One of the most common conversations John and I have with our clients is about their diet. We ask them if they eat well and they usually say yes, they eat pretty healthily. Then when we ask them what they ate that day they tell us and it’s usually pretty bad! OR… it sounds good, but once we have them track everything they realize they forgot a lot of things. After my surgery a couple of years ago I steadily gained some weight. Then this past summer I got a little bit lazy and off track with my diet and exercise. So I recently decided to refocus myself and get back on track. In order to do that the first thing I had to do was evaluate what I was doing from day to day. To do that I began entering everything I ate into My Fitness Pal. It is an easy application and it works on my phone and my computer. It’s free – unless I want to pay for it to do the harder stuff – and it really works.
So here is what happened to me and it is more common than you think. I eat very healthily. VERY. However, most of us allow ourselves a little something every now and then and those little somethings add up. I usually get up and eat a great breakfast:
- 1.5oz extra lean ground turkey and lean ground beef mix
- 3 egg whites
- 1/2 cup cooked spinach
- 1/2 cup quinoa
- this gets me to about 27g protein and 27g carbs and 3g fat – which is a perfect start to my morning.
My pre-wokout and post-workout shake are pretty easy and spot-on and my lunch is usually pretty good – something like a salad with chicken and maybe some rice. Then I fall apart a little bit. When I am at home with my kids and they want cereal I might have a small handful of cereal that maybe I over-pored. Whoops, I’ll take care of that (with my mouth!) Or making a peanut butter sandwich – just lick the peanut butter off that knife – yum! And late at night I really feel like I “deserve” a treat so I might have a little square of chocolate. And when I have my late-night protein it tastes much better with a little chocolate in it. And maybe some coconut flakes and pecans? Yum! And just one glass of wine won’t hurt me. Isn’t red wine supposed to be good for you anyway?
So now I’ve gone a little bit overboard, and this is just a weeknight. The weekends are even worse! I hate eating breakfast on the weekends – I don’t know why, I just do. I think there is a little part of me that really wants to go have breakfast or brunch with friends like the good old days and really resents having to eat healthily. I also really really really want to sleep late and not worry about food. I usually manage to get myself up though and get some good food down – or take it to work to eat it there. After that I fall apart. Lunch and dinner on the weekend is usually very fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants as I usually have lunches and parties and fun stuff to do. Ok, I don’t really have that much fun stuff to do but I often think I “might”. Right? Someone might call and want to go to lunch and I want to be able to go. Or I might decide I want a hamburger or mexican food or something. I should be able to do that, right? Or I think I can run home and sneak a healthy lunch in before the soccer game but that never happens. Sigh… then it crumbles. I don’t eat lunch because I am busy with work and kids and soccer games and stuff. I get over-hungry in the afternoons and then I get home and start grabbing anything I can get my hands on. A handful of cheerios here, an apple, just a few of the kids’ chips… just put some food in my belly! I try to control it and eat some protein – maybe a can of tuna? But I went too long and now I’m famished. Besides, just one little handful isn’t that bad, right? Okay, maybe it was more like 5 handfuls. Geez… food nazi! Now I’m getting ready to go out and I’m thinking maybe I should eat something healthy before I go out so that I don’t do anything foolish like decide to eat a burrito with friends. But I want to look skinny in my jeans so I pass on food and decide I’ll save those calories for wine. Great decision, right? Oh. EM. Geee. Now I’ve had 2 glasses of wine on an empty stomach and one of my friends just ordered french fries for the table. I freaking LOVE french fries. And come on, it’s just a fried potato. Potatoes are good carbs! Screw it – I want those fries!
So obviously, this is just an example. I would NEVER behave that way. I’m perfect. I eat healthily all the time. But this does give you a good idea of how just one little bite here and there can add up and really screw up your diet.
So here is the key to all of this: Fail to Plan = Plan to Fail.
It’s as simple as that. If you aren’t mindful about your food and you don’t take the time to plan to succeed, then you will not succeed. Next month: How to Plan to Succeed!
Note: I have signed up for Mike Doehla’s Stronger U to see what I can do. So far I really like it and I can already see results. If you are interested in checking it out, you can visit his Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/mike.doehla?fref=ts or check out his website here: http://www.strongerufit.com/