Friday, January 15, 2010

Show Us Your Life - Work Out and Diets

Do any of you get sick of diets?

Feel like you're not very successful?

Like you loose motivation after a week and a half?

Well, I'm sticking with the theory that it's a lifestyle change.  I know people get frustrated with hearing that theory, but  

There's no way that you are going to stay on a diet for three years.  But, if you start to shift your lifestyle, it's doable.  You're not going to be the yo-yo dieter that you've been for years.  

Some tips that I have to offer:
  1. Figure out healthy meals you can eat  - you know that you're not going to be okay with eating a salad every single day for lunch.  But, what about a list of foods that are healthy?  A salad with a veggie burger, lentils [kinda like a vegetarian, southwestern chili but with tons of protein - great from Costco], or leftovers from supper that include some veggies and possibly grilled chicken or any type of lean meat.  Pretty much anything that is healthy that you think you could rotate for lunch.  And then substitute.  Maybe use ground turkey for spaghetti sauce instead of hamburger.  Your family won't even notice the change!
  2. Keep Snacks Around - So that sounds crazy, right?  But by changing your lifestyle you are not going to stop having snack attacks in the afternoon or after supper.  So, instead of denying yourself the snacks - just make sure they are healthy snacks.  Fruit, yogurt and granola, a 100 calorie pack [not every day but an occasional treat], a Skinny Cow icecream bar [for the little something sweet after supper - just as good as icecream sandwiches but not as bad for you and they come in cute little decorative circles-always a plus].
  3. Look at other things than just calories and fat grams - I am a huge advocate for healthier eating.  Less processed foods.  Less chemicals being put into your body.  So, when you're eating healthy make sure that it's not just eating fewer calories or more "fat free" items.  They may be fat free but there are probably enough preservatives in these foods to stay good for the next 15 years.  Make sure that you are eating healthy fats and avoiding over processed foods.
  4. Have a Pig Day - this is the day where you can eat whatever you want.  And by whatever, I mean a dozen doughnuts, a large pizza to yourself and a bag of potato chips if that's what you want for the day.  The theory behind this?  First, it's a good motivator.  By Thursday at lunch you realize that you're sick of this healthy eating thing.  But, rather than giving up - you know you can make it to Saturday so you stick it out for another day and a half.  Secondly, over time you'll find that you don't "pig out" as much.  You start to realize how much worse you feel when you eat crap.  You feel sluggish and like your jeans don't fit as well.  You realize that it's actually much better eating healthy.  Does this mean that you'll do away with your Pig Day all together?  No way!  It just means that instead of shoving your face for the full 24 hour period, you may only pig out for one meal.  Or, you may have a little something fattening during a meal but balance it with healthier sides.  And lastly, it provides balance.  By the end of your Pig Day you'll be ready to start eating healthy again - this will last until about halfway through the week and then you'll be looking forward to Pig Day again!
  5. Watch it when you get off track! - All because you pull through Biscuitville in the morning to get a biscuit and sweet tea instead of eating your english muffin with peanut butter at work [speaking from experience?  yes.  don't judge], does not mean that you have ruined your day.  I repeat, this does not mean you have ruined your day!  That's one of the biggest mistakes.  Jump back on board for lunch.  Skip your afternoon snack and make sure your supper is healthy.  Then you have not completely ruined your day.  Or worse, your week.  Do not wait until the following Monday because you blew your breakfast on Tuesday morning.  You can still get back on track - by lunch!
  6. Understand you are human - If you "have" to eat that Reese's Peanut Butter Tree leftover from your Christmas stocking [again, speaking from experience] - eat it!  and enjoy!  But then, like I said earlier, get back on track.  It all has to do with moderation.  If this is going to be a lifestyle change [which in my book, it must] then you have to understand that you're going to be tempted and cave on some things.  And that's okay.  You just have to resist the majority of the time and only cave occasionally.  Just make sure that when you cave, you enjoy it :)
  7. Find a time to exercise that works for you - Again, LIFESTYLE.  You have to find something that you're going to be willing to continue.  If you are a night owl, you probably shouldn't expect to wake up at 4 A.M. to work out.  You want something that is doable.  But, you are responsible for making it doable.  Get to work 30 minutes earlier and walk with a couple of coworkers outside or around in the building.  Stay 30 minutes late.  Now do I suggest only walking? No.  But you have to start somewhere.  And then, as you filter other things in, you at least have the basic walking.  So on the days you can't also go lift weights or go for a run, at least you've walked for the day.  Or go for a two mile walk/run right after work.  Then, if you have more time you can do something else but at least you got that in.
Aggghh, I could probably talk forever on this subject!  It gets me so excited. 

I know that life happens.  But, I just want to encourage all of you.  It is imperative that when life happens you still make time for this.  Do not let exercising and eating well be the thing to go when you get busy.  If you do this, it will only make you feel worse.

I could talk forever as well about the benefits of it - but just to give you a tip of the iceburg - you sleep better and you have more energy when you're awake.  Either one of those [and especially the two together] should give you the motivation to give this a shot for a month and experience for yourself.  

You won't turn back.



  1. WOW! What a great post! So Very True. I'll refer back to this on my *down* days....but for two weeks I have done Great. See you at the YMCA!

  2. I am so inspired! I've got two weddings coming up so inspiration to follow some "rules" is a good thing! Thanks for sharing!