Have your healthy eating habits gotten a bit sloppy?

Ever been in a groove of healthy eating habits when suddenly you look up and you’re veering off track?

A snack-size Snickers here, a couple of Red Vines there. A bit more wine won’t hurt. 

Maybe you’ve gained back a few pounds. Or halted your progress. 

And if this happens you may tell yourself that you deserve a treat now and then. 

Or that sticking to your plan is boring. That life is meant to be lived and not have to worry about eating healthy all the time.

WARNING! This is self-sabotage in action!

It starts out innocent sounding. Very believable. Because it’s partly true: you deserve a treat and shouldn’t have to be bored with, or worry about, what you eat all the time.

But these partial truths cover up the lie:

  • A treat does NOT mean eating or drinking in excess, or mindlessly snacking on foods you really don’t want or need.
  • Making choices based on the health and body you want is NOT boring.  
  • Worrying about food is NOT the same thing as being intentional with healthy eating habits.

These insidious lies take hold and if you don’t catch them, soon you’re back to old habits. Your weight gained back. And beating the crap out of yourself. 

All because you believed the lie.

healthy eating habits
Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

So if you notice your healthy eating habits slipping, pay attention. Why are you making different choices than when you were on plan and making progress? How will you recommit and refocus? What will you learn from this experience to prevent it – or catch it earlier – next time?

Here are some ways to keep yourself on track: 

  • Remind yourself of the outcome you want from eating healthfully, and why it really matters. 
  • Focus on all the great foods you “get” to eat
  • Count every single healthy choice as a win. 
  • Don’t believe the lies.
  • Hire a coach.

To be a healthy hottie requires vigilance. Just like anything of importance. 

And, you’re worth it.

Do you like your excuses?

Last weekend I presented a seminar at a women’s retreat and afterwards had some one-on-one time with a few participants. During one conversation a woman told me it was a challenge to be consistent with exercise, and shared all of the reasons why. I said, “my, you make a lot of excuses.” She looked at me and said, “Wow, you’re right, I do!”

I loved her response! In that instant, she realized she was in control.

The reason we don’t do something is because of our thoughts, not our circumstances.

Sound dubious? Let’s see:

  • “My partner brought home my favorite ice cream. He was doing something sweet for me and it would’ve been rude not to eat it.”
  • “I can’t exercise at lunch because I’d get sweaty and have to shower and wash my hair. And in the morning, it’s too dark to go outside and in the evening, I’m wiped out from the day.”
  • “Friends that I hadn’t seen in months unexpectedly invited me for drinks. What could I do… go to a bar and not drink? That would be weird.”
  • “My grandmother cooks Sunday night dinners for the entire family and expects us to clean our plates. I can’t throw out food and hurt her feelings.”
  • “I worked a 12-hour shift and didn’t have the energy to cook anything healthy.”

None of these are about the situation at hand, but about how we think:

  • “Not eating food is rude or will hurt someone’s feelings.”
  • “Not drinking when at a bar is strange or uncomfortable.”
  • “I have no viable exercise option.”
  • “I need energy to eat healthy or stay ‘on plan.’”

I know these thoughts can feel true, but they’re just thoughts. One might say, excuses.

Making excuses
Photo by Nicole Honeywill on Unsplash

What are yours?

Once we recognize we’re making excuses, the question we really need to ask is: Do I like my excuses? Do they serve me? Do they help me get the results I want?

If you don’t like your excuses, the first step is to realize they’re optional. The second step is finding a replacement thought you like, that helps you get a better result.

Then practice the new thought. Repeat it. Live it out, even when you don’t feel like it. Keep doing it.

Try this process, one excuse at a time. If you do the work to change your thoughts, you’ll be amazed at the action (and results) that are possible for your body and your life.

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