Saturday, March 11, 2017

The "It Won't REALLY Matter If I..." Trap

Ever heard yourself TELL yourself "It won't REALLY matter if I..." as you are about to choose to have a little something-something that is off-program? Whether it's the left over chicken nugget from your child's dinner plate, or a little extra almond milk in your cereal, or that extra handful of pistachios, it DOES matter.

I don't know much, but here is what I DO know, and can tell you by experience. I have never seen ONE PERSON in my 6 years of coaching NOT succeed when they made the decision to follow the program as outlined in the Quick Start Guide EXACTLY, day in and day out.

On the contrary, I have seen MANY people who have opted to substitute their judgment, even daily, for that of the program and NOT succeed in their health goals.

It may seem innocent enough, and it may be such a habit that we aren't even aware we are doing it. We've stopped measuring (or have never measured) the half and half we use in our morning coffee. We stop counting (or have never counted) condiments. We eyeball our lean for our Lean and Green, and do the same thing for our vegetables. After all, WE know what 5-7 ounces of lean protein looks like, don't we? WE know what 1.5 cups of vegetables looks like, don't we?

And so starts the slow slide into forgetfulness, into mindlessness, into old habits, because pretty soon it isn't just once or twice a week we are deviating from the program it is once or twice a day. And although those deviations, on the surface, seem so minor to us, they can add up to COMPLETE FRUSTRATION because we have actually convinced ourselves we ARE following the program.

But are we? Are we really?

I've seen it time and time again, where someone will hit a plateau (and it's happened to me too!) and have no idea why their weight loss stopped? When this happens to me I do a three-day food log and meticulously log every single thing I put in my mouth (time, amount), and I track my water (time, amount) also. You'd be surprised at what I have uncovered about myself and my program when I've done this exercise. In fact, even the PROCESS of logging everything for 3 days usually gets me PAST a stall or a plateau, because if I'm going to write it down I'm going to make sure it was ON PLAN! If I'm going to write "6 ounces of chicken breast cooked in Pam" then I very well better have MEASURED it!

I challenge everyone to do a 3-day food log, but be sure to review the Quick Start Guide first, with brand-new eyes, then make YOUR 3-day food log MATCH the Quick Start Guide.

The danger of having a "good enough" mindset instead of a precise mindset when it comes to the program is that we slowly slide into complacency, and our results will follow.

If you'd like to try this exercise with me (I'm doing it for the next 3 days also) I encourage you to do it! If you want me to review your food logs to see how they match up against the Quick Start Guide, I am happy to do that, just e-mail me your log after 3 days and I'll analyze it, trouble-shoot it for any areas I see that might be holding you back without you even knowing it!

Here is a quick review of what your day should look like:
5 Medifast or Optavia Fuelings
1 weighed and measured Lean and Green, choosing only the protein and vegetables included in the Quick Start Guide List, and including the required amount (if any) of measured Healthy Fats corresponding to the lean protein you chose
No more than 3 condiments per day, also only of condiments listed in either the Quick Start Guide OR the Expanded Condiment/Healthy Fat List (if you don't have this list, e-mail me with "Expanded List" in the subject line and I'll get it to you asap)
90 ounces or more of water

Your 6 fuelings (5 +1) should be spaced 2-3 hours apart (no sooner than 2 hours, no later than 3 hours) throughout your day, with your first fueling consumed WITHIN the first hour of waking up.

Your caffeine should be limited to 300 mg per day, which is about 20 ounces of brewed coffee or black tea, or 3-4 cans of caffeinated diet cola beverages.

Your exercise (if you exercise) should be no more than 45 minutes per day, of moderate intensity

One optional snack (from the list in the Quick Start Guide) per day, if hunger is an issue. Never have an optional snack simply because you "feel like it", only utilize it on extra-hungry days if you have them. Remember that this program was designed for men and women alike, my personal opinion as that while men sometimes could use the extra calories, women don't tend to need them and in fact adding them may increase their hunger slightly or noticeable in the next few days.

Learn to recognize that voice inside that simply wants what it wants, and prompts you to reach for that extra something. Or, the voice can also convince you that measuring just doesn't really matter. Or that the extra condiments can slide today, because emotionally you really need them (or it doesn't really matter).

Follow the program, strive to make every day a 100% day, and when it isn't examine it to determine WHY it isn't and make corrections for the next day, and move FORWARD to your health goals! If you falter, don't beat yourself up, but also don't stay STUCK. Make your next decision an on program decision and carry on.

Remember this program was scientifically designed by people much much smarter than me! It was clinically proven safe AND EFFECTIVE provided it is followed. Do not modify, do not modify, do not modify. A modified plan will give modified results, and NOT the ones you were after.

Who is with me?

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