Is Your Diet or "lifestyle" Sabotaging Your Goals?
I’m just going to get right into the nitty-gritty of a subject that has rocked my world in the last few months and has shifted my thinking.
That's diet culture and "lifestyle" programs. While they mean well and the "results" come, one specific program is NOT right for everyone, not at all. No matter what they say, one size does not fit all when it comes to diets. So while we are gearing up for this "New Year, new me" season, when many are setting weight loss goals, marketing strategists for weight loss programs are preying on you during this time of high stress in hopes that you'll join their program. I'm giving you permission to give yourself some grace and protect your wallet this year!
Flashy diets, extreme fitness, and weight-loss shows, and the next best diet pills flash across our Facebook and Instagram 24/7. We can't get away from them!
If you regularly watch NBC, perhaps you caught when TODAY show co-hosts Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager publicly tried intermittent fasting (IF).
First off, let me just say that I admire why the co-hosts wanted to try this tactic-- it's being promoted a lot! And, let me just state that I believe we should all experiment if we so choose. I think this can be a great strategy for some and I encourage people to try and see how they feel (Google IF, you can learn anything on the internet for free with just a little research!).
What I don't like about examples like the TODAY show are how it is being leveraged by weight-loss companies. I am seeing ALL over social media people starting to fast improperly, or programs using this show segment to say "See! Buy my program."
What I have learned, through experimenting with my own body and teaching this strategy, is that you should not take this lightly. One should not simply wake up and decide to intermittent fast. There is preparation that should be taken into consideration, like making sure that if you can get in enough food in your "fasting window" so you don't end up doing more harm than good by cutting food back too far.
Like I said, with the New Year and the idea of a “fresh start” around the corner, the billion-dollar health and fitness industry will see an influx of people looking to change their eating and exercise habits.
Here is the real problem with “diets” (newly labeled as lifestyles to sound more appealing) and the diet culture to hit the media (such as intermittent fasting):
Most diets and meal plans are not meant to be long term. This is simply a fact, and I have personally learned this the hard way time and time again. Unfortunately, when we try to follow a super-specific program or rigid prescription, many things can - and do - go wrong.
✔️ You don't stick to it like you are supposed to (because we are human and we have lives!)
✔️ You follow it perfectly (but it becomes too strict for too long)
✔️ You follow the plan for a while but don't enjoy it so it is not sustainable long term
We tend to want to believe we can sign up for a program or go on a diet and still eat whatever we want, even though we know that hasn’t worked in the past. Or we sign up and begin to label certain foods as "bad" or I can only have these foods if I workout or at such and such a time creating stress around food and a negative relationship with food.
If you are relying on a general, one size fits all "diet" or "lifestyle" to provide you with the exact nutrition plan for your complex body, hormones, and emotions and you don’t have any input into that decision-making, then you are relying on something external. That external reliance can disconnect you from the wisdom of your mind and body and you, unfortunately, have entered "diet culture."
So, let’s stop jumping from diet to diet.
Let’s "un-diet" and find what works for your unique body and is sustainable.
Ask yourself... “Could I eat this way next month? Next year? Would I want to worry about ALL these guidelines while on vacation with my family?"
It has to be sustainable, otherwise, it won't last.
Most diets and meal plans are typically not sustainable long term. In fact, they are not designed
for you to ever move on from them. They’ll give you all the warm and fuzzy feelings in the "honeymoon phase" as I call it, but while you are “blasting fat” your hormones and mental health may be suffering.
And let’s be real for a second...
Changing how we eat is hard.
But, if we want to make a lasting change, we need to stop blindly following the latest diets and start understanding our unique bodies, how we feel about food, and which foods are beneficial to us.
I committed to NOT stick to a specific strategy, diet or "lifestyle" for 2020 because I have been let down time and time again and my body suffers for it. I honestly just wanted to throw in the towel recently. I was frustrated with food and confused. My cortisol levels were out of control (cortisol is a stress hormone) and I was lashing out and kind of a rage monster and I had a terrible relationship with food.
So I decided to embark on a long journey of education because this industry is a passion of mine and it is so fascinating WHAT diet culture does to get into our minds and pockets.
So I am in phase 1( as I call it ) of my education journey and am currently studying to be a personal trainer and I have something amazing, and FREE lined up for all of you this "New Year, new me" season so you can keep your hard-earned money and NOT get tricked into a "this is the only way to do it for everyone" diet or lifestyle.
Opening soon is the Fit Chick Society FREE health and fitness community. There will be games, encouragement, accountability, REAL info on all different exercise and nutrition strategies so you can learn the nitty-gritty of each and pick and choose what works BEST for your body.
I have a waitlist so if you would like to join you can CLICK THIS LINK to get on the list and in a couple of weeks when this group launches you will get in there ASAP! Oh, and if you follow a certain program or lifestyle, I would still love to support you and have you join in on the fun as well.