“Goals can destroy you-if you set them incorrectly.”
“Dieting is one of the only areas of life where we don’t accept mistakes. At work, we make mistakes, we learn, we do better; in relationships, we have fights, we work it out. We don’t expect perfection. But if we fail at a diet–binge or eat something we don’t think we should–we throw in the towel and say; ‘Forget it. I ruined it.’ We never accept the fact that we can make mistakes and be flexible. In the long game, you have to have that mindset. But everyone wants to play the short game.”
I came across this quote recently and I couldn’t have said it better myself. I’ve most certainly been guilty of this. In the past, I’ve always been tough on myself and thought I was being “disciplined.” However, when it came to beating myself up for making mistakes, whether it was binge eating on the weekends or skipping my workouts, or even getting that froyo when I told myself I wouldn’t. I wasn’t very gracious with myself back then. I would feel like I had to “make up for it” by going to the gym and running a few extra miles or restricting my food the next day.
When I did make a diet mistake, I often said “screw it” I’ll get back to it on Monday, and then continue to binge some more. This cycle of restricting during the week and then eating whatever I wanted on the weekends went on for a couple years. My view of exercise was what could I do to help me burn off all these calories I ate or am going to eat. Not focused on reaching goals or getting stronger. How defeating is that? Just working out to burn calories from the food you ate. At times I wish I could go back and change all that, but then I wouldn’t know what I know today.
If you have gone down or are going down a similar road, I want to tell you, “Don’t be so hard on yourself!!” There is a better way! You don’t have to restrict yourself, cut out certain foods (unless you have food sensitivities/allergies), or do hours of cardio. That all is actually VERY damaging to your body. Trust me, I experienced a lot of damage to my metabolism from my past, and it took about the same amount of years to reverse that damage. I hit a point where I couldn’t lose ANY weight and was actually gaining weight. It was SO frustrating. I didn’t understand how I was putting in SO much work, but not seeing the results I wanted. I also had no idea that my body needed a certain % of protein, carbs, and fat to THRIVE. I was tired all the time, killing myself in the gym…no wonder why!
Work smarter, not harder. If you are blindly starting a workout and or nutrition regimen, stop right there. You could be doing it wrong. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. And make sure you are asking a credible source. Anyone can have an opinion of what they think you should be doing, and sometimes their opinions are NOT right for you. Everyone’s body is different, their goals and needs are different, so why would two people be on the same plan? You don’t have to workout twice a day, do cardio everyday, and cut out all your carbs to lose weight/body fat, increase energy, and get stronger. Trust me on this one.
So stop right there. No more beating yourself up. Begin speaking truth into your life and encourage yourself. Put yourself around people who do the same and have the same goals in life. Remember, this is a LIFESTYLE. Look at the BIG PICTURE.
- Take care of your emotional and mental health first. Change your mindset, speak encouraging words to yourself, and be kind to yourself.
- Switch your focus to getting stronger in the gym rather than focusing on how many calories you can burn in one workout.
- Stop depriving yourself. Rather, find out what your individual macronutrient breakdown is (how many protein, fats, carbs you NEED to survive & THRIVE each day) This will also boost your ENERGY!
- Once you know that, allow yourself foods you love. No restrictions, just balance and knowing what portion you can have-guilt free!
- When you do mess up, shake it off and KEEP GOING. If you eat a little bit more, use it as fuel in the gym. If you miss a workout, don’t just go and skip the rest of the week. Each day is a brand NEW day.
- Finally, don’t compare yourself to others. Focus on your own journey. Don’t compare your progress to other’s progress. Enjoy the process!