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Jan 11, 201208:42 AMMind & Body

The All or Nothing Mentality

Jan 11, 2012 - 08:42 AM
The All or Nothing Mentality

Just because your eating habits change during the holidays doesn't mean you have to have to fall completely off the bandwagon.

I often adopt the “all or nothing” mentality. Here is an example: During the holiday season, I had family staying at my house for a week, I participated in a long and exhausting (but fun) Christmas production, worked on writing a book and did all the shopping, wrapping, cooking and cleaning.


Now, I’m not trying to sound like a martyr (okay, maybe a little), I’m simply getting to my point. What I did NOT do over the holidays was have any discipline about my exercise regime or what I consumed. Ugh! I took the month off of my personal training business so did not get my own workouts in.


It’s a bit like the chicken and the egg. I’m not sure what comes first — slacking on the workouts and then caring less about what/how I eat or eating whatever I want which, in turn, causes me to slack on the workouts. Either way, it’s not good. Problem identified: “All or nothing mentality.”


The AONM is a dragon that must be slain! I know better, but I fell into the trap. I did a lot of baking. Now baking in of itself can be a good thing: I delivered tins of goodies to neighbors who had been helpful during the year, and I actually met a new family and welcomed them in. Okay, all good, right? I also munched on much of those baked goods myself. You know the routine — open the bag of chocolate chips, throw most of them into the bowl, save two large handfuls for yourself...yeah.


I also told myself I didn’t have time for a workout with shopping and cleaning, etc. I managed to also convince myself that it didn’t matter. If I’m eating badly, I might as well stop  exercising. Mistake! This is a lie, folks. It matters!


I try to follow the philosophy of pro golfer, Camilo Villegas. It is this: “The pain of discipline or the pain of regret.” Yup, you have to deal with one or the other. And today, January 11, 2012, I am dealing with the pain of regret. Darn those cookies and the pumpkin roll and the endless take-out late night pizzas.


A small amount of discipline goes a long way. Do not throw the baby out with the bath water! As with all things, the path to fitness must be a balance. The “all of nothing” mentality only leads to frustration and discouragement. And the only answer to frustration and discouragement is to DO SOMETHING, no matter how small the step may seem. Cut some calories today. Skip the cheese on the burger. Eat one cookie, not three. Take a short walk. Do a few push-ups during a TV commercial. One small step leads to more. Trust me, you will feel better and BE better.

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