Let’s Talk About Habits

There’s a great book titled “Train Your Mind, Change Your Brain” by Sharon Begley. Humans like to form habits. We like to say, “But that’s how it’s always been done.” or “I’ve always done it this way!” There’s another quote I’d like you to think about too, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

Well, if you’re anything like me, sometimes (a lot of times) you fall into a lazy slump. You’re not motivated to workout and you let yourself eat all your favorite junky foods 24/7. Maybe once in awhile you make a halfhearted attempt at going to the gym, like in January when everyone makes their New Year’s Resolutions they forget about two weeks later. But do you want to know what one of the number one reasons people fail at losing weight is? They fail to sustain their healthy habits. They let one cheat meal pull them off the wagon and they go on a long bender again.

It can take just three weeks to form a new habit. Three weeks. But are you ready to commit fully? Are you ready to make healthy changes in your life permanent and a part of your routine? 

Cindy Chu's fitness progress after just one month of HIIT workouts and some strength training at home

Cindy Chu’s fitness progress after just one month of HIIT workouts and some strength training at home

I’ve been on this journey most of my life but it wasn’t until the last few years that I’ve learned how and why people should eat healthy most of the time. I’ve read numerous books on nutrition and healthy eating, and even completed a certificate course in nutrition. Now that I’m armed with more personal knowledge about why I should eat a certain way, I’m able to implement it into my life as a WAY of life. Do I still eat “unhealthy” foods sometimes? Absolutely. I encourage you to, as well, but the key is to make that kind of meal a deliberate choice, a “cheat meal”, a treat, and not an every day occurrence. The rest of the time, I make pretty boring eating decisions. Cereal with some fruit for breakfast, with nut milk. Lunch of eggs and veggies, maybe some chips and salsa or hummus. Dinner? Salad or veggies and a veggie burger patty. I have “cheat meals” a few times a week, maybe donuts or french toast one morning on the weekend, a slice of pizza for dinner on Tuesday nights, but I don’t keep this kind of food around at home, nor do I let myself eat that way all the time. I do keep healthy snacks around, though. Protein bars made with a base of nut butter, jars of raw nuts, fresh fruit, carrots, etc.

At my uppermost threshold before I learned how to eat right and eat well and now, after adding exercise

At my uppermost threshold before I learned how to eat right and eat well and now, after adding exercise

If you want to lose weight, the first thing you should do is fix your diet. Change the WAY you eat. Erase what you’ve been doing and start over and build from a healthy base. Eat nutritionally dense foods, basically the closer to nature it is, the healthier, rather than processed food. Make spaghetti squash with sauce instead of having white spaghetti, eliminate all that white bread you eat daily, get rid of the sugary drinks and sodas (maybe swap for something like La Croix if you love your fizzy water), eat more veggies, cut the butter and dairy, cut the desserts except for a couple times a week at most.

When I initially started on this most recent and effective leg of my journey to health, honestly I initially lost much of my weight through diet alone. I learned how to eat better and eat well, using some very simple concepts, and within a couple months most of my extra weight had been utilized by my body and burned away. I didn’t have much muscle mass then as when I was heavier, I hated exercising, so I didn’t really, and I became what I call “skinny-fat”. I had dropped several sizes, but I felt like my skin was loose and jiggly, and everything was too soft for my tastes. About a year after I’d dropped the weight I had moved to Los Angeles from Ann Arbor, MI. Everyone here was so active, and I felt like I had no more excuses. I had to make exercise part of my life. And so I’ve been working on finding what works for me, and I’m starting to see results. But I’ll save that for another post.

Learning to eat well & regular exercise & weight training have huge effects on your health

Learning to eat well & regular exercise & weight training have huge effects on your health

Will you join me in pledging that you will work on making healthy changes in your life so that you can honor your one body you have for this life? Will you join me in adapting your habits and picking up newer, healthier ones?

A sample meal plan:

Breakfast:

One serving bran cereal with nut milk
Two clementines
Coffee, black, or with splash of nut milk

Snack:

Carrots with a dollop of hummus

Lunch:

Eggs with sautéed veggies
Lentils or black beans

Snack:

Corn tortilla chips & salsa, portioned

Dinner:

Salmon fillet, or burger patty, or veg patty, or chicken breast
Sauteed veggies
Side of butternut squash

Cindy Chu diet

Tuna on salad with an almond milk latte make a great lunch/dinner option

Look for more posts on health, exercise and nutrition from me soon! I’m also doing some Periscopes on all of that as well, if you want to follow me:
Cindy Chu’s Periscope

If you have any questions, please ask and I will address them in later posts. This is more of an introductory post to get you excited to join me in your own journey to health. I’ll be posting about my workout routine and what I’m specifically doing at home, with very little equipment, to help get you started with your own exercise routine.

All the best to you,

Cindy

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