Good morning! I have a really awesome guest post for you today. My friend Lauren (and who is also my “boss” at the YMCA…), just recently started a blog called The Fueled Physique and I’ve totally been loving it so I knew she HAD to guest post for me 🙂 What I love about her posts is that she’s honest and real and she doesn’t try to sell you any bullshit on diets or training or anything like that. She shares experiences she’s had or that she’s been exposed to and I think it’s everything that people can relate to! Dieting is a perfect example of that…. there are so many out there and the thing no one tells you is that not every diet works for everyone. Plus, most are not sustainable for the long haul, so you work your butt off dieting and then once you stop that particular diet you tend to gain the weight back, right? What’s the point in that? Not a whole lot, in my opinion.
Anyway, take it away, Lauren!
Diets. Do they work? Sure! They work if we follow the rules, but what happens when we stop? Diets have a way of making us feel like a failure if we don’t stick to them 100% or if we don’t have a plan for what to do when the diet is over. Failing at diets keep us in a restrict/binge cycle. Forget for a second what this does to your body and think about what does to your mind. You probably start beating yourself up because you’ve failed at yet another diet. Wouldn’t you rather think of yourself as a success? Can’t you find something good out of a diet mishap? Yes (I hope) and yes! All you have to do is think about what you learned. What can you take from each dieting experience? Here’s my personal thought process with some of the diets I’ve tried.
- Low Carb Diet: Nope, need much more food because I nearly passed out from a low carb diet plus they make me seriously moody.
- Special K: A bowl of cereal is NOT a meal…let alone two meals!
- Figure Competition Diet: Too restrictive
- IIFYM: Math?! No thanks.
- Paleo: I miss bread.
This is just a small snapshot of the things I’ve tried, but here’s what I found out: My body needs carbs, cereal isn’t enough of a meal for me, I need to have some way to incorporate treats into my diet, I don’t want to do math to figure out what I can eat and I need bread (pizza is part bread after all!). So now if I were to go look for a new diet (which I wouldn’t because I’ve figured out what works for me) and any of these things aren’t included, that’s a red flag for me.
Here’s the thing, if you keep failing on diets over and over again…maybe you shouldn’t be on one. If you’re someone who is a diet hopper, here’s some homework.
- Take a piece of paper and split it into three columns.
- Think of all the diets you’ve been on and write them down in the first column.
- Now think about why that diet didn’t work and write that in the second column.
- Lastly, think about what lesson you can take from each diet and write that in the third column.
At the end you’ll have a whole list of your own “diet must haves” so you can begin formulating your own way of eating.
Going back to my personal examples, I never eat a bowl of cereal for breakfast. Not because I think it’s “bad” but because I know it won’t hold me over as long as I need it to. So instead I have a greek yogurt and some trail mix or a couple hard boiled eggs and a piece of fruit. The mix of carbs, fat and protein keep me much fuller. I also have some kind of treat almost every day. I have either a glass of wine, some chocolate or some of my favorite candy. This helps me stay away from feeling restricted and deprived. I also don’t count or track anything I eat. This is because I have enough experience with dieting to know what to eat for the body I want.
Give the homework a shot and let me know how it turns out. What have you learned from your experiences with different diets? Put a positive spin on it and see how you can use that to help you move forward into your own unique eating lifestyle. If you need help with it reach out to me and I can help! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit my blog at www.fueledphysiqueblog.com ☺.
Thanks for the post, Lauren! I hope you all go check out her blog- it’s definitely worth a read!
Questions for you: Have you tried any fad diets? Do you find dieting works for you or do you prefer to just eat mostly vegetables and protein and fruits and stay away from processed food?