“All or Nothing Mentality” Accepting the Grey Area

As a trainer I hear it a lot, “I’m an all or nothing type of person”. One week I have a client who goes all out and trains with me 5 days a week super hard and then I don’t hear from them for the next two weeks. I reach out to help them get back on track only to find my client pushing super hard to “make up” for the time away when they made less than awesome nutrition decisions. The truth is many people suffer from this type of mentality. If this is you don’t worry you are not alone.

To be honest I have been working on getting out of this mindset myself. I used to think “I don’t have time for my two hour work out so I don’t have time to work out.” Or something like, “I don’t have healthy options at this barbecue so I’m going to eat whatever I want and suffer with the consequences later”. However by practicing some simple techniques I have been able to break this cycle that otherwise was sabotaging my fitness goals.

Pro Tips to get out of that “All or Nothing Mentality”

Realize that something is better than nothing.

  1. When it comes to workouts, you can get a really great workout in 30 minutes. If you are limited for time pick 4-5 exercises that you can do and treat it like a circuit. 25 jumping jacks, 10 squats, 10 pushups and repeat for 2-3 rounds. Something is better than nothing
  2. When it comes to food, some healthy food is better than unhealthy food. Ok so maybe life happens and you find yourself running low on time and free range chicken and broccoli are nowhere to be found. Pick something thats a little healthier than chips and a diet coke at the convenient store. HIt the local grocery store and grab a packet of tuna, rotisserie chicken, hard boiled eggs and the salad bar. If your at that back yard BBQ put your burger over a salad instead of a bun. It might not be grass fed but something is better than nothing.
  3. Plan, plan, plan. Did I mention planning us super important? Look at yourself like a science experiment. At the end of each week reevaluate what worked and what could have gone better. Take note and plan accordingly for next week.
  4. Prep food you look forward to eating. Think about what healthy options excite you! Do some research and try a new recipe over the weekend. Be creative with a childlike spirit in the kitchen. Its a privilege to live where we have so many local farms available to us. Visit them and get to know your local farmer. Ask them how they prep their veggies and protein.
  5. ¬†Make time for you. This goes back to planning but it’s so important it gets its own mention. Amidst the kids sports, classes, errands, work, etc, we often times put ourselves last to the point that there isn’t energy left to spend time on YOU! Schedule you time into your calendar, whether its going for a short walk to clear your mind, taking a yoga class, or mindful meditation, journaling etc. This time is crucial for your soul.

Remember the “All or Nothing” mentality is a double edged sword that oftentimes leaves us anxious and depressed over the fact that we choose to do nothing because we couldn’t do it all. We have been taught all of our lives about absolutes, take politics for example your either a democrat or republican, religion is the same of one belief or another. We need to become comfortable with the fact that there is gray area and not everything is black or white.