I am all about making habits that keep me from failing in life. Failing is part of life, but I don’t want to set myself up for failure which would cause more physical and emotional unrest.
I put out my running clothes the night before so they stare me in the face when I wake up in the morning. I must get dressed and attack that pavement, I mean I have no excuse, everything is ready.
I make my coffee the night before so it is ready when I wake up at 4:30am.
So besides setting me up for a successful start to my day, doing these simple things the night before makes me think ahead and plan for tomorrow before going to sleep.
I use the same mentality where my food choices are concerned. I used to be extremely obese as a child. Food was shoved into my mouth as my pleasure as I sat on the couch. I didn’t think about food as about what the food was doing for my body and the things I wanted to do in life.
I used food to shut off the unhappiness in my brain.
I am working outrageous hours now, 12-14 a day 7 days a week as I moved my business into a virtual/online personal training business. I have been able to do this while maintaining the same weight, 147-149 lbs., and energy level, by listening to my body and this starts the night before.
- I don’t eat past 7pm. PERIOD. My day starts at 4-4:30am and if my stomach is still digesting when I wake up, I can’t run and will feel sluggish for hours. Dinner is also my smaller meal, usually about 400-500 calories max. I roast vegetables mostly or a salad and may have a small piece of fish. I don’t eat much meat, such as beef or pork and never eat chicken. I love dessert as much as anyone else so have dried fruit as my dessert afterwards with some warm tea. This makes me not feel deprived when I go to sleep. I avoid alcohol if I am running the next day. Drinking 2 glasses of wine will raise my heart rate by 10-20 bpm the next day on my run. Having a high heart rate when I run is painful and not productive. That meal 8-10 hours before my run makes my stomach feel settled when I run.
- After my morning run, I listen to my body. Especially if I did a longer 8-10 mile run, my body craves vitamin C. I can have a glass of Guava, Mango or Apple juice or some strawberries or blueberries. These choices are lower in acid than citrus juices or citrus fruit so won’t upset my empty stomach. I normally have a bagel with butter, my body craves some carbohydrates and fat. If you aren’t running like I am, you may just have like 4-5 strawberries and ½ a bagel with butter. Don’t deprive yourself, you can eat the same, just eat less. I replace the water I lost in sweat so it is 20-30 oz. of water in addition to any coffee I may drink. Dehydration will cause you to feel hungry later so take care of it right when your body needs it.
- Around 10am my stomach usually tells me I am hungry. This time of the day I need to be able to eat while still moving and working with clients so this is a small peanut butter and jelly sandwich or a vegetable sandwich. I always bring this to work with me even if I don’t end up needing it. I only eat this if I feel hungry. I drink 20 or oz. of water about this time, all at once.
- Between 1-3pm, I usually have my lunch break and this is my biggest meal of the day. I have protein, could be beans or fish, or fried tofu and vegetables or a salad and bread. I have time to eat slowly and nap a little afterwards. I never eat this meal rushed. Eating rushed causes us to overeat and not chew properly or enjoy what we are eating. I drink lots of iced tea at this meal.
And that is it. I don’t follow a diet. Diets are no fun and not feasible for daily living. I eat the foods that help me have the physical body I want that can perform the functions I need. Learn to listen to your body and your digestive tract will feel better which will allow you to conquer the day better.