What the 2013 Academy Awards have in common with healthy living

February 27, 2013

Movies-Oscar-iconI love movie stars. There is still a childlike part of me captivated by their beauty, thrilling lifestyles and torrid romances. So, when Oscar time rolls around each year and Hollywood’s biggest and brightest stars come out to shine, I’m front and center—ready to buy into that fairy tale Tinsel Town is selling.

This year’s award ceremony did not disappoint. The leading men were dashing, and the leading women were glamorous. But somewhere in between Hugh Jackman and Meryl Streep, I realized there was a lot of red carpet inspiration that could be applied to one’s pursuit of a healthy lifestyle.

Let me tell you what the 2013 Oscars taught me about losing weight and eating right.

No matter how much money you have, fat still looks fat. Singer Adele may have earned a B+ fashion grade on the Red Carpet Report Card, but I’ll bet a case of Twinkies her thrill at winning the gold for the theme from James Bond’s Skyfall was tarnished when she saw the publicity photos of herself. I’m not saying she isn’t beautiful, and I’m not saying everyone has to be a perfect size two. But as a woman who topped out at 242 pounds, I know how inhibiting that extra weight is. It dictates what you wear, how you pose, heck, even who you stand next to!

Small oscar iconDropping extra weight releases inhibitions, gives you confidence and allows you to celebrate life without worrying about lumps and bulges.

Everyone stumbles. Jennifer Lawrence was the talk of the town following the Oscar festivities; not because she won Best Actress for Silver Linings Playbook but because she tripped walking up the stairs on her way to claim the award. Like gossip rags, our internal media system likes to rehash such awkward moments, which deflects the focus from our accomplishments and achievements.

Small oscar iconRealize that even when at your best, it is easy to stumble. It might be skipping a workout or indulging in sweets. You’re not going to be flawless all the time. When you fall, pick yourself up and keep moving forward.

It takes a cast and production crew of hundreds. Currently the Academy Awards names winners in 24 categories, including best actor, best director, best costume design, best cinematography, best editing, best makeup and best original score. While several individuals have won awards across categories, it is impossible to singlehandedly produce a box office smash.

Small oscar iconCreate the best version of yourself by working with industry experts. Your production team should include health care practitioners, nutritionists, coaches, trainers and instructors.

Anyone can make a comeback. Of the eight films nominated for Best Picture, I would have predicted Lincoln, Zero Dark Thirty or the grand production Les Misérables to be named winner. While Argo got great reviews, many people pooh-poohed chances for director Ben Affleck because of his less-than-stellar track record. But win he did, despite flops like Daredevil and Gigli.

Small oscar iconIt can take a while to hit your stride. You may need to try the Cabbage Soup diet, the Easter Marshmallow Peeps diet and the Grapefruit diet before you find what program works for you. You may need to start with a seven-hour mile before you work up to a seven-minute mile. But even when the critics are unkind, don’t give up and don’t be afraid to follow your dreams.

Don’t be afraid to do something different. If you haven’t seen a Quentin Tarantino movie, you’ll have a hard time understanding this one. But let me throw a few QT titles at you and see if you get my drift: Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill (Vol. 1 & Vol. 2), Inglourious Basterds, Natural Born Killers. If you’re still clueless, let’s just say QT has a reputation for producing films best described in geographical terms such as “over the top” and “out there.” However, his 2012 screenplay Django Unchained (which is as “over” and “out” as any of his movies) brought home a set of gold-plated bookends when it won Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor.

Small oscar iconSometimes success is found when you try something different. While there are many popular weight loss programs, don’t be afraid to develop your approach to fitness and nutrition. Sometimes you have to find what works for you instead of doing what works for everyone else.

Even if you lose, you’re in good company. You hear the nominees repeat the same phrase every year: “It doesn’t matter if I win; it’s simply an honor to be nominated.” Whether they are truly being gracious or just spouting the politically correct phrase, there is truth to what they say. Being recognized for your efforts and hard work is a reward in and of itself.

Small oscar iconWhether it’s running a marathon or a weight-loss challenge among office mates, you don’t need to take first place to be a winner. Celebrate and be proud of your accomplishments. More importantly, encourage, acknowledge and applaud the achievements of those around you. This will create a network and support system of individuals who share your dedication and commitment to the pursuit of healthy living.

Photos licensed for free personal use by Itzik Gur (http://itzikgur.deviantart.com/) and IconShock (http://www.iconshock.com/professional-icons.php).

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