Boundaries Not Diets, Day 4

The problem with diets is the perfectionist, rigid way we use them. If you are like most people when you are on a diet, you try to follow it perfectly. Each day you strive to take in the correct amount of calories. But if you slip up and eat something delicious, you figure that you've blown the diet, so you minus well eat more. Soon you throw the whole diet out the window. The all or nothing method doesn't work, because when you go off your diet you cancel out all progress you made.

Like it or not, to lose weight you have to follow some type of system. For me personally I just watch my calorie intake. Some have plans that are quite rigid and meticulous. Instead of getting stuck on the word diet, learn to think of it as setting boundaries for your eating plan. Picture your diet as a road or a path. You can define the boundaries of your diet road based on the number of calories, points, or other factors you choose to follow. As you walk on the road each day, your goal is to stay between the sides of the road. Unlike strict or rigid diet plan, boundaries stay flexible. There are still guidelines, but at the same time they allow for common sense and good judgement.

When you are strong and focused on your diet you move boundaries closer together, making the road narrower. When you take a break from your program or work on maintenance, you widen the boundaries and allow more variety in your plan.

Boundaries should give you benefits not punishment! They should provide guidelines for you to live by, but not burden you with rules. Depending on your needs you can simply adjust the edges of your plan to match where you are in life. You will be far more successful than if you punish your self every time you step off the road.

Today's assignment:
  • In your notebook, draw line down the middle of the page, creating two columns.
  • Label one column, "Narrow road" for your diet plan. Label the other "Wider road" for your maintenance or alternative plan.
  • Under the titles define your eating and exercise plans for each of the roads.
    Then decide on ways you can be flexible with them without losing sight of the healthy road you want to follow.

My narrow road:
  1. Stay with in calorie limits for today.
  2. Don't deprive my self of something I really want.
My wider road:
  1. Work out for at least 30 minutes a day to counter calories I have eaten.
  2. Work out for an extra 10 minutes if I eat something that takes me over my calorie limit.

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