Are you eating better, what foods are you eating, what diet are you on?? These are just a few of the questions I get asked on a regular basis when people are curious about how I losing weight.. I generally start off my response to their questions with a slight chuckle as I begin to explain what I am doing…
The Stereotypical Diet Mindset…
I am sure if asked, most people would associate dieting as a highly restrictive list of foods that you are allowed to eat, much like the pictures above. Carbs and calorie counting, weighing out food items, portioning out there meals down to the last gram and most certainly the end of fast food/junk food.. When I hear people starting their dieting, this seems to be the aspect of dieting that everyone seems to understand and know? It was definitely my impression for years, but my struggle has always been, I definitely did not want to live the rest of my life thinking things like:
- How many carbs a day should I eat?
- So I can’t eat anything fried, or sweet
- Let me weigh my food
- Which fitness app should I use Loseit.com, myfitnesspal.com, fitday.com, etc…
Then what diet do I follow?
You have your Paleo , Atkins, The Dash fad diets of the day which is an endless list if you Google it.. Let us not forget the shake routes, Shakelogy, Isagenix and I am sure there are hundreds of others.. All of these various diets and weight loss solutions each of their own merits and strong points. At the end of the day, if followed as they are prescribed, you will see weight loss, no doubt!! They definitely make it easy for the people that let’s face it, do not truly have an understanding what eating healthy means… This should have been know surprise that people did not know this, since I struggled with actually doing it myself.. LOL It was not until I was diagnosed with my Type II diabetes and was instructed to visit the Joslin Diebetes Center for counseling on nutrition and dieting in order to ensure that I can keep my blood sugar under control, that understand how much this truly is not known in our society… To me, the information they were sharing were common sense things.. (no you should not eat an entire large pizzas in one sitting, bowls of pasta, and 6 cans of regular soda in a day – duh)
I realized through the dialog and the information the counselors where sharing, that sometimes in life people just don’t know any better for a number of reasons… So for these people that end up finding themselves sitting in the same chairs I was in, and many more, the diets and shakes do offer a template or an easy road map to follow! And why not take advantage of it? After all, you have to start somewhere and these are all great ways of doing so..
Is your Diet Sustainable?
If you are starting down the road of a healthy lifestyle, you have to be thinking long term.. Is your diet too restrictive and limiting, can you really sustain the diet of your choosing for the long term? Are you setting yourself up for failure, to crash and burn.. Are you simply cutting weight, or do you want to adopt a lifestyle change that you can sustain for the rest of your life? This is always my 1st question to someone when they rattle of their 1,200 cals. a day, and I eat yogurt for this, and I can have 6 grapes at this time, blah blah… The essential element of my thinking and mindset around becoming healthy in general is that “ I want to be able to sustain this new lifestyle the rest of my life”… Failure in my dieting and healthy well-being, has happened to me over and over because I prescribed to the philosophy of restricting myself to anything and everything that I deemed as being ‘bad’ for me.. So this time, taking in all the lessons learned my past experiences, I have learned, I am taking influences from all the great diet programs that our there. The tried and true methods of how to eat better, and then incorporating them into my diet:
- Grill vs Fry
- Fresh vs out of the box
- Lean vs fatty
- Home cooked vs Fast Food
I have also learned that I have to allow myself to still enjoy some of the foods that I loved before.. Not to say eat like a pig, but find ways to incorporate these foods into my diet (Sorrentos pizza) in such a way that you don’t do a binge and reverse your progress, but keep you motivated in staying the “healthy lifestyle course”.. Moderation is the key and always evaluate where you in your wellness, is this regimen working or do I need to make some tweaks? This is what I do all the time, I do not allow things to get stale and I am always evolving my methods!