On paper, fall is just about the worst possible time for someone to start a diet. Seriously. When you think about it, fall is basically designed to get us to overeat. Gone are the days of lounging by the pool in a swimsuit and fighting off the anxiety of whether or not you can take off your cover-up. All the fall clothes are flattering, warm, and don’t dream of being revealing. At the very same time, it’s like all of the food that gets popular is about as calorie dense as possible. It’s like all of the sudden everyone agrees that people need to increase the pie baking production per capita by 10-fold. Oh, and while we’re at it, let’s toss cookies and pumpkin-spice-everything into the mix. Seriously – when it comes to building a season that should wreak havoc on a diet, it’s hard to do much better than fall. It’s not hard to see that I’ve got a lot of thoughts on fall, which partly for the reasons listed above, is my favorite season. But here’s the great irony of my thoughts on fall: I actually think right now is the best time of the year that you can start dieting.
Really. I’m not being sarcastic.
Maybe it’s because fall follows summer, a season that we all look forward to from about February on – but once late July hits we’re about done with. Grilling out and having cookouts with friends and family is fun, but it’s hard to eat and drink with reckless abandon for too long without feeling bloated and exhausted. Or, maybe, it’s that fall coincides with back to school time. Back to school is like this phenomenon that impacts just about all of us, no matter if you’re actually going back to school or not. The signs, the ads, the school-supply aisles popping up. It’s impossible to ignore, and I think that’s a great thing. It’s a chance for all of us to take stock of our year up to this point. A natural moment of reflection plopped about ⅔ of the way through the year. That is my favorite thing about fall. Fall is the time for children to return to school and use what they learned the previous year and expand their knowledge and experience. I like to think about fall as the same thing for all of us who have weight loss, muscle gain, or performance goals. Especially those of us who are tracking and paying attention to what we eat. It’s hyperbole to say that for most of us, we tend to slack off a bit in the summer. That’s not a criticism on anyone because I can absolutely say that’s true for me. It is a time to enjoy the progress we made, maintain our weight and live in LIFESTYLE MODE. How can you not ease off the gas a bit whenever it seems like every weekend has some cookout, some outdoor event built around food and drinks, or some other social plan that seems to always pop up? Those are all just normal things that come along with summer, and for most of us, they’re things that we’re fortunate to be able to take part in – so why wouldn’t we enjoy that? Fall,on the other hand, is a natural place to go back to the basics, reflect and make a better diet. It is a time of year in which it makes sense for us to take stock of our processes, our daily behaviors, and make sure those are lining up with our goals. It’s that very process of regularly auditing yourself that sets successful dieters apart.
It’s that very process of regularly auditing yourself that sets successful dieters apart (see life long learner)
For some of us, taking stock of things might mean renewing your focus on how you’re weighing and measuring your food. For others it might be auditing how you’re going about logging your day to day food intake, to make sure you’re not missing anything. And still, for others, it might be a matter of looking at what your planning looks like and identifying ways in which you can improve your process to make your life easier. The actual behavior we’re talking about doesn’t really matter. What does matter is the spirit behind it. The knowing that you’re actively working to take control of your health and your behaviors to become a little bit better each and every day. At Strive Fitness and Performance, this is something that we not only encourage, but want to actively support as much as we possibly can. Are you ready to make a change this year? Are you a life long learner? Do you want to become 1% better? Committed to your success, Derek Ledwidge