Food triggers and cravings are the biggest enemy for any weight loss or fitness plan. They are especially strong when beginning your plan; so it is important to prepare for them from the get go. Journaling is a great way to discover what foods you crave most, and what type of event sets off triggers. Emotional eaters often have the greatest struggles with their weight, and one emotional upheaval can be enough to start a spiral of downturn events. Before beginning on your weight loss or fitness journey, you have to identify your food triggers and beat them before they beat you.
For one week, write down everything you eat. Not only should you identify each food item consumed, but also you should make a note of why you ate it, how fast you ate it, and what caused you to eat it. You might be surprised how revealing your journal is. By journaling your eating habits, you will become aware of any bad or negative food habits that you have as well. There are many negative food habits that can sabotage your weight loss and fitness goals, so identifying these is vital for your success.
Keep track of the calories, fat grams, protein, and carbohydrates that you are consuming on a daily basis. Do not forget to add beverages, including sodas, juice, coffee, and tea. These are often ways that extra calories sneak into the diet and by keeping track of them in your journal, you will be aware of how much you are consuming. Once you identify why you eat when you do, you will be able to make healthy substitutions, and prevent food triggers from getting the best of you.
Your food triggers could include boredom, depression, anger, happiness, loneliness, or might occur the same time each day. Many people find that each day between 2:00 and 4:00 P.M. they begin to crave sugary or starchy carbohydrates. For some, they might do well all day, and then once nighttime hits, the food cravings begin. If you find that you have strong cravings each afternoon, prepare for them. Save some calories from breakfast time and use them for a good snack when you know you will be hit with your greatest cravings. Energy bars are a good choice, but choose the snack that fits in best with your weight loss and health routines. It might be pretzels for some, peanut butter on crackers or rice cakes, or a serving of pure protein for others. If food cravings are unbearable at night, then try going to bed earlier. By identifying your food triggers and cravings you will be prepared for them, and it will only be a matter of time before you have won the battle and have reached your fitness goals.
A proper diet is just as important as a good workout. The two are a team and work together best. One without the other will not give you the results you desire. Learn to control those urges and you will thank yourself.