When we start a diet or weight loss program, excitement tends to run pretty high. We want to do everything well, eat perfectly, and have our friends and family join us on our natural high from exercise. Unfortunately, it does not always work that way. In fact, many of our friends and family may be doing things to keep up from losing weight and changing. Here are three comments you might have heard and what’s really behind them:
“One piece of cake won’t hurt.”
This is often said by a well-meaning relative at a holiday or family get-together. We all know that these celebrations are ground zero for fatty foods and sugar-laden deserts, but these are often tough situations. You don’t really want to say no to Grandma’s famous apple pie because you want to be polite, but the truth is, that piece of cake could hurt. If you are not prepared going into these events, you might fall off the diet bandwagon. When that happens, you figure that since you had one piece of bad food, then you might as well keep going and eat more bad food. Instead, try these strategies:
1. Build in the calories to your day.
By doing this you won’t have to say no to grandma and you can have a smaller than normal piece of that favorite dessert.
2. Make a healthier version.
You don’t have to stay away from all desserts forever. Bake a healthier version of that favorite dessert and take it to your party. You don’t even have to tell people that it’s healthier and they probably won’t notice. This is another way you can enjoy dessert guilt-free.
“You exercise too much.”
Barring an actual addiction to exercise, it’s possible you are hearing this because friends or your significant other feel like exercise is more important to you than they are. While they may not be actively trying to get you to stop exercising, you might start to feel guilty enough to scale back on the exercise or drop your routine all together.
Remember that your friends and family may not take to the new you too well. This may be true if your friends and family are overweight and you are the first one to make lasting progress in weight loss. Give them time and assure them that you are not replacing them with exercise. There is enough room in your life for everyone. However, if your friends never come around to supporting your healthy lifestyle, it may be time for new friends.
“You act like you’re better than us.”
You might hear this comment when it comes to your food choices and your choice to reduce your alcohol intake. While your friends and family may be used to times when you ordered large amounts of food and ate other people’s leftovers, it will be hard for them to see you control your portions, ask for special preparation, and take the time to make sure that you are putting good things in your body. And even though they know that it is good for you and would be good for them, they may feel resentment because it casts a light on their own unhealthy habits. Keep in mind that you don’t have to say anything about their lifestyle to provoke this resentment. It comes from casting the good alternatives next to the not so good alternatives. Remind yourself that they are not in control of your life and that you need to do what is best for you to be as healthy as possible.
Like I said, although you are doing everything you can to life a healthier lifestyle and lose weight, it may be uncomfortable for some of your friends and family. While this may be hard at first, many of them are just worried about losing you. Some are worried that this will change you in some way and that you may cast your friends and family aside if they can’t keep up with you.
As you go through this transition in your life, it is very important for you to remember that if you do not keep yourself healthy physically, mentally, and emotionally, then you are no good to anyone. Being at your best will help you be a better spouse, sibling, child, employee, etc. Watch out for these signs of sabotage and keep a positive attitude. Remember, positivity is contagious.