Saturday, November 8, 2014

Should Health and Fitness be a Goal?

I just stumbled across the bazillionth Facebook post on a health and fitness goal. You see them all the time, right? 30 day challenges. 10 day cleanses. New Year's Resolutions.

I'm having a bit of a problem with that whole thing. I mean, I get it. People want a short term, quick fix. People want the feeling of accomplishing that goal. And sometimes, people need to get really serious about digging in and completely hitting the reset button on their habits.

But here's what I hate about the 30 day things... the focus doesn't seem to be on getting healthy and fit. Some people come off a successful 30 day thing and dive headfirst into a bowl of ice cream that leads to a week of binges on food they had just cut out because it's not healthy. OR before even entering into a commitment to 30 days of clean living, they eat everything in sight. This does not even make sense. 

If you find yourself in a place that you don't like, the best thing to do is to get the heck out of there now. And then stop going back there. Eating junk food, not exercising makes a person feel bad. Some of us never know how good we are supposed to feel until we step away from the bad food and start filling up with the good.

Eating well, sleeping well and moving your body is not about a number on the scale or the pant size.
Eating well, sleeping well and moving your body is about taking care of yourself, living longer and feeling good.

So, maybe instead of a 10 day or 30 day quick fix, you should just gradually wean yourself off the crap.

Pick one thing to eliminate. Cut it out. Wait a few weeks or a month.
Pick another thing. Cut it out. Wait a few weeks or a month.
Pick another.
Then another.

It's taken me about 3 years to completely overhaul my diet. But I've been successful and happy.

First it was the ice cream. (When I was training for marathons, my after school snack was ice cream. Every day. And I don't mean one half cup serving.)
Then is was the fru-fru coffee "creamer." So gross. I can't even drink it now-- it tastes like chemicals. (And no wonder, check the ingredients-- can you even pronounce ANY of those?)
Then it was white sugar.
Then processed foods.
Then fake sweeteners (and adding back honey).
Then gluten-- breads, pastas, etc. and dairy. (I just don't feel good after eating meals heavy with either of those.)

I don't know what "diet" (way of eating) is right for you. Only your body will tell you. But just try cutting back and cutting out some things. I guarantee you will feel better. And after the initial pity party, you won't miss those things at all.

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