You’ve got it
You’ve got your gym routine down. You are dedicated 3-5 days a week to getting in the gym and crushing your workouts. So why is eating healthy so hard? For a lot of people, including myself, the answer is simple – we don’t plan ahead. When I first started my fitness journey, I noticed that if I didn’t have access to healthy food at all, and I mean ALL times, I would grab the closest thing to me and just destroy my diet. A box of donuts in the breakroom? Awesome. Wendy’s is right around the corner? I love their fries. When my tummy is rumbling, it no longer cares what goes in, as long as it’s fed. Obviously, learning a little self-control is the way to ultimately solve this issue, but who has time for that? I don’t. Or you could always read a million quotes about healthy living and being a “better you” on Pinterest. Which I do, daily. But, until we can all master the art of saying no, there are a few tricks that I’ve picked up along the way. Hopefully, they may be useful to you.
First – ALWAYS HAVE SNACKS
I’m not talking about spending hours in the kitchen on a Sunday, preparing your meals for the week either. I’m talking about simply throwing a few healthy snacks in some Ziploc bags before you leave for work. My favorites include, but not limited to, a handful of pistachios, a couple of oranges, a protein bar, rice cakes, banana chips, or every fit-chick’s favorite – a spoonful of peanut butter. Personally, I like to really get crazy with it and spread my peanut butter on top of my rice cake for a volcanic eruption of flavor in my mouth. I bring ALL of these to work and eat one periodically throughout the day. Usually it’s about every two-three hours, when my tummy gives me the slightest hint that it’s getting restless. My grandmother always used to say “Pre-planning prevents problems.” And you know what? She couldn’t have been more right. You would be surprised by how helpful it is in staying committed to your fitness plan. It will stop you from reaching for that donut in the breakroom. I promise you’ll be a lot less tempted to stop at Wendy’s on your drive home.
Second – GET CREATIVE
Eating right doesn’t have to be miserable. There are countless healthy but fun recipes on Pinterest for the calorie/carb counter, the gluten free guru, or the vegan veggie lover. Did I mention how much time I spend on Pinterest? I’m talking buffalo chicken lettuce wraps, paleo coconut covered chicken, ground turkey stuffed peppers, skinny zucchini lasagna etc. And they have desserts too! Anything from banana muffins to pumpkin coffee cake to paleo cinnamon rolls. Did you not just hear me? THEY HAVE A HEALTHY CINNAMON ROLL RECIPE. Now, obviously, as with everything, moderation is important, but knowing that eating can still be fun is a huge motivator to stay on track.
Third – WE ARE ALL HUMAN
No one is perfect. I don’t know of a single person that eats healthy 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. When starting my “fitness journey” I put way too much pressure on myself to be perfect all the time. It gets exhausting. And what happened? I ended up breaking one Saturday night at the Cheesecake Factory. That then turned into a two-week binge on every delicious naughty meal I’d been denying myself for months. I gained 15 pounds in 14 days and felt like a failure. Do not be like Jenna. Have a cheat day. It helps you stay sane during the week and it’s something to look forward to. Don’t constantly deprive yourself and put all this pressure on it, because take it from me that eventually you will crack. If someone brings those donuts to work, cut ¼ or even ½ of it off and treat yourself. Doing that every so often isn’t going to kill anyone, and it will most likely help you stay strong in the long run.