I’m Not Failing My Diet: It’s a Lifestyle in Progress!
It’s January, and the holidays are over. I have spent the past couple months being super mindful of all that I am putting into my mouth.
I didn’t want to kid myself thinking I would start a whole new way of eating during the holidays. That muscle isn’t built up in me . . . . yet.
I did however make different choices. I said ‘no’ to a number of things.
What I Did Differently This Holiday Than the Past
Staying healthy during the holiday season can be a real challenge. I don’t want to make new years resolutions only to have the pressure of failure or disappointment hanging over my head.
I would rather create a LIFESTYLE.
I didn’t do the Christmas cookie binge thing I usually do each year. I actually stopped making Christmas cookies a few years ago because I know myself better . . . . I’d eat them all up! But cookies are everywhere during the holidays!
It felt good to say ‘no’ more and more.
I also had other snacks that I could turn to so I wouldn’t cave to choices that weren’t going to support me. Making sure I had alternatives to sugar and sweets makes it much easier to make a better choice.
There is no rule that says Christmas dinner has to be a huge nine course meal! Our family doesn’t eat that much, so I never make a ton of food anyways. Holidays don’t need to be the exception.
Thank goodness I didn’t plan a big meal, because I caught the flu and wasn’t able to help with food at all Christmas day!
Planning food in advance is how I will be successful. No plan, plan to fail.
Deciding to be realistic about my habits was key.
I still had some sweets, but I made sure I didn’t beat myself up about it. I know it can be a challenge to go from one lifestyle of eating, to a totally new one.
Now it’s a new year, with so many possibilities!
It’s up to me to make good choices.
Not only that, but to make good CONSISTENT choices.
I am learning that having ways to motivate myself will keep me moving along. Being consistent with my choices will create the positive habits of healthy choices.
Setting up an environment for success is key.
If I keep sweet snacks, like Trader Joe treats, in the kitchen cabinets, I will be tempted and cave. I also know that if I store snacks in my office or bedroom, which is where I do my writing, I will eat.
Creating a space that has either no snack or only healthy snacks will be helpful.
Setting up an environment that is positive is important too. I let my family know that I am making changes so they can understand I need a positive and supportive environment.
I know it’s not easy for others to work around someone else’s new habits. But even a little positive support is better than none.
My husband was very sweet and bought a piece of equipment I was interested in using. It’s a trainer machine that we can have at home. I was driving to the gym, but this makes things easier not having to commute and it’s a quick workout I can do in the basement.
I was setting my alarm every few days, so I could get in an early morning workout. Then it became a weekend workout. Then once in a while.
I did a good amount of walking during the holiday months, a cheap and easy workout.
Although, it doesn’t feel very enjoyable when it’s cold and snowy out. But there is always the mall. Nothing like doing laps around the mall!
What I Will Implement Going Forward
I will fail with my new lifestyle if I don’t put a plan in place. It doesn’t mean that this plan is in concrete.
What’s cool is I can make adjustments to make it work for my schedule, my mind, and to motivate me!
PLANNING MY MEALS AHEAD
Planning meals ahead gives me the hope of being successful with my new way of life.
I am doing this in baby steps because I am worried if I cut everything off at once, like I have before, I will feel like I am being punished and it won’t last.
If I plan yummy meals and snacks, finding new foods that will serve me well, I am more excited about my new plan!
Planning meals in advance also saves time and money. It makes each day easier not being concerned with, what am I going to eat that isn’t bad for me.
Finding cookbooks that support the nutrition plan I want to follow, gives me more ideas and I am more inspired!
There is extra work, however, with meal planning because my family wants to continue to eat meat and dairy.
It’s a little challenging, and extra temptations, but I want to do this for myself. And who knows, they may change their mind. NOT!
I WILL PLAN:
- One week in advance
- Make a grocery list
- Trying at least one new recipe each week
- Prepare fruits and/or veggies in advance
SET TIME FOR EXERCISE
I am grateful that I actually like to exercise. I understand that there are some people that do not enjoy exercising.
Years ago, I was a fitness instructor that exercise need to be kept fun! It was the worst when you would see people in the class looking like they were being tortured. I always wanted to keep it fun!
Once it felt like a chore, I would resist.
When that happens, I set new goals, try new things, and look for ways to keep it an adventure!
TRACK MY WATER INTAKE
There are many great ways to keep track of water. I found a cute app that I can enter my info after I drink a cup of water. I also love to use my colorful and unique water cups that make it more “fun” for me to slurp down my water.
I can feel it when I don’t drink enough water. I know that sometimes I will be taking more trips to the restroom, but as I have learned in the past, that lessens over time. (Thank goodness! But I guess that’s good exercise too!)
USE EFT REGULARLY
It can be easy for me to get lost in my own head.
- Remembering how I have failed in the past.
- Remembering how I have easily caved into food that has been offered to me.
- Remembering all I have done to get myself into this place I am right now.
Tapping, or EFT, helps me to work through issues I feel holds me back from moving forward.
I can tap on issues I am struggling with each day, and work on issues that are stuck in my mind. Have you ever noticed when you repeat the same thought over and over and it can become overwhelming?
Tapping can help to release thoughts we have that are holding us back from making changes. Changes that we desire to make to move forward in our healthy journey.
I also love to use tapping when praying. Just like folding hands or kneeling to help stay focused, tapping helps me to stay in the moment while I connect with God.
STAY IN PRAYER FOR STRENGTH
The ultimate way for me to gain clarity, strength, and direction is asking for God’s help.
I sometimes slip back into my old ways of thinking, feeling that human’s can figure it all out on our own.
I know this is to be my first go to!
God knows the desires of my heart, and with Him, I can change my life.
By changing my life, I can help others.
Some people don’t want someone to check up on them. I however know how my mind works. When my feet are held to the fire, I usually will keep my word.
I may be resistant at times, but I know I want to succeed and I have supportive people are there to help me.
It’s so much harder to make big changes in life alone. If you are hesitant to share with others what you need help with, consider who you can trust that will encourage you in a way that you need.
I am very grateful for Facebook groups!
This is where I spend the majority of my time when I participate with social media. Connecting with people is very powerful and supportive when you find a group of people that are aligned with similar interests.
I started a Facebook group to do exactly that. It is such an honor to be a part of a small group of encouraging people who want to make healthy changes just like I do!
We would love to encourage and support you too, so hope you will join us!
I can hold myself accountable by documenting my thoughts and progress. This blog is a big part of that.
Journaling or brainstorming in one of my notebooks helps me too. It gets my thoughts down and stares back at me to show what I am thinking and feeling. It helps me to see in writing if I am on track or not.
I am working on a special coin that I will share here soon. I designed some beautiful coins that can be printed out and used as a reminder of what our goals are.
A coin, something to hold and see, can help keep us on track, and to snap us out of any destructive thoughts that could potentially set us on a nasty food binge.
I will keep you updated!
Having a Goal
Are you goal-oriented? Not everyone is.
I know it helps to motivate me when I have a set goal that I works towards. I create
d one that pushes me, but not so much that I will become resistant and quit.
Setting a goal may help you. Even if they are smaller goals, that will help you work your way to one larger goal.
It doesn’t have to be a certain amount of weight loss. Sometimes focusing on a specific number of pounds to be lost can be very daunting.
What else could you use as goals or benchmarks?
Here are some ideas that may help:
- Clothes fit better
- Off medication
- Eliminate certain foods that cause allergies
- Build muscle
- Feel stronger
- Feel good wearing a bathing suit
- Become a vegetarian/vegan
- Exercise regularly
- Feel good for upcoming vacation
- Happy to get a photo taken
- Sign up for an endurance event like 5K or even a marathon
- Eat only at meal time
- Drink half my weight everyday
What else would you add to this list?
WHAT AM I WORKING TOWARDS?
I personally am working towards a few that I listed.
- Feel good in my clothes again
- Gain muscle
- Feel good in bathing suit
- Get my business photo taken again
- Do a 100 mile bike ride, a Century ride
Just by writing them done, I have an even better chance of them coming to pass!
WHAT ARE MY REASONS?
Why is just as important as the goals themselves.
Why do I want to do this for myself?
- I want to feel good
- I want to live a long life
- I want to avoid horrible diseases
- I want to have good energy to do the things I desire
What are your reasons why you want to get healthy or lose weight?
If you don’t understand why you want to do something, you have no reason to follow through. Why would anyone want to lose weight if there is no reason?
Your reasons can be very similar to a goal, but it gives even more detail.
It can have more emotion. Having emotion behind your reasons of why to want to reach certain goals, gives you more momentum.
FEEL how important this is to you!
I have set some goals, setting up my space for success, planning my food and exercise, and have support in place.
How do I maintain this?
By taking all of this one day at a time.
We can look ahead towards our goals, like being excited about that future vacation that we will wear shorts on, or running our first 5K.
Take it one day at a time, keeping your schedule, making sure you have everything you need to be successful. The more you stay on track, the faster this will become habit!
Those, like myself, who do not keep the plan in place, taking it a day at a time, give that space to be filled with other habits. Likely bad habits.
Putting it All Together
Documenting what you want to do, how you want to do it, and when you want to do it by, will be very helpful in your journey to better health.
At the same time, not being totally obsessed with the outcome is key. There is so much to enjoy and learn while you are in the journey.
Check in with yourself on a regular basis, just like I will here, and you will be thrilled to see your progress!
Enjoy the journey, all you will learn about yourself, and who will become.
Giving Ourselves Grace
I didn’t expect perfection over the holidays, I extended grace to myself. I wanted to make some small changes to move me forward towards my goal of getting healthy again and creating a new lifestyle.
I gave myself grace, just as God gives it to us everyday.
I am down a few pounds, but I know that that can fluctuate. Having the flu isn’t what I would recommend as a cleansing solution. But, it did show me how getting the toxins out of my body is a game changer.
Although I am not where I wanted to be by now, I have to be honest with myself.
I didn’t plan as I should have.
I wasn’t consistent with what I did plan.
But the good news is, WE CAN ALWAYS START OVER!
Even if I mess up one day, giving in after hearing bad news or giving into temptations, I don’t have to wait until the next Monday. I don’t have to wait until the next day. I can start over that very moment!
We can do this together, I believe in you!