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Winning Ways:
The Skin You're In

Wednesday, May 12, 1999

By Gregory "Graig" White
SJSports Physical Fitness Advisor

"I just want to tone up. How can I get my abs tighter? Once I lose these 10 pounds, I'll be happy." Being in the fitness business, I've heard lots of people say things like that. People spend lots of time worrying about the physical shape of their bodies. People are so preoccupied with youth and their flawed views about beauty.

Focusing on areas of your body that you aren't happy with can be exhausting and stressful. Sometimes this dissatisfaction can turn into depression or an eating disorder. Low self-esteem is a result of focusing on the negative. This can make the situation more difficult than it really has to be.

My goal is to get people to become more positive about the skin they are in. Stop thinking about how much weight you need to lose and do something about it. Focus on making corrections in your eating and exercise habits. This can help you reach your weight loss, and maintain it.

While working with people, I find it frightening how easy it is for some to focus on the negative. If you find negative thoughts creeping into your head, work to put a spin that is positive on that same thought. Work to create an atmosphere that will help you grow into the person you want to be.

Sometimes everyday life can lead us to believe things that aren't true. "If only I wasn't so fat, people would like me." Take a look at your friends. Do you have friends of all shapes and sizes? You will be amazed at how many friends you actually have. Remove all the pressure you are putting on yourself and work to be the best possible person you can be.

Another good way to change a negative focus into a positive focus is to find something positive to say to a person, and then say it to him or her. Be sincere and watch how good the other person feels. Doing this doesn't cost you anything.

There are times when everything you do seems to not go as planned, and you feel like everyone is against you. This is the time to get involved. Get out and connect with others. Helping others is a great way to help yourself. Remember, you are only alone if you choose to be alone.

Photos by Art Redd

Do you have a fitness or conditioning question for Graig? Send it to If your question is used in an article, you will receive a free Team Conditioning Systems t-shirt.

For previous Winning Ways, visit Graig's Archives

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