It’s Not Cheating, It’s Called Living


One of the hardest changes anyone can make after they’ve successfully lost weight is establishing a more healthy relationship with food. While losing weight, you monitored everything that went in your mouth. To move your life forward and leave that fat-suit behind, you need to learn to stop treating food as an enemy.

Here’s a quick story. A young lady was excited that she had been invited to her first fancy work affair. It was at a really nice restaurant that she’d never be able to eat at on her own because of the high cost. She was really afraid, however, that she was going to make a mistake with her eating and “cheat.” She was petrified! The worry around food was going to ruin her enjoyment of this special occasion.

Food nourishes us and gives us energy. It’s also a lot more. Food is often the focal point of social gatherings and, honestly, provides us with a lot of pleasure. Without changing thought patterns to allow you to successfully navigate these situations, you’ll find yourself missing out on everything life has to offer. You can enjoy these special occasions by learning that the occasional indulgence does not mean you’re going to immediately gain back your weight. You just need to be smart and act the part of the fit person you’ve become.

Keep everything in balance. Your goal is to enjoy the event, participate fully and not let food panic ruin your time. Just be mindful that this is an indulgence. You’re not changing your eating patterns to match this meal going forward; this is something special. Acknowledge that mentally and give yourself permission to enjoy the meal and the time with your friends or family.

Make some smart decisions. Remember, you’re a fit, healthy person now so there are some choices you’ll make naturally. If you’re at an awesome steakhouse, you get a leaner cut of steak, a lot of veggies and maybe a decadent side that you share with a few people. For drinks, you have a little red wine. When the meal comes, the portions are huge so you save at least half to take home. Finally, dessert. You pass on it, right? Heck no! But you do share something with all your friends and enjoy every bite you do take. You might hit the gym extra hard the next day but you do it because it feels good and you know it’s good for you—it’s not done out of guilt.

By setting the correct mental image as we just discussed and allowing her new healthy instincts to take charge, our young lady truly enjoyed her special event. It created great memories and she has no guilt.

You worked hard to get where you’re at today. You have to trust your knowledge about the right way to eat. You’re also active now and you’re burning plenty of calories. Allow yourself these “free meals” periodically. Otherwise, you trap yourself in an eating prison that will make you feel like you’re dieting for the rest of your life.

With the Holiday season approaching, you’ll have a number of opportunities to try out your new skills. How will you see these events? Will you create potential pitfalls or opportunities to celebrate and enjoy your life?

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at

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