Anyone typically involved in fitness often despises the word ‘diet’ when used to describe a system for weight loss. Diet, by definition, is the food you ingest, whether you eat a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins, or an unhealthy diet complete with fatty meats, high salt content and refined sugar. Both lifestyles are a diet, but that does not mean both are optimal for weight loss or healthy living. Unfortunately, most people do not take the word “diet” to mean its definition but rather a system to lose weight, creating a mentality of can and can nots and have and have nots. This entire mentality can often be the downfall for the person simply working to get and be healthy.
Food is only one piece of the equation related to healthy living. When people choose to “diet” they are so incredibly focused on this piece of the equation that they forget any other pieces that are necessary to get and stay healthy. To diet means, through way of common beliefs, that the dieter must count every calorie and avoid any and all foods that are high in sugar, carbs, fat, or salt content. The dieter becomes obsessed with numbers rather than paying attention to how he or she feels. These numbers are solely in relation to the food he or she is ingesting. For instance, an avocado is high in fat and calories, but is amongst the best foods you can put into your body; yet people who consider themselves to be dieting will avoid the avocado in exchange for a carrot to avoid the calorie hit on their diet.
On the other hand, those that live a healthy lifestyle understand that the avocado may be a better overall choice because it will help them feel energized, full, and will provide them with healthy fats and vitamins necessary to live a healthy lifestyle. The person living a healthy lifestyle is not concerned with the numbers as much as the choices they are making and how they feel as a result. This person may know that a fatty burger and fries will make them sleepy, and therefore choose to go with the quinoa and kale salad. This person also knows and understands moderation and does not feel guilty in partaking in the special desert made from chocolate from the Swiss Alps.
Exercise is the second piece relating to healthy living. Those who choose to diet look at exercise as a necessary evil and loathe its very existence. Furthermore, if this person can get to their goal weight without ever having to lift a weight or walk a mile, he is even more ecstatic. This same person gains weight back as soon as his “diet” is over and does not know how to maintain his weight without counting every calorie.
The person living a healthy lifestyle enjoys exercise and the way they feel after a good workout. He is up for the challenge and wants to push himself further each workout. He feels amazing after a workout and does not wish to lose that momentum by eating a fatty burger and fries.
The final piece to a healthy lifestyle that is rarely discussed in “dieting” is self-acceptance. A person must be at peace with who they are and how they appear to truly live a healthy life. If you are interested in a healthy lifestyle and need a little help getting there, contact Apex Personal Training at 612.405.3002.