The struggle IS real.
This is a great time of year to talk about struggles. Speed bumps, obstacles, stumbling blocks, etc. I prefer the term speed bump because that's really what it is; it isn't a roadblock - you're not stopping. Rather, it's an obstacle that slows you down temporarily. Whichever way you name them, they're a part of everyone's journey. Regardless of your goal: struggles will happen.
This time of year tends to be tough on those of us following a healthy lifestyle because the holidays always bring out the goodies. Baked goods and purchased goods alike.
We all know how it goes:
"Just one" turns into "just one more" turns into "I'll get back on track tomorrow." There's almost always a well-meaning family member nearby nodding in agreement with a kind smile saying, "You're allowed to cheat!" only further crumbling your wall of resolve.
They're never malicious in their intent. Rather, they just want you to feel comfortable with whatever decision you make. If you were to put the treat back and not eat it, they would still genuinely pat you on the back and tell you, "Great job!"
I'm closing in on two years with Nutracelle, and there were times throughout my journey that I isolated myself from my family to make it easier for myself. It took me some time to find that balance of what to expect from my family with this journey, and what to ask for.
When I started my journey, I was ALL IN.
I cut out carbs, sugar, and junk out of my life. I told myself there would be no cheat days because I knew historically that cheat-days lead to cheat-weeks... which lead to cheat-months... and then I was back where I started - except heavier. Being around my family was hard. They never pushed junk food on me, of course, thankfully they've always been very supportive. However, one of my struggles came from just being around the food they were eating. Donuts, chips, chocolate, candy. Being surrounded by people eating bad things when you're the only one focusing on eating the good things is hard.
At first, I was annoyed.
How dare they? I begrudgingly drank my delicious shakes, thankful to have my healthy option. No one offered me the junk food but watching everyone enjoy their treats was hard. My goals were worth it, but... still.
I contradicted my own annoyance by coaching myself: "They aren't required to give it up just because you are." I told myself this over, and over, and over again. It became my mantra in my head when I was around temptations. I can remember sitting in the corner spot of my sister's sectional one evening while my parents & I visited her in Petawawa, Ontario, as three people on my right enjoyed donuts, and three people on my left did too. I remember staring straight ahead repeating that mantra in my head, telling myself that one donut would be a slippery slope. At this point, I was only a few months into my journey and I had already lost over twenty pounds. I knew in my heart that this would pass, and I would adjust to my new lifestyle while I was around them (and others).
What helped me get through those struggles?
Talking it out with them, ensuring I always had my shakes and keeping low-carb snacks around for me, too.
- My initial plan was just to NOT have what they were eating. Just say no, I told myself. That was hard. Eventually, you'll give in when you're just trying to say no without a backup.
- My second plan was to have a shake while they had their snacks. It wasn't a bad plan; I was full after my shake and, as well all know, the shakes are absolutely delicious. Sweet tooth? Check. It worked, but there was still a divide between myself and my family. I wanted a more seamless plan.
The best and most successful plan I've followed yet has been to find new recipes for both snacks and meals to make with my family. Low-carb cookies, desserts, dinner options, and more. My family was always supportive, I just had to find a way to incorporate them into my new lifestyle the right way.
Now we make low-carb recipes all the time - both Protein Treats recipes, and other ones we find online. Sometimes we're successful, and sometimes we're not. We learn every time, and more importantly, I've included them in my lifestyle. Instead of isolating myself, feeling annoyed and struggling... now we're doing it together.
My mother has since joined the Nutracelle family and has had her own amazing successes both weight and other (I'll write about that in a different post! #mombrag coming up).
Did they start to follow the same lifestyle I do?
No, and that's totally fine. They celebrate my accomplishments, they make game plans for my struggles, and they are always willing to try new things with me. That means more to me than I could ever explain. Even my 16-year-old nephew, 8-year-old niece, and 7-year-old nephew love my shakes and will try every recipe we make. They're also brutally honest... seriously. Ha!
Check out some of the delicious food we've made together! Each picture is either a Protein Treats recipe or a low-carb recipe with Natural Nutralean thrown in! (even the Christmas dinner plate! Protein stuffing and cauliflower fauxtatoes instead of mashed potatoes!)
If you're reading this post and thinking, "Yep, I've been there." Just know that you're not alone and that it doesn't have to be hard. Remember that these are your people. The number one thing they want is to see you succeed. Trust them to be your support when you need them, and they won't let you down.
Maybe it's not your family, maybe it's your roommates or your significant other, your children, etc. Temptations are everywhere. The best part of this journey is overcoming these speed bumps and giving yourself a pat on the back for choosing YOU every day.
Here are my top 5 tips for overcoming your speed bumps:
- The main thing you can do is identify the problem. That sounds pretty standard, but in my donut story -- the donuts weren't the problem. The lack of options for me was the problem. As soon as I had a delicious option in hand, the donuts weren't a problem.
- Bring other people into your lifestyle. There are thousands of low-carb recipes out there. Our own site has hundreds! Grab your Natural Nutralean and experiment with your people. Find a recipe that everyone agrees sounds delicious and try it. There's no harm in it! If the recipe is a flop - try another! You're making memories and growing together. That's priceless.
- Plan ahead. If you're going somewhere that consistently throws temptations in your face - have your OWN back. Pre-make protein treats, and bring them with you. Ask the hosts ahead of time if it's a planned dinner - what's being served? What's in it? This knowledge will help you figure out what you may want to bring.
- Ask them to hold you accountable. There have been many times while out with my sister that I've said to her, "Don't let me ______." Sometimes it's "order sweet potato fries" or "take one bite of anything bad" or "have any of your popcorn at the movies" because I know my own triggers. Now she does, too. She never lets me down.
- Celebrate your successes with them. If you only ever associate your struggles with your closest people, you may start to feel resentment towards them. Let them be a part of your successes, too! Trust me, they'll LOVE it! Whether it's losing weight, fitting into smaller clothing, making an amazing recipe, etc.
Losing weight is hard, but the reward is so worth it. I've grown closer to my family through this process (and we were already super close!), and hearing their praise about my success makes it even more worthwhile.
I also know that sometimes the struggle is not having anyone. If you're alone, please read this paragraph to yourself as many times as you need it: YOU HAVE US. You have NutraTalk which is full of like-minded people all focusing on their health, too. You also have us 'head office' folks. We are all here to help you succeed. Everything we do is with you in mind. Don't ever forget that.
& above all, you have me. You know my story; you know my struggles. No one understands your journey more than I do - the good times, the bad times, the ugly times, the embarrassing times, and everything else in between. If we've never chatted before, don't worry - just call me. 1-877-229-1207.
Did you know you can schedule a call with me? Use this link. I'm ready to help you overcome whatever speed bumps you run into.
Talk to you soon
P.s Shout out to these amazing people who have had my back since day one. I wouldn't be where I am without you all.