Fitness Friday :: Want Health? Ditch This.
Nothing will derail your fitness efforts faster than all-or-nothing thinking.
It’s the voice that says,
“I don’t have a full hour to work out, so I’m not exercising today.”
“I missed my Zumba class, so I might as well go back to bed.”
“I already messed up breakfast by eating the giant bagel, so I might as well eat this cake and French fries, with a super-sized Pepsi for lunch. And order deep-dish meat-lovers pizza for dinner and a side of wings. And get the milkshake for a snack. And sit on the couch and watch the entire second season of Downton Abbey, while I eat this bowl of ice cream topped with crushed up Girl Scout cookies.”
It’s the voice that says, “I’ve screwed up once today. What’s the use?”
All-or-nothing thinking is toxic to your health. The one poor decision you made this morning does not have to dictate the rest of your day. And by all means, it certainly should not dictate the rest of your life!
You have hundreds of opportunities every single day to choose the healthy option.
- You can choose fruit instead of another bagel and cream cheese.
- You can choose to run up the stairs instead of walk.
- You can choose to drink a few sips of water as you swing through the kitchen.
- You can choose to grab an apple and a few nuts as you’re headed out to run errands.
- You can choose to park at the back of the parking lot and walk.
- Or you can just choose to walk and not drive at all.
- Or you can walk faster.
- You can put out the cigarette.
- You can pull into Panera Bread instead of Burger King.
- While at Panera Bread, you can order soup and salad instead of another bagel and cream cheese.
- You can choose to do a quick 20-minute workout instead of scan your Facebook feed.
- You can choose to lift the 10-pound weights instead of the 8-pound weights.
- You can choose to bypass dessert.
- You can pull weeds instead of scrolling through your Twitter feed.
- You can take the kids to the park instead of Sonic.
- You can order unsweetened green tea instead of a venti vanilla latte with extra whip.
- You can grill the chicken instead of fry it.
- You can choose steamed veggies over a plate of pasta.
- You can order salad instead of nachos.
- You can push away the bread basket.
- You can stop eating before you feel stuffed.
- You can choose to bypass the bowl of cereal (or chips) (or ice cream) (or all three) before bedtime.
- You can choose to go to bed and get a full-night’s sleep.
What a tragedy it would be to miss all the little healthy opportunities in a day, simply because you couldn’t get past your choice to eat the bagel this morning.
Listen to me: So what, if you ate the bagel?
So what, if it was a big ole’ giant white flour bagel with zero-nutrition and full-fat cream cheese, and you ate the entire thing, and licked your fingers, and loved every stinking second of it?
You can still choose to run up the stairs instead of walk. And drink a few sips of water as you swing through the kitchen. And grab an apple and nuts on your way out the door….Failure or success in one micro-decision will not determine your destiny. Your health is rarely the direct result of a one-time decision. It’s the byproduct of the 10’s, turned to 100’s, turned to 1,000’s of micro-decisions you make over years.
Fitness is 80% mental and 20% physical.* That means, on the road to health, right thinking is half the battle.
No, wait…I mean 4/5 of the battle.
(It’s been a while since I converted percentages to fractions and then reduced the fraction.)
Whatever you have done today, good or bad, is behind you. You can only start where you are. So, consider where you are right now and think about the healthy choices ahead of you. Then choose the next healthy thing.
If you want to be healthy, ditch all-or-nothing thinking.
*I made this percentage up.
Tell me the next healthy choice you will make. Mine is choosing to do a short workout instead of heading straight for the shower.
Linking up with Jill Conyers–who, BTW, ran 32 miles!!!!!! Go leave her a comment and tell her how utterly impressed you are.
For me I think the percentage is 95% mental. (I made that up too.) It is a lot no matter what the percentage.
What would that percentage be in a fraction?
I chose to get a chopped salad from subway instead of the popcorn chicken at walmart with potato wedges. And bypassed the yummy looking candy bars in the check out line!
Ooohhh…well done, Shelley.
I am SO very guilty of this! So, my good decisions for today are:
– Rest up and drink lots of water as I’m fighting off a bad chest cold
– Eat soup and heathy proteins instead of white carbs (except for the noodles in soup;)
– Give up the guilt about not working out when I don’t feel well!
I think giving up the guilt is the best one on there. I do the same thing. I have such a difficult time giving myself grace for sickness. But once I feel better, I always feel guilty for feeling so guilty. Know what I mean?
If I’m gonna use the Lose It app to track calories AND eat pizza for lunch – I will track Thise pizza calories and move on with my day!
Consequently, my slice of pizza wasn’t as bad as I thought. And the hard workout I did today balanced it all out pretty well.
Yes, girl. Move on. You have many more opportunities to make good choices today. Carry on.
I’m choosing to get up in the morning four a run before my day begins and things get too busy.
Thanks for mention about my run! Still talking about it 🙂
I find whatever I do “first thing” is the thing that always gets done. So, if you want to get that run in, that’s the best time. (I for one, have decided I like mid-morning workouts, but I don’t work outside the home, so that works well for me.)
I’m giving up pop, at least until we go on vacation next month. Then I’ll re-evaluate. I’m also starting a 10 day cleanse today to help get my eating back on track. I’ve gotten derailed recently. It’s time to get back to feeling as great as I did last summer.
Isn’t it amazing how much better you feel when you pay attention to how you are eating? Good luck on that cleanse!!!
32 miles… wow Jill did great. I like all of your tips here and I try to implement alot of them. I try to choose water over soda. I try to slow down my eating. I attempt to eat smaller portions. I try to avoid seconds. I must work on reducing sugar.
I try to slow down my eating too, but everyone starts before I sit down (cuz I’m still dishing everyone up!) and then they all get done super fast and want to start cleaning up so they can go play or finish homework or whatever! I always feel rushed.
But I do try to take my time when I’m eating alone.
Great post! Wonderful advice, I think people always figure all or nothing but the little choices are huge 🙂
Thank you for this, Sandy. Amazing and encouraging! I am choosing to set out my clothes tonight so that I will make sure I go to the gym tomorrow. You’re awesome!!