Happy Sunday my beautiful friend and WELCOME to your weekly dose of MOTIVATION+ positive self love reinforcement + actionable tips to live well!
I wanted to cover something that pops up A LOT for my clients and because I think it is something we ALL struggle with to some extent. I also believe the WAY WE THINK about this topic plays a HUGE role in our journey through it.
Our brains run "programs" that we create by repeating behaviors OVER and OVER again. These programs can either SERVE us and our goals and wellbeing, or they can KEEP US from reaching them. I cannot tell you how many Christmases, Halloweens, New Years, and basically EVERY other holiday I have run my "program"... and it looks a little something like this:
▶️Currently "on" a meal plan or macro set that I PROMISE myself I will stick to NO MATTER WHAT!
▶️Event is coming up, anxiety around food and how PAINFUL and UNENJOYABLE it will be AVOIDING "taking part" and eating the foods I want so badly.
▶️But I WILL BE GOOD!
▶️Day or evening of the event arrives.
First part of the evening goes GREAT!
▶️Then, I "slip" up and take just ONE bite of my husbands slice of cake... or have ONE Halloween candy... or...
▶️OLD PROGRAM KICKS IN "You have ALREADY blew it... let's let the wheels FULLY come off and eat whatever your heart desires until you are beyond stuffed
▶️Heart beat speeds up, belly bloats, dopamine starts to fade out and the old program finishes and the REAL, LOGICAL brain steps back in WHAT DID YOU DO?! That's it! Starting SOOO FRESH tomorrow it's not even funny!
▶️The program is run again at the next "event" or weekend...
If any of this resonates with you, I FEEL YA! The level at which FOOD thoughts take up space in your head feels INSANE and almost like a BLACK CLOUD you can't get out from under. IF THIS IS, or HAS BEEN you, read on!
I WANT TO TELL YOU ABOUT THE TIME I DIDN'T RUN "THE PROGRAM".
Something FLIPPED in my brain (notice I didn't say my BODY!) Our MINDS run the show! I read something that made me stop in my tracks. Well, a few things actually. And the journey from then until now has culminated in these (my TOP TIPS) for changing the MOST IMPORTANT part --> YOUR MINDSET. Here goes.
1) What if I just stepped outside of myself, and viewed these thoughts or this program, for what it was? An OLD PROGRAM deeply ingrained by habits I have repeated day after day, year after year? These thoughts were just that... THOUGHTS, not actions. I would have to DECIDE to act upon them. So what if I just felt the urge, breathed through it, and let it pass? The moment I realized this was a THING, that this was POSSIBLE, was HUGE. Step outside yourself and THINK ABOUT what you THINK ABOUT.
2) What if these URGES to "fall off track" were simply my body's way of revolting against RESTRICTING my body TOO SEVERELY and not eating enough micronutrients, variety, and allowing the odd delicious treat (because it was always either FEAST or FAMINE)?
3) What if what I PERCEIVED to be the BE-ALL END-ALL, was... WRONG? Meaning, what if I could in fact take part in each event and HAVE a chocolate or two, enjoy a piece of cake, eat a full burger with a side salad, etc. and NOT lose progress, feel I have "failed", or do a full "fall off the wagon"?
I wanted to share these thoughts with my clients and subscribers because I know a few people have reached out to me CONCERNED about "WHAT THEY'LL DO" during family events, holiday get togethers, and work functions. So, my beautiful strong friend... my advice to you is as follows:
1) Do NOT miss out on a SINGLE EVENT.
2) Do NOT say/use the word DIET from here on out. You are going to focus on "EATING WITH LOVE". This means focus FIRST on getting in lots of colorful vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats. If you are at an event and can't get your mind off that delicious cake. I want you to HAVE A PIECE. Not 2. Not 4. Not 1 and then grab Dairy Queen on the way home because "I MAY AS WELL I FAILED!". No! I want you to SLOWLY eat, and ENJOY the flavor. And then, I want you to MOVE ON and continue making choices that line up with your goals.
3) DO NOT starve yourself all day knowing you have a big dinner one evening. Eat as you normally would (whether that is on a macro tracking plan OR a meal guide). I DO recommend FASTING through breakfast to shorten your eating window to minimize potential fat storage but this is NOT NECESSARY, simply a tip that I personally use.
4) Do NOT overcompensate the next day. Simply HIT YOUR WEEKLY targets (the workout tasks + your nutrition plan) at each meal moving forward.
5) IF you find yourself WAYYY off track, spend ZERO TIME regretting, feeling bad, talking negatively to yourself. This serves NO PURPOSE other than making you feel like CRAP. Again, take a DEEP BREATH, review WHY you felt you lost control and how you may navigate it differently next time, and MOVE FORWARD!
6) EAT WITH LOVE. I saved this one for LAST because its the one that REALLY changed my mind around. The moment I stopped viewing my JUNKY BODY as FIGHTING against me (aka not dropping the fat as quickly or from where I wanted, feeling TIRED all the time, etc.) and STARTED viewing it as a GIFT and being GENTLE and acting with LOVE towards it, that things TOTALLY CHANGED. Think of the things we have put our bodies through!! Yet, we often stand staring at them in mirrors or in pictures and think TERRIBLE things about it. Think of your body as your BEST FRIEND. Its the ONLY ONE you will ever have. It carries YOU throughout this life and Godwilling into very old age. It may hold children, survive disease, car accidents, injuries, stress, depression, periods of obesity... It's been out dancing, it may have been forced by us to DRINK too much, to STAY UP too late and pretty much EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN! And what do we do?? We say things to our bodies like "You're still too fat! You look awful!" I hope that me asking you to LOOK at your body in this NEW WAY will help start or make the MINDSET SHIFT that is necessary and SO HELPFUL in allowing YOU and your BODY to work in harmony towards your physical + health + wellness goal. When you are at that party... don't FIGHT yourself for what you have trained your mind to believe you WANT so badly (for me that's cake!)… and instead, find that JOY somewhere else. The company, a night out, laughter with friends... and if that cake stays on your mind, enjoy a slice and know that that's enough to treat your body and move forward.
You and your body don't deserve the feelings of having food be a larger part of your life than you want it to be. YOU are in the drivers seat! And YOU are on a journey to the ultimate self love + care version of yourself!
There you have it my beautiful friends! I hope that this has been helpful and motivating for you and stay tuned for next weeks newsletter!
Peace + Love + Positive Vibes✌
Your Trainer Friend,