Every December, most people indulge in treats and large holiday meals. By the end of the month, the thoughts of eating clean, starting over, losing weight and detoxing come to mind. Losing weight is usually the top thing on New Year’s Resolution lists. I never liked the word diet. Who does? It’s associated with thoughts of restrictions, deprivation, bland foods, boring, sacrifice and just plain torture. How can that keep anyone motivated or excited to be committed and successful?
Instead of being on a diet, how about having a DIET PLAN?
A way of eating ALL OF THE TIME. Not just for three days or three weeks. Habits you cultivate over time, not overnight. Have you ever tried starting fresh? You know what I’m talking about. Throwing all of the bad food out, going to the store and stocking your fridge with healthy foods and then wondering, what the heck do I make now? Do I even have all of the ingredients to actually make something I like? Been there and done that. And how many of you have started a diet and quit? Or after the diet, you gained all of the weight back and sometimes even more than when you first started? You can feel more defeated than when you first started. It can be very discouraging and depressing for some people when they fail. I know how it feels.
We didn’t get out of shape overnight, so why should we expect to get healthy overnight?
Having this mind shift that it’s going to take time, effort and commitment, is truly the first step in having a successful diet plan. There really is no quick-fix in transforming your health for the rest of your life.Transforming your diet, not just a diet fad, takes time. So by now, you’re probably thinking, “I know why you are not dieting, but how do I accomplish this?”
Here is my how. Practice these simple and affordable steps to start your journey.
I can’t emphasize this enough. This is where I know I am hurting if my week feels stressed, I’m not eating properly and making poor food choices.
Plan out your menu for the week.
Include all three meals and snacks. Are you eating Paleo style? Vegan? Whole30? Gluten-free? It doesn’t matter which style of eating you choose. If you don’t plan out your meals, it’s not gonna happen. Period. Whip out those cookbooks and recipes you have always wanted to try. And add at least one or two into your weekly menu. You don’t have to try all of them at once. Don’t overwhelm yourself. Remember, baby steps.
Steer clear of processed foods (pretty much anything boxed or packaged). If you can’t pronounce it, you probably shouldn’t be eating it. I put a bowl of fruit in the center of our table. Unsalted nuts without any added oils, dried fruits without added sugar, and Lara bars are all go-to snacks for our family. Try my granola recipe. Sugar is evil. Use raw honey, dates or other natural sweeteners. Gluten, especially non-organic, creates inflammation in our bodies. If you can’t break free from bread, try Ezekiel or almond bread. Sprouted grains are way better for you than the processed junk. If you have digestive issues, you really should consider a gluten-free style of eating.
Shop on certain days and prepare your food for the week.
I shop on a day I can shop and organize my food when I come home. This takes some time, but once it is done, I’m a happy, less-stressed camper for the week. It’s actually very liberating.
I buy a ton of produce. So when I come home with the groceries, I take them all out and wash the produce. I literally line my counters with hand towels to air dry my produce. Then I bag them in Debbie Meyer bags and put them away. I also take this time to make about 6 bottles of fresh juice for the week. It’s time consuming cleaning my juicer and chopping everything, so I only do it once. I use airtight bottles, recycled from a juice bar 🙂 This also saves a lot of room in my fridge from all of the produce that goes into my juices.
I am currently trying new recipes in the Fixate cookbook by Autumn Calabrese. She eats very clean. The cookbook set came with these cute little color coordinated containers for my food. I don’t like to count calories and measure, so these containers make it a breeze to see how much of what I am really eating during the day. I didn’t realize that I was eating too much of even healthy foods, until I started using these containers. You can learn more about or order the cookbook and containers here*.
Journaling gives you insight into how you are truly eating, and even how it affects your body and mood.
I’m going out today to buy the prettiest journal to track my food, feelings and faith-filled moments throughout the year. This year, I want to track how I am really living my life, to be more intentional. The journal can be anything you want it to be. I’m just getting one with lines in it and create my own format to journal. I’m sure over the year, it will evolve into something I call my own.
I will track my food and exercise daily, weight and measurements every month (Do not let the scale define how you are doing. This is a topic for an entire post!), and my feelings and faith-filled moments whenever I feel impressed to do so. I don’t want to forget any God-winks, and I want to focus on moments of gratitude and revelations in my life. It can also help you realize if you are substituting eating for emotional struggles. Journaling can be exciting and liberating. I can’t wait to look back a year from now and see answered prayers, how I have grown spiritually and hopefully shrunk physically 🙂
I start my day off with prayer and meditation.
The Bible says in Psalm 5:3, “In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.” and another favorite verse of mine is Philippians 4:6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
I know I can’t always get it right. I know I’m far from perfect. I seem to have the most breakthroughs when I put my trust and hope in Christ. When I mess up my eating habits, choose not to workout or just have a bad attitude; its then God reminds me I can always have a fresh, new start.
#5 PARTNER UP!
Statistics show that your success rate increases significantly when you have an accountability partner.
And it’s a lot more fun to have someone to encourage you on days when you don’t feel like making good food choices or working out. And when you hit those goals, you have someone to celebrate your victories.
So how are you starting off your New Year? Are you planning any resolutions? Do you have a diet and workout plan? Would you like to be in an accountability group? I am starting up a group on January 11th. You can connect with me through my Facebook page for this group.
Let me know how you plan to achieve those goals. I pray that your coming year is blessed, amazing, filled with joy, health and prosperity. Thank you for sharing this small piece of your world with me. I am grateful for you! Happy New Year!!!
Love In Christ,
(*I receive a small commission for any purchase through this affiliate link.)