We’ve all seen those crazy challenges all over social media about changing your life in 30 days. The one that I saw said to cut out white carbs, no cookies or sweets, no chocolate, workout everyday, eat clean (which had a picture of a salad) all for 30 days!
Am I the only person seeing something wrong with this? Let me explain why I think these diet templates people are creating are really unhealthy for you.
- White carbs are not always unhealthy for you. White potatoes are full of essential nutrients, vitamins and an excellent source of fibre. They are also indicated to contain high-quality protein because of their superior amino acid composition. They also rank as one of the highest satiating foods, meaning you will actually enjoy them and feel full when you eat them.
- No sweets? If you tell people they can’t have something they end up wanting it even more. Hence why I don’t believe in diets. EAT in moderation and actually enjoy your treats every once in awhile. If we cut things out for a certain amount of time we tend to go a little overboard when we have it again; aka binging.
- This template said no chocolate as well, but dark chocolate is actually not bad for you, and most people who like dark chocolate know that they can only have 2-3 squares due to how rich it is.
- Workout everyday? This post had a picture of a person running on the treadmill with a pizza hanging from a string… We all know and understand that our bodies need rest and if someone who is just starting out on their lifestyle change sees this silly 30 day challenges they actually might consider this and overdo it and could get hurt. Resting is actually VERY important. You will also get insanely burnt out working out everyday, which will lead to you not liking the gym.
The gym is supposed to be fun and challenging. A place that can be therapeutic, not a place to go everyday because “maybe “you will see a significant amount of change after 30 days just so can have a slice of pizza… We need to also understand that what the picture is telling us is that you can workout for “fast food,” but we know that isn’t true. Just because you did some cardio does NOT mean you should reward yourself with garbage each time…
- Eating clean should already be a part of your lifestyle, so why only for 30 days? … With a picture of a salad? Why is everything related to “eating clean” depicted with a salad? If you’re eating a plain salad with 0 protein on top, this could be why you’re not reaching your fitness goals. PROTEIN is key to losing and gaining weight. Salads are just water, unless you actually add some healthy toppings on it with some sort of protein. AND depending on how you make or buy your salads, it could end up being much higher in calories than a big mac combo! Check out this post blog post. Items That Can Destroy Your “Healthy” Salad.
This makes me pretty angry that people are going around and making these templates and not talking more about balance or just how to have a better lifestyle in general. Say you do this “challenge” and you lose some weight, but after those 30 days, you miss so many things from your “normal” routine you go back to it. How about we learn to have a balanced lifestyle and still eat what we want. Cutting things out will only lead to binge eating and we all know that’s not healthy. When you treat yourself to eating out once, you will look forward to it and enjoy every bite, with being able to have that motivation to eat clean for the rest of your week.
I wanted to write this and get people to really dig deep and understand that doing a super restrictive challenge for a short period of time won’t help you with your goals; especially if you’re trying to make a better lifestyle change. Here are some healthier ways that will change YOUR life in 30 days with a better mindset.
Drink Your Water Every Day
I’m not talking about one glass of water, I’m talking about trying to drink 4 litres of water every single day. Drink it, tell your kids to drink it, just get it down! I never drank a lot of water until I started prepping for my bikini competition, where I had to drink so many litres a day, which flushed out all the toxins in my body. If you’re a person who frequently get UTI’s, start drinking more water, as it can really help.
Get 7-9 Hours Of Sleep
I get that our sleep patterns can change every night. One night you can have the best sleep, but then the next night you don’t sleep well at all. In this case try to go to bed earlier if you did have a bad sleep before. Stop hanging out on your phone, as it actually messes with our body’s internal “sleep clock,” just give your body what it needs. Always try to get more rest and sleep!
Eat With Balance
Eating with balance is the great 80-20 approach. 80% clean diet and 20% treats!! I would hope we all want the best for our bodies and feed it with clean nutritious foods. We need to understand that it’s far from “expensive” and stop with the excuses. You can also enjoy a glass of champagne or even a delicious donut too! It’s a treat meal not a full treat day. Know the difference.
Be Active Outside The Gym
Going for bike rides, walking, jogging, tennis, golf, whatever you like that’s being outside, do it more! There’s more to life then indoor cardio sessions. Learn to enjoy nature along with some activities to keep you busy and having fun! If it’s been raining all day and you’ve been sitting on your bum doing nothing, try to get outside when the rain is over. I love going outside at least 1-2 times a day.
If you want to make changes to your body you need to be consistent; so 30 days will not be enough. You need to put in the work and your body will eventually show you how hard you killed it. Keep it going and never give up. Just like being consistent in a video game to beat the next level and the next and so forth you need to be the exact same way with your workouts! Pew! Pew!
Find A Routine That Works For You
Whether this is you working from home or a fitness routine. Everything should be exciting and it should get you motivated. So, finding that right routine will help you with having a consistent schedule, instead of guessing and figuring everything out the day of. Try and be organized!
Changing Things Up
If you’re a person who does enjoy switching up your routine every now and then make an effort to change things up in the gym as well. We want to keep fitness fun, so add in new training techniques, change up your workout schedule from back and bi’s etc to a push and pull day, to maybe even a different work out split completely. Every little change will make a huge difference in a good way. If you always blog right when you wake up try enjoying a work-free breakfast. There are plenty of ways to keep you motivated and excited!
Leaving Unhealthy Relationships
You can break up and get back together so many times a year and still be in the same rut over and over again. What makes you think it’s going to be different this time? Or you have “friends” who only talk to you when they want to try and sell you something. etc. If you need more help distinguishing other toxic people start reading The 5 Types Of Toxic People You Need To Say GoodBye To. We never want the hassle of having unnecessary drama over you telling your “friend” why you don’t want to connect anymore, so you just live life normally. When you don’t leave toxic people they will always bring you down in big or small ways, that you sometimes don’t even realize. Growing up you really realize how your mental health is so important, and that you need to surround yourself with those who are a positive influence, not a Debbie Downer.
How are we supposed to get motivated about life when we don’t set up goals for ourselves? Big or small you need to set yourself up for success. I love setting goals for myself with hitting a new personal record with my lifts in the gym and even with my business. It never stops! I’m so busy these days, I don’t have time to watch endless amount of tv. Going to bed watching a show with Jamie is now a treat and it feels great. Fitness related, career, family, budgeting etc! Keep grinding and work hard for what you want in life. You were born to do amazing things in life, so go get it!
Stop Blaming It On The “Diet”
Your friends want to meet at a pub tonight for some drinks and noms but you cancel because you don’t want to ruin your “diet”. This is NOT a healthy sustainable way of living. You can workout hard and eat clean, but you and your body need some balance and happiness in your life. You can reach your goals with having a treat meal once a week. Moderation girl, go live your life and enjoy it. Jamie and I are huge foodies, so we workout hard and eat clean during the week and every Friday we’ve been going out for a lovely dinner or ordering in.
Find New Fun Ways To Cook Healthy Food
Shredded chicken salsa with coconut rice topped with sriracha, green onions, mango, cilantro, corn, and avocado. How good does that sound? These are fun ways to make healthy food tastes good. I’m not going to lie, I’m not a huge fan of chicken breasts anymore due to eating it a lot when I was on prep, however when it’s cooked like this I can’t resist. It’s not boring, it’s juicy, filled with flavour with all the spices and herbs, and it has that spicy and sweet combo, which is so delicious. Healthy food is not boring or bland, it’s YOUR COOKING that sucks! Seriously, there are so many ways to make something taste so much better. Good post you should read is Ways To Stop Eating Bland Food.
Start Being More Organized
This is for everything in your life. Make a grocery list with the only items you need to save yourself some money, write down the exercises you want to do at the gym; so you’re not wasting time when you’re there, or write down a to-do list for what you want to accomplish this week for work. There are lots of ways to be organized so you can stay on track and check things off one by one! 🙂
Maintain A Grateful Positive Attitude
It’s easy to get angry when something goes wrong or takes longer than expected. How you deal with unexpected things in life is how people will view you and also how you will contain your stress levels. Why work yourself up with a crazy headache and be stressed for the whole week? It’s not fun. Try to understand these little mishaps are meant to happen and it may also get you closer to your goal without you even knowing it.
I do believe everything happens for a reason. Example, last Sep (2019) Jamie and I left to backpack around the world for a year! That was our plan… However we were moving around too much and unpacking and packing again to the point that we just super drained. We were on a train to Luxor Egypt where I just broke down wanting to go home. I felt so guilty giving up on travelling like that and feeling like that in EGYPT! Like come on! I was so frustrated and beyond angry with myself because I felt like a “bad traveller.” I felt drained before we even got to Egypt, so it wasn’t Egypt that made me feel that way. Egypt was magical! A lot of it had to due with watching way too many Youtube videos of people full-time travelling where it always looked so perfect and they never talked about how hard it was! Anyways, we ended up going home a couple weeks later and made it home in time for Christmas with our families. 3 months later COVID happened! SO, as disappointed I was; I was really happy we weren’t stranded somewhere in the world due to the pandemic.
Hold Off On Watching TV
I blog from 6am – 6pm or even later sometimes. Now when I sit in front of the tv it’s more enjoyable! It’s so easy to sit there for hours on end binge watching some amazing tv shows, but if you have big life goals, you’re certainly missing out on a lot of hours to accomplish everything. Try to spent more time with family, accomplish goals, go outside etc. The tv will always be there, so do some other things before you sit down for the rest of the evening.
Take Self-Care More Seriously
Skin care, meditation, alone time, and anything that helps with your mental health. We always need to put ourselves first and keep on working on trying to be the best and healthiest we can. Whenever I see posts online about self care it always has to do with bubble baths, shopping, facials etc, but we need to also focus a lot more on our mental health. Read 15 Self-Care Ideas That We Need More Of when it comes down to your mind, body, and soul!
Disconnect From All Technology
Yes, I’m not crazy for saying this. I’m not saying take a week off technology, but even a couple hours a day helps. Get off your phone, go for a walk without music so you can be in your thoughts, and stop scrolling through Instagram because there’s no end to the pictures. We get so caught up on checking out other people lives when we should be more involved with our own life. It’s so easy to compare yourself to other fit females, but do you even know how long their journey has been? Probably not. We sit there and judge ourselves wishing we had her body without even knowing their own struggles or how long it took them to get to where they are now. Take a break, stop comparing other people’s journey to yours, be more confident in yourself etc. There are plenty of ways to become better and healthier. Start by living less on social media and living more in the real world.
Be Outside More
Nature and the sun makes everything better! Enough said! No, but seriously, get outside more and get that fresh air and vitamin D. Hangout outside instead of sitting on the couch with your friends, lay and tan, go for an evening walk. The smell, sounds, and peace throws your worries out the window.
Don’t Be Neurotic With Numbers
We TRACK EVERYTHING these days. From tracking our steps, budgeting, hours our kids watch tv, food, and more. We seem to be obsessed with analytics.
Tracking certain things is wonderful, I love tracking my food intake due to knowing how much protein, carbs, and fats I’m putting into my body. But sometimes we can overdo it with being obsessed with the numbers. We obsess too easily about the numbers on the scale or how we didn’t hit our macro goal for the day. You know what? LIFE happens! Nothing will be perfect, so stop stressing about the little things.
You need to understand that the scale changes a billion times a day. Our bodies hold onto water weight from not drinking enough water, or you may have to go #2 in the morning, or your muscles are growing hence why the number on the scale is going up. It doesn’t always necessarily mean you’re gaining fat. As for tracking your macros and sometimes being under or over, it’s ok! Do you not think pro bodybuilders or those fitness people you look up to have a perfect macro intake at the end of each day? We still need to enjoy life, and sometimes we can’t track everything or maybe one day you just don’t want to track. Stop letting little silly things get in the way of your happiness.
Continue to chase your goals, but let loose a little and really try to focus on the right path, not just how one day you didn’t hit your macro goal perfectly.
Some posts about macro tracking that might help you along your journey.
Read & Write More
We need more quiet time in our lives! Don’t you just miss being younger and having quiet time in school. Ahh, those were the days. Take some time for yourself to have some alone time to think about your goals, reflect on the past goals, what you can do next, differently, etc. There is a lot to think about, so why not journal or read more? I know some people don’t like reading books like myself, unless it’s a motivational, girl hustle kind of book, but find other materials to read. I enjoy reading other peoples blogs and I enjoy writing mine. Writing for me is all I need. It gives me a chance to write what I’m thinking and how I’m feeling with the stuff I’m interested in for others to gain some knowledge of their own.
Love Yourself Before, During, And After The Process
No matter where you are in your life long journey always remember to love and accept who you are and being in your own skin! You’re unique, so learn to embrace that. If you’re going through a huge fitness journey learn to love yourself no matter what stage you’re in. I love doing mini bulks for fun, but sometimes I do end up in that “fluffy” stage, but I learn to love it. Love the whole process because you can’t get to the finish line without those small steps!
If you need more motivation 15 Ways To Love Yourself Even More.
Don’t be intimidated by some of these “fake” templates stating how you should change your life in 30 days. Don’t stress yourself out by trying to do a “booze free” month. It’s ok to have a couple drinks during the week, you won’t hurt your progress. What will hurt it is if you don’t pay attention to how much! Moderation is always a gem!
I really hope you enjoyed this blog. At the end of the day, I want everyone to realize that it takes time to build a better you! Start by implementing these 20 changes, and see where you are in 30 days. They say it takes at least one month of repetition for something to become a habit, and I know that if you incorporate even a few of these suggestions into your daily routine, you will not only look better but start to feel better as well!
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