Tomorrow is the first Monday of 2016. A new year usually signals the start of the health and fitness resolutionists - new year, new me and all that. As much as I moan about newbies hogging the lat pull down or standing in my spot at kettlebells, I actually don't mind. My own health and fitness journey started out as a New Year's resolution way back in 2010. Back then I couldn't imagine ever stepping foot in a gym, and even when I did I needed Gordon to hold my hand! Gyms can be a scary place. I try to remember and smile at newcomers, to make people feel welcome and comfortable and definitely not judged by my angry bitch face in the corner! I'm glad people are using the new year as an opportunity for positive change - a chance to create a healthier, happier version of themselves.
What really grinds my gears though, is the way the diet industry cashes in on this time of year. People have made the decision to lose weight and more often than not they will look for the easiest and fastest route to their goal. I actually saw a comment on Facebook today that said "Roll on the starvation and hunger pains!", or something along those lines. I think it was meant to be motivational to the other people in the conversation!
Here's the thing... THERE IS NO MAGIC PILL AND YOU DO NOT NEED TO STARVE! Forget your juices and your shakes, your fat burners, your point counting and your carb banning. I can't understand why anyone would choose to punish themselves like that. Forget the diets! I've gone from a size 16 to a size 10 and never been on a "diet" in my life. You've probably gained a few lbs over the festive period, we all do. I have. The thing is, most people don't eat the same way in December as they do the rest of the year. First things first, get back into your usual routine. This will more than likely get you back down to your pre-Christmas weight! Maybe not straight away, but in a month or 2 - it's never going to happen overnight.
If you want something you've never had, you have to do something you've never done!
If you're unhappy with the weight you were pre-Christmas, assess what you can do to make a difference. Back in 2010 the first thing I did was cut out alcohol for 6 weeks and I still to this day believe that's what made the biggest impact on my weight loss! So much so that Gordon and I have agreed to do it again for the first 6 weeks of 2016. Let's face it though - cutting out all your vices in one go is never going to be easy, or enjoyable. Chances are you'll feel so restricted that you'll eventually end up binging on all the things you've banned yourself from! Rather than banning ALL junk food FOREVER, try cutting out one thing at a time, or even just limiting it to the weekend or once a day. Or better still, put your focus on what you can eat. Set a goal that packs more nutritious foods into your diet - eat protein with every meal, eat more veg, make a healthy breakfast every day. Make things easier and more sustainable for yourself! The main thing to remember is you don't have to eat less*, you don't even have to eat perfectly - you just have to eat better. Use your common sense and cut the crap.
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Flexible dieting has been my savior these last few months and I'm getting right back into it this year. My wedding is 7 months away and I'll be tracking my macros to get in shape for it. Look out for a post on macros soon!
"The secret of change is to focus all your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new."
*OK, you do need a calorie deficit but for most people that's 15-20% less than their current intake - NOT starvation!