If we maintain the status quo, we really aren’t growing, are we?
But growing and changing doesn’t have to be (and probably shouldn’t be!) a super-serious and boring business.
It should be fun!
How can I make healthy eating more fun?
What else can I do to keep things lively, interesting, fun?
To your best health,
Well for a lot of you reading this, they probably aren’t existent. You don’t have any (and if they aren’t written down, posted and reviewed regularly, stop kidding yourself – you don’t have any).
There are really two types of goals: Outcome based goals and Behavior goals.
1) Outcome Based Goals are the objective or objectives that you hope to accomplish. “I want to lose 10 pounds in 10 weeks” is an outcome based goal, as is “I want to earn $100,000 a year by the age of 30”. You can’t directly control the outcome, rather the outcome will be the result of things you have to do.
2) Behavior Goals represent the steps that need to be taken to accomplish your desired outcome. This is where the rubber hits the road. When you want to lose 10 pounds in 10 weeks, your behavior goals will likely include “I will reduce my total calorie intake by 500 calories a day for the next 10 weeks”, and/or “I will not miss training at for the next 4 weeks.”
See the difference?
You directly control the behavior goal.
You choose to take action on it…
or you don’t.
Behavior goals for a 10-week fat loss program might include some of the following (which are familiar to many of you):
“I commit to eating breakfast every day for the next 10 weeks”.
“I commit to taking 3 grams of fish oil and a multivitamin every day for the next 10 weeks”.
“I commit to planning my “free meals” and eating junk food only during these 1-2 meals a week”.
“I commit to exercising 4 hours a week, with at least 2 being with my peeps at Cr8 Fitness”.
Building Behavior Goals does not have to be complicated. These are regular daily and weekly action steps that will positively and immediately impact your Outcome Goals.
Following is a real world example from a client that we received just yesterday. It is an outstanding example of behavior goals that are sure to contribute to her desired outcome (fat loss). She has already shared how establishing these goals with a end point (she set them for the month of August) has helped her overcome the feeling that she was somehow depriving herself. She just has to keep them for a month, not the rest of her life. So turning down the blueberry waffles wasn’t that hard, because it’s only for a month. Great lesson there as well!
Here are her behavior goals for the month of August.
1. I will keep my list of guidelines in a spot where I can easily
see them, and I will read them every day.
2. I will exercise 4 times every week.
3. I will write down specifically what I am eating.
4. For the rest of August, I will . . .
a. eat protein and vegetables at every meal.
b. drink a minimum of 80oz. of water each day.
c. eat no more than one whole grain bread serving each
day (and no later than lunch time).
5. For the rest of August, I will not . . .
a. eat any dessert items except for one special
occasion that I have already planned.
b. eat any pasta, rice, white potatoes, or white bread.
c. eat any more than one serving of cheese and one
serving of nuts or nut butter each day.
Now there is a lot on this list, yours doesn’t necessarily have to be this long. In fact here is what I want you to do. Establish one outcome goal for the next 8 weeks. It could be “lose 8 pounds in 8 weeks” or “drop 2 inches off my waist in the next 8 weeks”. Note there is a specific time period involved, don’t skip that part!
Now that you know your desired outcome, establish 3 behavior goals that support that outcome. You have some great examples above, and I can help you if you are stuck.
Once you have your outcome and behavior goal(s), post them to the comments below. Hold yourself accountable to meeting both categories of your goals. I look forward to seeing what you come up with, as well as coaching you to get there. Coach Dean is right "Goals start with Go"!
To Your Best Health,
Dialing your choices to fit your goal is how we reach them. If we could flip a switch and instantly see change we'd sell that magic button to everyone. Instead life isn't switches but dials.
Dials that help us to turn up the volume, turn down the speed, its slight adjustments make it feel more like a car turning a lazy corner than having the breaks slammed on while the car is thrown in reverse.
Dialing down your high carb choices in place of lower amounts of carbs is a starting point. But you could focus on turning down the amount of carbs or making a slight adjustment to quality of your carb choices. For example you could eat a SLICE of cake or you could dial down the portion size and enjoy a 'slice' of cake. You could also chose to forgo the icing and just eat the cake part. Dialing things down could be you chose to eat a bowl of berries while others are eating cake. You could apply those same principles to using regular pasta or dial it down to quinoa or dial it in a different direction but still on the downward trend by making zucchini noodles instead of the pasta.
Of course Carbs are not the only thing that can be dialed up or down. Increasing your sleep time or quality improves health too.
I love to do the opposite as well. I dial up the goodness. I'll fill my plate with veggies by doing that I've increase my vegetable intake and I've left little to no room for foods that I would normally focus on dialing down anyway.
Its just a different spin on the same thing.
What are you going to dial down today?
To Your Best Health,
We’ve talked about the importance of drinking enough water and how it affects muscle soreness and fat loss. Here are some “fun facts to know and tell about water”, and it is absolutely worth reading.
Here’s some more good reasons to keep that water bottle handy
Are you drinking the amount of water you should drink every day?
To Your Best health,
Why we started to change how you eat? Why you are continuing to struggle through to reach your goals?
I’m going to keep it short today and just simply ask,
In one word why did you start?
Bring awareness to your meals.
I believe all of us have felt that overstuffed feeling after a meal. You know when you want to “rush to put on that pair of sweats so you can breath” feeling.
Eating just enough is like playing golf. You hit the ball and you want it to land on the fairway. Too much to one side and you are in the woods, too much to the other side and you’ve gone into the crowd. You want to be somewhere in the middle. But there is a bit of lee way in that middle ground. Goldilocks.
Let’s really enjoy those three meals.
Eat slowly. Enjoy each bite. Take small bites and chew to enjoy the food and the experience. (just that will take practice)
Identify the feelings and sensations that happen as you eat. These will help you to recognize ‘being satisfied’. Eating just enough.
Stop once you feel satisfied.
To Your Best Health,
"I just start eating and don't stop. What I'd like to know is how I CHANGE that behavior."
For some people this is an easier process of undoing than others. While some people have one or two poor habits to change you might have several- no worries.
Think of it as a scan of yarn that is all tangled up. Its going to take some time undoing and pulling on strands only to find that it tightened the knot. Often experimenting with certain types of eating patterns will show us ways we can either loosen or tightened your knot. For example eating in a window of time is one pattern of nutrition that you might explore. It can solve some of your poor eating habits. Using a 8 hour window where you eat all your meals during that time, could be just what you need in order to stop night time snacking. Other options include only having a piece of fruit after having 3 servings of veggies first. This often gives you just what you need to help you achieve all the servings of vegetables you've been missing from your eating plan.
Other things will keep loosening the knot, but it will take time to untangle it all. Pull on one string each day. (pulling is the action item that you can do today) See what happens and if that string gives a bit- pull on it more tomorrow.
You're doing great showing up. Don't stop doing something each day to make yourself better.
To your best health,
Do you remember playing this game when you were a kid?
If so, you are oooooold…like me!
Actually all three of those categories are vital in a balanced diet, but I want to talk about vegetables in particular.
We all have heard time and time again that’s it important to eat your fruits and vegetables, but how many of us actually do it on a daily basis?
The National Cancer Institutes encourages us to eat at least 3 to 5 servings of vegetables a day. New research has shown that broccoli is one of many vegetables that can inhibit some forms of cancer. I know Coach Meagan already loves broccoli, now she has another reason to love it even more. – check it out here.
The goal is to eat:
What’s a serving size? Not all that much, really…
The reason I bring the number of daily servings up is because we get asked a lot – Fresh, frozen, canned, organic – which should I eat?
To which are answer is “All of the above!”
You see it doesn’t really matter which of those choices you make if you aren’t eating enough.
For instance we get asked a lot about buying organic – it’s a hot topic right now, and it seems everything is organic.
Organic is great, but what matters more is that you are getting enough fruits and veggies first, then worry about super high quality.
I also understand that fruits and vegetables can be expensive, and there is nothing wrong with choosing economical options. Personally my preference would be fresh (organic or not), frozen, and then canned.
You know what may be even more important than organic? Buying your produce locally. A vegetable picked from the farm down the road is going to be tastier and healthier than organic produce shipped halfway across the globe.
Pretty soon Farmers Markets are going to start popping up here in NH, and Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) are also gaining in popularity. A CSA is where you buy a share of a local farm and get a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly delivery of the farms crops, depending on the agreement.
Look, I am not trying to tell you it is easy to integrate more vegetables and fruits into your eating plan, if it was easy we would all do it all the time! What I am saying is it is worth the effort. The health and disease prevention benefits are well documented and reliable.
So do what mom said – “Eat Your Vegetables” – she knew what she was talking about!
To your best health,
Planning meals has been proven to help you in your health journey. Its right up there with stepping on the scale if your goal is weight loss. On top of that there are other side benefits that you'll love is that it saves time, relieves stress, and keeps money in your wallet. And yet, it stills feels like the one thing that holds us back. Lets look at meal planning with a slightly different twist.
What if you look at planning more like giving you options?
Here is what I would do as an experiment to see how you succeed with this version of meal planning.
1. List out all the dinner meals you and your family enjoy eating during this time of year. That list will probably be a bit different in the Summer vs. the Fall vs. the cold of Winter. How many did you get? Aim for at least 10 different dinner meals. Remember some of these might be the quick options like picking up a rotisserie chicken while others are all day cooking affairs like homemade spaghetti sauce.
2. Do you have on hand all the items to make these meals? Check your cupboards, freezer, and fridge. Some items can be kept, like canned goods, in your cupboard; others are best fresh so you'll have to purchase those items. But then others can be pulled from the freezer when you need them.
3. Look at your schedule. See what is coming up that might pull you away from making a meal or that might require a meal that is very quick to make. I leave cans of tuna in my cupboard because when fast and speedy is required, I can quickly put tuna on a salad or cook up some tuna patties. If you will be away from home one night, you'll end up with more options to chose from on the other evenings.
4. Again take a peak at your schedule, this time looking for those times when you might be able to spend more time in your kitchen than usual. I often can do this on Sundays. Its during this time, I prep what I can for other meals, but I can also make a dish that takes more time than I usually have to prepare dinner.
5. With your favorite dinner meal ideas in one hand and the list of items you need to make these meals in another, head off to the store.
6. Now when it comes time for your next dinner, you've got options to choose from.
What do you think?
To Your Best Health,
I wanted to write a quick little note to encourage you. Starting a new way of living healthy is challenging. I've been there. In fact some days I feel like I am still there. Each day please wake up to make the decision to live healthy again. Post reminders on your bathroom mirror, your car's dashboard, and your computer screen at work. These little reminders will help you to continue to make decisions that will further your progress until they become more natural. Our goal is to make small changes each day that become our new normal. People that meet us a month from now will know a different you than the one standing in front of your mirror today.
Now there will be days when all goes well and it feels like smooth sailing. Some days will be a bit more challenging but you'll muddle through. Still other days will seem like you've only stepped backward.
It will get easier. Take baby steps. As you increase in confidence make those steps a bit bigger and stronger. Soon you'll look back through time and see all those little steps have added up.
You've got this.
From one whose walked these steps before you.