All or Nothing, Boozing and the Dimmer Switch
There’s a lot of all or nothing thinking in the fitness and nutrition industry.
People assume that you need to be super strict, be constantly ‘on a diet’, or training seven days a week.
All or nothing thinking can be destructive.
This person or thing is all bad / all good
If you’re not fully with me, you’re against me
Because this wasn’t a complete success, it was a complete failure
All or nothing thinking can derail you, and is very unhelpful when it comes to creating a long life that you want to live.
So instead of an ‘on/off’ switch,
Think of health and fitness as a dimmer switch.
Sometimes we are on full brightness, doing exactly what we need to do every single day, optimising everything, doing everything by the book.
These days are rare.
Most days we are somewhere in between.
Some days we turn the dimmer switch down, like when we’re on holiday or at a social event, and just want to let our hair down and eat / drink what we like.
Other days we turn it up slightly, hit our daily protein but maybe include some processed food.
Eat veggies, but also eat ice cream.
Do a workout, but also have a few beers.
You get the idea.
Instead of ‘all or nothing’
Think: Always something.
As long as the majority of your habits are taking you in the right direction, there’s some wiggle room for whatever you want. one way that this plays out is when it comes to socialising.
People still think that, if only they cut out the beers, they would be in great shape.
Don’t get me wrong.
Beer has calories.
If you’re consistently consuming more calories than you burn, you will gain fat.
But the beer alone is not what’s causing you to gain fat, or keeping you from losing fat.
You can manage your diet, leave some room for beers, exercise, and still get into decent shape.
Think of it as the 80/20 rule.
If 80% of your life is aligned perfectly to your goals, there’s flexibility in the other 20%.
And if you want to fill that 20% with beers, wines and good times, go for it.
The other bit of this is the knock on effects.
A night out will probably have consequences on your food choices the next day.
So you might need to find a way of mitigating that.
But again – that doesn’t have to mean you go completely sober or anti-fun.
You just need a way of creating a life that works for you. It’s a sliding scale.
And what dictates that sliding scale, to a large extent, is your environment.
Often, it’s when we have less control over our environment (ie. The foods that we have access to) that are the times when it’s best to dial things back a little, and dim the switch so that you’re not trying to stick to unrealistic goals
Weekends away, holidays, parties, etc
Setting up your environment for success when you want to dial things in a little bit therefore becomes crucial.
When you have control over what foods are in your environment, make sure that they are the ones that will help you to reach your goals.
So whether that’s fat loss, or health, or muscle gain
What are the foods that will help you?
Prioritising protein and veggies
Getting good fats and carbohydrate sources that will satiate and fuel you
Maybe putting in some processed foods so you don’t feel too restricted all the time.
Whatever helps you.
Want help figuring out what that is? Let me know. Here are a few ways I can help when you are ready. - Book a free coaching call with me here - The Healthy Planet Project is about improving your health, losing fat, or gaining muscle, in an environmentally sustainable way. Try the Free 14 Day Challenge