An email on a Sunday from me? Yep, I left it until today to send this because it feels more timely!
Actually I had a really lovely day yesterday.Katie, my daughter came home from Uni unexpectedly, so I just had the day off! Sometimes other things are just more important. Know what I mean?
So I am SHAPING this email to FIT the day at hand...I'm nothing if I'm not honest Zig Zag!
Over 15 years ago I took a very "traditional PT approach with my clients. I'd write them an individual rockin' exercise program, full of stuff to be effective and "entertain" both them and me (!), and then give them an individual nutrition plan with all their calculated macro and micro splits. It felt so sexy and uber intelligent!! But this is exactly what lead me to quit the game 7 years ago.
NO meal plans and No strict protocols.
And that LOST feeling!...wandering around in the mind-blowing world of dismal diet dismay - no that's not sexy - and I get that
But of course, thats a picture of what clients perceive it will be like without strict guide lines.
“Without a meal plan to follow I have no self-control.”
"I won't know what to eat when I go out"
" I won't know what's GOOD and what's BAD"
"I won't know if I am being "Good Zig Zag or Bad Zig Zag? "
I completely understand that it feels good to have a plan because it gives us a sense of control,direction and makes us feel safe and taken care of. I also see the power (every week with my Zig Zag ladies) of understanding your own body and trusting yourself to figure it all out. You finally ditch that whole idea of DIET and turn on your automatic button. Leaving your mind to focus on those things that really make a difference to your happiness rather than "How many points in this mince pie?" (Ha!)
>>The Darth Vader side of Meal Plans - The Monday tighten up!<<
No one talks about this.
The strict rule based protocols: they perpetuate a "good" or "bad" mentality. If I'm good, I'm following it to a T. If I'm bad I deviate. I slip in a biscuit in. A packet of crisps, a Kit Kat...
How crazy is this when you think about it? ONE deviation from the perfect plan and you are justified to just throw your hands up and say, "forget it all", proceed to eat with abandon and start again on Monday?
>>The dark side of strict meal plans is that they perpetuate perfectionism<<
When it comes to longterm results and sustainable happy weight loss we can't afford to be perfect. Why? because we eat many many times a day for the rest of our lives and the idea that we will get it right every time is absurd and sets you up for a huge fall.
I once had this client tell me she was giving up all fruit and all dairy. Her friend had done exactly that and she wanted HER body!
Understandable. Except that literally every single week, she’d make it to Thursday on the plan, and then Friday through Sunday, she’d eat a bucket load of dairy and fruit, plus a million other sweets and treats way worse then either of those. And then come Monday, she’d put the no-dairy, no-fruit plan into place AGAIN and tell herself that she’d be better this week. Sound familiar?
And then the same thing would happen. Of course it would. Week after week, for months, this same deprive-then-binge cycle. She also didn’t mention that her friend was a fitness model!
It’s not really her fault from the standpoint of unrealistic expectations and the nature of willpower, but it was her fault for not trying anything else, especially in the face of an approach that was actually not working.
The reason we always feel as though we need a clean slate is because the approaches we are taking are too extreme.
If you keep messing up. If you keep starting again on Monday. If you ditch your diet at every opportunity, you’ve got to STOP & REASSES. It’s not because you’re weak willed, it’s because your plan is too hard, too extreme.
Do you REALLY want to lose 5 stone? Do you REALLY want to drop 3 dress sizes? Do you REALLY want to run a marathon? Do you REALLY want to look in the mirror naked and see your abs? Do you REALLY want to look in the mirror and see the same body that you had 20 years ago or your friends body who's a fitness model? REALLY?
OR do you REALLY want to drop a stone or 2, have more energy, be a bit less snappy, feel comfortable in the clothes you already have, feel strong, fit and revitalised….and enjoy all the other things you do without being obsessed about how you look?
These two scenarios above require very different approaches.
If it’s the latter…why are you trying to be super tight with your diet? What's really getting in the way?
If it’s the former…Are you REALLY clear with what you want? Yes, it would be tough to achieve THOSE amazing results, but if you really want those things your consistent daily actions MUST match your desires, and yes your focus will need to be on point at least 90% of the time. Tough. Some clear support needed here.
I’m absolutely NOT judging you here Zig Zag, but getting clear on exactly what it is you want will really help you change the story in your head. Alter the way you speak to yourself and stop you thinking about your weight, dress size, wobbly bits FOREVER.
Knowing what you want EXACTLY will help you put together a plan that will work for you and stop you calling yourself rubbish names on a Sunday night!!
Many of us learn this lesson the hard way. But we are stubborn and we want to fit a circular peg into a square hole. And week after week we try it. And months, years later, we feel defeated, hopeless, confused and ashamed that we weren’t strong enough. Which is actually a lie. The problem is not you, it’s your APPROACH.
Bye for now!
Allison (loving the unsexy approach) Harding
PS This is of course an insight into the UNSEXY Coaching approach I take now a days with my fabulous Zig Zag ladies. If you're ready to change your story and actually get some feel great results in January then jump on board our next FREE Taster week.
CLICK HERE to grab your spot. One group already full and the others will fill before Christmas.
Allison Harding,Fitness & Motivation Coach