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Why “bootcamps” make people fat, sad and disappointed… in themselves.

For the past couple weeks, my life has been a little… different.
 
Instead of meeting girlfriends at the local coffee shops around Evansville, Indiana, I’ve been feeding monkeys bananas and eating green papaya salad in Thailand.
 
Yep. Thailand.
 
I’m here because my teenage son, Ryan, wanted to study a form of martial arts called Muay Thai at one of the best training facilities in the world, which happens to be… here.
 
He’s obsessed with Muay Thai — it’s his greatest passion — and he’s enrolled in an online high school program, so missing class wasn’t an issue. I had to jump over a few emotion hurdles to make it happen, but eventually, we got the finances together, got over our anxieties and off we went. 
 
I’m SO glad we did. Because I gotta tell you… Thailand is AMAZING.


 
But this isn’t actually a Thailand Adventure Recap.
 
The reason I’m writing today is because I noticed something on this trip that made me feel… deeply worried. And if you want to lose weight, it’s something that might relate directly to you.
 
Here in Thailand, close to where we are staying, there are Muay Thai gyms with a super-intense “bootcamp” style program for people who want to take a “fitness vacation.”
 
The people enrolled in this program are taking 3, 4, sometimes 5 grueling fitness classes a day. They are subsisting on bland protein shakes and bars. When they are not working out or slurping down various liquids, they are sweating off “water weight” in the sauna.
 
Everything about this “bootcamp” is carefully controlled and regulated to get them the optimum results. They can’t mess up. It’s a perfect system.
 
The goal? To lose weight, tone up and get into the best shape of their lives.
 
On the surface? This seems like an admirable goal… and what a great way to do it! A Muay Thai bootcamp! How fun and exotic! Hell yeah!
 
But when I chat with people who are enrolled in the program and ask, “So what happens once the month is over? What happens when you go home?”
 
Their faces turn ashen gray. Kinda like those protein shakes.
 
They don’t know what happens once they go home.
 
It’s too scary and unsettling to think about.
 
A few of them have actually said to me, “I don’t know. I’m hoping I can stay committed to my weight loss goals, but… I’m scared. It’s gonna be much, much harder at home.”
 
This worries me.
 
Because — as a woman who lost 35 pounds and has kept it off for 8+ years, and as a life coach who has helped hundreds of people to lose weight, as well — I have seen and heard and felt it all. And I know EXACTLY what happens once you leave the “fantasy boot camp bubble.”
 
You go home. You walk through the door, into the kitchen, open the fridge and realize, Sh*t. All of the problems that caused me to overeat and gain weight in the first place are still here. I may be slimmer now, I might have a tan, but my mind is still warring against me, urging me to sabotage my efforts.
 
You gain the weight back. And then some.
 
And you feel shittier than ever.
 
All that money. All that time. That whole trip to Thailand… and for what?
 
Im right back where I started. But worse.
 
It sucks.
 
I know they sound “sexy.” I know they sound “effective.” I know they seem like a “fast” fix.
 
But if you’re thinking about joining a “weight loss” or “fitness” bootcamp?
 
Do yourself a favor:
 
Dont.
 
It’s not going to work. Not for long. Not forever.
 
What DOES work… is a permanent approach to weight loss that does not involve dieting, detoxing, shakes, pills, powders, or extreme, unsustainable measures.
 
What DOES work… is changing the way you talk to yourself, inside your own mind, replacing self-sabotaging thoughts with encouraging ones.
 
What DOES work… is Love. Specifically: asking the question, “What feels most like Love?” and then feeding yourself, exercising and behaving accordingly.
 
Love. Self-respect. A permanent lifestyle change — not a temporary bootcamp.
 
THAT’S what works.
 
I know it. You know it.
 
The only remaining step… is to get the tools that you need to DO it.
 
I want you to learn how to lose weight sanely, safely and permanently.
 
The Weight School is where it all happens.
 
Join me on Wed, October 22, 2014 for an introduction to The Weight School and a FREE class on why you keep overeating, even though you “know” better: http://theweightschool.com/
 
Circle the date. Sign up here. Invite a friend. Spread the word.
 
Oh, and between now & the 22nd?
 
No crazy bootcamps. Promise me.
 
Please.
 
 
Love,
 
Susan
 
DISCLAIMER: I am not referring to the MANY amazing fitness classes that might have the name “bootcamp” in the title. Get your mind right first, and THEN if a bootcamp class feels like love, by all means, sign up.
 

PS. Keep the conversation going at Facebook.
 

xoxo, Susan

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Susan breaks down the prevalence of diet culture in today's society and why it is so toxic. She provides tangible lifestyle changes that can lead to healthier and more fulfilled lives.

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