Break the cycle of seasonal dieting

THE CYCLE

If you’re consistently rushing to drop weight in summer and then waving goodbye to all that effort and achievement in winter, then you definitely need to read this blog. Not just for your mindset and relationship with food, but to cut costs and keep all those hard earned summer gains.

So how do we break the cycle of the seasonal dieting?

FIRST, SEE THE STORY

We are so attached to the stories we tell ourselves about different foods, you know, those ones where foods are considered ‘treats’, ‘cheat meals’, ‘naughty’, ‘good for you’ and ‘bad for you’.

There is a lot of misunderstanding around food, mostly due to fact that information is always changing. And there are also many different views on how to achieve fat loss, increase energy and improve health especially from the media who just make it all the more confusing. All this, means that we have a gigantic library of unhelpful tall stories stored up in our mind.

The diet story goes a little like this; fear, restriction, failure, exhaustion…And the ‘not on a diet’ story is more like this…comfort, tasty, naughty, easy, happy. I don’t know about you, but I’m not sold on dieting. Why does it have to be such a chore? Or do we make it a chore because of how we view the food we choose to eat when dieting and not?

UNDERSTAND HOW WE ARE PROGRAMMED

Pain and pleasure govern everything we do and every decision we make. Humans will always be driven to the more pleasurable things in life, but will push themselves away from the painful things. So, if a ‘diet’ is conceived as painful, realistically how long do you think we can keep it up? Not long. Which is why for many women we struggle to be consistent with our fitness and food choices.

But it’s easy to diet in the summer, whys that?

Well, summer is when you are likely to be wearing bikinis and less clothes so, for many, the pain of being in a bikini and not feeling confident outweighs the pain of eating a salad. Plus it’s much easier to eat a salad when the sun is shining and it’s warm outside. But in winter, we cover up! It’s dark and cold, and way more pleasurable to sit in the warmth, snuggled up and hiding behind a big jumper eating a comforting carbohydrate-heavy meal. We are simply procrastinating until the last minute, January, when we start up our seasonal diet rollercoaster of pain. Procrastination is when NOT doing something is more pleasurable than actually doing something. That’s ‘winter mode’ for most of us.

So how do you stop being a seasonal dieter?

Simple, we need to stop procrastinating, and to do that we need to understand the WHY. Why am I dieting? What’s the end goal? In summer I bet most of us start a diet thinking; ‘I want to feel good in a bikini’, ‘I want to lose x amount of lbs before…’. In winter, be honest, have you EVER reset your focus or your goals? Many have not. Do you even know what they are in winter? Many do not.

So, the solution is a simple as these three steps:

  1. Assess and have clarity on what you want to achieve.
  2. Write down all of the benefits of achieving those goals like, a boost in your confidence, how much better you will feel overall, having more energy.
  3. And then write down all the negative things for NOT achieving those goals. What it will do for your confidence, how you will feel if you don’t achieve it and what you might shy away from doing, as well as any negative thoughts you have about it.

After you have done these 3 steps, you can then make the decision to get that goal. Write it down, stick a note on your bathroom mirror or better still, find a way to put all of the positives and negatives in plain sight, to remind you every day of your goals. And then, when it comes to the food story, you can simply ask, is this food going to help me achieve all those positive things about this goal or is it going to push me towards all those negative things. You will be surprised at just how effective this is. It is one of the techniques we teach on our 30 and 90 day nutritional programmess and has worked for so many women just like you.

“I can’t do it, I know I will fail”
“Tried it before, it doesn’t work”
“It’s too hard”
“There is too much temptation at Christmas”

It’s all a story…change the story, change your achievements.