When we came back from holiday last year, we were looking through some of the snaps and hubby and I both caught sight of some “rear” views. Now they say that it takes an unflattering photo from the rear to make some women start a diet or hit the gym and I think I was one of those women (and hubby was too!).
We’re not talking about the “does my bum look big in this type of picture”, let’s face it, few women are ever content with how big “it” appears (no matter how big or small). I’m talking about the type where you spot the wobbly “love handles” you didn’t realise you had. The subtle way your, by now dimpled, buttocks have started to merge with the backs of your thighs and settled just above the back of your knees.
I’m lucky, I’ve been a constant weight for most of my life but, post children, I put on a few kilos which I neglected to shift. From the front I thought I still looked okay but what I hadn’t really appreciated is that my muscles had slowly begun to turn to jelly. The back told a whole different story: Although my weight was constant there was much more of me. More flab and less muscle. Hubby and I both decided to do something about it.
We thought we only had a few kilos to lose (me about 5, hubby about 10). Because of this, our first temptation was:
A Faddy Diet
We considered opting for one of the faddy diets like Atkins or Dukan or an even more radical detox like the lemon and maple syrup thing. When I looked into them though, I was astounded by the amount of people who had tried them and either failed, or succeeded – and then failed by piling it all (plus some) back on. So, it was going to have to be:
A Serious Formal Diet
Again, so not overly impressed. They all seemed to be promoted by stick insect celebrities that had “snapped” back into shape 5 minutes post birth with the help of personal trainers, a housekeeper or chef that prepared their meals, cleaners, nannies, etc. – help basically, by the bucket load. Let’s face it, mere mortals don’t have this army of helpers. Unless we’ve got bags of free time going, we also don’t have a hope in hell’s chance of achieving the biceps and buns of steel the models in the accompanying photos have. Result: From the get go your subconscious is telling you you’re going to fail and will wage a battle with your positive outside that’s desperately trying to avoid temptation at every turn. Hmm, look at those biscuits/cakes, you’ve done okay. You’re slimmer. Your muscle ARE more toned but you’re never gonna have a bod like that picture you know. Go on. Treat yourself! Bam, diet over. So, the formal diet was also off the list for us.
So what did we do?
We decided, that the only real way forward was to take a good long look at ourselves. Our biggest issues were:
- Processed food too regularly – so not enough of the fresh stuff
- Too much food – a little gluttony goes a long way
- Giving into temptation a little too often – self-discipline was most definitely not pulling it’s weight.
- Too little physical exercise – lazy XXXXs
What all of this boiled down to wasn’t a diet as such but to work on each of these issues – our Healthy Life Skills. Oh! And our self-discipline. The trouble with self-discipline, is that it doesn’t like being disciplined. We had to come up with ways to sneak up on it. Catch it unawares and try and train it to be a little more, well… self-disciplined.
In Kick Your Healthy Eating Life Skills in the Butt Part 2. I’ll give you some ideas on what we did to beat issue 1 – processed vs. fresh foods and how we starting whipping our self-discipline life skills into shape.
I hope you’ll stay tuned and share some of your own healthy life skills triumps! Send us a CANDo email or comment below.