The “D” Word
April 8, 2010 § 2 Comments
DIET: the dreaded four-letter “d” word. When people want to lose weight they typically start by saying, “I need to go on a diet.” But what exactly is a diet? Is it the latest craze of drinking lemon juice with maple syrup, cayenne pepper and water? Or perhaps it’s the cabbage soup diet. No wait, maybe it’s the ‘I’m going to starve myself because I really need to cut down my calories and fat’ diet.
WAKE UP PEOPLE! It’s not that simple. I’m not a nutritionist or any kind of licensed professional, but you don’t need to be either of those to know that fad diets are not healthy and they are not a long term solution that will get you to the weight and physical fitness level you’re aiming for. A fad is nothing but a trend that becomes popular for a very short time and then fizzles out once people see its ugly truth.
I don’t like to use the “d” word because I think it has an implication of temporariness. I think of it more as adjusting my everyday eating habits. For me, it comes down to portion control, exercise, fruits and veggies, exercise, good proteins, exercise, vitamins, and did I mention exercise? It’s key for me to include exercise because without it, I would only get so far. I wouldn’t get toned muscles. I wouldn’t be able to walk up the stairs at work without getting winded. I wouldn’t feel healthy inside and out. And I definitely wouldn’t see much difference in the way my clothes fit.
So what happens when I crave a beer or want to go out to eat? I have a beer or I go out to eat. Doing these things is ok and isn’t going to make me “fall off the wagon”, as some dieters say. In fact, I encourage myself to splurge from time to time so I don’t ever feel like I’m depriving myself of something. Sure there are times when I wish my steamed veggies were a bag of Cheez-Its; but when I’m finished with my lunch, I am full and satisfied – leaving no room for me to make up a reason why I needed to hit the vending machine for the crackers that will leave the all-too-familiar grease-laden stains on my napkin as a reminder of why I probably didn’t need to eat them.
Eating better and exercising go hand-in-hand and it has helped me get to where I’m at today. A marathon finishing, bag punching, broccoli eating girl who loves to cook, eat and run and I feel great! There’s still work to be done, but I’m ok with that. Being healthy and getting in shape is a commitment for life. You can’t just reach your goal and then quit or else you’ll end up back where you started. So to all you people who see me eating my healthy fruits, veggies and other snacks and make some sort of backhanded compliment to me – don’t be a hater. Get your butt off your chair and do something about it.