WHY YOU SHOULD NEVER GO ON A DIET


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Yep – you read that title correctly. Want to lose weight for good? Then don’t go on a diet.

Why?

I consider the word “diet” to be a four letter word – one of those bad words that people get uncomfortable when they hear it.

Nobody likes going on a diet. I mean honestly, when your doctor tells you that you’re overweight and need to shed some pounds, odds are you don’t run gleefully out of his or her office yelling, “Woo Hoo”! – I get to eat more kale!” Right?

Instead, the images that come to mind when someone tells me they are going to start such-and-such a diet this week are usually people who are depressed, stressed, angry, or sad, with a little trepidation about just how long they think they’re going to last, leaving their favorite foods behind.

Why do people generally fail at dieting? Because most people can’t stick to a diet for long. Most diets have some sort of restriction, or they wouldn’t be called a diet to begin with. No sweets. No Chips. No ice cream. No pasta. No breads. Name your favorite foods and they are likely on the forbidden food lists.

So in order to try convincing yourself that it won’t be “that bad,” your mind already starts thinking in terms of your upcoming diet as something that has a beginning and an end. Surely in a few months you’ll have dropped the weight and will be at a good place where you can stop dieting and return to your earlier eating habits.

And that’s why diet’s don’t work! You mistakenly thought that dieting has a beginning and an end. You did great and lost 35 pounds and feel wonderful in doing so, while denying yourself your favorite yummies for so long. Now you’re “off” the diet and guess what. If you’re like most people… odds are you go right back to eating like you used to – before the diet. And before you know it, those 35 pounds you lost have snuck back in and brought their friends to boot and suddenly you have 40 extra pounds! At which time many folks end up blaming the diet, or believing that diets don’t work! When in fact, it is a set-up to fail to begin with.

I was watching the Today show the other day when Megyn Kelly was putting a variety of diets under the gun, as to their effectiveness as well as longevity. Weight Watchers was getting many accolades but, Megan said, “But you can’t stay on Weight Watchers forever.”

And therein lies the problem … the great myth that takes me back to the word diet. In fact, if you want to shed those pounds and keep them off you need to make your food choices a “lifestyle”, as opposed to a diet. Meaning, even if you reach your goal weight, you’re aware every single day, of just how much food you  put in your mouth and your body to keep the weight on hold.

Yep. Every day.

Now that’s not as bad as it sounds. For example, for me to keep my weight at 142 pounds (I’m 5’7”), I allow myself about 1,600 – 1,800 calories per day. Might sound restrictive to you but what I didn’t tell you is that I don’t begrudge myself partaking in anything I want – whether it be a birthday party or Thanksgiving, or the office party picnic. I’ve been known to eat an entire box of Girl Scout thin mints in an evening (I don’t advise it!) and still not gain weight.

How, you ask? For two reasons … First, I stay fully aware of how many calories are in the items I’m gulping down. Yep, those thin mints might only be 160 calories per serving (4 cookies – not an entire box!) But the whole container was 1,280! That only left me 520 calories for the rest of the day. And if I’d already eaten half a day’s calories before I even hit the cookies, odds are I’m way already over my limit to begin with.

OK, NO GUILT. NO SHAME! That’s what I mean when I say “No Cheatin’, Just Eatin’.” It’s not a diet. It’s a lifestyle. I wasn’t cheating when I ate the box of cookies. I just chose to eat more of it than I needed. Which will definitely slow my weight loss plans, for sure.

So this is where the second part of how I do it comes in … the next couple of days I cut way back on everything. Tighten my calories back to 1,200 – 1,400. Make sure I get some exercise in and probably eat more salad, lean meat, and fruit than usual. And I eat that way until the number on the scale is more acceptable to me.

I can handle giving up my junk food every now and then, knowing I can have it back in just a couple of days. After your first week or so of counting calories you’ll know what the calorie counts are for your favorite foods in your head and can likely calculate your intake each day simply and easily.

And with all the apps out there these days, keeping track couldn’t be easier!

So don’t diet to lose weight. Make weight loss a lifestyle of something you can live with each and every day.

KLONDIKE BARS … MY NO KISS-AND-TELL LOVERS!


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klondikebaroriginal

This is an excerpt from NO CHEATIN’, JUST EATIN’, a short insight into the crazy world of food and my junk food junkie lifestyle. This excerpt is taken from Chapter 10, Love or Lust. It takes place just as I was getting my feet back under me after going through divorce.

***

The first thing I did was put the house on the market. That was tough. I’d spent 16 years there, had made many memories there. It had been the dream I’d had for years. Suddenly it was different. Now it was just a house, not a home anymore. I also sold the last two horses, which actually broke my heart more. I just knew I couldn’t keep up a place that size any more. Not by myself.

I was in transition, not knowing what the next journey would be. And so after the house sold (and that took nearly a year), I sought out a temporary living arrangement to keep myself flexible. I ended up in a roommate situation in the mountains just west of Denver. The guy who owned the house, Patrick, was gone 90 percent of the time. He got on a plane every Monday morning and returned every Friday night. And if it was snow skiing season, he left the house Saturday morning to go work on ski patrol, then returned Sunday late afternoon, paid his bills, did his laundry, and packed to leave again the next morning.

It was a perfect situation for both of us. He got rent and I got a house essentially to myself. I only mention this brief living situation because it was where I gained back so much of my weight. And looking back at it, I have to laugh. It was truly one of my greatest excuses of all the great excuses I’ve used over the years. Since Patrick and I were nothing more than roommates, that also meant we bought our own food as well. However, since the grocery store was a good 20 minutes each way, it was considered fair game to borrow something from each other, then replace it the next time either of us went shopping.

Living alone like I was, food did its great job of being a filler of emptiness, as always. And so, when my hunger (stomach or emotional) started working its way with me, I’d start searching first, through my stuff, seeking something sweet and satisfying. But because I refused to buy any junk in bulk to bring home, I was usually pretty good about not going overboard too often. I’d buy whatever junk I could when I went to town, something yummy at the bakery perhaps, then eat it in the car on the way home. (Yep, I never quit that habit, even after 7-Eleven!)

However, on nights when a good snow storm had settled over the house and I couldn’t get out to procure my fix, I would start searching through Patrick’s goodies. Mind you, he was about 5 foot 10 inches tall and not an ounce of fat on him. Ate healthy all the time too. But he did like an occasional Klondike bar. It didn’t take me long to find his stash and I took the first one, thinking he’d understand if one was missing. It wouldn’t be that big a deal. So, I’d eat one, despite the fact that ice cream bars really weren’t on my favorites list. I gobbled it up right quick. Hmmmm … I thought. Not so bad after all. I even licked the stick until the last traces of chocolate were gone.

Well, I said to myself, maybe just this one time, I’ll allow myself two. Surely I’ll have time to get to the store before he comes home and I can refill his supply. He’ll never know the difference.

Made perfect sense to me. But that was before I realized that I would be house bound due to the snow for two and a half days. The Klondike bars barely made it past the first night.

By the time Patrick was due home, I’d been to the store and back and reloaded the freezer, just as he’d left it. I even pushed the wrappers to the bottom of the trash can to hide the evidence. It worked! He never knew a thing. And I – well, now I had a Plan B in the event of another snow-in. Which of course happens quite often in the mountains.

My “Plan C” came quickly on the tails of Plan B. Only this time it was one of those tubs of ready-made cake icing. I couldn’t for the life of me understand why he would have cake icing on the shelf. He certainly didn’t bake and he certainly wasn’t a sugar junkie. The Klondikes seemed to be his only weakness and even those he only ate on a rare occasion.

And so one night, when I’d either already wiped out the Klondike supply or had gotten bored with them, I did it; I broke into the frosting! Just me, a spoon, and Pillsbury’s Best Chocolate Frosting. What else could any God-fearing sugar junkie need? So, for the next 24 hours, I gorged on that stuff.

Then, of course I had to replace it, in case he might miss that little goodie on his pantry shelf next time he was home. I didn’t find out until much later that it wasn’t even his! It had been left there months before by an earlier roommate. So I’d gone through all those antics for nothing!

As it turned out, I was only there for about five months. He ended up meeting some gal and despite the fact he was barely ever home, she wasn’t too keen on me being there, roommate or not.

It was time for me to go. All those Klondike bars and the Pillsbury’s Best Frosting had landed me at 185 pounds!

Yep, the evidence was clear; whether I had no love or no lust, I always turned to my reliable standby, food, as my no kiss-and-tell lover.

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WHY YOU SHOULDN’T WAIT ‘TIL JANUARY TO DIET!


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Ok, so Halloween is here and if you haven’t been around candy and goodies yet, you likely will be soon! They’re everywhere! Every office you go into. Every neighbor you visit. Every social gathering you attend. You simply can’t escape it! Then, of course, there’s the candy you buy to give out to the Trick or Treaters … I always buy something I don’t like to minimize my wolfing them down myself. (I always buy Whoppers – don’t like them much. Yet last year there were quite a few left and I polished them all off anyway!)

Next, Thanksgiving is only a few weeks after that with its mashed potatoes and gravy, turkey and dressing, sweet potato casserole, cranberries, dinner roles, appetizers and of course – ALL THOSE DESSERTS!

Then, come all the Xmas parties that usually start about the first week of December. Just how many of those are you planning on attending? PLUS Xmas Eve and Xmas itself… the big family gigs and God knows you don’t want to make your mother feel bad by not having seconds (of everything) since she slaved all day making your favorite dishes for you!

Then New Year’s Eve celebrating and New Year’s Day football eating all day long.

Why am I bringing this up? Because I hear so many folks say they’re going to wait until the first of the year to start their diet. AFTER all the celebrating and over-indulging is over. In the meantime, they give themselves permission to pig out until Jan 1, when they’ll likely hit the scales like most of us, and groan at what they see.

On the other hand, what about if you put some serious focus on food NOW – lose a couple of lbs now, BEFORE ALL THE HOLIDAY OVER EATING ONLY ADDS TO YOUR WEIGHT. That way when the big feast come around, you’ve got a little wiggle room to spare. Then, if you want to get seriously into losing some weight when January comes, you’re already one step ahead of the game.
Oh yea – and don’t forget that Valentine’s Day is right after Xmas, with its chocolate in every shape and size. Then there’s Easter and all the Easter hams and Cadbury eggs. (LOVE those!) Then Memorial Day and the 4th of July cookouts with those awesome summer burgers! And then …

As you can see, there’s never a good time. You just have to start.

The other thing to consider with all these parties, is planning ahead. For example, if I have a party to attend on Saturday, I cut my calories back the day before the party, the morning and afternoon of the party, as well as the day after the party.

I also do things like bring a dish to pass that I know will be safe for me. I bring the fruit or veggie tray. Maybe a nice, big salad. (Other folks could benefit from some non-fat options as well, you know!)

Lastly, under absolutely NO conditions, should you take leftovers home! (Despite how much grief Aunt Mable is giving you!) It’s one thing to pig out once – why would you set yourself up to fail twice? Just say NO! She’ll get over it!

These are just a few tips to help you avoid gaining over the holidays like I did several years ago. (I put on 8 pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas! Yikes!) Believe me, you don’t want to do that!

Sure – there are so many pitfalls of the busy holiday season but if you put a plan into place now and look ahead for the best way to navigate the food minefield this several weeks, you shouldn’t be sobbing over your scales come January 1!

http://www.http://nocheatinjusteatin.com

Mary Jo Fay is the founder and author of No Cheatin’, Just Eatin’,, the memoir of 40 years of yo-yo dieting that reads like a novel and has just enough “how to” advice for folks who want to lose weight but refuse to give up their favorite foods and eat healthy!    cvr_nocheatin

Available soon on Amazon.