How many calories, carbs and fat grams does this food have?
How much do I need to work out to work it off?
I should probably be exercising more, shouldn’t I?
My arms are looking really flabby lately. Don’t get me started on my stomach.
Do I really need that jelly donut, cookie, piece of cake, pasta or slice of pizza? But it looks soooo good…
Does your brain sorta sound like the above more often than not? Many of us spend minutes or even hours a day with thoughts of food and fitness ping-ponging in our heads. Sometimes, the thoughts seem to have a life of their own, coming in and going as they please, often flooding our minds any time we catch our reflections in the mirror or the car. They may seem to be all-consuming, eating up any positive thoughts.
So here’s a simple question: If you weren’t constantly thinking about calories, diets, exercise and your weight, what would you be thinking about?
That’s what Constance Rhodes of FindingBalance asks in an excellent one-minute video. As someone who struggled with disordered eating, she realized that she wanted to dedicate her time, energy, money and resources to other pursuits. What about you? What would you dedicate your time and energy to? Try to sit with this question for a few minutes. And if you’d like, even make a list of possible thoughts.
Maybe you’d be thinking about a hilarious family memory, what fun things you’d like to do that week, a book you’d like to read, a thank-you card you’d like to send to a friend, an inner trait you’d like to work on, a gift to get for your mom. Maybe you’d be thinking about absolutely nothing, enjoying the silence and relaxation of your mind…your list of potential thoughts may be endless and probably more satisfying.
The next time food and fitness thoughts bombard your brain, take out that list and remember that there are other more interesting, challenging, enjoyable and even fun things you can be thinking about.
By the way, please check out my guest post on the validity of using the Body Mass Index (BMI) over at Treatment Notes, a wonderful blog by eating disorder specialist Sari Shepphird, Ph.D.
I hope everyone has a fantastic, fun weekend, and that the above has given you some food for thought.