We’ve all been guilty of following a specific diet program that deprives us of the foods we really enjoy in an attempt to get fit and healthy. These types of diets that promise rapid fat loss are usually ones that promote calorie restriction and advocate eating a limited set of foods that will get us the results we’re after. More often than not, your latest “wonder” diet was recommended by a friend, or you found it on Google or your favourite fitness celeb was promoting it. So like me once upon a time, you decide to give it a go. You’re all motivated, you go and get all the food recommend and eat nothing but that. You’re determined to follow it down to the last gram and after a few weeks (or months if it’s one of the better plans out there), you’re seeing great results. You’ve lost weight and everyone is noticing – hooray!
All the praise you receive makes you feel like you can reward yourself. And so you do! After all, you’ve been missing out on all the things you love to eat and you’re feeling good, so why not. So, you reintroduce your favourite foods and gradually forget about following your specific diet plan. Sadly it’s not long before you notice you’ve gained weight and no longer feel great about yourself. It’s literally like getting on a merry go round and not knowing what to do to get off.
Thankfully there is hope! I too was guilty of being in diet mode – in fact, I spent years following diet after diet only to realise I kept getting bigger and bigger! That’s right, I kept getting bigger and bigger and it was NO fun at all.
So let me tell you straight, the more “diet plans” you go on, the WORSE you’re going to feel when you finish your diet! So please, please, please don’t embark on another diet unless you have a specific plan, for a specific timeframe and you are making sure that your calories are not in any way restricted as you could end up doing more damage to your metabolism than you realise.
It wasn’t until I actually learnt why I was putting certain foods into my body and what those foods were doing to my body, that I understood how to make better choices. By learning about food and the role it plays within your body, you can empower yourself to make conscious decisions daily to eat healthy nutritious food that doesn’t weigh you down!
Learning about protein, fats and carbs and how much you need of each is crucial to your long-term health and fitness success. Learn what foods are best to eat often and which are better to eat less often. By learning about “why” you should be eating something (rather than just eating it because your diet plan told you to), you’ll be changing your mindset to focus on nourishment.
So if you’re someone who finds themselves in ‘diet mode’ time and time again, watching the number on the scales go down and then up and then down and then up again, make a conscious decision to break the cycle. Rather than putting time into researching your next diet, put time into researching how to eat healthy for life. My 7 rules for success are a great place start!
It will literally change your life, it changed mine!
“If tomorrow, women woke up and decided they really liked their bodies, just think how many industries would go out of business.”
— Dr Gail Dines
When Dr Gail Dines said the above quote, she really hit the nail on the head. Whether you realise it or not, so many industries thrive from targeting those of us who are at times insecure and our genuine desire to change ourselves.
We see products and marketing every single day that tries to get an emotional response from us so we buy into the promise that product X provides. These companies know all too well that women can be insecure and super hard on themselves to live up to some sort of picture of who they think they should be. Not to mention, if we’re having an ‘off’ day, it may mean that we inevitably buy into promises that usually fall well short of the intended result! However, some of the time you’ll find a product or someone who actually cares about your success but bottom line, but there’s a catch….YOU have to be the one to do the work. No one can do it for you.
There are numerous diet programs, boot camps and online plans promising you’ll lose kilos upon kilos in a few weeks, teas or pills that promise you’ll get a flat tummy, waist trainers that guarantee you’ll have a more feminie and curvy figure, supplement companies promising to drop your fat faster than ever and it doesn’t stop there. The beauty industry is well known for presenting manipulated images as ideal representations of what we all should strive to achieve. These images are supposed to make us feel great about the investment that we’re potentially making and subconsciously allow us to think that perhaps we’ll look like that and we’ll be as happy as “she” is if we buy the represented product. However, it’s important to know that a lot of the time, the women used as models in those advertisements don’t actually use the products and the products themselves are full of empty promises!
All we have to do is look at the latest social media platforms at the myriad of examples to compare ourselves to and it’s enough for even the most confident woman, to feel pretty inadequate. However, while we can’t change what is being presented to us anytime soon, there IS something we can ALL do about how we perceive ourselves and what we allow ourselves to accept as fact.
Learning to love who we are and allowing ourselves to accept our imperfections is probably the hardest thing you’ll have to face in your search to be truly happy in your own skin. Until you are able to look at your (judgmental) self on all levels, you’ll continue on your merry-go-round of self hate, negative self talk and resentment.
So for those of you who are ready to take a good look at yourselves, you may find the following tips helpful:
// You don’t need the magical product: If you’re looking for a solution to feel better and look better, it’s not going to come in a box! Eat healthy, move often and take time out of your schedule to do things you love – your body will thank you for it.
// You’ll never be happy if you keep comparing: You don’t need a smaller waist, a bigger bum, larger boobs or anything else – what you need is to stop comparing! Whether that is on social media, in real life or elsewhere, never compare yourself to another person as you are perfectly imperfect. Setting goals, should always be based around health! Looking good is a side effect!!
// You can love every inch: Every flaw, stretch mark, wrinkle and more – these are all signs that you’ve lived life and lived it well! Often society makes us feel like we don’t have the right to love every bit of who we are – but we absolutely can! Love ALL of YOU… your mind, your body and your soul and appreciate yourself for the amazing person you are.
When you feel good within yourself, you won’t pay attention to the silly magic product ads with empty promises. Instead you’ll keep on loving yourself for all that you are!
Full Body Circuit - 15mins
If you looking for a super fast, super effective workout that will work your entire body, then make sure you put aside 15mins!
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If you can't get to the gym today, try this at home workout! It's super quick and super effective. Even just getting moving for 15mins each day helps you feel so much better within yourself. After all, don't we deserve to feel great?! It all STARTS with us. No one is going to do it for us, so why not start right now!
If you're looking for a super fast, super effective workout that will work your butt and get your heart rate up at the same time, then make sure you put aside 15 minutes to try this workout!
For those of us who are honest, we’ve all been guilty at one time or another of wanting to look our very best, whether it’s been for a selfie we’ve taken, a coffee date with our girlfriends or a pic of us out and about enjoying ourselves. Now there’s nothing wrong with wanting to look great as it often leads to us feeling great, but the problem is that sometimes people actually lose sight of what’s important and often hurt themselves long-term by doing things for short term gain.
Not to mention on top of all of that, we’re surrounded by constant pressure to be something we think we should be or to look a certain way. There are constant updates, newsfeeds and social platforms bombarding us with images of “fitness competitors” who we should all aspire to be like.
It’s VERY easy to get caught up in the tidal wave of those who are eating well and going to the gym just to look good. Let’s face it, an image of you looking good results in more engagement from your friends, more popularity and more attention and for many people this is actually a good thing to keep them motivated. However, the danger arises when your focus shifts from being “fit and healthy” first and foremost, to something a whole lot worse; “looking good at whatever cost”. So many young women (and men) think that in order to be successful they need to go on restrictive diets, do copious amounts of cardio and contemplate doing other things to their bodies. People don’t seem to want to work hard these days when there are other easier options to get you into great shape.
It’s frightening to think about how many people have sacrificed their health for a short term result and who have then paid the ultimate price. Health FIRST is something that every person needs to be mindful of now and always. Without health, what do you really have?
Being fit and healthy is, in my opinion, is one of the best things you can ever achieve! Not only will you feel great and have so much energy to do the things you enjoy, you usually look amazing simply as a side effect!
Being fit and healthy is all about having a functional body that is strong enough to fight off diseases, strong enough to keep us in a good mental state and strong enough to do all the things us women do – as mothers, daughters, wives, role models, employees, bosses and so on.
Of course, when we work out and eat well we’re going to reap the benefits by looking great, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that! Feeling good and looking good result in increased confidence levels and having more confidence is so positive on all areas of our lives. However, while it’s great to be confident in who you are and how you look, just make sure your driving factor is to be fit and healthy first and foremost!
I would really encourage you to take some time to have a good think about why you workout and why you eat well. Start by thinking of all the reasons that AREN’T associated with looking good. In all seriousness, this will give you the drive you truly need to be fit and healthy for life!
Remember, being healthy is paramount, looking good is a side effect.
If you can't get to the gym today, try this at home workout. It's super quick and super effective!