This is the Mondayest Monday that ever Mondayed
So it’s Monday morning and you wake up reflecting over all the (not so good) things you ate and drank with your friends over the weekend. Part of you says, oh well you gotta live a little, while the other part of you is dreading what you’re going to have to do this week to ‘make up’ for that splurge.
It can be a cyclical routine day in and day out where you dread eating the same old simple meals throughout the week days and look forward to all the happy hours you’re going to take advantage of on the weekend!
I’m not here to tell you that what you’re doing is the right or wrong way. Each person has their own experience with food because we have such an emotional tie to what we eat. I didn’t truly realize this until earlier this week while having a discussion with a colleague. If we have a poor relationship with food, then we tend to let food control us. But when we develop a positive understanding with food, we tend to make better decisions for our body and mind. But that doesn't tell us necessarily why people fail time and time again to stick with a new diet...
Why can't I stick with it?
We all are guilty of doing it. We jump into something because we hear that it's worked so well for Billy Bob or Jilly Jane and begin to consider joining the club. Then we turn to Google and various Instagram famers to tell us how to lose weight, gain more muscle mass or get that chiseled set of abs. The first mistake we make is looking at the "How to (insert fitness goal here)" before we ever look at the why. Not discovering your rhyme and reason for this change is the big culprit as to why people start an extreme diet striving to lose 20 lbs and aimlessly quit by the end of the week. Understanding exactly why you want to be healthier will give you a greater ability to achieve your goals. So let’s run through a scenario of how one might begin to determine their deepest why:
Do you see the process that led to discovering the deepest reasons? I think it will take true honesty and self-vulnerability to recognize the reasons of why we want what we want and do what we do.
Ain't nobody got time for that!
Once you determine your why, the next step would be to identify your top priorities. We all have the same 24 hours in each day and what we do with that time may look very different from your neighbor. In order to gain more time for exercise and better eating, we need to give up time elsewhere. I’m not asking you to give up your day job or time with family in order to achieve this, but maybe giving up an hour of TV would be plausible to exercising or cooking instead. Or cutting down on the countless hours we spend on social media or video games can free up time to prioritize your health.
Have you ever sat down and written how much time you spend doing various activities throughout the day? I did. And it SHOCKED me to see how much time I actually spent on social media or doing useless things that could’ve been more productive. I would challenge you to track your day in increments from the moment you wake up to when you go to sleep. You’ll be able to analyze and assess where you’re spending most of your time to help adjust your priorities. But let's be real - the only way this can work is if you're being truly honest with where your time is really spent, not where you want it to be spent. I'm sure some of you may find some startling news just as I did.
So I hope you have a few takeaways that will give you some healthy ‘food’ for thought (get it?) throughout the day. If you’re truly serious about wanting to make some changes, run through some self reflective questions to determine your why and then assess your daily and/or weekly schedule to evaluate where in your day you can steadily make some changes.
In the next article we’ll jump into some actionable steps to start the process of making better decisions resulting in a happier and healthier you.
Resources: Graphics used from Precision Nutrition.
I've created a free handout covering the Top 5 Exercises for Fat Burn! If you're wanting to ramp up your exercise routine to get the most out of your time, check out the handout below!