As a low-grade insomniac I get the opportunity to lie awake at night and stress about things. My typical anxious thoughts about money, kids, spouse and my latest faux pas of the day were driving me nuts so I tried to think about something calming: The Gym. Ahhh.
As I pictured the gym and thought about all the Lululemon fashions, my mind wandered to my closet where I recently donated all my plus-sized clothes. Every woman I’ve ever spoken to who has done the yo-yo diet thing has the same secret fear: we will gain the weight back. For me getting rid of all my bigger clothes was a big deal because it meant I would no longer allow myself to even have the option of “fat jeans.” It meant that I was committed to a new lifestyle, one which did not permit me to binge eat or make poor nutrition choices.
It has been difficult for me to wrap my mind around the concept of clean eating being a “lifestyle” choice, because lifestyle implies forever. Can I really eat clean forever? Am I really ok with eating salad and a protein shake at a birthday party when everyone else is eating pizza, chips and cake? If I decide to have a cheat meal at a social gathering, am I willing and able to immediately get back to eating clean the very next meal instead of it turning into a cheat weekend? Can I do this without a bikini competition serving as my impetus to stick with the meal plan?
Although I really love bodybuilding competitions; love the process and enjoy the show; I don’t want to depend on them to keep me healthy. I don’t want them to become a crutch for me. I really and truly want this lifestyle to be my new norm. This past month has been more stressful than most and I’ve been finding it difficult to not fall into my old patterns of self soothing through junk food.
You know how people tell you to ‘take it one day at a time’? Well, this week I’ve had to take it one meal at a time. I’ve been staring at my clean food, not wanting a bite, and saying aloud, ‘food is for fuel.’ Sometimes the green bean wins; sometimes it doesn’t but I’m still dedicated to make it work.
How about you? How do you stick to healthy habits when you just don’t want to?
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