Do This And You Will Succeed

We frequently see on MFP, those who struggle with eating the wrong things, "falling off" of their diet plan, lacking motivation to exercise, and/or simply consuming too many calories - good or bad. 

A prevailing question is: How do I stop this...? How do I get back on track...? How do I get my eating under control...? 

Here's some tips that might help you... 

1. This is a good one, especially if you have been on track in the past, but are struggling now: You were on track and doing well at one time, what did you do to get on track initially? And what caused you to go off track? Answer these two questions and you have your answer. Simply do what you did initially to be where you want to be... and, avoid what knocked you off kilter. 

2. There is always a reason for everything. Yes, MAYBE your binge eating is a sign of lacking nutrients, but I find that in most cases, it's not. Rather, it's something else that causes this breakdown... an emotional strain, stress, poor self-confidence brought on by some external stimulus (an insensitive person's comments, etc.) and all the binge eating in the world will not cure this condition, it will only make it worse. So, how does one combat this attack? You must find a way to keep yourself both strong, and accountable. A). Start by writing down your goal/plan. A written plan is more solid than one that is merely a thought. B). Make an ally of a person or people who support your goals. Note: this should NOT be someone else who shares your struggles - this is a horrible mistake made by far too many people. It's far too easy for two people sharing the same struggle to fall to temptation and simply wallow in the defeat together. NO, this should be someone who is doing better than you. Let's face it, you need help. You can't get help from someone who's in the same condition as you. They must be doing better than you, and that applies to any category from finances to fitness. 

3. If your goal is weight loss, then set small goals that are easily achievable, to establish a pattern of success in your own mind. When you accomplish a goal, then reward yourself with something small, other than food. We are reward motivated, as people. Once you reach a larger goal, up the ante on the reward. But, as a general rule, never reward yourself with food. This isn't to say that you must be ultra strict and never deviate from your diet. A break now and then is both acceptable and understandable. But... 

4. Recognize that there are certain foods and certain kinds of foods that cause cravings in a person's physical body. For me, it's sugar. When I consume sugar, I want to eat more and more, even when I'm not hungry. So, because I've recognized that result in my own life, I will limit the sugar intake. You must learn to avoid foods that cause bad cravings in your body. 

5. When you've eaten the wrong foods and now it's having its craving-causing affect on you, here's where you've got to get tough. In some ways, it's like detoxing off of a drug. You're just going to have to stick it out and beat the craving. It will pass, once the craving causing substance is out of your system. To help speed the process, sweat. Turn up the cardio and burn that stuff out of your system. 

6. If you exercise, recognize that exercising is the process of building a better body for yourself. Poor eating choices on a consistent basis will tear down what you are building during exercise. So, look at it like you are building a house while exercising. Choosing to eat poorly is like coming along afterwards and tearing down boards, walls and ceilings that you built during exercise earlier. Keeping this image will eventually cause you to despise tearing down what you worked so hard to build, and you will eventually limit the destructive activity, if not completely eliminating it altogether. 

7. It doesn't always have to be a struggle. Obviously, there are people who seem to live to workout. They love it and can't get enough of it. You may wish you were that way. Well, the truth is, you can be that way, it just takes a little bit of time, committed time. Over the course of a few short weeks, you will build a habit of exercise, if you are committed to it. Think about it. You built a habit of doing what you're doing now. If that's the case, and it is, then you can form a habit of good eating and exercise. Commit to establishing those habits. Yes, it does mean that you will have to change. That's what forming new habits is all about. But, you didn't actually think that you were going to become a new person without having to change, did you? 

8. You do what you convince yourself that you have to do. In other words, you get up at 5 in the morning so you can be at work on time. It's not because you want to get up at 5am. No, you really want to sleep, but you want a the paycheck that comes with having your job MORE than you want to sleep. So, you do what you have to do. Get a strong enough reason to be healthy and fit. When your reason is strong enough, you will do what you have to do to make it happen. If you find that you're not responding to your goals, then you may need to get a stronger reason for accomplishing them. When you want it bad enough, you will go after it. 

I hope these tips help you. Truthfully, the biggest struggle to accomplishing your goals is internal. It's in how you think about your goals and achieving them. If you can get your inside in stride, then the outside will follow along nicely. People have been able to accomplish the impossible because they made the necessary internal adjustments. There's nothing worthwhile that you cannot accomplish when you truly set your heart on it. 

All the best! 



  • Topsking2010
    Topsking2010 Posts: 2,245 Member
    Good post John!!!
  • zaepr
    zaepr Posts: 1
    thanks! Needed to read this today!
  • floridamike99
    floridamike99 Posts: 35 Member
    What a great post. I particularly like your first few points. I am a sales manager, and most of what you write are the kinds of things I talk to my team about every week. These are basic tenants of success--whether the goal is increasing sales, losing weight, or riding your bike 1,000 miles. Really good post.
  • rockstar53
    rockstar53 Posts: 215 Member
    Great post! So many great points that struck a chord for me. Thank you, I needed that!
  • MoreBean13
    MoreBean13 Posts: 8,701 Member
    Overall solid advice. Thanks for taking the time to post this.
  • Sharon5913
    Sharon5913 Posts: 134 Member
    This very eloquently says it all. Thanks for posting and putting it in black and white for us.
  • ijohn_001
    ijohn_001 Posts: 29 Member
    Thank you all for your support and kind comments. Glad I could be there to help.