?” Or do you think that you can handle these simple things without some kind of crutch?
If you are thinking about attending a weight loss camp for adults, I sincerely hope that you do not. I hope that you can be an adult and take control of your own everyday habits.
Then use the money that you save to send a fat child to a weight loss summer camp for kids. Kids have valid excuses, you do not.