Every year, on New Year’s Day, millions of people make a resolution to lose weight and get in shape. In fact, surveys show that this is the number 1 resolution in the entire world. It is also the fastest resolution to get broken. Many don’t get past the first week. Most don’t get past February.
One of the main reasons for this is that people have a few slip ups in their diet, end up feeling guilty and tell themselves that they just don’t have the discipline. They then tell themselves that it will never work and they give up on themselves.
This is truly a pity. It really is because you are all you have and if you give up on yourself, then who is going to help you? The road to personal fitness is your road and it’s yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but nobody can walk it for you.
Before even thinking that you don’t have what it takes, let’s examine the reasons why most people slip up when it comes to eating.
- Unrealistic goals
This is without a doubt the main reason. Someone who has been eating pizza, junk food, sodas, doughnuts, etc. for years should NEVER ever suddenly decide to go on a diet of lean chicken breast and broccoli. It’s madness.
The change is too drastic. Yet, so many people do this. They have unrealistic expectations and think that their will power is extremely strong. In most cases, it isn’t.
Always start with small goals. If you drink a lot of sodas, try cutting that out for a week and drink water instead. Keep the rest of the diet the same. The following week, if you snack while watching TV, then stop snacking. If you can’t do that, then stop watching TV. The week after that you may reduce your portion sizes but keep the diet the same.
By doing this, your goals are incremental. If you ask too much of yourself initially, you will most probably fail. Inch by inch, life’s a cinch. Yard by yard, life is hard.
- Letting one slip up make them give up
If you accidentally dropped your mobile phone on the floor, what would you do? You’d most probably pick it up, dust it off and check if it’s all ok and be more careful. Would you pick it up and keep smashing it on the floor just because you accidentally dropped it once?
No way! Yet, when it comes to the diet, many people throw the entire diet away just because they had a doughnut or a plate of pasta.
You know what? It’s human to slip up. Everybody does it. You just pick yourself up and try to be more compliant to the diet. You may have read that a good body is 30% exercise and 70% diet. The truth is that a good body is 100% commitment.
And… commitment is very difficult. That’s why obesity is an epidemic. It’s difficult to commit. If you’ve already started, don’t give up. Anytime you feel like it, remember why you started.
Success is not linear. You will take three steps forward, two back, five forward, maybe six back… whatever the case may be, only one rule holds true. You keep going. So you ate that glazed doughnut… well, that’s ok. You will run for 15 minutes and burn it off later. Don’t tell yourself, “Argh! I ate one doughnut. My diet is screwed. I better just eat the remaining 5 doughnuts in the box”. NO! YOU WON’T.
These are the 2 reasons most people mess up their diet. Unrealistic expectations and aiming for perfection. Expect yourself to slip up. It’s a given.
Now that you know that you should aim to set your goals in incremental levels and not be too hard on yourself, stop worrying about those times you mess up your diet and focus on getting it right as much as you can. That’s the only way.