Celebrate your fitness, don’t punish yourself for bad choices
The other day I ran across the quote above on Instagram and, as usual, it got me thinking.
Many of us fall victim to this thought process and it’s a mentality that needs to be broken.
We eat like shit, then we feel bad about it, then we wish we were in better shape, then we go to the gym and “punish” ourselves, then we do it all over again.
At one point in my not so distant past, I was a full fledged member of this vicious cycle.
It was a point where I was overweight, out of shape, and unhappy with how I felt and where I was headed.
I don’t exactly remember what day or what life event occurred that made me look in the mirror and decide to make a change, but I remember how hard it was at the beginning.
It was hard to pack my lunch every day and to say no to drinks after work with colleagues, but I knew that these small decisions were the beginning of a snowball that would gain momentum and would take me to where I wanted to be.
I didn’t make the change overnight, but through CrossFit 5 days a week (which isn’t easy to do if you’re hungover or ate shitty food all day the day before) and making the decision to eat cleaner on a more regular basis, I adjusted my thought process from punishing myself for what I ate by killing myself at the gym to enjoying the improvements I was seeing by eating well and drinking less.
And once I started seeing those positive changes, I couldn’t help but want more.
It was like an addiction, but one that I was happy to have and one that I wanted to pass on to others.
Co-workers started asking me about what I was eating at work, and I started bringing extra to share with them and they loved how it tasted and knowing it was good for them (Paleo Chocolate Chili was always a hit).
Old friends started to reach out and ask me about this CrossFit thing I was doing, and I would tell them a little bit about it and then find a CrossFit gym near where they live and tell them to check it out.
My family started noticing a change and wanted to be a part of it, constantly asking Kelly and I for nutrition and workout advice, which we were happy to share.
All of this just from changing the way I make decisions about food and fitness.
And that is not to say that I don’t slip up from time to time or enjoy a couple extra beers or a few too much dessert.
But those are the moments I don’t regret or punish myself for anymore because they’re the outliers, not the daily path.
So, with this week’s blog post, I’ve got another challenge for you.
When presented with the option to make a poor food or drink option this coming week, make the decision to make the healthy choice.
See how you feel.
Then, the week after, try to make two healthy food or drink decisions.
See how you feel.
Then, even if you slip up, enjoy the meal and forget about it.
You don’t need to be punished for enjoying some cake at a birthday party, what you need to do is make the healthy decision more times than you make the unhealthy decision and soon enough it’ll become habit.