We have all had that feeling! When you have been eating healthily for a couple of weeks and you feel great.
Then that little devil pops up on your shoulder! Before you know it you are waking up in a pool of Doritos with Malteasers stuck to your neck!
What just happened? You, sir/madam, are a binger!
The dictionary meaning of binge? “a period of excessive indulgence in an activity, especially drinking alcohol or eating.” hmmm does this sound familiar?
For much of my life I was a serial binger!
And I was literally a cereal binger (I was obsessed with cereal until I was about 24!)
Today I wanted to share with you some tips on how to avoid the binge or at least limit the damage.
Run through these steps before you take the plunge. They have helped me curb the habit (mostly!), so I hope they help you too.
STEP 1 – Ask why am I REALLY doing this?
That thought just popped into your head! I could just stop at the petrol station on the way home and grab some munchies? ?
The first step is to understand why you are about to have a nutritional breakdown. Just shining a light on the real reason you are about to eat 70 kit-kats can be enough to ward off the event. Classic reasons for me included;
– I am tired
– I am sad
– I am bored
– I have a habit that triggers this
– I want to escape (usually mentally)
Think about the reason for a little while before you act. Is there a better way you can deal with the issue?
Tired? Try drink two large glasses of water
Sad? Call someone and talk about it
Habit? Avoid the trigger habit or be prepared with an alternative solution.
Need to Escape? You need to look at the deeper issue. Eating/drinking to escape is always temporary and usually makes the issue worse
STEP 2 – The 3 Magical Questions
Soooo… step 1 did not work! You are standing in the queue of the petrol station with enough Haribo to feed a large school. You are hoping no one sees you!
Take a few deep breaths. Become present, become mindful, separate for one second from your emotion-driven craving.
Ask your self these three questions
1. Why am I about do to this? (Example answer: I am tired, sad, escaping!)
2. Will eating this actually help? (pretty much always the answer is no)
3. How does this fit in with my vision of who I want to be?
Ohh how many times have I replaced 2 x multipacks of Buenos after asking these questions! Why? Because it does not fit in with my highest vision of myself!
STEP 3 – Emergency Meal (Please break the glass)
Step 2 did not work! The questions are useless!! Screw mindfulness…you need sugar. Waaaait just one second!
Do you have an emergency, break the glass meal at home that may ward off the full on binge? The idea is to have something filling, tasty and with enough “oomph” to ease off any cravings.
For me the thought of a big bowl of porridge with Manuka honey and cacao nibs is sometimes enough to stop me going full binge! Other things that work;
– A big batch of sweet potato fries
– Making raw chocolate or eating 90% dark
– Poached eggs on brown toast
– A cup of coconut milk and manuka honey (good for fighting the sweet cravings)
– Protein balls are also amazing. I would choose them over chocolate anyday!
STEP 4 – Move along nothing to see here!
Nothing has worked! James you are rubbish! I have just eaten my own body weight in crumpets!
Ok so it did not work…you had the binge!
Now this is the most important step of all.
1. Draw a line under it and move on. Do not judge your self, no self-loathing, no thinking this has screwed up your results. These emotions will destroy your motivation.
Transformations are NEVER made or lost in one day! We ALL fall off the wagon sometimes! The people who truly succeed are the people who just keep getting back on the wagon, again and again, *insert Rocky quote here I am sure there is a good one!
2. Listen to how your body feels! When I binge I feel physically diabolical. Bloated, tired, unhealthy and even depressed. I have that etched in my memory! The next time I make eye contact with a donut and think about getting intimate…I remember that feeling
2. Use it to your advantage! There are lots of studies that show if you have a high-calorie day and then eat very well the next couple of days it can help you lose fat (because of the hormone leptin). DISCLAIMER: This is not justification to go on a food bender “to get the benefits”
So stay strong and be good Warriors!
But if your not…..forgive yourself and just start again tomorrow!
James – Owner and reformed binger
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