This sends me into a frenzy....

The excitement of starting something new.  A new diet, a new workout, whatever kind of new plan.  It’s so exciting!  And then you realize all the things you can’t have or do.  

Now, starting a new exercise routine and leaving behind a favorite exercise or two is a whole helluva lot different than starting a diet and having to leave behind chocolate or wine, right?   Or maybe it’s another favorite for you.  

I am one of those that the minute I decide something is off limits, I become obsessed with it.  Even if it’s something I don’t even enjoy that much!  Frenzy or just plain whack?  

When I was competing in natural bodybuilding I ate 5 times a day.  But, I weighed, measured and counted every ounce, gram and bite that I consumed.  I was a bodybuilder and that’s just what you do.  I learned a lot about food and portions.  I also learned some foods just weren’t worth it to consume because they would set me back up to 2 weeks on the scale!  I learned Splenda or diet soda could set me back 3 days!  

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I did that for about 7 years.  I worked my ass off, literally.  I felt great...until I didn’t.  

I loved life...until I didn’t.  

I had abundant energy….until I didn’t.  

I had a social life and friends….until I didn’t.  

I rebounded.  When I competed for the last time, I went crazy eating foods I never cared for before.  I felt off the rails.  I had to get balance and gain some control over myself.  But, I had to do something different because I just couldn’t make myself adhere to a strict program anymore no matter how hard I tried, how badly I beat myself up or how much I tried to exercise.  

So what exactly sends me into a frenzy?  

RESTRICTION!!!!  DEPRIVATION!!!!  

I’ve obviously been there and done that and it was a sick game while it lasted.  But, I’m so over that.

I remember during the post competitive bodybuilding period sitting in a restaurant, having lunch with a friend during the week and watching a table next to us of 3 women.  They were having such a great time and they were having wine!  WHAT?!  During the week.  During the day.  That is some crazy shit!  I had rules around wine and food that was "non-diet".  

SPLURGE FOOD RULE #1:  It must be weighed, measured, consumed only on one night a week which was going to be a weekend and limit of 1-2 glasses only and probably only after a heavy leg day (that burns the most calories).

Pu-LEASE!

Are you feeling exhausted yet?  Me, too!  

And that’s exactly what happened.  I got tired.  Sick and damn tired of restriction and food rules.  I saw people enjoying their life, their food AND during the week and they were thin and happy!  

I started to wonder why they were so lucky?  I also decided I wanted what they had.  

I decided to get curious.  

I decided to be adventurous and crazy myself and have wine with lunch on a Wednesday!  

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I had to loosen the hold that diets had on me.  One way of doing that was to do the complete opposite of what I’d been doing.  

I don’t know about you, but the minute I ward of some sort of food that I’ve deemed off limits, I crave it like there’s no tomorrow.  Don't tell me what I can and can't do or have!  :D

So I just stopped making food bad.  

 

Instead, I let myself have whatever I wanted, but I made sure to check in and make sure I really wanted it.  And that I wanted everything that goes along with it.  

 

Maybe that food brings with it:

  • Gas

  • Bloating

  • Rumbling tummy and loud gurgles

  • Headaches

  • Foggy thinking

  • Low energy

  • Anxious energy

  • Swelling of my hands/feet

  • Mood swings

  • Or in the case of wine at lunch, pretty much no productivity for the rest of the day

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And if I CHOSE to have something like cake, that doesn’t make me feel good in my body, then I practiced eating less of it.  When it ceased to taste truly decadent, I stopped eating.  Brilliant, right?!  

Yes, I’m saying you don’t have to eat the whole damn thing because this is your only shot to have a cake.  The reality is that is ISN'T the only cake you'll ever get to eat again!

Try this instead:

  • Don’t make any one food be off limits.  After all, it’s just food.  

  • No matter what you are eating, pay attention to how your body reacts and feels during, after and a few hours later.  Take notes on that and remember it.  

  • Enjoy every bite like it’s the best damn thing you’ve ever eaten.  Even if it’s a fast food burger.  No judgement here.  

The best tip I’ve ever gotten around eating decadent or splurge food was:

!Stop eating when it ceases to taste amazing!

What?!  I didn’t know that was ok.  Because of restrictive and deprivation diets, I always thought I needed to eat the entire cake in one sitting because I didn’t know when my next chance would be.  You feel me?  

Well, screw that.  I changed my thinking and settled my monkey mind by letting it know that I can have anything I want at any given moment.  And my monkey mind started to relax.  

So stop.  

Just stop depriving yourself of nourishment.  

Just let yourself eat.  

Relax and trust your body’s innate wisdom that it knows what it needs at any given moment.  

Learn to recognize when it’s emotional hunger or physical hunger and go with it.  

I hope you learn something about yourself when you give this new way of thinking and being a try.  Life can be so much more fun when you aren't tied down to food rules and restrictions.  

Are you curious to learn more and would like support while you figure this out?  Let's talk!  Tell me about your experience in the comments below.  I want to hear from you.