Showing posts tagged with: moderation

My “Moderation Moto”: Why the “Unsexy” Approach is Sustainable

by Emma Hammond 0 comments

Habits Mindset Nutrition Uncategorized

Let's chat moderation shall we? One of the most frequent conversations I have with clients who are struggling with consistency in their dietary choices deals w/ the dreaded ALL OR NOTHING eating mentality. We absolutely live in a go big or go home kind of world.

Insanity Workouts OR Netflix Binge Watching

Chicken & Broccoli OR Pizza & Beer

ON the Diet Bandwagon OR I'll Worry About It Come January

We swing from one extreme to the other on the emotional rollercoaster known as the health & fitness world. Sucks right?

Yet when I talk about practicing moderation, I often get the eye roll of "that's not sexy" or "it won't get 20lbs off the scale in 20 days". And people aren't wrong! Eating moderately probably won't lead to a picture perfect before & after 60 day transformation challenge. It also means you have to experiment a little, stop following all the guru's magic meal plans & actually make a little effort to figure out what moderation means for you.The benefits? It's a lifestyle. It means you can be imperfect & still make progress. It also means you take it one step at a time & can improve a little every single week. You can make your own rules of what works for you, makes you feel best & stop "cheating" the system. Why? It's your damn system to make, break or bulldoze through.Ok lots of vague rambles later, what do I mean by moderation? All I can tell you is what moderation means to ME & what it's given me.everything-in-moderation

Emma's "Moderation" Moto:

~ Eat the majority of my meals based around whole foods: vegetables, fruit, proteins, single ingredient labeled foods & food labels I can actually read all the ingredients. Truthfully I could leave it at this philosophy without a single over answer. WHY? Because WHEN I make the majority of my diet based around whole foods, the few things that sneak in like a piece of momma's poundcake or slice of pizza on a Saturday just don't matter that much. My body functions well, my cravings are in check & the imperfect foods I still enjoy are such a small proportion it's no big deal.~ Stick with food's & portions that make me FEEL good: I don't tolerate gluten well & dairy is only so so. I am NOT demonizing these foods as good or bad. BUT I'm not going to eat them because I feel like shit doing so. The same as eating too much raw broccoli hurts my belly but a handful or pumpkin candy corn is a-ok. It's not good vs bad, it's listening to what my body is telling me. It's loving a big ass salad but still stopping when I am full. Leaving a few bites on the plate at night because I am satisfied instead of stuffed. Having an extra snack when I am truly hungry, not just bored. Or skipping my mid-morning snack because I'm just not hungry today. Slow down & listen!~ Having wine on the weekends: I freakin love wine, this is NO secret. MODERATION for me is keeping it in my diet for my happiness & pleasure. The unfortunate part? I absolutely gain weight when I drink daily vino. I also feel hungover & unhappy when I drink more than a few glasses, man i've gotten old.. BUT that's the reality. Not to mention I don't think it's healthy to drink a glass or two every day to use as a coping device to deal with life. So I have found the balance that works for me is to be 100% ok with skipping the weekend wine & enjoying it on the weekend. I pick GOOD quality wines & enjoy the flavor, how they pair with food & the memories shared over bottles. I don't binge just because "i'm not allowed" to drink during the week & when I'm not in the mood, I don't. Although let's be real with how often that happens.. ;)~ Saying NO to foods I don't actually want to eat out of social pressure: This is a big one for me. I use to really struggle going out with friends, hitting a dinner party or holiday gathering & being able to say NO to foods. I didn't want to "stand out" or be the weird one that says no to the morning donuts everyone is fawning over. I also never wanted to sound rude when I told my mother in law "no thanks" to another piece of her amazing layer cake. BUT ultimately at the end of the day it's my body & I have to live in it. No one that actually cares about me is going to fight with me over what I consume. And if they do? Honestly that's not someone I want to spend my time around. Harsh? Maybe BUT if someone cares about you they should respect & WANT you to feel your best. Frankly I stopped caring about what others thought of me because I was a better person for them when I felt my best self.~ Cooking the majority of my meals at HOME: This one has really become so much more important to me over the years & it has nothing to do with saving money, calories in restaurant foods, making poor choices out or whatever else you typically hear. This is about building a better relationship with where my food comes from, prioritizing spending the time to prepare it, taking pride in eating something I prepared & valuing quality food over the instant gratification huge quantity of food we can get in a drive through. Really think about it? You prepare a home cooked meal of even the simplest breakfast like scrambled eggs, w/ some greens & fresh berries from a farm near you. It's a totally difference experience than hitting McDonald's & shoving it down on the go. For me, this is a self care technique I truly think is not prioritized in this modern age of on the go eating. *Insert "back in my day" answer*~ Enjoying special meals & memories guilt free: Food absolutely has so much family history, bonding & connects us all to each other in meaningful ways. I cherish times of baking cookies in the kitchen w/ my mom or seeing my husband light up like a kid when his mom mentions eating cupcakes straight out of the oven. I've gotten "healthy" & "not so healthy" recipes from family that has emotional meaning I can't describe. So does that mean every holiday I stay away & bring my tupperware of healthier meals? NO! I eat a pancake my mom makes on Christmas morning or have the peanut butter brownies that are my absolute fav! I don't have guilt or anxiety about these activities. Why? Go back to #1 on my list. My pancake is often accompanied by scrambled eggs & fruit. Or I eat a big stack but eat something more nutrient dense for lunch because it makes me FEEL better. I eat a brownie & enjoy every bite, knowing they are in abundance so I don't have to down them all right now. It's memories that I want to BE AROUND FOR, which means taking care of my health. Moderation..As you can see these aren't hard & fast rules or a diet to follow. It's guidelines I hang out in the middle of that fit MY lifestyle. They ebb & flow as everything does in life. What has moderation giving me? The POWER to FEEL good physically, FEEL good about my choices & LIVE the life I want to in a healthy active way. To change my mindset from that of deprivation & self loathing to abundance & self love.Ever thought about your "Moderation MOTO" that could change the game of how you think? Maybe take a few minutes to jot it down, journal it out & even share out loud. I'd love to hear & help!

More on HOW this actually looks for me & what it could look like for YOU in Part 2...

Wine Wednesday Words

by Emma Hammond 0 comments

Uncategorized

If I were asked what 3 things would I bring with me to a deserted island, my answer would quickly be:

  1. My husband
  2. My dogs
  3. Wine
Don't worry, I could use the wine bottle for bicep curls too..wineOver the years my enjoyment of a glass of wine has blossomed into a full blown love affair. I not only enjoy drinking a big glass of my favorite cabernet, I love learning about it. My husband & I have taken multiple wine classes to know more about the origins, grape varieties & regional differences between each & every bottle. Am I an expert? Haha no in the slightest. I'll be real, my husband would diligently take notes as I would be 100% on top of the taste testing portion. After a few pours I stopped caring so much about where the damn grape originated & mostly wondered when the teacher would stop talking & continue pouring. But that's not the point...From a solo glass to end a long work day, to a wine tasting with friends & of course a shared bottled in the kitchen while cooking with my husband, it is one "liquid calorie" I just refuse to give it up. Now it's lovely to hear the experts throwing around headlines touting the "health benefits of wine" & having you believe that nightly glass has no consequence on our body composition. However let's be real.
  1. Who only pours 4-5oz into their glass? Hello 8-10oz "glass"...
  2. How often do you have more than one?
  3. Does that glass of wine loosen you up to a few after dinner treats?
  4. What are your goals?
Quite frankly all of that sucks! I would personally kill to be able to have 2 nightly glasses of vino & not see an extra layer appear around my waistline. BUT my reality is my body absolutely holds onto extra body fat when I drink alcohol too frequently.Bummer..IMG_2045Life isn't fair...& many other expletives I could spout.But that's reality & I had to at some point accept that it was interfering with my goals.Another reason the nightly vino had to go? It interferes with sleep quality. Science backed, we just don't sleep as well post drinking. My sleep is crucial to my job, energy, workout performance & overall attitude. That right there is honestly more important then the extra albs I hold onto. So does that mean I had to break up with my true love Cabernet?Heck no! BUT I did have to learn the best way for ME to moderate my consumption in a way where I didn't feel deprived OR feel disappointed in my path to healthy living. How'd I do so?
  1. Know Thy Limits: in general i try not to drink more than 2 glasses at a time on any occasion. it's my line where I can get a little tipsy without feeling crappy the next day.
  2. Set Parameters: I say no Sunday-Thursday & that made the BIGGEST difference for me! Most week nights I had created the habit of throwing my stuff on the table, sighing out the long day as I pour a glass because I deserved it. I found other ways to de-stress such as taking the dog for a walk or making a hot cup of tea. It took practice & habit change but now it's no big deal.
  3. BE FLEXIBLE: if we have a weekday event I don't punish myself by saying "you can't drink on the weekdays". I stick to my no more than 2 glasses & usually go with only one. As I remind myself that work will come early tomorrow & I have a responsibility to my clients to be at my best.
  4. Don't Drink Crap: if I open a crappy bottle that doesn't please my palate, I don't drink it! Why waste the enjoyment on bad wine. Simple!
  5. Make it an Enjoyable Experience: I make sure I am in a situation where I sip the wine, not guzzle it. I also don't succumb to peer pressure to drink just because everyone else is doing it. Learned that in kindergarten right? Funny how we forget. I am a big girl & if I am not in the mood, I am not going to drink. Frankly anyone who cares I'm not drinking can buzz off.
Life is all about choices we make & prioritizing what matters. BUT be honest with yourself as to what behaviors might be getting in the way of all your hard work. I far to often find clients lying to themselves about some of these sneaky behaviors like the night "glass" (aka 2-3) of wine or just a few drinks with friends. Yes I know that trick from personal experience..This is another example of how food doesn't have to be the all or nothing diet mentality. Anytime I say "no wine", I fall into the weekend bender & repeat the cycle week after week. Feeling like a constant failure for not being able to exhibit more willpower. Who needs that? Instead I took a good look in the mirror to recognize my habits, behaviors & goals. Then found a middle ground that works for me!Any other wine lovers out there struggle with this like me? Shoot me a message to tell me how I can help!Healthy Balance LLC