Three Little Words
In a time of expanding waistlines competing with pressure for the ‘ideal’ body, most of us are aware of three little words. These three words are thrown around as though everyone knows what they mean and how to implement them.
Three little words that cause more confusion and argument amongst family, friends, and social media than any other. We all know what each word means, or do we?
The three little words? Diet. And. Exercise.
Diet and exercise form the standard of advice for changing our bodies and our health. It’s such a simple concept, but almost impossible for the average person to put those three little words into practice.
Almost every adult has, at some point, been ‘on a diet’. Almost every person enquiring about gym memberships or exercise programs list ‘weight loss’ as one of their goals. If the simple advice of diet and exercise worked, nobody would be overweight. There’s a lot more to the story than just three little words.
Most people confuse one of the three little words. They diet or they exercise. And becomes Or. The key to success is to combine the strategies at the same time. Diet And Exercise.
One of the surprising aspects of putting diet and exercise together is in how the strategy affects mindset.
Dieting can be tough. The rest of the family don’t want to change. Old habits are still in place. The start of the diet (usually on a Monday, right?) is positive. People are motivated, and willpower is high. But what happens by next month, next week, or even next day? Initial weight loss goals have not been met, but the after-dinner biscuit with a cuppa is a lure. The smell of toast in the morning, or the cake that granny bakes, or hearing someone munching on a bag of chips can all be temptations that, without the right mindset, are difficult to resist. Habits are hard to break.
Starting an exercise routine can be tough. An early morning walk is a great way to start the day, but the wind is freezing and bed is warm so staying put is much more appealing. The idea of getting sweaty, or feeling the muscles work is less appealing than watching another Netflix show. Setting a regular appointment with a friend or a personal trainer makes accountability much easier, but doing it alone is hard for anyone who is not a regular exerciser.
Putting diet and exercise together does something to the mindset. Exercising releases feel-good hormones that increase positivity, and nobody wants to undo all the good work by eating rubbish food. Eating fresh, healthy food increases energy and stops the sluggish feeling that makes turning up for exercise so difficult.
The combination of diet and exercise sees results, and results help with motivation. Motivation helps with continuing to do what works. It’s a great feedback loop that reinforces itself.
Diet And Exercise. Three little words that can make all the difference.