Getting Back on the Keto Train
How do I get back on the "Keto Train" after a weekend or vacation full of cheat meals and too many carbs?
We've all been there. Eating Keto allows us to look and feel our best but.... this is life! There will be occasions where you will (and you SHOULD) enjoy some non-keto foods that you love. The goal is to make this a lifestyle, not a diet, which should allow some room for indulgences in moderation or on special occasions. One of the things that a lot of people struggle with is "falling off" and not being able to get back on. Whether your cheat meal was planned and intentional or a perceived loss of control that resulted in over-indulgence, getting back on the Keto train can be tricky and we're here to shed light on some things you can do to make this process easier.
1. Be Aware
Was your cheat meal planned for a special event, like enjoying a piece of birthday cake or your favorite slice of pizza while visiting New York City? Did your deal with yourself to enjoy some french fries on Friday night turn into a weekend long feast of carb-filled snacks? Whatever the case may be, its important to be aware of what knocked you off the Keto train so you can start to decide the best way to get back on. If your non-Keto indulgences were something you anticipated but you're finding your cravings to be a little hard to manage as a result, you're in a good place to mentally power through and get right back to your well-planned routine. If it's Monday morning and you're feeling guilty about what you ate over the weekend and the second a carb touched your lips you lost all control, then you might need to take a step back and get your mindset right before anything else!
2. Get Rid of Your Guilt-Driven Mindset
That feeling of guilt when you feel like you "broke your diet" or ate something you shouldn't? We've all experienced that but we're here to tell you to stop it. Stop right now. This dwelling over the decisions you already made is not going to put you in a positive frame of mind to make good decisions going forward. If you've ever told yourself "well I already ruined this weekend, might as well start again on Monday" your guilt-driven mindset is setting you up for failure. This idea that you've already lost all hope and control for a certain period of time could not be further from reality. The truth is that every time you eat you get to make a choice between something that will make you feel good and something that won't. This is true not just on Mondays, not just the day you get back from that vacation, not just the 6 weeks leading up to summer.... it's true every time you eat, every single day! So be kind to yourself - don't beat yourself up for what's already done or punish yourself, look forward to multiple opportunites just today alone for you to get back on track. And give yourself a mental pat on the back when you do make even one smart choice. It is amazing what a little postitive affirmation will do for your confidence and self esteem. Slowly those small day to day choices will add up to long term lifestyle changes.
3. Make a Plan
Making a plan can really help prevent situations where you are rushed, busy, hungry and less prepared to make smart food choices. I know you might be thinking, "make a plan for what I'm eating? I barely even have time to MAKE what I'm eating", but stay with us. A plan doesn't have to be some elaborate daily meal chart that includes Sunday meal prep and a grocery list or any of that. It can be if that works for you, but making a plan can simply mean just taking a glance at the week ahead. Do you have any work obligations, special events, date nights, family parties etc. that you need to take account of this week? Do you have some time to cook or will you be mostly on-the-go? All of these things factor into your ability to make smart food choices. If you're the type of person that has "meal prepped" and planned your week to the minute only to have it fall apart and become discouraged... that's okay, because you've already gotten rid of your guilt-driven mindset, remember? :) This is life, and not everything will go according to your plan, but having an idea of what your week looks like will put you in a better place to know where your challenges are and how to make the best decisions when you face them. Even if you do nothing other than simply take a glance at your schedule for the week, this can allow you to plan and prepare to the extent that works best for you.
4. Do it Now
Let's get real for a minute. Is this carb-fueled bender you went on a once-in-a-while thing, or is this something you're doing every weekend without balance? If you're looking back on the last month or two and you're eating poorly Friday-Sunday of every week and finding it difficult to get back to eating well on Monday... then it's time to realize that you're basically spending HALF of your time eating in a way that doesn't make you feel good. And no one ever achieved anything by doing it half way. Stop wasting half of your time! Do not wait till Monday, do not wait till after the holidays, do not wait at all anymore. You've started to understand WHY you fell off the wagon, you've gotten rid of that guilt-driven mindset, and now you've got a plan... so, get to it! And everytime you fall off, get back on immediately. For some of us we may fall off in a big way, and spend 6 months eating unhealthfully before getting back on. For others this falling off and getting back on can happen in small ways, multiple times a day. The key is to remain consistent as possible and return to that consistency every time you need to, no matter how often that is. Those weekends where you've given up all hope until Monday morning will start to turn into weekends where you had a cheat meal on Friday, but then ate great on Saturday, and maybe had a few beers watching football on Sunday, but got back to it on Monday. And suddenly your 3-day bender is broken up with smart choices in between. And that "half way" approach that got you nowhere suddenly gets closer to 2/3 of the way, and then maybe even 3/4 of the way or 9/10 of the way, just by making these small changes and making them right now.
Some other tips:
Most of what causes us to fall off a program or way of eating is mental and psychological. But there are a few other things you can do to make this hurdle a little easier to get over.
- Drink lots of water. You're probably tired of hearing this "tip" but its repeated so often because it's true. Hunger is an unmistakeable feeling, we know when we are truly hungry. But a lot of time dehydration creeps up on us. Stay hydrated is good for your body and can also help curb cravings.
- Keep convenient keto food on hand. No excuses! With the amount of keto-friendly products that are out there now it is much easier now to keep good snacks and foods readily avialable than it ever was before. We'll humble-brag for a second and say that our keto meal devliery service that literally drops keto meals and products to your door is a good option if you are someone that really struggles with having the time to do keto the right way.
- Think before eating. Like actually take 2 seconds to think about the thing you're about to eat before you eat it. Am I really hungry? Does this food have healthy fats that will keep me satiated or will I still be hungry after eating it? Is this the best choice thats available to me at this moment in time? This pracitce of taking just a few seconds to THINK can be a game changer if you make it a habit.
We hope these tips have helped you on your path to getting back on the keto train! If you have any questions at all you can send us a message on Facebook or Instagram, or shoot us an email.
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