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Dear future me.. you are feeling weak. The cookies on the counter seem to be calling your name, and no one is around to witness your failure. It would be so easy to just go over there and inhale one before you get a fair chance to talk yourself out of it. I am here to help you.
Anyone else feel like you are fighting a battle in your head when your motivation seems to waiver, and cheating on your diet seems like a good idea? Now, I usually hate to use the word “diet,” because I’m making a lifestyle change.. blah, blah, blah. Lets call it what it is- a diet. By definition the word “diet” means the kinds of foods that a person, animal, or community habitually eats, so no matter what you eat, it is your diet.
When you are on a weight loss mission like I am (pretty much constantly, my whole life it feels like), you have to watch your food intake and caloric deficit so that you can shed the pounds. Even though the end result is everything you have ever imagined- whether it’s a rock hard six pack, or simply fitting into your old jeans, it is still very difficult to have the discipline needed all the time.
Cheating on your diet would be so easy, and no one has to know, but you would have to live with that choice. Before you even think of opening that cookie jar or chip bag, read this entire article. If you still feel like cheating when it’s done, well that’s on you. Don’t say I didn’t try.
Thinking of Cheating on Your Diet? Read These 10 Tips First!
-This exercise helps me avoid post-binge depression quite often. Just imagine that you just got done eating whatever it is you were craving. Feeling guilty? Was it worth it? Was that 5 minutes of happiness scarfing down a couple hundred empty calories of garbage worth hating yourself the rest of the day? Didn’t think so.
-Find out just how much fat/sugar/calories are in that “small” treat you want to have. Enter it into My Fitness Pal and prepare to be shocked. It might seem harmless, but junk food is usually packed with calories and sugar, enough to throw off your whole day’s work.
-Reward yourself for resisting. I know the first thought when you hear “Reward Yourself,” is food. There are so many other ways to reward yourself. Let yourself relax and take a bath, get your nails done, buy yourself something you have had your eyes on for a while. It’s time that we stop treating ourselves like dogs and using food as a reward all the time.
-“Nothing Tastes as Good as Skinny Feels.” Ok, I have some serious beef with this quote, but in a way it makes a good point. That donut may be heavenly, but I guarantee you will feel about a thousand times better when you reach your fitness goals, and get to be confident in your shorts this summer.
-Count how many weeks you have until Summer. Seriously, it’s right around the corner, and we’re finally in the home stretch. This is your last chance to buckle down and get into shape before swimsuit season, and any time you cheat, you will just set yourself back.
-Cheating on your diet is a slippery slope. If you allow yourself this one indulgence, you are more likely to scrap the whole day, and it will be even harder to get back on track. If you are like me, it will likely turn into a binge where you eat everything in sight, and we all know why that’s no good.
-Find your motivation. Whatever you do to stay motivated, do it right now. For me, I like to go on Instagram and catch up on my favorite fitness pages. Seeing others staying strong in their journeys will help you find the inspiration to turn down the junk food.
-Find out the reasoning behind your temptation. Are you actually hungry? Are you bored? Have you been having a rough day, and feel like you “deserve” to treat yourself? Digging deeper and finding out what is causing you to feel this way is important. If you are truly hungry, get a healthy snack, stat! Have a rice cake with peanut butter and banana slices, or a (healthy) protein bar, or some veggies! If you are bored, stop! Find something to do. If nothing else, workout! If you are feeling emotionally drained or exhausted, find a better outlet. Start a journal or talk to a friend. Finding better ways to release your stress is very important in this journey.
-Get a hobby! Keeping yourself busy will help keep food off of your mind. Personally, I like to sew and write, and I keep myself busy constantly, which usually helps keep me out of the kitchen. Not only will this help curb your temptations, but it will improve your mood and help you find more of a “purpose” in your day to day activities.
-If you do end up caving, and feel like you HAVE to cheat, do it wisely. Don’t waste your cheat on something that will be consumed in 5 minutes that packs in an extra 500 calories. Try to find something that has a good balance, without too much of the bad stuff. Since I am a bread lover, my weak moments usually consist of some sort of sandwich on whole grain bread. That always fills the void, without all the guilt involved.
It can be so exhausting being in a constant war within your own head when you are feeling tempted, believe me, I know. I also know that the war will be even worse after you cheat, because you will be overcome with guilt and self-loathing. It’s important to acknowledge those emotions and overcome them, because they can easily lead to an unhealthy eating disorder. Find the perfect balance for your body and your goals, without overdoing it. If you cheat too much you will stay in one place, kissing your goals goodbye. However, if you are too strict on yourself you may be depriving your body of food and nutrients that it needs. Make sure you are giving your body plenty of healthy nourishment.
What helps you overcome temptation? Share in the comments!