Tuesday Tip: Re-train your brain 🧠
One trap many of us fall in to is treating food as a reward, and exercise as punishment; “i’ve had a really good week, I deserve a dessert” or “I’ve had such a bad weekend I need to really work hard at the gym tomorrow”. This cycle is self-defeating and creates a negative relationship with food and exercise. The key is trying to view both food and exercise as ways to fuel and care for your body, so you can sustain a healthy lifestyle long term. Here are some tips to help:
#1 Non-food rewards:
Instead of food, reward yourself with other things that are calming/relaxing or fun e.g. massage, manicure, new smellies, a bath, a walk, time reading your book, watching your favourite show etc. Or try things that encourage the healthy habits -new workout clothes, a new experience (e.g. rock climbing) or recipe books. Having nice things to go along with a behaviour makes that behaviour more fun, so your reward motivates you to do better
#2 Try not to justify food:
When you think, “I can have this because I’ve been good all week” etc then pause and remind yourself that your behaviour doesn’t determine what you can eat e.g. don’t reward yourself with cake because you went to the gym. Think about what food you want and decide why you want it e.g. you want cake because it tastes good – that’s fine. Re-train your mind to disassociate food from your behaviour. Have cake because you like it, not because you “deserve” it.
#3 Find fun workouts:
If the workout you’re doing isn’t enjoyable then change it. Try something new – if you usually run on the treadmill try doing a class, if you do classes have a swim etc – find something you actually like doing.
#4 Remember the good times:
Recent research in the journal “memory” has shown that recalling times when you had fun working out can help you look forward to future workouts. So reminisce about a workout you really enjoyed – it could be a fun class, or a race you took part in, or a game of football with your friends, or a walk or cycle outside – anything!
Happy Tuesday 🤗