** GET HEALTHY WATCHING TV by Graham White**

"Healthy TV?  Isn't that an oxymoron?"

That depends.


Sitting in front of the TV while eating is one of the greatest contributors to North America's epidemic of obesity.  How much TV do you watch?  What do you do while you're watching TV?  Are there specific shows that you watch every week or every day?

To get healthy watching TV, you simply have to determine that when you are watching TV you will be doing some type of exercise.  Go out and get a used treadmill, weights, or other piece of exercise equipment and make a commitment to only have the television on while you're using it.  

You don't even have to push yourself or work hard, especially if you like to watch a lot of TV!  By simply introducing exercise into your day, the benefits will be enormous.  Within the week you will notice yourself feeling better.  Within the month you will find you have lost weight, are in better shape and you feel better about yourself.



I know that for some people, it is easy to fall back into old habits.  If you find it too easy to go back to the habit of watching while on the couch, move the TV out of the room you have it in and put it someplace where the only piece of furniture is the exercise equipment.  If that isn't possible in your setting, then you'll need to be creative.  Here's some creative solutions:

  • Turn the cushions on the couch up and put them down only when you're having company over.

  • Store books that will help you develop your mind on your chairs so that at a minimum, you are faced with the choice of developing your mind or medicating it with TV.

  • Every time you turn the TV off, re-tape a note to it that reminds you to turn it on when you are ready to exercise.

  • When you're done watching TV, turn it around so that it faces the wall.  Attach the same note.

  • Keep your remote in the glove compartment of your car.  Before you turn the TV on, go for a walk before you take bring it in.  You've got to go outside anyway, right?

  • If all else fails, sell or lock up your TV, disconnect the cable in the basement or cancel it all together.  Do whatever it takes to have control over your life and take the time you spent watching TV and pick up a book or spend some time with your family.


I don't know what solution will work best for you.  Be creative.  Change your environment to support your goals and do what works for you.  Assume that what you're doing may not work, but that it will give you another idea of what will.  Keep trying until something sticks.

You're looking for the easiest, simplest solution.  You want to find something that you enjoy, or at least can tolerate.  The solution must be something that you feel can become part of your life, part of your daily routine, so keep it simple and make it enjoyable.



Set up rewards for yourself.  Here are a few examples:

  • When you lose 5 pounds, treat yourself to a movie.  Don't go to the movies until you lose the five pounds and plan to spend money on the healthiest snack they have.  (And don't go on an empty stomach).

  • When you lose 25 pounds, go shopping for some new clothes (and donate the ones that are too big so you don't feel like you have the option of getting to that size again).

  • When you reach a target weight, go on a trip.  Save up for it by taking the money you normally spend on fast food and junk food, put it aside, go home and deposit it into your trip bank.

  • Any time you feel like snacking - go ahead! - just choose something healthy!  Don't deny yourself or what you're doing will feel like punishment.  You'll need to educate yourself about what you enjoy that's healthy - there really are tasty, healthy snacks.