4 Lies That Keep Us Unhealthy

I hate that the health and fitness industry seems to have only made getting healthy more burdensome and stressful for most. I don’t think most of us are trying to make it that way, but either way it certainly defeats the purpose right?! We live in the age of information overload. While that might sound like a good problem to have, it also makes it so so SO hard to pick out the most useful information from the newest fads or marketing gimmicks.

Health is not about looking like some photo-shopped actress or about who can be the most hard-core or dedicated. It should enhance your life, not burden it. So I’d like to set the record straight by laying out some of the biggest lies that we tend to believe that are only making it harder to become healthy and happy.

Lie #1. The nutrition part is too hard, so I will just exercise extra hard to lose weight. 

No matter how crazy intense your workouts might be, you simply can’t out train a bad diet. In fact, training too hard or too often will actually increase hunger and cravings making it harder to eat better. Exercise can make you feel better in a myriad of ways like better sleep, more energy, more discipline, better mood, better metabolism, which is why it is part of the equation. It’s just not the entire equation.

beth burns fitness

Truth: If you want to lose fat, you need to improve the way you eat. If you’re looking to get healthy and fit and you want to start with the exercise just to get yourself going, then go for it! Just don’t expect to lose a lot of fat without changing your eating habits.

Lie #2. If I want to lose the fat around my (insert body part), then I must do extra work on said body part.

This goes right along with #1. Exercising a specific body part in order to lose fat in that specific area is futile. All the crunches in the world will not burn away the fat on your stomach. They will strengthen your abs. Strengthening all of your muscles, whether they have a layer of fat over them or not, is great for better movement and overall health. Unfortunately though you have very little say over where your body loses fat first.

Truth: Your genetics determine the rate at which and the order in which you lose fat. Of course, there are things you can do to encourage fat loss, but spot training is not one of them.

Lie #3. If I want to look like her, I need to eat like her.

I used to constantly be checking out what this trainer or that celebrity was doing. I was always looking for that thing that would be the life-changer for me and my clients. The only problem with all the information out there is that all it really does is keep you distracted from finding what works for you.

Come on now. For the most part, you know what you need to eat. But what’s challenging is breaking the old habits and creating the new ones.

Truth: You don’t need a new diet. You need to find tools that help you put into place a way of eating that not only gets you results, but is sustainable FOR YOU so that you keep your results! Sustainability is key. If you feel deprived and like you’re missing out, it’s only a matter of time before you go off the deep end. So while you may not get everything you want, you want to be getting enough to feel satisfied.

Lie #4. If it doesn’t happen in a month, it’s never gonna happen.

Most of us have completely unrealistic timelines for fat loss, so we quit before our bodies can ever catch up. Our bodies are designed to resist change. It takes time for them to adjust, especially if you’re making reasonable (i.e. sustainable!!) changes! There will come a time when the changes start to compound and the scales will start to tip, but how much time? Everybody’s a little different.

Truth: Accept that fat loss is going to be a process that takes time, patience, and persistence. The absolute best thing you can do is let go of the unrealistic timeline! It took you a while to get where you are and it will take you a while to get back to where you want to be.

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*For lasting change, stop looking for the quick fix and go back to the basics. Health is not about how perfect you can eat or exercise or look. It’s about choosing the things that are better for you, the majority of the time. It’s about making lasting changes that create a more full and enjoyable lifestyle FOR YOU.

Loving your body while wanting to change it

The other day I was looking through old pictures and was reminded of the ever so common experience that I’m sure many, if not all, of us have had. You know the one where you’re looking at pictures of yourself from back in the day and think, “I can’t believe I didn’t like my body back then,” or “I can’t believe I thought I was fat there!” This is usually closely followed by: “What I wouldn’t give to look like that now.”Ah yes, this experience is not limited to those who are overweight. I have been guilty of this many a time. In college, I yearned after my high school body. A few years after that, I was yearning after my college body. Until one day it hit me: if I continue to do this, someday I’d be looking back and wishing I had this current body.

I remember thinking, “Oh my gosh, that’s so insightful! Yes, I have to get off this crazy cycle and just love and enjoy my body RIGHT NOW.” The only problem is that’s a lot easier said than done. As much as I tried, all I could seem to focus on were the flaws and imperfections in my current body. I started to wonder: is it even possible to love and accept my body as is and want to change it at the same time?

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I absolutely believe it IS possible! Not only possible, but pretty important for balance in your mind, body, and spirit.

Feeling pretty skeptical right about now?? Hang with me….

Let me start with this analogy: I love my life right now. I’m happily married and I have the freedom to focus on going after my dreams. It’s pretty great. However, as much as I love this phase of life, I don’t want to stay here forever. I hope for change in the future and I’m even doing things that are hopefully moving me toward that change. There are days where I do great and there are days where I totally fail in this pursuit. (As a former professional procrastinator, I’m working on my time management skills but they still leave a lot to be desired.) Back in my perfectionist days, every bad day would lead to a downward spiral of self-loathing and all the reasons why I can’t do it.

Now, since putting away all of the BS that is perfectionism ;), a bad day is simply feedback that allows me to re-evaluate and figure out if there’s anything I could change in order to help myself out.

Now let me explain how I got to a better place of loving and accepting my body….

Where do you hang your identity

First, I was able to get to this place by realizing that my job and my success do not define me. In the same way, I can love my body while taking steps to change it.

After all, my body is what houses my soul, my brain, my heart, my personality – all the things that make me me. The shape of it does not determine any of these things. Just like a good book, the best thing about it is not in the exterior at all. My body does not define me and changing it won’t make me more or less worthy of love.

The more I believe this, the easier it becomes to love and accept my body…for the amazing creation that it is and for the life that it provides and for everything it allows me to do each day. The more I hang my identity here, the harder it will be to accept my body as is. The more I base my love for my body on my performance and results, the harsher I will be.

Fighting the urge to compare

you are true

Comparison is a heavy burden to place on yourself. It will do nothing but enslave you.

In this auto-tuned, photo-shopped, and social media-driven culture we live in, I think we’ve become obsessed with perfection. It’s doesn’t matter how often we tell ourselves that it’s an illusion, it’s still hard not to compare. Fight this by finding what triggers discontentment and comparison in you and take the necessary steps to help yourself out. Maybe just awareness is enough or maybe it means unplugging more often or switching out your magazines for a book. I don’t know what it’ll look like for you, but it’ll be worth it. I can promise you that.

There is no one alive that is youer than you. That’s pretty cool! No need to worry over being authentic! Be you and you will be.

Ending negative self talk

“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” ~Ephesians 4:29

OK, let’s be honest. How many of you have read that verse before and ever thought about the words you say to yourself? I hadn’t.

So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things. How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire!” ~James 3:5

Our words are powerful and yet, most of us don’t think twice about how we talk to ourselves. Just because no one else hears it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be mindful of the words you say to yourself. Especially when you realize that you are in your own head all the time. So naturally, you’re much more prone to believe the things you say to yourself over what anyone else says to us. So next time you’re looking in the mirror, remember:

“Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.” ~Proverbs 16:24

So why is it so important to start loving your body now?

Because when you love it, you want to take the time to listen to it, honor it, and care for it.

I was recently reading something from fitness blogger Neghar Fonooni and this quote especially stuck out to me:

“The hard part is separating the different stages of my physique from my feelings of self-worth. The hard part is finding the courage to be fully authentic, to live in my skin with a sense of freedom and ease–to understand and accept, every single day, that I will not suddenly be more worthy of love and acceptance if I lose 10 pounds.”

It is hard. SO hard sometimes. So start small….next time you look through old pictures or look in the mirror, be thankful for the body that holds the beautiful story that is you and be kind to it. This is where it starts.

What are you willing to exchange for a six-pack??

So I came across something from Precision Nutrition today and I loved it so much (I wish I had come up with it…I mean) I wanted to share it with you. 😉 It’s a simple, yet very informative, infographic that illustrates the lifestyle trade-offs required for different looks/body fat levels.

If you’re struggling with your health and fitness goals or just starting to make changes or if you simply desire to be healthy and fit, I think this is such an important thing to consider. Which is why I decided to write a quick little blog post about it. So without further ado, here are 3 reasons why you should take the time to consider the trade-offs:

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#1. Balance

It brings to light the common extremes our minds tend to go to when thinking about diet and exercise: 1st extreme – that we can look like an air-brushed cover model with just a few small tweaks or the 2nd extreme – that it has to be painful and you have to restrict and deprive yourself of everything you enjoy in order to get healthy.

Both of these are simply not true. Which leads me to #2…

#2. Reality check

In life, we are constantly looking at and weighing the trade-offs. However, you can’t do this if you have a false sense of what the trade-offs are or if you’re just not sure what they are in the first place. For instance, have you ever wanted something so badly only to find yourself a little let down when you finally got it? Whether it’s because you had built up in your head its power and potential to give you something it actually had no capacity to give or simply because it did not deliver the results or happiness it promised, it’s easy to become disillusioned.

This is what so often happens in health and fitness. Losing weight so that you look and feel healthy versus losing so that you look like a super model involve very different levels of commitment and trade-offs. Yet I think most of us subconsciously equate the two. Same goes for being fit and being a marathon runner or being strong and looking like a fitness model. There is so much misinformation and air-brushing illusion out there that it can be hard to know what the reality is.

On top of that, in our all-or-nothing mindsets we tend to believe that we need to have every last detail in place and perfected before anything will change. We jump straight into the deep end and then wonder why, 4 days in, we already feel like we’re fighting just to keep our head above water.

#3. Prioritize

It forces you to figure out what your priorities are. Once you’ve figured out what’s most important to you and what you want your life to be about, then it’s a lot easier to decide which trade-offs are worth it and which ones aren’t.

Of course, different people are going to have different priorities and that’s OK. I’m not saying that you can’t or shouldn’t aspire to be lean. What I am suggesting is this:

* Take some time to honestly evaluate your life and your priorities. Figure out your purpose and what you want out of life. Be careful to make sure that you aren’t looking for joy or peace or a fix in something that has no capacity to give it.

** Take a look at  The Cost of Getting Lean and consider the cost. You might realize that some trade-offs are just not worth it or you might find yourself surprised at how little the cost is!  If the trade-offs are worth it, then go for it! If not, then you have a bigger reason & motivation that allows you to let go and be OK with a different goal.

Knowing your why, having that higher purpose, is critical for motivation and longevity, especially when it comes to enjoying a healthy lifestyle!

 

don't forget to factor in these things too!!

 

 

The Benefits of NOT focusing on Fat Loss

I am taking a big risk with my upcoming holiday program (which will be available to you Tomorrow!!). It’s not a challenge, or some kind of crazy cleanse or detox, in fact it’s not even a fat loss program! If you’re thinking, “what else would does a personal trainer even offer?!”, then allow me to explain….

If I were to ask you right now how long you’ve been unhappy with your body and therefore trying to change/improve it, what would you tell me? In my experience, most people will give me a number in years as to how long they’ve been at it. Most women start struggling with their body image in high school, if not sooner. Most men start struggling in their mid-20s or so. That’s a long time, right?

So what if I suggested that you stop focusing on fat loss? In fact, what if I highly recommended it? Would you even consider it? Or would you just laugh it off thinkin’ “that Beth girl is funny….or crazy.” (I’m not denying either. 😉 )

Most of us spend years and years with fat loss being our one and only health or fitness goal. I know I did. Until one day when I just felt so…over it all. I was at a point where it felt like something needed to change, so I thought, what if I just took a month off? What if I just took one month and focused on something- ANYTHING – other than losing fat?

Well, I did it. I lived to tell the tale. There were even a number of things I gained from the experience- big things, in fact. So big, that I actually decided to put together a program where fat loss is not the main focus! Here are a few things I took away from it….

1) Big Picture Perspective

For the first time in a reeeeally long time, I decided to just set aside this ideal image I had in my mind. Turns out, I was so one-track mind about what I thought I should look like as a trainer that I had developed some pretty serious tunnel vision.  Being so focused in not only took up a TON of physical and mental energy, but I had gotten to the point where all I could see were the flaws.

Changing my focus allowed me to zoom out the lens, which helped me to look outside myself and see the bigger picture. Big picture perspective is being reminded that there’s so more to life than the perfect body and so much more to YOU than some love handles and cellulite!

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2) Learning to trust yourself

“Self-trust is showing up in your life with your likes, dislikes, preferences, desires, wants, needs, hopes, dreams, lines in the sand, insecurities on full display and letting the chips fall where they may in terms of other people’s responses and reactions and acceptance (or not).” ~Jill Coleman

Taking a step back from a goal you’ve had for a long time is always scary. You wonder what the heck you’re gonna do and if it’s the right move. But you start to realize that just because you don’t have it all figured out right now doesn’t mean you can’t do it. You simply figure it out as you go and correct course along the way. It’s a process but learning to go with your instincts and trust yourself is huge in so many areas of life….weight loss is no exception.

For me, I learned to trust myself, but even more so I was able to work hard, do my best, and then surrender the results to God.

3) Self-reflection

When I stopped focusing on all the outside things that needed improvement, I was able to look a little deeper within myself. I was able to see how the constant pressure I put on myself created an anxiety and fear that I didn’t even really realize was there. Once I knew it was there, I was able to start working through it.

4) Enjoyment & Balance

Most of us already know that the body doesn’t operate at it’s best when it’s under a lot of stress. Maybe it’s because of my job or maybe it’s just that I’m impatient, but there was always this urgency to fix every imperfection and to do it NOW.  Taking a break from that mindset and timeline felt like a weight had been lifted. It was such a relief. With the weight lifted, I was able to just enjoy and find a balance I hadn’t been able to achieve before.

step back

 

In the end, it was a big turning point for me in my mindset, my business, and my nutrition (which, like so many, has also been one of my biggest struggles). There’s just something about allowing yourself a little breathing room to relax into the process – it’s huge. So yes, I’m saying…

Sometimes it’s also OK to not focus on fat loss. It doesn’t have to be forever. You can always go back. But if you’ve been focusing on it for a long time and not getting where you want to be, then something’s not right.

Sometimes it’s OK to not focus on improvement or progress, but to just be. To  slow down, breathe, and be Present.

As for my program, no it’s not a challenge, a cleanse, a detox, or a fat loss program per say. I took a step back and saw 2 big issues:

1) Many people have been trying to lose weight for a long time with little to no success.
2) The holidays seemed like an especially hard time to try to lose weight seeing as most of us struggle to just maintain.

I want to help take some of the stress out of it, to have some fun and enjoy the holidays while starting on the foundational tools that will help you to hit the ground running in January…..with hopefully a new mindset and perspective and all the tools in place to achieve whatever goal you want!

***For anyone interested in some hands-on training, nutrition, and mindset advice geared toward helping you navigate the holiday season, click below all the details…

 

Do you have the Courage to Do Less? (part 2)

In part 1, we talked about how our culture celebrates work and activity and can be almost hostile, it seems, to rest and renewal. ESPECIALLY in the fitness industry! Which is really quite counterproductive as evidenced by my own story. 🙂 So how do we stay fit while moving away from the ‘go hard or go home’ mindset? How do we find balance?

To maintain a powerful pulse in our lives, we must learn how to rhythmically spend and renew energy. *

The reason I loved The Power of Full Engagement so much is because the point  of the book is that rest allows us to stop going through the motions and more fully engage in life, whether that be in business, fitness, or relationships. The author’s point is stated simply in this question: “If you could wake up tomorrow with significantly more positive focused energy to invest at work and with your family, how significantly would that change your life for the better?”.

Prioritizing rest is prioritizing your work, your loved ones, your health, your quality of life. That is why rest is so important.  That is why I believe rest should be just as much of a priority as work.

rest pic

So with that being said, here are few things I have learned to implement that have really helped me Do Less and therefore, find more balance:

1) Managing energy, not time

Allow me to start with a story. My first real job was cleaning hotel rooms. Since I’m not a morning person, I figured I would just workout after work. Only problem with this was that I was on my feet, vacuuming, scrubbing, picking up after random people, and making beds the entire day. So when I did actually get a workout in, it wasn’t a very productive one. So I tried working out before work. As much as I hated getting up earlier than I absolutely had to, this ensured that I had plenty of energy and got a good workout in. Plus it turns out I actually had more energy throughout the work day as well!

Many of us have a story like this, right? We put together our schedule, looking for where we can fit this or that in, without any concern as to the energy it will take to accomplish it. This is why so many people struggle to get to the gym regularly. Sure, most of us have plenty of time to workout after work, but without the energy to do it it doesn’t really matter how much time you have!

 Energy, not time, is our most precious resource. *

Take some time to learn yourself. Figure out when you are the most energetic and productive. Schedule the most important things you want to get done during those times. Then let the rest be what it is. Learning to manage your energy can be tricky. You have to let go of the “superman/superwoman” mentality, BUT I think you will also be surprised how much you get done.

2) Actively disengaging

Going right along with scheduling your priorities around your most productive time, we also have to allow for down time.

It’s been shown that people produce a higher quantity and quality of work in shorter bursts (90-120 minutes) followed by a time of deliberate rest or actively disengaging (even if it is just 5-10 minutes). Actively disengaging means deliberately shifting your attention from achievement to restoration. Your body needs this whether it be for a project, a workout, or a conversation. You can’t give your full attention to everything without any breaks and then expect to keep up the same amount of focus all day long.

Running yourself ragged day after day, beating yourself up about the things you didn’t get done, that’s no way to live. Plus, it’s completely unsustainable, meaning eventually something will give out.

Schedule specific times for rest and rejuvenation.

Set up clear boundaries between work and home. Learning to actively disengage enables you to be productive at work, then go home and be all there for your loved ones.

3) Learning when to rest and when to go hard

Yes, in order to reach most goals, especially in the gym, you will have to push past perceived limitations and learn how to deal with discomfort.  But there also needs to be a balance between too little and too much! (For more specifics on what that looks like in the gym, go here.)

Back in the day, when I was still running myself ragged in the gym, I would often make some of my best gains after coming back from vacation. It’s embarrassing that I never put it together back then. No one can go at 100% intensity all of the time. We have to back off and give our bodies rest so that we can come back stronger and with more intensity.

Nearly every elite athlete we have worked with over the years has to come to us with performance problems that could be traced to an imbalance between the expenditure and the recovery of energy.*

Sometimes you just need to take it easy, back off on the weight a bit, and focus on the basics. Sometimes you need to take the day off and just go for a long walk instead. As you learn to listen to your body, you will also learn when it’s feeling good and can be pushed harder.

When in balance, people tend to experience:

  • Fewer injuries
  • Better hormone balance
  • Lower stress levels
  • Less anxiety
  • Higher productivity
  • Deeper relationships
  • More happiness and contentment

Dan John, a world renowned fitness expert and strength coach, was talking about training when he said, “you have to have the courage to do less.”

It is a little scary, isn’t it? But the benefits above are the things that lead to higher consistency, which in turn leads to fat loss and a healthier mindset & lifestyle!

The challenge is finding that balance for yourself. It might not be easy, but it is definitely worth it.

What do you think? Do you have a hard time believing more rest could actually help instead of hinder your progress? What tools do you use in order to unsure you’re getting enough rest? Leave a comment over on the Beth Burns Fitness facebook page and let me know! 🙂

*All quotes from: The Power of Full Engagement by Loehr and Schwartz. I highly recommend.

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Do you have the Courage to Do Less? (Part 1)

We live in a world that celebrates work and activity, ignores renewal and recovery, and fails to recognize that both are necessary for sustained high performance.*

The other day, I was giving my marathon-running friend a hard time because she was complaining about how hard it is to taper off her running in preparation for an upcoming race. My other friend then commented on how funny it is that I’m the fitness person and yet here I am, encouraging her to enjoy it, to sit on the couch and relax a little more! But this is what most of us think, right? That fitness-junkies and personal trainers are all about this:

 

nopain nogaingo-big-or-go-homeno_pain_no_gain_2013-10-13_18-15-57

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the most part, it’s true. In fact, health and fitness isn’t the only realm in which we hold to this ridiculous type of mindset. This was my own mindset for a long time….

I used to feel guilty about relaxing. I lived on as little sleep as possible, which usually meant 4-6 hours for me. I thought walking, or anything else that didn’t feel challenging, was a waste of time. I thought, along with most Americans,  that there was a certain nobility in being busy all the time. To the point where I was even embarrassed if I didn’t have a list of stuff I’d done over the weekend. I pretty much lived in a constant state of anxiety.

I’m not trying to be dramatic. I’ve never had anxiety attacks or needed medication. It was more of an inner struggle, but unfortunately it still caused a whole host of issues for me. My hormones got completely out of whack and I got sick easily. I never listened to my body so my joints ached and I dealt with a lot of injuries. Then, my body just literally started forcing me to rest more. I couldn’t read or watch movies without falling asleep. My progress, both in and out of the gym, plateaued. When I got sick, it took a lot longer for me to recover than it should have. I was a bit of a hot mess. 🙂

So why I am sharing these experiences with you? Because quite honestly, I’ve had enough of it and I want this kind of mentality gone. We’ve got enough imbalance, stress, and guilt to deal with.

Being fit is not about who can do the most or go the longest or endure the most pain. Ignoring pain signals, working out when you’re really sick or already exhausted, making yourself vomit or super sore on a regular basis… these things are not healthy. The all-or-nothing attitude is what leads to burnout, injury, or not even beginning in the first place!

When I started prioritizing rest and allowing myself to rest more, what do you know, I actually became less anxious and more productive! It was like a weight was lifted off of my chest (which probably seems counter-intuitive: most of us seem to think that if we’re resting more, we will be getting less done).

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Let’s get away from go hard or go home, perfection or nothing! True health is not found in the person who needs the least amount of rest, but in the person who has found the perfect balance of work to rest. As Dan John puts it: You have to have the courage to do less.

Do you?

~

Next time, we’ll go over some practical ideas for what this looks like so stay tuned for Part 2! But for now I’ll leave you with this one final quote:

“The busier we are, the more important we seem to ourselves and, we imagine, to others. To be unavailable to our friends and family, to be unable to find time for the sunset (or even to know the sun has set at all), to whiz through our obligations without time for a mindful breath, this has become the model of a successful life. (W. Muller)

We have lost connection to the simple but profound message of the Twenty-third Psalm: “He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul.” *

 

*All quotes from: The Power of Full Engagement by Loehr and Schwartz. I highly recommend. 😉

 

Help! I can’t stop eating!

Recently I received an email from a reader that I wanted to share with you guys….

Hey Beth~ Right now I am really struggling with moderation. I eat well and exercise regularly during the week but, for example, on the weekends or Fridays I will hang out with friends (which I don’t want to stop doing) and we eat relatively healthy things (our tradition is the in-house made guac from whole foods) but I have no control on moderation. I just can’t stop eating. I feel full and “gross” until the next day, but for the most part, I will repeat every weekend. It is an internal battle in my head that I mostly lose. I feel like every weekend derails my nutrition goals. I’ve tried writing things down that I don’t want to eat any more. For example, I have been fantastic about not eating any type of chip or fries. But horrible about not eating sugars or peanut butter. Help!

Ugh, we’ve all been there my friend. For some, it’s a weekend thing and for others it’s a nightly ritual….we usually don’t sit down with the intention of eating until we’re sick. But you get home from a long day of work and it feels like all you have the energy to do is sit in front of the tv and eat. So we do. We eat dinner and then dessert and then we’re craving something salty and before we know it, we find ourselves waddling to bed full of food and regret. We scold ourselves for being so weak. We promise ourselves that we’ll remember this feeling and never eat like that again…

Yet, we find ourselves back there more often than we care to admit. Why?

I thought about it and came up with what I believe are the 3 main reasons for why we tend to do this and offer you a tool to help deal with each:

1) Food FOMO

FOMO stands for Fear Of Missing Out. I first heard this used in terms of food by my coach, Jill Coleman. Sometimes it’s being afraid of missing out on the actual food itself and other times I think I’m more worried about missing out on the experience. When you’re at a social event and everyone’s gathered around the buffet table, munching and chatting and laughing, I don’t want to miss out on that so I stay with the group and I munch and chat and munch some more.

The solution to this? Honestly I think it might be the opposite of putting all those foods that tempt you off limits. It’s actually been proven that your desire for something grows when you know you can’t have it. Perhaps, that’s the reason for the weekend binge. You’ve resisted it all week. You know it’s the only time you’re able to have it. So that desire for guacamole goodness that been building all week in anticipation of Friday of course wins out over any kind of reasonable thought process.

Idn't that serving just adorable...ha ha! yeah right..

*The fix: Allow yourself to have those foods during the week….in specified portions.

DO NOT just grab the bag and sit down on the couch. We all know that never works!

Give yourself a predetermined amount. That means decide now what a reasonable amount is and stick to that. Allowing yourself to have some each day should cure your food FOMO. After all, why would you have it if you know you can have some chips and guac every day?! 🙂

2) Mouth boredom

When there’s tons of amazing food every where you look, it’s hard not to think about it. The more you think about it, you start convincing yourself that you’re still hungry or that you just absolutely MUST have this particular food right now!

*The fix: Sometimes you just need a diversion to get your mind and your mouth off of food!! My two favorite tools for this are mint gum and water/tea. Both of which are natural appetite suppressants. Although usually we don’t need an appetite suppressant as much as just a distraction for our mouth.

3) Habit

I think this is probably the most common reason.

At the end of the day or week, we’re feeling drained and looking to kick back. We don’t want to have to think about food. Our willpower is exhausted and all we have left to fall back on is HABIT. And changing a habit, well, that takes mindfulness and deliberate practice. Moderation is not a switch you can simply flip on and off. It’s a PRACTICE. So here’s my favorite and most helpful way to practice and get better at this (I also learned from this from Jill 🙂 ).

*The practice: Take a third of a protein bar and put the rest back. Savor and enjoy that one third, then go DO SOMETHING for at least 10 minutes. If you’re still thinking about the protein bar after that, go have another third. Then go do something for at least 20 minutes. If you still really want more, then you can go finish the bar. However, you’d be surprised at how many times you’ll forget about it after the first or second helping.

Protein bars can be really addicting which is why I used that example, but in all honesty, I do this practice with cookie dough ice cream. I give myself 2 spoonfuls. 😉 You can do this anywhere with anything, but it’s usually easier to start off practicing it at home!

my favorite treats!

my favorite treats!

I know this might sound kinda silly, but if you’re serious about wanting to get to a place where you can enjoy food and parties without the uncomfortable stomach feeling or the regret, then you have to find a way to build up your willpower and reset your habits. Imagine being able to have the foods you want and NOT completely derail your goals! THIS is a worthwhile practice!

But it is still a practice. Be ready to mess up. Be willing to look back and figure out how you need to do differently next time. Be patient with yourself. Be persistent and unwilling to give up.

Is this helpful? What tools do you use to prevent yourself from going all in on the weekends?

*Interested in Colorado Springs kettlebell classes? Check out my in-home training studio, Springs Kettlebells!*