I am going to be doing a YouTube video on this topic (check the channel out here for other vids in the meantime) because I think it is just that important: why do we fall off our plans? Usually it’s when we go out, eat “bad” and stop our momentum.
So why does your health plan fail when going out with friends? You are doing great for a week or two, maybe even a couple months and finally you feel you have earned the right to go out with friends, have some drinks and enjoy some forbidden foods.
So you do – and then you feel horrible about it. And then the next day you feel even worse. You don’t do your workout because you are either feeling too guilty or you are too hungover (totally been there) and that makes you feel even worse. So what do you do? Drown out your sorrows in ice cream. Hey – no one can blame you. Actually, considering everything said above that is probably the best part of your plan.
So, in order to answer the question: why does your health plan fail when going out with friends…we have to tackle it from the thing causing the problem in the first place and working down from there.
- It starts with earning the right to go out, have drinks, and eat “bad”.
- You have to understand that this lifestyle isn’t a temporary thing. It is FOREVER. There is no falling off the plan when you go out with friends. You have to have a plan that works AND allows you to go out with friends. That is the only way it is sustainable. That is the only way it is forever.
- You don’t “earn” anything. If going out was a part of your plan from the beginning, then it is just another peg along your path to success.
- Earning the right to go out and have drinks and eat “bad” food implies that you are taking a break from your current plan – and that is what causes the guilt. Having drinks and eating chicken wings is a part of life. They aren’t “bad” at all.
“You have to understand that this lifestyle isn’t a temporary thing. It is FOREVER. There is no falling off the plan…”
- You must stay on your plan WHILE going out with friends – and no, this doesn’t mean you can’t do what you are friends are doing (or eating, or drinking, or whatever)
- How can you stay on your plan and have chicken wings? How is that possible? By making chicken wings a part of the plan!
- This means you MUST be food logging. If you food log, you can plan in a basket of chicken wings, or 4 slices of pizza and 4 beers – at the very beginning of the day.
- This means, that when it happens you aren’t “falling off” at all – this is how the guilt is avoided and if you look back up at the guilt cycle I explained earlier you will see that without the guilt the “bad” stuff stops at one night. And one night isn’t ever going to add any real body fat – unless you ate like a sumo wrestler and consumed enough beer to down an elephant!
- Now – is a basket of chicken wings and 4 beers and 2 slices of pizza going to allow you to lose body fat that night? No, probably not. You might break even or maybe even be a little over your “neutral” calorie limit which means that a super small fraction of a fraction of body fat will be added. So little that it won’t mater whatsoever.
- So – knowing that, now you can see that you have just lost one single night, and that if you get back on the horse (which is easy since really, you never fell off. As well as now, there is no guilt to hold you back) you will be just fine!
- Are you going to feel GOOD? No, again probably not, but you shouldn’t feel guilt either. You don’t always have to and won’t always feel good about things – one trip to the gym can change all that, so it isn’t a big deal.
- You must think of last night, in this scenario, as a positive thing. If you didn’t have that night – you would eventually quit. Where would that get you? Last night was a longevity thing. Last night will allow you to put in another 6-13 or more days focusing hard on your goals. If every break even night is balanced out with 6-13 or more focused nights, you better believe you will find success.
I’m going to do my best to explain, very quickly, the “break even or neutral calorie limit” I mentioned above: 1. Once you are in myfitnesspal, and after a while of using it you will discover you lose 1 lb. of body fat on average per week at X number of calories. This will be roughly 500 calories UNDER where you need to be in order to lose weight. If you are aiming for 500 calories under on myfitnesspal, and you go OVER by 500 calories on the app – you will actually be breaking even or “neutral”. If you go 700-800 or even 1000 over, you will gain roughly 1/6 a lb. of body fat – IF you allow it time. Body fat takes time to make – so remove the guilt, get back in the gym, and this body fat won’t even have time to be added. And even if it is, 1/6 a lb. is easy to lose. You may not realize it but your body burns through more than that each week without you even trying – it’s just that usually you gain more than that so you don’t notice it!
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