One of the things I want to use my blog for is to motivate myself to improve my health and fitness, I am hoping that by writing about my goals I can make myself accountable and maybe encourage others along the way.
Have you read Gretchen Rubin’s book ‘Better than Before’? She explains that the secret to habit change is knowing and understanding yourself. So to master our habits it helps to understand where we stand in the ‘Four Tendencies’ framework, in other words, how do I respond to an expectation? I am definitely an ‘Obliger’, I respond better to outer expectations but struggle to meet inner expectations – I require external accountability. That is why I do not exercise alone, I’d never do it, I’d always have an excuse!
You can take her ‘habits quiz’ here.
So when I saw the Cancer Research campaign Sugar Free for March I decided that signing up for that as well as recording my journey on my blog might just give me the kick up the backside I need.
Why do I want to give up sugar?
Well my weight has been slowly increasing for a few years now, that is down to my age as I can no longer make little adjustments to my diet and find the pounds fall off. Hormones, stress and age are all conspiring against me. I exercise twice a week, ideally it should be more but I am an active person anyway and I do other activities like a dance class and walking the dogs so I don’t feel I have to add in another formal session. But diet is the real thing to address when trying to change your figure.
To help me write this post I referred back to James Duigan’s book ‘Clean & Lean Diet’ – he says cut out the CRAP (Caffeine, Refined Sugar, Alcohol and Processed Foods). But he dedicates a whole chapter to sugar as it is the worst of all!
Put simply sugar makes us fat. Our bodies cannot process too much of it so it gets stored as fat. Plus it makes fat-burning even harder – if you are eating sugar every day, all the gym sessions in the world won’t shift that excess flab. For me I don’t think it can be any clearer! So why do we do it? Well it’s addictive and that is the habit I have to break.
And I think it is worthwhile adding in a reminder here about Alcohol – it is the simplest and most fattening sugar of all - it is basically a poison – it stimulates the production of oestrogen in our blood stream which promotes fat storage (around the waist and tummy). It will decrease muscle mass, leaving you squidgy and out of shape. It is no coincidence that women’s waist sizes have got bigger over the years in line with the amount of alcohol we consume.
I am going to keep things simple to start with – I have already cut down considerably on alcohol so I will continue with that, basically no drinking at home, social drinking only and then maximum two glasses of wine. Having sugar in my tea is the biggest habit I need to break. If I can master that in March then I can move onto other sugar-laden snacks too. I will be posting regularly with updates and tips.
Will you join me?
Hi, I’m Michelle and my blog Fifty & Fab is all about my journey into and through my fifties. I share style tips, health and fitness inspiration, I talk about my holidays and days out and I tell you about my beauty regime and my lifestyle. I hope you might pick up a tip or two and get some inspiration!
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