EPISODE 82 | You can only follow keto or Whole30 for so long before you’d kill for a piece of pizza—but that SINGLE piece of pizza can taste so good that it leads to another piece, and another—and since that first piece of pizza already “ruined” your clean eating streak, you may end up washing those pizza slices down with some soda and topping ‘em off with some ice cream. Within a few hours, you’ve “fallen off the wagon” and you vow to start ____ [insert diet here] again on Monday. I hear about this yo-yo pattern ALL the time from clients who’ve tried everything in the past. So, what can you do? HOW can you enjoy everything in moderation, without following the strict food rules of a diet or spiraling out of control? In this “bite-sized” episode, I share a quick, simple journaling exercise with you that can be a real game changer! Enjoy!!
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ROUGH TRANSCRIPT OF THE EPISODE:
Hello, Health Investor!
Welcome to another episode of The Health Investment Podcast!
You may have noticed that this episode is quite short…and that’s because it’s another bite-sized one!
In addition to interviewing experts, I also do solo “bite-sized” episodes where I share a brief and helpful tip relating to nutrition, sleep, stress management, movement, and mindset.
If you want to listen to the four previous bite-sized episodes, I’ll put links to those in the show notes!
Today, I’m gonna share a quick written exercise you can do to enjoy indulgences and treats in moderation—without feeling guilty or gaining weight!
If you’re like most people, you adore cookies, ice cream, pizza, and nachos, but when you’re trying to lose weight, you fear that satisfying your cravings may cause you to spiral out of control.
Since a single weekend of happy hour, dinner with friends, and football Sunday can seemingly derail any progress you’ve made, it can feel easier to swear off ALL treats and follow the rules of a diet that restricts carbs, sugar, or processed food.
The problem with going ALL IN on a diet is that doing so can actually be more detrimental to your progress.
You can only follow keto or Whole30 for so long before you’d kill for a piece of pizza—but that SINGLE piece of pizza can taste so good that it leads to another piece, and another—and since that first piece of pizza already “ruined” your clean eating streak, you may end up washing those pizza slices down with some soda and topping ‘em off with some ice cream.
Within a few hours, you’ve “fallen off the wagon” and you vow to start whatever diet you were on again on Monday.
I hear about this yo-yo pattern ALL the time from clients who’ve tried everything in the past. Even though their experiences are unique, pieces of their stories—like this common BLACK or WHITE approach—are all too common.
You may even be listening and thinking, “How does Brooke know EXACTLY what I go through on a regular basis?!”
Promise I’m not a mind reader. Like I said, I just hear stories like these regularly.
So, what can you do? HOW can you enjoy everything in moderation, without following the strict food rules of a diet or spiraling out of control?
To live in the middle ground, self-awareness is absolutely key, as is a lot of mindset work.
There’s ONE written exercise I want to share with you today that can be a real game changer when it comes to both.
Here’s what I want you to do (unless you’re driving or walking or something!):
Grab a piece of scratch paper and something to write with—or open a note in your phone.
Create a two-column chart.
At the top of the left column, I want you to write “100% Worth It.” At the top of the right column, write, “Not Worth It.”
In your 100%-Worth-It column, I want you to write 10+ less-nutritious things that are a 9 or 10/10 in your book.
I’d write gooey, homemade chocolate chip cookies; chunky ice cream (I really prefer ice cream with a lot of STUFF in it, not just plain vanilla or chocolate); New York style pizza slices; nachos that aren’t soggy (very important qualifier there!), French fries that ARE soggy (call me crazy, but I like them undercooked), red wine (not white!)…and so on.
Notice how specific I’m being with each thing. Specificity is VERY important!
Once you’ve got 10+ of your absolute FAVORITE things written down, I want you to move to the right column.
The right column is for the things that are kinda tasty, but they’re not your FAVORITE. Maybe they’re other people’s favorite things, but they just don’t do it for YOU.
And again, I want you to write 10+ things. I also want you to look at the left column and see if there are any things that piggyback off of the ones you’ve already written down.
So for example, I said I really enjoy underdone French fries. In the right column, I’d write super crispy French Fries—cause I really don’t like those as much. I’d also write plain ice cream without any chunks, crispy chocolate chip cookies, white wine, etc.
Aside from piggybacking off of my left column, I’d write onion rings, chicken wings, mozzarella sticks…you get the idea!
Once you have a bunch of things in both columns, I want you to write six words below the chart: “Change requires change. Change requires choice.”
When you’re trying to lose 5-50 pounds in a healthy, sustainable way, ALL foods can fit, but ALL foods can’t fit all of the time. You’re gonna have to make some changes to your typical routines and habits, and you’re gonna have to make choices, especially when it comes to less-nutritious foods.
That’s the point of this two-column chart! To get really clear on things that are ABSOLUTELY worth it to you, and things that aren’t—so next time you’re at a sports bar with friends and you guys order ONE dish off of your 100%-Worth-It list and several off of your Not-Worth-It list, you can enjoy a small serving of the thing you absolutely LOVE and say a confident “no thank you” to the rest.
James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits, likes to say that a lot of our successes in life come down to delaying gratification. You’re gonna want to delay gratification for the things that are 100% WORTH IT to you and not waste your time (or calories!) on things that aren’t.
Another important reflection would be to notice which of your 100%-Worth-It things you keep inside your home—cause boy are those tempting! If there was a platter of gooey chocolate chip cookies staring at me every day, it’d be tough to ignore!
Depending on your personality, you may want to keep your most tempting foods OUTSIDE of your home, which doesn’t mean you can never have them. It just goes back to that idea of delaying gratification—you wait until you’re at a cute bakery or ice cream shop to enjoy your favorite indulgence.
That being said, some people do fine keeping their favorite treats INSIDE their home and eating them every once in a while. Like I said at the beginning of this episode, the guiding principle here is self-awareness.
YOU are different from every other person, so YOUR personality, likes, and dislikes are unique. You’ve gotta figure out what works best for you, but it’s important to be sure you’re being honest with yourself.
Alright, so that’s today’s episode!
Like I said, losing weight in a healthy, sustainable way requires A LOT of mindset work, and this is just ONE activity that may help.
Inside The Health Investment Membership, I do a TON of exercises like this one with members so that they’re not only able to lose 5-50 pounds—they can also keep the weight off long-term and stop dieting forever!
If you’re interested in learning more about the membership, visit thehealthinvestment.com/join. I’ve created it to be the most affordable, comprehensive, flexible, supportive weight loss resource out there—and I’m VERY proud of it. It’d be great to have you on board!
Also, don’t hesitate to reach out to me with any questions or thoughts about this episode—or the membership, or something else! I’m allllways here for ya…