28 Feb Feeling stuck? Non-food related reasons may be the reason
You’ve ditched the processed junk foods and are bringing healthy lunches to work. These are powerful first steps that sound simple but make a profound impact. You saw some significant improvements in the beginning, but you’ve seemed to hit a plateau. So, what’s going on?
While eating clean is important when choosing a healthier path, there could be some non-food related reasons why you’re not seeing or feeling any improvements lately. Here are the top challenges my clients have experienced:
Focusing too much on the scale
When you feel like you’re doing all the right things, it can be frustrating not to see or feel any improvements. We tend to measure our success by the number staring back at us on our scale, which isn’t an effective way to gauge our progress. With things like fluid fluctuations and building muscle, the scale can be deceptive. It is most practical and accurate to assess progress by how we feel and how our clothes are fitting. Don’t let the scale tell you how you’re feeling; you are far more than that number.
If you’re eating healthy and not exercising, you will likely hit a plateau. While eating clean is a crucial piece of staying healthy, exercise is the other puzzle piece necessary to achieve the goals you’ve set for yourself. You don’t need to workout in the gym for an hour every day. A brisk walk for 20 to 30 minutes each day is great. Find the exercise that fits into your schedule and that you enjoy the most.
Exercising too much
Is this possible? Yes – if you exercise too much it can cause stress and impair your adrenal hormone production. So if you’re working out too much in hopes to reach your goals faster, take a couple of days off and reevaluate your workout strategy for better results. Weight training is important to build a stronger body and increase you resting metabolism, which in term helps you to burn more calories each day!
Drinking your calories
Sure, you eat salads and healthy meals all day long but your morning coffee is filled with cream and sugar, or you’re drinking fruit juices or diet soda. To avoid withdrawal symptoms, don’t go ‘cold turkey’! Instead, set a goal this week to make one change in this area. Trade water for one of the sugary drinks each day. Who knows, you might start craving water more than that sugary drink. My favorites are flavored sparkling water like LaCroix or Poland Spring to satisfy the bubbly craving, herbal teas, like Stash Licorice Spice, and water infused with fruit.
Stressing to much
Unfortunately, when you are under constant stress, your body stays in a state of ‘fight or flight’, or survival mode. During stressful times, your cortisol rises, which can lead you to overeat. Increased levels of cortisol can cause higher insulin levels, which leads to a drop in blood sugar, causing sugar and carb cravings. Unfortunately, “More stress = more cortisol = higher appetite for junk food = more belly fat,” according to Shawn M. Talbott, PhD, a nutritional biochemist. Since it’s impossible to avoid stress, focus on tools to manage your stress better like deep breathing, exercise, meditation and connecting with friends.
Tuesday, March 6th: 7:30pm. Gluten-free: Is it for me? Confused about Gluten? Want to know what’s hype and what’s real and how it relates to you? Join us at Pure Pilates in New Providence, NJ for an interactive workshop discussing the latest information about gluten and what’s right for you. Light gluten-free food (and treats) will be served from Zing Meals. Register at: http://purepilatesnj.com/workshops prior to the event.
This eggs and greens recipe is a simple way to get more veggies into your morning routine. If you don’t have time to cook the veggies in the morning, why not use some of the leftover veggies from dinner instead. Fresh herbs are another way to add flavor and disease-fighting antioxidants into your meals.
Simple, no fuss, healthy meals
Want to eat delicious, gourmet, healthy meals, but don’t have time to prep, cook and clean up? Zing Meals has you covered! Order your Zing Meals by Sunday at 8 PM for Tuesday afternoon delivery in Berkeley Heights, Chatham, Madison, Mountainside, New Providence, Millburn, and Summit, with pick-up available in New Providence, Millburn and Maplewood.
I am here for you if you need guidance, support or accountability. Please email me with your questions, comments and suggestions!
Yours in pure, simple wellness,
Elizabeth Girouard, Certified Holistic Health Coach & Workplace Wellness Master Ambassador