Like I mentioned last week we are going on a vacation later this month and I’m working really hard to eat healthy in preparation for all that pool side time. I usually eat pretty healthy but like many people the busy holiday season tends to lead to getting off track. Many people make New Years Resolutions to lose weight and get healthy and most unfortunately don’t succeed. If you’re trying to get back on track healthy eating, here are my top 5 Mistakes that Sabotage Healthy Eating.
1. Not Sharing Your Goals for Healthy Eating
When I know I need to lose a few pounds I always tell my husband my goal-whether it’s to fit comfortably into my favorite jeans or a particular number on the scale, sharing that goal with someone else helps set you up for success. If you live with others, sharing your goal helps others know to (hopefully) support you. For my family this means my husband knowing not to suggest ordering pizza or picking up Chick-fil-a (my favorite) on his way home from work-those are my willpower weaknesses!
Having a friend to check in with who has the same goals is another way to have the encouragement to help keep you on track, or if those in your life aren’t supportive there are plenty of online support communities that can help you get that encouragement.
2. Not Planning Your Meals
Meal planning doesn’t have to be elaborate or complicated, but not doing so is just asking for impulsive bad choices. You don’t have to make a hard and fast day by day meal plan in order to make good choices but having a rough idea of what you’ll eat and having those items you need for those meals on hand. On my last shopping trip I had these meals listed as my lunches for during week as an example:
- Veggie burgers (no bun, topped with salsa) and spinach, feta and blueberry salad
- Open faced egg salad sandwich and apple slices
- Turkey and cheese roll ups with ginger salad
When I went grocery shopping I made sure I had the ingredients to make everything on that list once or twice, then when I got home I went ahead and assembled the salads in individual plastic containers so that the produce took up less room in my fridge. I work from home so I am able to put together my lunch of choice when it’s meal time but when I worked outside the home I would prepare everything the night before. I know many people assemble an entire week’s worth of meals once a week but I haven’t been able to do that with success personally.
3. Eating Boring or Bland Foods
This is a huge one for me when it comes to eating healthy. I’m NOT a fan of brown rice or chicken breast which is what I see a lot of “diets” recommend. BUT I’m not on a diet-I’m trying to eat healthy for life so finding healthy foods I love was key to that. It has taken a bit of experimentation but I have a ton of go-to foods I truly love that work together to keep me healthy! I have a lot of healthy recipes here on the blog that I personally love, but each of us has our own taste so scour Pinterest and find what you love! Here are a few of my favorites I have almost weekly!
4. Over Restricting Calories Instead of Focusing on Macros
Macros sounds like a term body builders toss around but in fact it’s pretty simple. When you focus on your macros you’re just making sure you keep a proper balance of protein, fat, and carbs for your body’s needs. Many people get stuck focusing solely on calories without thinking about what kind of calories they are putting in their bodies which is a very unhealthy way to feed the only body you get in this life! Plus-eating too few calories can slow down your metabolism, making it actually harder to lose weight!
I like to use the MyFitnessPal app to track not only the number of calories I eat but see what kind. Focus on getting lean protein, healthy fats, whole grains and reducing processed foods. Think moderation instead of deprivation! Which leads me to my last mistake….
5. Keeping Unhealthy Foods in Your House
I share treats quite a bit on the blog and you might wonder how I can say I eat healthy with all the tasty goodies I make. To be honest I have quite the sweet tooth and I do love developing new dessert recipes to share. When I am creating or testing recipesI will try a small serving of whatever I made and I use my family for initial taste testers as well to make sure the recipe came out as intended. I then package the rest up immediately and send it off to my husband’s work for him to share or gift to a neighbor or friend. I get to have a small bit, others get their day brightened by an unexpected treat, and I’m not left with a kitchen full of temptation!
Keeping foods that are hard to resist in your home is a recipe for disaster. Make sure you have healthy alternatives for your sweet cravings-like my skinny “ice cream” above and keep unhealthy options out of your pantry! Make sure when you have the occasional treats that you account for it in your macros and you don’t leave yourself with an excess in the kitchen that will make you want to spoil your goals.