What did you think of last week’s coaching tip?
Did the numbers or video give you or someone you know a sense of unease?
Last week, we unveiled the first step to making a lasting change in any area of life – having a sense of unease.
But having a sense of unease isn’t enough!
To make a lasting change, we need to have a vision for what a better state would look like…and specific actions to take us from our current uncomfortable situation to that better state.
When we started our REAL food journey, our vision of a better state simply included losing some weight, eating less “fake” food, breaking out of our dinnertime rut, and getting our kids to eat a wider variety of foods - especially vegetables (no more fast food, fish sticks and chicken nuggets!).
Once we started making changes, these new habits became part of our routine and led to even more changes. Before we knew it, our relationship with food had totally changed and we found our “better state,” which was 1,000 times better than we ever anticipated. It even became a passion we never knew we had!
So, what does a better state look like for you and your family?
Imagine a better state as a situation where your discomfort or unease no longer exists, or is at least significantly diminished. This, of course, is going to be different for each person. Here are some examples of what a better state might look like:
- Lose weight or maintain your current healthy weight
- Get off medications (for blood pressure, cholesterol or diabetes, just to name a few)
- Your clothes fit better (can you imagine trying on your summer clothes and they fit better than last year?!)
- Reduce your killer cravings for sweets, fast food and highly-processed food…and realize you enjoy - and even crave - REAL foods you never knew you liked before!
- Your children are nourishing their bodies with healthy foods
- Your children can make good food choices when you are not there
- Reduce stress (eating unhealthy food actually increases stress)
- Improved athletic performance
- Enjoying flavorful meals and not stuck in the rut of making the same things over and over
- You have more energy and just feel better
But, maybe your desire for a better state is more difficult to see…
Now that you have the vision, how will you get there?
Here is a path, and specific actions, to consider as you develop your plan:
1. Change your environment. Realize that willpower is not enough! Often, the traditional advice is to eat more fruits and veggies and use your willpower to fight off all those temptations and stay disciplined. Our willpower simply isn’t strong enough, especially as it wears down during the day. Unhealthy options are just too convenient and too prevalent. Start with your pantry and fridge. Do they make it easy to eat healthfully, or do they require your willpower to work overtime? Stocking your kitchen with staples and tools that make it super-easy to make delicious and healthy meals, snacks and sweet treats, is a HUGE step on your path to your better state.
2. Focus on daily change vs huge goals. It doesn’t happen overnight, but it happens faster than you think! Have faith that small victories will build momentum and multiply…and don’t give up! Here are a few ideas:
- Each week, make a new meal you haven’t made before
- Create a "Superfood of the Month" challenge, picking an in-season food to enjoy in a variety of ways throughout the month
- Pick one day a week to make a slow cooker meal, then take advantage of a 2 for 1 meal
- Make it a priority! Don’t use “I don’t have time” as an excuse. Yes, we only have a finite amount of time each day and we all make choices about how we use that time. If you truly want to reach your desired state, challenge yourself to find the time. Once you find your rhythm, it really doesn’t require that much time to plan and prepare delicious, healthy meals.
- Avoid the temptation of the latest "fad" diet and don't cut out entire food groups. Our bodies need the combination of nutrients that comes from a wide variety of REAL foods. Don’t dwell on what you can’t have (like that Oreo cookie), but focus on the variety of great-tasting options you CAN have.
3. Have a plan. We see it over and over again. It’s dinnertime and everyone looks at each other and asks, “What should we do for dinner?” Fast food, carry out and processed foods to the rescue! Find a planning, shopping, and preparing rhythm that works for you and your family. Some members like to set aside a small chunk of time once a week (such as Sunday afternoon) to plan snacks, breakfasts, and sweet treats for the week. This is also a great time to prep anything for meals for the week such as chopping veggies and making dressings. Involve the family! Imagine how much better each week will be when you have a plan!
4. Find support and encouragement. Being part of a group where people have similar interests, goals and strategies helps tremendously! It could be just a couple friends or family members, or a larger group. That's part of what try to create and maintain with Eat REAL America.
You may even be interested in a FREE webinar Zonya is doing this Thursday, January 12th at 12:00 eastern time (11:00 central time) and 7:00 eastern time (6:00 central time). She will be sharing 4 easy steps you can take to conquer whatever health challenges you may be facing, whether it be weight loss, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes, gastric reflux, or others.
Zonya is also leading a 3-month livestream program (Eat REAL For Your Health: Weight Loss Initiative) starting in just a couple of weeks!
Your health and your family’s health are worth it!
Get started right away, or encourage a family member or friend to get started - and become one of the many Eat REAL America success stories!
"I am on the last loop of my belt. I have lost 40 pounds and my doctor said I am no longer pre-diabetic! I am wearing clothes that I haven't worn in years, and I feel like a totally different person!"
"I have lost 30 pounds because of you guys! I am eating salads every day and more vegetables than ever. I am loving it!"
“I started with one thing…I cut down to one soda a day. Then, I began to realize how sweet it really was. I ended up dropping soda altogether and lost 20 lbs. This began to change my sweet cravings too…now I crave salads at lunchtime and my whole family, and kids, are eating so much better!”
“My 14-year-old son now works alongside me as I prepare dinner. It’s become our after work “thing” – we divide it up and we chat as we work. He has become a master onion chopper – much better than I am at that task! What used to be a chore to me is now a source of enjoyment!”
“The planning and shopping list makes it so much easier. Now, by the time I leave the produce section, two-thirds of my shopping is done. There are aisles I don’t even go down anymore!”
“To improve the snacking at our house, we purchased an air-pop popcorn popper and our boys were instantly hooked! To top it off, I made the chocolate avocado banana pudding. Granted, I had to secretly make it while my 7-year-old wasn't watching, but again both boys loved it. My 3-year-old even topped his with some homemade peanut butter granola!”
“I am roasting vegetables and eating things I have never eaten before. If you would have said this 65 year old would be roasting Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes, I would have said you were crazy!”
“We love the meals on Eat REAL America — everything we have tried has been great! I haven’t had to think about meal planning for several weeks now. I pick the meals I want, add them to my shopping list and BAM! It is done for me! And, since my list is done, my shopping time has been cut in half! It is so worth it!”