It’s way too easy to make excuses these days instead of following through and creating positive and healthy eating habits. The same goes for working out and exercising. After a while, excuses tend to add up, and the result is getting nothing accomplished. Instead of allowing excuses to rule do something about it. Decide to get rid of excuses and replace them with healthier habits. In fact, the Body Reboot book discusses how to make healthy eating habits and stop making excuses once and for all.
“I earned one of those chocolate chip cookies.”
Having difficult days may lead you to believe it’s okay to indulge in a cookie or two, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Instead of rewarding yourself with food Everyday Health says you should pay yourself with a fun activity. There are other ways to keep you busy while having fun instead of munching down on unhealthy snacks.
Famous Last Words: “What a rough day! I definitely earned one of those chocolate chip cookies.”
The Fix: Learn to distinguish between hunger and emotions. If you’re not sure whether you are actually hungry, involve yourself in another task or activity. Still hungry after that? Then have a healthy snack.
“I love junk food and sugary drinks.”
We get it; it’s hard giving up those delicious snacks. However, eating sugary food isn’t going to get you anywhere. It can affect your health in wrong ways. Good Housekeeping offers a few tips on how to get past this excuse and hopefully make better decisions:
“Starting a weight-loss plan is overwhelming.” Solution: If you eat in moderation and plan ahead for indulgences, you can still enjoy not-so-nutritious foods and lose weight, says Cassetty. Avoid unhealthful choices and control cravings by eating until you feel comfortably full. If you are still hungry after consuming a wholesome meal, enjoy a small treat. Try 100-calorie snack packs, which Cassetty calls “training wheels for dieters,” to satisfy a sweet (or savory) tooth while practicing portion control.
“Starting a weight-loss plan is overwhelming.”
Good Housekeeping mentions yet another excuse which is starting a weight-loss plan is challenging. Yes, it is challenging to begin making healthy decisions, but it’s worth it.
“Starting a weight-loss plan is overwhelming.”
Solution: Create a simple exercise habit, and adopt the mindset of learning as you progress, says Blakely. Use free resources, such as library books or fitness.gov, which offers basic diet and exercise tips.
Instead of fixating on foods you're giving up, find ways to add healthy foods to your diet. “Eating is very challenging for people because every time you sit down to eat, you have choices to make,” says Cassetty. “Every time you make a healthy choice, give yourself a little mental check, and all those little senses of accomplishment help you have the motivation to continue.”
“I'm super stressed!”
Shape reveals another excuse, which is telling yourself that because you’re so stressed, it’s okay to eat those chocolate snacks. Instead of eating sugary treats, however, opt for exercising, yoga, and sipping on tea.
“A study published in the journal Appetite found that foods like chocolate make us feel less stressed for only three minutes and then the feeling completely fades,” Albers says.
Stress eating also increases your stress in the long run. The stress hormone, cortisol, makes you crave sugary, fatty food. When you eat sugary treats, your blood sugar spikes and then drops causing you to be more irritable.
“The good news is that you can reduce cortisol in natural ways without any calories whatsoever—sipping black tea, exercise, yoga poses, self-massage, and soothing music,” Albers says.
“I’ve ruined it anyway, so why not go all the way?”
Just because you’ve made a mistake on your diet and ate something you shouldn’t have doesn’t mean you should throw in the towel. Instead of giving up, Shape recommends making up your mind to get back on course. If you give up now, you’ll end up wanting to be where you were before!
“Everyone has plenty of slip-ups throughout their lifetime,” Bushard says. “It isn't a matter of whether or not you've made a mistake but rather whether you let that mistake snowball or choose to just get back on course.”
Remember that each bite is a choice. There is a lot of “grey area” between perfect and ruined, Albers adds. “Think of your actions to be on a continuum instead of all or nothing. Just skipping a few bites can make a big difference in the long run.”
“Lunch just isn’t a healthy meal to eat.”
It’s easy to make an excuse that lunch isn’t a healthy meal to eat, but if you find yourself saying that, it’s likely you’re the one who is making unhealthy eating decisions. Fox News advises planning by bringing a lunch with food that’s healthy and will help you stick to your diet.
“Lunch just isn’t a healthy meal to eat.” Seventy-two percent of women said lunch was their least healthy meal of the day.
Busted! Acing your lunchtime meal is all about thinking ahead; it’s making decisions on the fly—when you’re hungry and likely stressed—that gets you into trouble. “Have your go-to thing,” said Keri Glassman, author of Slim Calm Sexy Diet. “For people in an office, have your three go-to restaurants, and have two meals at each place you know are healthy—that way, your healthy choices are already mapped out,” she said. Another smart option is bringing your lunch from home. “Make it after dinner,” said Glassman, “so you're not hungry and it's not an impulse decision.” For more ways to guarantee healthy lunch success, check out our lunchtime meal planner.
“It’s my grandmother’s Sunday dinner; how could I NOT eat?”
Family gatherings make it challenging to resist food temptations, but it’s not impossible. Everyday Health recommends focusing on friends and family during get-togethers instead of food. That may sound challenging to you, but if you have health goals to meet it’ll be worth it.
Famous Last Words: “It’s my grandmother’s Sunday dinner; how could I NOT eat? She would be insulted. How many years do I have left with her anyway?”
The Fix: At social gatherings, try to focus on friends and family — not food. Socializing and eating do not have to go hand-in-hand. Plan to meet friends at the park or at the movies instead of over lunch. The key is to prepare responses for people who encourage you to overindulge in social situations. That way, you’ll be armed with an automatic response — one that rolls off your tongue because you’ve thought of it ahead of time and it makes sense! If you are prepared, there’s a better chance you will be able to control the outcome.
“I can’t let it go to waste.”
Having a lot of food is one thing, but continuing to eat it because you don’t want it to go to waste is just an excuse to overeat. Instead of eating everything put some aside as leftovers. Or, you can invite a friend over to help you eat the food. Shape offers a few other solutions to help you overcome this excuse:
“Do you want it to go to waste or to your waist? Imagine carrying around a trash bag full of the extra bites you've saved,” Albers says. No one wants to throw away perfectly good food, so focus on preventing waste as you are cooking and ordering rather than after the fact.
“Cook just enough food for everyone to have a portion—no extra. Or box up the leftovers for lunch the next day. Think strategically,” Albers says.
“I’ll go tomorrow”
Diet and working out often coincide, even though it’s possible to lose weight on a low carb diet without exercising. If the excuse of “I’ll go tomorrow” keeps creeping up in your mind or you even say it out loud, perhaps it’s time to change that sentence to say “yes, I did it!”
There's no better time than the present. Try visual reminders to help get you motivated. Create a workout calendar and hang it on the refrigerator or somewhere you'll always see it. Mark each day you exercised with an “X” and you'll quickly notice whether the space is filled with marks (congrats!) or pretty empty. You may reconsider the next time you want to put off another workout until tomorrow.
Now that you know which excuses to look out for, it’s time to follow through and create some healthy habits. Currently, we’re giving away free copies of the Body Reboot book which will help you stick to a healthy eating plan and hopefully see some incredible results! Cover the cost of shipping, and we’ll send you a FREE book. Check out this page to find out if there are any copies left.
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Discover how to activate your body's “Reboot Switch” that flips on a fat burning inferno so you can finally achieve your weight loss goals!