I have always had food cravings so when I first decided to get healthy, I knew that I needed to make a change to the way that I was eating. Just making that small change triggered even more crazy cravings for sweets, breads, chips, etc. I was miserable and starving at all times. But I was eating… so how could I be starving??
So I evaluated and asked myself questions.
Was I hungry or bored?
If I am actually hungry, would I eat an apple to satisfy my hunger? If no, I only wanted chips/sweets then I am just bored.
Am I a stress eater?
Did something in the last hour happen that was really stressful?
Is it all in my head? Or out of habit?
Every time I was craving something I asked myself those questions. What I found out was that in fact I eat when I am bored, stressed, hungry, when I am in my head, when I am relaxed, when I am having fun, when I am sad… it didn’t really matter. I just love food and can and will eat at any time.
So what did I really learn? Is that I needed to stop making excuses and start making the right choices. I would work late – “it was a long day, I need a glass of wine with dinner and probably dessert too”. Going out to dinner – “Well we are going out to a restaurant, so I might as well get the three course meal with a cocktail. I don’t do it THAT often”. In reality, I traveled… A LOT… so I ate out almost every day of the week. Launching an event – “ Well I didn’t have time to eat before the event, let’s just go to the bar and grab chicken tenders and fries at 1am”.
Whatever the situation, I had an excuse to why I should eat that said cookie, french fry, or chips and dip.
When I realized that it was all in my head and I was the one that held the possibility of change in my hand, I chose fruit over dessert, carrots over chips, packed healthy snacks when I traveled, planned ahead with healthy meals, and if I did drink, I made healthier cocktail options. After a while, the cravings stopped, the hunger pains were only there when it was time to eat, and I no longer want to eat when I get stressed. I actually want to go to the gym and crave the gym.
So to stop your cravings, stop making excuses, stop telling yourself you don’t have a choice and remember that you have a goal. Keep your goal at the forefront of your mind and ask yourself if that moment of cheating was worth it.