Aaaahhh, Spring has sprung. The time of year when everything gets green and starts blooming, the days get a bit longer, the temperatures warm, bunnies are hopping, and….. allergy sufferers are cursing pollen, our to do lists get even longer with the addition of outdoor projects, and we are ALL on diets. Kermit was right, it’s not easy being green.
‘Tis the season of the NTD (Need To Diet). NTD is as expected and reliable as, well, flowers blooming. Just like spring, it may come a bit later than usual, but have no fear – it will be here. It is bad enough that we emerge from our heavier clothes, see more of our pale skin, and try to fit into our summer clothes – but it is the total dread we feel in knowing that some day very soon, we’ll need to don a pair of shorts or – DUN DUN DUN, a swimsuit. Yeee gads. Welcome aboard, NTD. Wish I could say it’s nice to see you again.
It doesn’t really matter whether we are determined to lose an extra 10 pounds of winter weight, or we are panicked because we have gone up two clothing sizes – we convince ourselves that now is the time to shed it. After all, there’s more good fresh produce available for healthy eating, and the weather is better for us to get more active. Suddenly there are tons of people out walking, running, biking – we are like moles coming out of the ground after a long hibernation. Should be piece of cake (err, kale) to drop those unwanted pounds quickly, right?
Well…. yeah, until we realize that there are more social opportunities like backyard BBQs with tables of yummy food, and that outdoor exercising makes us sweaty and hot and isn’t any easier just because we aren’t in a gym. Not so easy. As a matter of fact, NTD is kind of hellish.
If you are like me, my NTD is a fickle beast. (aka I have a lack of willpower). I know darn well what will work – lower caloric intake, avoid sugars and carbs, more lean protein, and kick up my exercise several notches. Some days I’ll wake up ready and eager, repeating my health mantras: Today’s the day I get serious. My body is a temple, and I’m going to get thin and toned and feel awesome. I’ll start off strong, and I may even have a couple good, healthy days. Then all it takes is a dinner out with friends, or a fresh pitcher of margaritas, or a craving to bake cookies, and quickly my mantras change to: You only live once, life is short, eat dessert first. The struggle is real.
I have so much admiration for those of you out there to stick to your plan, make long term life changes, lose weight and get in shape. You have earned your right to feel amazing, walk tall, and heck – buy a new swimsuit. As for the rest of us – we deserve to feel proud too. Because it doesn’t really matter that we aren’t going to make it back into the jeans we wore 5 years ago, lose our extra rolls, or look like Jillian Michaels. If at least 50% of the time we make some healthy choices and learn how to feel good about ourselves, then our NTD plan becomes a successful WTR (We Totally Rock) plan. Sure there are going to be those days when we don’t feel like WTR – especially when we pull out a favorite old pair of shorts that no longer button, or we notice new cellulite. But there are going to be other days when we are at a pool party wearing a super cute sundress and being thankful for the extra workout we fit in that day.
In the end, that NTD is really all about balance. And Spring is about fresh starts and lighter moods. So if you’ll excuse me, I had a good healthy eating, active day and I’m going to treat myself to a Dove chocolate. Because I deserve it – it even says so on the wrapper.