Weight Loss and Lifestyle Revelations
I spend a lot of time on the internet reading everything from academic, peer reviewed articles on every topic under the sun (I like to learn, and I'm really nosy and basically want to know everything) to the latest makeup trends and other frivolous dreg. The internet is chock full of people and organizations trying to sell you the best way to lose weight and be healthy. So much of the time I see people trying to sell me a pyramid scheme of powders and prepacked crap and calling it a "lifestyle". Let me tell you, from my vantage point prepacked meals and powders that your "friends" are attempting to sell you to pad their pockets is not a lifestyle. It's not sustainable, you can see this from how transient the effects of these products are and how people actually never use them for a prolonged period of time. A lifestyle is something you subscribe to, it is something that you engage in for more than a month or a year. It is something you come back to time and time again.
Okay, that rant is over.... Wait! One more, eating "clean" is the most ambiguous term probably ever. What does this even mean (I am like actually curious people, tell me)?
Okay, I do not proclaim to be an expert on health and fitness, but I can tell you what I am learning. And yes I mean learning, this is not a one and done thing, I want to constantly better myself and learn continuously. In my adult life I have had a tumultuous relationship with food, it has been my crutch, my means of celebrating, I have loved it and hated it. Here is the thing:
Food is for enjoying, not worrying about!
Let me say it one more time, food is for enjoying, not worrying about. You do not need to have this tumultuous relationship with food. You don't need to feel immense guilt if you eat the french fry or the brownie. YOU DO NOT NEED TO BEAT YOURSELF UP, the world is tough enough, we don't have to beat ourselves down. One of the ways to revamp your relationship with food is to know the difference between emotional hunger and physical hunger. I found this nice infographic on the Londoner's blog.
I am a sucker for giving into emotional hunger, so one of the most difficult things I have trying to achieve is to not give into this emotionally charged hunger.
In the post referenced above, Rose Thomas of the Londoner talks about the 80/20 rule, and I think that for me, this really is the key to achieving a lifestyle instead of a fad diet. I attempt to be strict low carb, and my first rodeo with low carb I was diligent, and I remember the anxiety I felt at the prospect of having a cheat day. Well that from my vantage point doesn't mean that I have a more positive relationship with food and ultimately with myself. I means I was using low carb as a crutch. Instead I need to look at eating what I deem to be healthy 80% of the time and allowing myself that 20% when I need it.
So how has my relationship with food changed? While I still try to eat low carb, I no longer feel immense guilt if I have a Lindt Truffle, or if I really just want to eat a couple french fries. For me it is more important to learn my limits and to focus on moderation. If I was going to cheat, it was going to be a glorious event that the ancient Romans would have been proud of. I no longer need to do that, I can have a small cheat and not continue to cheat the rest of the day and I no longer hate myself.
Of course I still have things to work on, but I feel like I am finally headed in the right direction. I am learning that the number on my scale is not a reflection of who I am. So what, I don't have a 6 pack and I don't need to enter myself in a bikini contest and have people judge my body to validate my existence. So coupled with continuing to love myself, my next goal is to cut out diet soda. So wish me luck! I will update you guys in a couple months.