Besides the genetic traits you were born with, your lifestyle habits, good or bad, have the greatest impact on your mood. Life habits did not begin yesterday, and depending on how old you are, they can go back several decades, Day after day, year after year, you have surely repeated similar patterns and routines in your life. So, the reality is that convincing yourself to just eat right or to get your lazy rear off of the couch to exercise is just not going to cut it. In order to make deep, meaningful and impactful changes to your life, you will need to have an executable plan of action. Your plan must be realistic in order for you to succeed, You will need a few basic skills in behavior change and a plan to remain motivated through those tough times when it is so much easier to forgo hitting the gym for cruising the kitchen pantry and or refrigerator. To succeed in changing unhealthy behaviors to healthy behaviors, you must identify lifelong habits that contribute to your unhealthy lifestyle, you wll need to set realistic goals, and practice effective tactics for developing new healthy habits.
If you follow David’s Way, you will gradually reprogram your tastebuds away from craving sweets. And this will happen without you feeling deprived nor overwhelmed as long as you set realistic goals, which are achievable and specific. Specific as in not just losing weight, but in achieving specific body fat percentages, lowering your cholesterol, lowering and managing your blood pressure. You can and will set realistic physical fitness goals that no matter your level of fitness, you can achieve through setting numerous short term goals to work towards in the journey towards your final goals. Setting short term goals is the most effective means of achieving personal goals whether it is with your health or level of physical fitness.
In making changes in your dietary habits in order to lose weight or to meet other physical goals, it is a must that you begin keeping a food journal in order to truly evaluate where you need to tweak changes in your dietary habits. It is highly difficult to make changes for your life when you do not know the specifics of what needs changed. Tracking calories and macronutrients are key to success. While this may seem to be a pain at first, it will soon just become a part of your daily routine. It is a part of my daily routine, I track every morsel of food that passes my lips. Your memory is not always going to be accurate, you will forget a few things you have nibbled on occasionally. You memory will also be biased in what you may want to recall with your food choices. With all this being said, jotting down information such as when, what, why and how you felt before and after eating provides invaluable and accurate feed back. Once we at David’s Way begin individual counseling here soon, we will require a food diary as a component of our program.
After keeping detailed records for at least a week or two, you will notice patterns. You will know what might have triggered you, this will help you in watching for the thoughts, moods, events or circumstances that trigger binge eating, or even the foods which might have caused a change in your mood to the positive. By tracking your patterns, the clues about why you eat inappropiately will become obvious. You will be able to identify the conditions, thoughts, and feelings that cause you to not eat right. By learning to identiy patterns and clues, you will be able to develop strategies for creating changes in your daily habits. Keeping records is going to require a little of your time, and certainly requires full commitment, but it is the most valuable tool you will learn to use in bettering yourself in health and weight management.
Remember, how you think and feel about making dietary changes influences how much you eat or whether you will stick with a new way of eating. In the case of David’s Way, it will be eating zero refined sugar or processed foods and eating only whole foods from the perimeter of your local grocery store. Very little from the interior of your grocer is worth eating. It is highly important to understand and untangle the link between eating and feelings. Certain beliefs and attitudes can contribute to problems. You must work on strengthening your resolve and control. Examine your beliefs, attitudes and thoughts and couteract any negative ones with more realistic and positive ones.
Always, always remind yourself that it took a good long time to develop your habits, they will not just instantly change over night because you wished for it. Be patient with the process, trust the process, be patient with yourself as you take steps in improving yourself. As you learn to identify and replace old patterns with new eating habits that help you feel your best. Know that by quitting sugar, you will never experience that sugar high and subsequent crash again. Set realistic goals for your self, which are specific. Just saying I want to lose weight is not enough. Keep records, plan and practice new eating behaviors until they become your habits.
Eating the right foods where you are not crashing or your blood sugar or spiking your insulin is a simple fix to repairing the way you feel. Bad foods cause you to have a lack of energy, depression, sleep problems, stress, and an inability to concentrate. Even if how you feel is caused by another factor besides your diet, eating well is the foundation for getting well. You do not have to feel poorly for the most part, as proper nutrition helps immensely in elevating your mood and spirits. There is hope. And that hope lies in making the commitment, a life time commitment to be the best and healthiest you can be. To always strive to be a little better than you were yesterday. Set a realistic image in your mind’s eye of how you want to feel and look. Create a plan with a long term goal that will be reached by first meeting several short term goals. Be prepared to make small daily adjustments in your lifestyle to reach your goals. There is hope, you can do it. And always know, you are worth it.