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Manic Monday - Eat to Live

Have you ever heard the question, "Do you eat to live or live to eat?" This question is very clear and simple. If you REALLY think about it and ask your own self this question, how would you answer? (Take a minute to analyze and answer.) I bring this question to the forefront because nutrition and a proper diet is crucial to a healthy lifestyle. Now, I have to state that I am not a certified dietician. I share what I have observed and experienced with hundreds of people trying to improve and change their lifestyles. I have researched and finished many nutrition based classes to aid in my education of the matter. But, what I have found is that people either eat foods and calories that will benefit their health or they eat foods and calories to accommodate pleasure. It's one or the other. I find that in our country most people live to eat. We are a country that offers much! Just turn on the tv. Watch the commercials. Better yet, watch the commercials when you're hungry! Just the other day I was looking through Pinterest to collect some ideas for a kid project. As I toggled through the main stream of what was popular, I couldn't help but to salivate over several cinnamon roll recipe posts. It was like I could smell them baking and then it was on! My mind was focused on cinnamon rolls! Uggg! Imagine if I had the ingredients in my house. I would be sure to whip up a batch....seriously. It's almost brainwashing. Commercials. Restaurants. It sucks you in. You know you are living to eat when you get overly excited about the food items offered at social events instead of the event itself. Well, if any of the above resonates with you, maybe you need to consider focusing on eating to live. Because it's this mentality that brings a much higher chance to achieve goals of weight loss, toning, strength, endurance, low blood sugars, low blood pressure, low cholesterol, more energy, better sleep, better immunity, and stress relief. Simply stated. Doesn't that sound better? A healthier life because you are eating the right things at the right times. It IS easy, but it's the mind that makes if difficult for us to accomplish this. Therefore, you need to renew the mind. Re-train the mental thought process to make better choices. You have to recreate different associations with food. For example, what comes to mind when I mention movie theater? You probably think of a big screen and buttery popcorn with a side of soda pop. Or how about Texas Roadhouse? What comes to mind? The salad? No, it's the sweet rolls, steak, French fries, loaded potatoes, and the peanuts. See, we make strong associations of pleasure foods with just about everything we do. It's the pleasure of gratification and satisfaction that the mind falls victim to. It's time to create different associations. Find pleasure in eating clean and healthy foods. Find satisfaction in knowing that clean eating is producing wonderful results for your body. Find gratification in knowing you can find alternative foods or activities that replace your old associations. I can still look forward to Texas Roadhouse while meeting these needs (if I am in my "safe zone" of thinking). I can choose a lean sirloin or grilled chicken breast, a sweet potato with cinnamon, and a robust salad with a smidge of dressing. The difference is I will feel good not just during the meal but the entire time after. So this week, create new associations with opportunities that might otherwise sabotage your efforts. Keep practicing these new associations and before you know it, you will have a habit. That new habit will produce great results! I look forward to writing more on this. Next week I will tap into exercise and alternate weeks regarding nutrition and exercise. Have a GREAT week and enjoy your blessings! Rachel Zimmerman, Certified Personal Trainer and Life Coach ACE/NSCA Wife, Mother, and Friend

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