A huge warm welcome to ‘Back to balance’, a 12-week Kick-start challenge with a difference.
Over 12 weeks we are here to help you make changes to your lifestyle that help you look better, feel better, sleep better and have more energy every day. Most importantly, we are here to help you make changes that can last, so the results you get don’t disappear.
Rather than focusing on the demoralising and destructive ‘diet’ mentality, which encourages restriction and a reliance on willpower to get results, we want to help you get to a place where you are able to regulate what, and how much, you eat naturally.
Here’s how it is done:
1 Rather than focusing on what you can’t have, focus on what you can have and what you need to eat more of to nourish your body. More veges, more pulses, more water through the day and so on. Plan, prepare and get organised, so you know what you will eat for dinner most nights of the week and have a plan ready in advance for social situations, work lunches or dinners out, so you don’t have to rely on willpower so much in those trickier moments.
2 When you eat, enjoy it! Work on eating mindfully. This really is a must. Sit down to eat and use cutlery. Make eating an experience. Chew your food well and really taste it. Part of the problem for so many of us is not just what we eat, but how we eat. When you eat with little awareness, on the run or while you are doing other things, it is so easy to consume more than you need. Tune into your hunger and fullness and stop when you are 80 per cent full. It will take practice, but is so worth it.
3 Find other ways to manage your feelings than using food and alcohol. Do you eat when you are bored? lonely? Frustrated? Stressed? When you eat to manage your feelings, what sort of food do you tend to choose? look to identify times when you eat or drink when you aren’t actually hungry and look deeper into what is going on. Find alternatives to help you feel better, instead of food or drink. Try listening to your favourite song (music is a great mood changer) or write down what you are thinking and get your thoughts out of your head so you can let them go. Maybe take a walk around the house or just go outside for a minute or two and take 10 slow, deep breaths. Figure out what grounds you and turn to that when you need it.
I look forward to being on this journey with you.