Get with the Program!: Getting Real About Your Weight, Health, and Emotional Well-Beingby Bob Greene
Losing weight is the easy part; it's keeping it off that's hard. In Get With the Program!, bestselling author Bob Greene gives you the keys to losing weight and staying fit for a lifetime.
The four-phase plan in Get With the Program! is like having your own personal trainer to take you through the psychological, physical, and emotional/i>/b>/i>
Losing weight is the easy part; it's keeping it off that's hard. In Get With the Program!, bestselling author Bob Greene gives you the keys to losing weight and staying fit for a lifetime.
The four-phase plan in Get With the Program! is like having your own personal trainer to take you through the psychological, physical, and emotional challenges that are keeping you from weight loss success. There are no arbitrary deadlines here: you move forward at your own pace, making lifestyle and dietary changes and increasing the intensity level of your exercise when it's right for you to do so. Journal entries, worksheets, and questionnaires let you establish, track, and evaluate your fitness goals.
In Phase One, you'll make the commitment to yourself to Get With the Program, and change the way you think about diet and exercise. Phase Two will show you how to rev up your metabolism using aerobic exercise. In Phase Three you'll take control of emotional eating, the eating you do to satisfy emotional, not physical, hunger. You'll also see the positive results of your efforts. Phase Four is all about strength training, making the best food choices, and making your new habits of health, activity, and good eating a continuing lifestyle. Included is a week-by-week diary to help you track your progress.
Get With the Program! is full of anecdotes and stories of women and men who met their personal goals, further helping to inspire you to move on to the next level of health and fitness.
- Simon & Schuster
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Read an Excerpt
Congratulations! Whether you realize it or not, simply by picking up this book you have taken the first of what I hope will be many steps, both large and small, simple and challenging, toward the most rewarding journey of all the road to reclaiming your physical health, well-being, and happiness.
Living the best life possible is everyone's dream, and that includes maintaining a healthy weight; getting in shape; achieving strength, fitness, and self-assurance; and attaining a sense of feeling a whole lot better in general. Those goals are exactly what Get with the Program is all about.
This is not a diet book.
This is not a fitness book.
This is a book about moving in the right direction. It's a book about getting real about getting back in shape, physically and emotionally, realistically and gradually. It's also a wake-up call and a reminder about many things that you may have already learned over the years but have, for whatever reason, put on the back burner for a while or let slide. It's a book about tuning into and tuning up your body day by day and little by little, until, before you know it, your extra weight begins melting away. It's also a book about changing the way you think not only to help you make intelligent, healthy choices about how best to nourish and strengthen your body and to nurture your sense of well-being and self-esteem, but how to help you literally move out of your own way.
For as you probably already know, the best reason in the world to move perhaps the most difficult exercise of all is to learn how to push away the emotional obstacles that have been holding you back from accomplishing your personal goals. We all struggle with that challenge, believe me. The ultimate goal of Get with the Program is to help you get real about the changes you want to make in your life once and for all. Do that at your own pace but with complete commitment to this program, and I promise that you will soon become slimmer, stronger, and brimming with self-assurance.
When you get with the program, you will get in touch with your inner self. When you acknowledge and identify the emotional issues and triggers that have caused you to overeat when you are no longer physically hungry and begin losing weight through sensible eating and exercise, you will have achieved one of the greatest accomplishments of all. In doing so, the personal benefits and physical rewards that will follow will be lifelong and life changing. Emotional overeating is an epidemic in the United States, and simply acknowledging that it might also be an issue for you is a major milestone along your journey to renewed health and happiness.
So, once again, I want to congratulate you for taking your first step toward becoming the best that you can be: stronger, slimmer, healthier, and happier. One step at a time. Realistically. Gradually. Consciously. Finally.
If you're serious about losing weight and keeping it off for good, I'm going to show you exactly how to do it and why to do it. I can assure you that you are capable of doing everything that I teach you and best of all you will happily be able to do it for the rest of your life. I'm not selling anything trendy or something that promises unbelievable results with little or no work. There are no gimmicks here. You're going to be challenged in many different ways; that's always the case when you make meaningful changes to your life. What I'm offering you is good, sound, honest advice. And should you decide to follow this advice, it will change your life!
Get with the Program is not a quick fix. Let's face it, you've probably tried the quick-fix approach to dieting and know it never really works for long. My philosophy with this program is more along the lines of "slow and steady wins the race." It's about putting one foot in the front of the other, at your own pace, in your own time frame.
This program may or may not get you down to your "dream" weight. But realize that dreams can be elusive and so can a size-eight dress or a thirty-two-inch waist. Shooting for unrealistic goals is how the dreaded "yo-yo dieting" syndrome begins, and I'm sure you're familiar with that losing game. What we're trying for here are achievable results, results that you can live with comfortably.
Get with the Program is not about trying to get you to be "thin as a pin." You will find as you read further that my main motives are these: Move a little, lose a little. (Great.) Move a little more, lose a little more. (Even better.) Eat less, weigh less. (Naturally.) Stress and worry less, binge less. (Wonderful.) Weigh less, move more. Move more, eat more (but sensibly). Strength train more, metabolize more (and age less). And on and on until you soon discover that you're smiling more and looking great and feeling better than you have in ages.
This is a program for life, for people of every weight, size, shape, and age. When you Get with the Program, you will follow a simple progression of behavioral, exercise, and eating changes that will guide you through the following goals.
1. Get real about adjusting your thought patterns to help create positive change.
2. Get stronger and healthier.
3. Get in touch with your emotional eating triggers.
4. Get on with finally living and feeling really good about yourself.
Who wouldn't want to achieve all four of these goals? Unfortunately, many people focus on the goal they believe is the most important one to them, which is usually losing weight, and they typically select the quickest way to do it. This is where their problems begin. If you're like the majority of people on this planet who have tried to lose weight, you have gone down this road at least once or twice and maybe ten or twenty times only to eventually fail. If that's the case, I say let's go back to the drawing board and rethink that quick-fix way of thinking about weight loss.
First of all, isn't your real goal to live the best possible life? And wouldn't the best possible life include being a healthy and maintainable weight, being in shape, being in touch with your emotions, and feeling better about yourself? These four goals are all interrelated, and the best overall way to achieve any one of them is to go about achieving all of them simultaneously.
Get with the Program will help you accomplish all of those goals. It may not be the fastest way, but it is by far the best way. Trust me on that. This program is a recipe for success. You will become healthier, slimmer, happier, and stronger mentally and physically. Don't worry about the daunting goal of trying to quickly get down to your ideal or fighting weight. Toss that goal out the window now and replace it with striving to be simply trimmer and stronger.
This program is especially geared for people who have found it difficult over the years to maintain their shape, weight, and strength, and who have tried numerous diets only to succeed for a short time and then to fail. If you include yourself on that list, you are certainly not alone. In fact, you have a lot of company, and this book was written for you.
Get with the Program is comprised of four clear-cut phases, which correspond directly to the program's four goals. Each phase requires that you make specific investments in yourself, which will physically and emotionally prepare you to successfully move on to the program's next phase and goal.
Phase One is about preparation mental and physical. You'll begin with simple changes to your body and, more importantly, to your mind-set. You won't change what or how you eat. You won't even do any formal physical exercise. You will, however, perform several written exercises that will help you learn as much as you can about yourself and your attitudes about the process of change. These exercises will help you get in touch with your personal issues with regard to your health, happiness, and any potentially self-destructive habits.
Simply put, this is the time for you to learn the truth about your real attitudes toward changing your life. In doing so, you will learn plenty about the actual process of weight loss and the specific obstacles that have been in your way. You will also begin to move by gradually increasing your usual amount of physical activity to strengthen and prepare your body for regular (or increased) exercise in the next phase. You might start by stashing your remote control in the closet and getting off the couch every time you want to change the channel on your television set. Or you might decide to climb the stairs to your office on the sixth floor every morning and afternoon instead of taking the elevator. Whatever it is, you decide. Just stick with your decision. Be faithful to it and to your health.
I will also ask you to sign an actual contract with yourself, committing to Get with the Program. You'd be surprised how motivating putting your intentions in writing can be. Oh, and yes, you'll also drink plenty of water lots and lots of water.
In Phase Two, you'll learn how to exercise properly and what aerobic exercise can do for you, especially to kick-start your metabolism. As you progress through this phase, you will actually begin to see weight loss results as your body's metabolism increases. This metabolic boost will eventually lead to dramatic changes in your body. This is the time when you'll begin to modify your eating and drinking behavior especially if you currently drink alcoholic beverages, which you will begin to limit at this stage. You will also continue to drink plenty of water.
In Phase Three, you will continue to follow and benefit from what you've already accomplished in the first two phases, as you begin to focus on the emotional connection to your eating habits and how they affect your overall health and fitness. In this part of the program, you will identify the emotional issues that trigger you to eat when you're not hungry stress, anxiety, depression, boredom, loneliness, and fear of failure (or success!) are among the possibilities. By identifying and acknowledging those emotional trigger-points rather than by numbing yourself to them through snacking, overeating, and inactivity, you will soon find yourself making much better eating choices and decisions about how to treat your body. As you become physically and emotionally stronger and healthier, you will be better equipped to make a total commitment to fully impose your will to bring about permanent positive change to your life.
Finally, in Phase Four, you will continue to increase the amount of exercise that you perform, including the addition of strength training exercise. This is one of the program's keys to maintaining your weight loss success on a permanent basis, because it keeps your body's internal "metabolic fire" burning calories at a high level even when you're not exercising. This final phase will also find you focusing on fine-tuning your eating. The end result? A lifetime of health, well-being, strength, and stamina.
The four phases of the program remind me of the process of building a fire. Phase One is all about getting your inner fire going. It's when you strike that first match and spark the first flames. That flash of light that ignites the whole process. Phase Two is where you begin to fan and build up the fire, turning up the heat by adding fuel and oxygen to the flames. It's where you really get moving aerobically and start to stoke your inner furnace. Phase Three is where things really begin to burn in earnest as sparks start to fly and dance and the flames grow both in temperature and intensity. This is the stage where you get in touch with your hot buttons where you discover why "emotional eating" has been weighing you down and what's really been "eating at" you. Finally, in Phase Four, your fire is ready for the really big logs strength training exercises which not only will help to make the fire burn brighter and stronger than it ever has done before, but will help to maintain the radiating glow and brilliant burn long after you have lifted those heavy logs and heaved them onto the fire.
Get with the Program is designed to get you where you want to go. It's a program that is designed to help you finally become the person you were always meant to be.
Now let's fire it up...and get going!
Copyright © 2002 by Bob Greene
Meet the Author
Bob Greene is an exercise physiologist and certified personal trainer specializing in fitness, metabolism, and weight loss. He holds a master's degree from the University of Arizona and is a member of the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Council on Exercise. For the past seventeen years he has worked with clients and consulted on the design and management of fitness, spa, and sports medicine programs. Bob has been a guest on the Oprah Winfrey Show. He is also a contributing writer and editor for O the Oprah magazine, and writes articles on health and fitness for Oprah.com. Greene is the bestselling author of The Best Life Diet Cookbook, The Best Life Diet, Revised and Updated, The Best Life Diet, The Best Life Diet Daily Journal, The Total Body Makeover, Get With the Program!, The Get With the Program! Daily Journal, The Get With the Program! Guide to Good Eating, and Make the Connection.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Mr. Greene's book is a delightfully low-impact way to improve your health, appearance, conditioning, and weight. The book is built around his experience as a personal trainer and exercise physiologist to get your body moving in more helpful ways. You set the pace, and you decide how much improvement to make. If you want to make more improvement, the advice is here. Like most books about health, the 'solution' reflects the author's perspective and experience. Mr. Greene knows exercise, so you get a lot of exercise. But he fleshes it out with good information on water, food, and mental preparation. If you think you would like to exercise more, this book will please you. If you don't think you want to exercise more, then this book may not appeal to you. In addition, the book focuses on women in the text and in the photographs. So many men won't feel like this book is aimed at them. If you are a man and want exercise advice, try Body for Life which has photographs of women and men. Overall, I suspect that people with Type O blood will benefit the most from this book, as long as they avoid wheat products. My prediction is that most people will at least improve their hydration and flexibility as a result of using this book. That would be a fine result. If you get further, that's great! I really liked the way the book combined a spiral binding with a hard cover so that it lies flat. As a result, you can study a page without using your hands to hold the book down. There are also lots of logs to fill out so you can keep track of how you are doing. Make progress, one step at a time. Donald Mitchell, co-author of The 2,000 Percent Solution and The Irresistible Growth Enterprise
Concise, well organized and full of useful tools. Great way to jumpstart a diet and exercise routine.
You have to find out why you are overweight before you can lose weight. Anyone who thinks any differently is only fooling themselves. This is a great book!
This is a smart book that can help you make the transition to healthy living. It has great tips in a variety of areas and includes suggetions for what to do on a daily basis. I found this book to be valuable and I read all the weight and health books. Very high recommendation.
I was very unhappy with my body. I weighed a little less than 200 pounds when I bought this book, and now I couldn't be happier with the results. It is a great tool for anyone looking to lose weight and get fit.
I was very disappointed with this book. I wanted more weight training and practical advise. It appears to me that the author believes anyone that needs to lose weight has an emotional eating disorder and needs to find the "root of the problem". I found this to be a turnoff.
This book really got me back in touch with myself. Signing a contract promising to take care of my body was the best thing I could do. I found out how lazy I was and how easy it was to fit exercise into my schedule. I would have liked to see some more sample menus.
I've enjoyed the book because it preaches that small steps of achievement counts and it makes one feel successful. It's that pat on the back all people are looking for that keeps me in the program.
This book matches my personal philosophy of making incremental changes in life that are easy to stick with. The book basically breaks down the steps for improving one's physical health into four major phases. The reader can then pick and choose the steps that would most benefit him/her and begin working in that phase. The only improvement that would make this book even better is if it contained more specific material on improving eating habits.
Bob Greene provides a well-balanced perspective between physical and emotional needs. Full of good, practical information that you can live by. Highly recommended.
I was not overwhelmed by this book, but think it's a good source of general information for anyone on a fitness quest. I would not recommend living by this book alone. The book does provide helpful information about exercise, and the section on emotional eating provides positive advise about identifying emotional problems that are linked to food. However; I found the eating plan to be very restricting and a bit unrealistic. I would have enjoyed the book more if Greene had discussed how to responsibly limit yet include taboo foods into the program. If this is a program for life it should be one that everyone can live with.
WOW! I've never written a review before, but I just HAD to write one for this amazing book. Bob Greene is so refreshingly real, so sensible, so motivating. AWESOME BOOK!
Wow, what a truly amazing book, it is a page turner, I couldn't put it down. Bob Green has taught me things I didn't know about how your metabolism works and how to get it revved up, to how the body plays tricks on you when you weigh yourself. I would recommend this book to anyone who has struggled with weight. Thanks to Bob's wonderful book, I finally understand the importance of eating breakfast. For years, I would skip breakfast and lunch then binge for dinner so I really messed up my metabolism, but no more, I am getting it revved up again thanks to his help and am on my way to a healthier me.