In the previous entry, I shared my primary method for not eating that cookie. It’s a rather simple mindset hack or mental switch that I’ve used for decades with astounding success. Now I’d like to share a few other options that may also help you battle cravings and stick with your dietary goals.
Some of these you’ve no doubt heard of or even tried before. Even so, try one or all, or combine them until you find the mix that works for you.
This one is pretty easy: 80-90% of the week, eat healthy. The remaining 10-20% of the week, enjoy a treat.
That junk food that you’ve been eating too much of, just stop it. Jump off that cliff. Drop that junk, fast and hard. Stop buying it. Clear your cabinets, pantry, and refrigerator, or freezer shelves of it, and give every last bit of it away. Then, don’t look back. Don’t look back.
For most, going “cold turkey” can be physically or emotionally stressful, resulting in an even greater desire to indulge or overindulge. So, instead of leaping off that edge, ease your way down the cliff. Over a period of a week or a month, reduce your consumption of those tasty, but not-so-healthful foods. If you swap in a healthier item, increasing the amount of the better-for-you food as you decrease the other, you’ll hardly miss the questionable food.
Much like going Cold Turkey, the Quick Switch requires abrupt action, but also takes advantage of Tapering. Start by replacing that daily donut with carrot chips or fruit just once or twice per week. Keep doing this until you reach your goal.
Find a trusted friend or close family member who is walking a similar path to better health, or desires to, and team up. Hold each other strictly accountable for what you eat on a daily or weekly basis. This will require complete honesty, transparency, and more than a touch of vulnerability.
This final method takes the Accountability Partnership to a different level, so choose your buddy wisely. It’s easy and can be fun. You’ll need someone who possesses a good sense of humor but who will, at the same time, hold your feet to fire and call you out if and when you mess up. You start by making simple a contract such as: “I will pay John Doe $50 if I eat any sweets between now and August 31st. Signed, XYZ“. And if you eat the cookie before August 31st, you pay up. Simple yet effective.
If losing money doesn’t motivate, consider agreeing to something a bit more, uh, creative such as:
-Sporting a mohawk for a week and then shaving your head
-Singing karaoke at a local biker bar. Sappy love songs are a must
-Cleaning your buddy’s house or walking their dog every day for a month
-Posting daily on social media, telling the world what an extraordinary and amazing, awesome and intelligent your friend you have in your pal
-Chauffeuring your Bounty Buddy around for a month
-Wearing your clothes on backward for a week
-Wearing bright colored 1970s leisure suits for a week
So there you go, more easy to implement ideas that just may help you stay on the healthier diet path. Again, try one, or try all until you discover what works best for you.
Though the weather says January, it’s April, believe it or not. So how’s that New Year’s resolution workin’ for ya? “What resolution,” you ask. You know, the one where you promised yourself that you’d make massive, healthful changes to your diet and get fit in 2018. It worked for a few days or maybe a few weeks, but then the voices started up again. The cookies and the cupcakes, or the chips and the pretzels started whispering to you, started calling your name again, quietly, softly, consistently, almost constantly…
These tempters are hard to resist, and sometimes, your willpower goes offline or fails altogether and you feel the overpowering urge to give in. And you do. But after that, you try again, you reset your willpower quotient and try again. After a few rounds of the same cycle, maybe you decide you’re just not strong enough, or the change is not worth the challenge, even though deep inside, you really know that it is.
What if, instead of relying on the limited and sometimes fickle resource of willpower, there is a better way to upgrade and maintain your dietary goals, and your exercise goals? Actually, there are many helpful ways to make your desired change stick, but let’s talk about what is quite possibly the most powerful: Intention.
Intention, a deep-seated, unrelenting resolve that goes far beyond the willpower. It doesn’t rely on how you feel. It doesn’t need anyone else to agree with it. And it doesn’t wane with use; use actually strengthens it. At its core, within the heart of an intention, you’ll find your why, and having a strong why is one of your hidden superpowers.
When I’m in full training mode, usually March through October, I’ve found that I have this striking, mutant-like ability to resist my own personal kryptonite. How? It’s really simple. I set the intention that I will train at a high level and I won’t enjoy my “victory dance”, i.e., eat sweets, until after a certain day has been reached or a certain event has been accomplished. Once I set that mental intention, backed by a solid end-date, I’m good. I can purchase my favorite ice cream and though I may see it in my freezer every single day, I don’t experience even a twinge of desire to eat it, even if my victory dance day is weeks or months away.
I’ve used this method for decades with an astonishing success rate of about 97% . That’s not to say I always eat right and never enjoy a cookie, or donuts, or candy on occasion, ’cause I do. I just don’t eat sweets during my hardcore training period. After that, from about Thanksgiving to the first part of a New Year, well, that’s a different story that I’ll save for another time…
Why does this work? Why does setting an intention seal the deal? When you have a reason, a why, and a when, you can endure just about anything in order to reach your goal. If on the other hand one dallies with a vague notion of what they maybe would sort of like to accomplish, doesn’t possess a strong enough why, and hasn’t set a concrete end-date, the chances of making progress, let alone of succeeding, are close to nil.
If you’re struggling to change your diet, or stay on course with your fitness program, and you’re up for a fun little challenge, do the following:
For some, this will work the very first time. If so, great; now expand the experiment and see what else you can accomplish by setting a powerful intention. Your mind is really the limit.
If it doesn’t work for you on the first go, try it again. You may want to tweak your intention if it doesn’t work the second time, but above all else, do not let yourself become discouraged; seeing the positive results you desire, and that you deserve, could take a little longer than you first expected, but it will be worth it.
You’ve got this. You can do this.
Good luck. Be sure to let me know how it works for you!
After several months and many, many hours, the Martial – Fitness Minimart is finally open! I built this site for you, martial artists, fitness enthusiasts, and those who seek to live an overall healthier lifestyle.
As a kid, I loved going to convenience stores and mini-marts. Though they were usually small shops, they seemed to hold everything I wanted and more, namely junk food! In particular, I fondly remember family road-trips to Oklahoma and stopping in the town of Big Cabin, Oklahoma. In a child’s mind, it took forever to get there, but once there it was like Shangri-La; once the secondary things had been taken care of (bathroom breaks and gassing up the car), we’d dive in and refuel ourselves, each of us sorting through the sparkling aisles and items and choosing armfuls of tasty sweets and salty treats–talk about a kid in a candy store…
Well now that I’m an actual adult, I’ve created my own convenience store of sorts, but with a totally different emphasis. So, what’s in this online mini-mart? Take a look:
Aisle 1 contains martial arts supplies, equipment, books, uniforms, etc. In Aisle 2 you’ll find a ton of general fitness training equipment, books, and clothing. Aisle 3 features a wide range of sports nutrition supplements to help you level-up. The most extensive aisle, Aisle 4, is filled with so many great healthy alternatives to everyday products that you’ll probably want to camp out there for a while just to see it all. I created Aisle 5 so that I could share the really cool items that don’t exactly fit any of the other categories; there you’ll find stylish women’s clothing, and interesting gadgets, among other things. Finally, I have to be candid with you about Aisle 6, the personal shopping aisle. At the moment, I’m on the fence with this aisle, knowing that it could be very helpful to some but also wondering if it can work as envisioned. So for now, Aisle 6 is still under construction, but I’ll let you know if and when it opens.
Be sure to also visit the Specials! page. Most of the posted offers will be available for a limited time, so check in often.
In addition to the above, you’ll soon see:
My hope is that you find this virtual mini-mart helpful and it becomes your go-to site for the best in healthy alternatives, sports nutrition, fitness, and martial arts supplies. So, please dive in, look around, and enjoy! For more information, visit About, or Contact me.
Thanks for stopping in. Come back soon, come back often!