Tuesday, December 21, 2010

It's a Lifestyle NOT a DIET

"People are so worried about what they eat between Christmas and the New Year, but they really should be worried about what they eat between the New Year and Christmas”
My 90 year old grandpa
& 82 year old grandma
That quote really spoke to me!  Especially as 2010 is coming to a close.  Eating healthy and being healthy is a lifestyle and something that we can change.  The truth is, and I've said this before, only 10% of the battle is genetic!  80% is nutrition and 10% is your activity levels.  If your own lifestyle or your family lifestyle is to eat unhealthy or you've fallen into a rut of inactivity you may feel like it's just too much to try to change.  If you have been heavy most of your life you may feel trapped or that genetics are working against you, but you have the power to change it.  Give yourself, and your family, the gift of a better life.

Know Yourself
Caitlyn, my three-year-old
If you are ready to embark on a new journey of health and happiness, the first thing you have to remember is that it is NOT a DIET. It is a LIFESTYLE; a lifestyle that can become your new life AND your legacy.  If you have children, the lifestyle you are living is the lifestyle they will adopt for themselves.  What do you want for them? 

If you believe that you are starting a program you can't sustain, then you have to make modifications and be realistic.  I don't see what I do as a diet, it's something I do every day and I don't feel deprived in how I eat and live - and I've made adjustments to ensure that's true. 

For example, I don't like traditional salads.  I like greens, but not salads so you won't often see me eating one.  I also like large portions a few times a day, so eating clean allows me to eat larger quantities of lower calorie foods to make sure I feel full and have energy throughout the day.  You won't see me starving myself or counting calories.  Actually, eating clean properly with the right portion sizes and food combinations makes counting calories and fat unnecessary.  I like the occasional glass of wine, the piece of chocolate, and ketchup on some of my meats.  Moderation is key.  I don't use them as "treats" I weave them into the fabric of my routine in the right portion sizes so that they don't feel "wrong" and I don't feel guilty if I eat them.  I also don't beat myself up if I have a bad day - I don't let myself give up for the day either and throw in the towel, but I am kind to myself.  It's a journey, not a destination. 

The Power of One
"The Journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."

When I started my own personal journey (more to come on that) I wanted to be able to stay on this path for the rest of my life and not tie myself to a number on a scale or a dress size. I wanted to have energy, be happy and balanced for myself and my daughters. Weight loss and smaller dress sizes were a by-product of that healthy living.

Don't underestimate the power of one.  One positive choice.  I started with one minute of running on a treadmill.  That turned into one continuous mile.  One mile turned into one healthy meal a day and then one day of adding strength training.  One mile turned into one race... it just took the courage to get on a treadmill for one minute.  Anyone can do anything for one minute or one step at a time... remember that.  So, good luck on your journey... tomorrow is coming whether you are living healthy or not, why not make tomorrow healthier than today?  One day, one step, one choice.  Start with one.