FITNESS, FOOD, CRAVINGS AND HABITS
This is always a topic I think people can complicate. We are not better than our bodies and the sooner we can learn this the better we can work to achieve our goals. Now if you have health complications then this makes your journey that little bit more difficult but, for the majority of us it is just a need for learning to listen to our body and apply some common sense.
If you are pushing your body to its limits in the gym (or outside) and restricting the energy you provide it then you are going to have some big problems dealing with fat loss, concentration, sleeping, sex!! YES, SEX!! Food is energy and there is no way you will ever trick your body for too long if you restrict and control what you feed yourself.
Whatever you are working hard to get rid of, unless you are feeding your body what it needs those difficult to shift bits won’t be leaving you anytime soon….or at least be gone forever if you don’t do it the right way.
WHY DO I GET CRAVINGS?
There can be many reasons as to why you are having cravings, below are just a few;
- Deficient in minerals and/or vitamins (chocolate could mean you are low in magnesium)
- Hormones are all over the place, stress, PMS, Thyroid….training and daily lifestyle/circumstances can all play havoc with your hormones
- You’ve restricted your calories for too long and your body is fighting back
- You’ve trained yourself to give in to your cravings (eating when sad or angry, working out hard so giving yourself a treat)
- You’re bored or lonely
Your body is screaming at you to eat those sweets or that ice cream or crisps and cheese on toast, whatever food it is. It could just be that all you really need to do is raise your blood sugar….eat something nutritious, a mountain of vegetables and some protein, fill yourself up with goodness.
Write down when you get your cravings, YES keep a diary (ladies this is also true for your monthly cycle) you may just see a pattern, many things can make you crave and turn to food, it’s one way to distract yourself from dealing with the real issues.
What else can you do when you get a craving attack?
- Drink 250ml of water! Right now, drink it, you may be dehydrated
- Go on facebook, search Instagram, stalk a fitness model, message a friend, call your grandma, do some push-ups! do anything to distract you for 15 minutes
- Stay away from the shops and do not go shopping (and never go shopping when you are hungry!)
- Substitute your craving food for a better alternative (see chart below)
- Lie to yourself and tell yourself you can have that delicious unhelpful food tomorrow
Some other easy tips is to write down your mood at that time the craving hit, what you were doing, where you were…..and then ask yourself what are you going to get from eating the food you are craving? Will it make you feel better, give you what your body needs…get you closer to your results?
Now don’t get me wrong, I am human too, I LOVE my food and I give in to sweets, brownies, chocolate (yes I love sugar) but it doesn’t make me feel good…..it just tastes good for a moment and doesn’t give me any other satisfaction but, I will still enjoy those foods in moderation along with a healthy balanced diet.
OTHER GOOD HABITS TO GET INTO
DITCH THE SUGAR
EAT WHOLE FOODS
EAT PROTEIN WITH EVERY MEAL
EAT YOUR GOOD FATS
TAKE A GOOD MULTIVITAMIN AND FISH OIL
Most importantly, just enjoy food whilst making sure you feed it everything you need to make sure it runs the best it can, you wouldn’t want to drive a car on empty or fill it the wrong fuel so don’t treat your body that way.
Enjoy the occasional treat and try to understand when and why you have certain cravings or want to eat masses of processed food.
If after changing the way you eat you still get cravings do a little research, the web is a wonderful place to find science backed research to help give an insight as to why you get certain cravings and help you understand your body, learn a little, ask questions, do a little trial and error, discover yourself and how your body works best.
MAKE BETTER CHOICES AND CREATE A BETTER VERSION OF YOU