BetterU – Week 6 Information & Action Steps

Welcome to week 6 of the BetterU Challenge! (New here or want to find out more about this program? Jump back to the week 1 information here!)

Week 6

Week 6 focus: Breaking barriers

As you will see in the BetterU program book (which you are hopefully making time to sit down and explore and fill out weekly) this week we are talking about breaking barriers. It discusses physical activity as good medicine, how many calories certain activities burn, a little bit about breaking the barriers and how to be an empowered shopper. Since we have gone into most of this over the past few weeks in-depth, (take a look at all of the information shared so far in the previous weeks by clicking the links on the right of this post) I chose to cover more in-depth one of the biggest keys to change that we haven’t gone into…breaking barriers.

I’ve talked about identifying our barriers before, how important it is, writing these barriers down once we identify them, then writing down how you plan to move past them, or deal with them the next time they come up.


When our guest speaker Kat Kim asked how many of us journal I only saw a few hands raised. That is why I brought her in, to reinforce how important this is…well, that and all of the other wonderful things she shared!

(FYI: At this time Kat is having some technical issues with her computer. Her blog post will be up as soon as possible!)

Every week at the end of the chapter in your book you see the empty pages for you to fill out. I also send out in the weekly action items to journal what you are eating. Several weeks I have talked about how important it is to write down not only what you are eating, but also what you are feeling, any negative self-talk, what may be going on to cause this and to sit down and take the time to also write out how you are going to change this.

Remember…change requires change. If you are going to successfully change your lifestyle, lower your numbers to help your heart (and yes, while my focus isn’t on the weight, it is important to have a healthy weight and all of your efforts to lower your other numbers will eventually lead to a healthier weight) or just bring about great things in your life YOU have the power to create this change. When we write down and identify these challenges or even the things you are celebrating, you are changing the way your brain and in turn your body react. If you do the same thing over and over with no results…something has to change. 🙂 Positive change doesn’t usually occur on it’s own, we have to make it happen and we are meant to!

Kat Kim

Kat Kim is a life coach, speaker, mindset-transformation specialist and much more. She shared with us the mind-body connection between lifestyle change (including weight-loss) and in society what we are all conditioned to do only affects the tip of the iceberg….this is why change is often times temporary. To truly change our bodies, we have to change our minds and identify and heal the other 80% that is underneath that iceberg that we don’t see. We are all action-oriented: Diet! Eat Better! Workout more! Take diet pills to get skinny! What is the next get-skinny-quick scheme that just takes your money because it never really identifies the issues? None of it leads to permanent change without dealing with the under side of that iceberg…what goes on inside of our minds.

How you talk to yourself, how you were raised, ideas you formed as a child based upon what you were told: “we are the fat family; people in our family are just big; you’re fat; why don’t you look like everyone else; what is wrong with you”. Kat shared with us that she formed many ideas about herself as a very young child that was given diet pills by her mother. This made her feel she wasn’t good enough and it led to a lot of destructive behavior, just like many of us.

Being destructive by overeating junk food, stuffing down feelings with binge eating, destructive self-talk, getting involved in unhealthy relationships, all because we don’t value ourselves. Respecting your core values and respecting yourself means you want to take care of yourself, you want to put out good energy which will in turn return good energy.

What you think about, you bring about.

We also attract what we think: think negative (“I look so gross, I am so fat, I’ll never lose this weight”)you will in turn feel negative (“I hate how I look) which then turns to behaving negative (“I may as well eat this cake, who cares I’m not good enough anyway and nothing is going to change” and then leads to the outcome of attracting negative things (weight gain and an unhealthy body from the destructive thinking) as well as negative people (people that continually bring you down). You can turn this around with your thoughts too. This is what changed my life and helped me transform my health, lifestyle and weight. It is also what the key change is for most people who have successfully changed their lives for the better, not only through weight loss and improved health, but also those that have received more success, healthy relationships and more. Kat herself created a transformation in her life and not only lost 30 pounds, she completely created a new life for herself.

Here is Kat’s diagram on creating positive change: Thoughts > Feelings > Behavior > Outcome.

The day you signed up for this program or started following on the blog, you made a step to change your lifestyle and get healthy. You may have had thoughts of apprehension, skepticism or possibly hope and excitement. The thoughts you had may well be determining your success at creating your healthy new lifestyle. I urge you to reflect on your thoughts and practice positive self-talk and positive thinking.

Of course… it comes again….take time to journal. Reflect. Identify issues and then identify solutions. Journal your thoughts and how it is affecting your feelings and behavior. Then work through breaking past the barriers and identifying positive thoughts, how this may change how you feel and in turn affect your behavior and outcome!

Every thought is a cause and every condition an effect. ~C.F.Haanel

One more thing Kat talked about that generated a lot of buzz in the room: take time for yourself. This not only helps you, it also helps you become a better person for everyone else. You put out better energy, are more attractive to be around and will likely take better care of yourself when you take the time to respect YOU.

Week 6 Action Items

Action items from the BetterU program book,  plus a couple of extra recommendations from me:

  • Journal – not only your food and movement, but how you are thinking and feeling at the time. Identify negatives and try to create positive thoughts instead. How are you feeling about what you ate? If it was a not-so-healthy choice, identify what you were feeling that brought about that behavior (tired? unsatisfied? emotional?) and then <first of all don’t beat yourself up about it> identify how you can break that barrier and make a healthier choice the next time (maybe you were tired and have been busy and didn’t schedule the time to menu plan and shop so you will create that time the following week, maybe you grabbed a candy bar at the checkout counter and wolfed it down because you were feeling stressed out about something that you need to identify and work through instead of stuffing your feelings with a candy bar, etc.)
  • Schedule time for yourself
  • Take the time to go back through the all of the blog posts and information from the past 6 weeks and see if there are some things you want to work on this week that you haven’t made the time to focus on.
  • Make time to make your log and review it.

Activity goals:

  • Keep up your goal of achieving 150 minutes of physical activity every week!
  • In addition to reducing your risk for heart disease and stroke, physical activity can prevent other chronic diseases and premature death. It can also increase your fitness and energy levels, improve mental health, reduce stress and enable you to carry out your daily activities with greater ease and enjoyment. Just choose the benefits that are important to you and use them as motivation to get moving!
  • Celebrate your successes so far!

Nutrition goals:

  • Keep up the great work on what you’re already doing! Small changes can have a big impact on your numbers!
  • Add one new healthy thing you want to try this week (got water intake down? Try eating one more vegetarian meal this week; doing great getting the right servings of the right foods? Try looking for a few new recipes you’re excited to try that are within your skill level. The internet is FULL of ideas for everyone!)
  • Keep sitting down once a week to meal plan and schedule your activity. Again this is a HUGE KEY TO SUCCESS!

Week 6 Highlights

  • Great news from one of the partipants: While she has been transitioning her family to a healthier lifestyle, her daughter has had the added bonus of shedding 5 pounds so far! This is so wonderful…the effects of living a healthy life often spread and you can help others by being a positive example of a healthy lifestyle!
  • Many of us are planning on attending the Celebration of Food Festival 2013, brought to us by the Food Revolution Snohomish County. If you’re in the Lynnwood/Seattle/Snohomish area I hope you’ll attend this wonderful event to celebrate and learn about delicious, local, wholesome food! One of the generous sponsors of this event happens to be one of our generous sponsors as well. Thank you Verdant Health Commission for all you do!
  • The participants are doing so wonderful and the small positive changes they are making every week are starting to really show through! Not only some weight loss, but just a lot of talk of just feeling better, having more energy and feeling great about their choices. Half-way through the challenge but the beginning of their long, healthy lives!
  • Kirsten’s recipe of the week: Pasta “Caponesca”.   Yep, I made up the word when I made up the recipe. 🙂 I hope you enjoy…SO good! Click here for the recipe!

Have a wonderful week and congratulations on Week 6 towards a BetterU!

Chef Kirsten Signature

Special thanks to our sponsors:

Verdant Health Commission

Lynnwood Rec center


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