I’ve been around the block enough to know what some of you are thinking today.  We’re going to play a game.

Let me guess…

1).  You gorged on candy yesterday.

easter candy

Love these little guys!

2).  You straightened your hair and wore mascara for the first time in months.

lindsay wright

3).  You went to church, then laid around the rest of the day.  Only getting off your duff, to peer over the Easter basket, pick your favorite piece (which changes as the basket gets smaller and the goodies grow less and less), then plodded back to the couch to watch Bethenny Ever After.

4).  You ate ham.  At least once.  But probably twice.  Oh, and yeast rolls.  There were some yeast rolls involved in the whole production.

cheese casseroleeaster meal

(I actually didn’t have ham.  Just lots of cheesy casserole goodness.)

5).  You went to bed last night with a PLAN.  A plan to fast sugar, fat and carbs for at least two weeks.  Maybe you resolved to do a juice fast.  You’re going to drink 300 ounces of water and not a morsel of food.  Oh, and take tomorrow’s AM spin class, paired with a Cardio Bootcamp in the evening.  100 crunches before bed.

6).  You may have even written this PLAN down on paper!  It’ll “stick” better that way.

7).  When dinnertime rolls around today, it will all seem like a joke.  You should have thrown those jellybeans away LAST NIGHT, then you wouldn’t be tempted. 

8).  Come Thursday, you’ll have forgotten your PLAN.  Or you’ll remember that you tried and then feel truly horrible for not succeeding.  Maybe next month will be THE month when it works out for you.

So, did I get it right?

This logic, this cycle…it’s STUPID.

And highly detrimental. 

I’m SO over the “feast and famine” game.  Let me tell you – I wasted at least 10 years playing this game and I lost every time.  The feelings of guilt and remorse when I couldn’t live up to these strict guidelines – those were the worst!

Don’t get me wrong!  I am all for setting goals and moving forward.  I think that setting goals is a vital tool when it comes to losing weight.  Deciding what you want and planning out the steps of how get there.

That is healthy.

What I’m not ok with, is self-harming.  Setting yourself up for failure.

That’s what usually happens when we give our bodies and our minds ultimatums.  The ALL or NOTHINGS.  “You can have candy today but NEVER again!”

This is why diets fail.  This is why 35% of Americans are obese.  This is why weight loss supplement companies make MILLIONS.

They are feeding off of our inability to live BALANCED lives.

Living a healthy lifestyle is all about BALANCE.  It’s about cutting yourself some slack, while also fueling your body properly and working up a sweat everyday.

About 3 years ago, I made up my mind to start treating my body differently.  I’m still a work in progress.  I know I always will be while here on Earth.

lindsay wright

But I don’t see an advantage in going back to that “feast or famine” place.  I just wasn’t happy there.  And I’m willing to bet (a million Peeps) that you aren’t either!

I ask you to join me in this fight against the “All or Nothings”! 

I want to encourage you to treat yourself to a 80/20 eating plan (notice I didn’t use the word “diet”).

Let’s drink our water and eat our vegetables.  Let’s MOVE daily, strengthen our muscles and shake our booty’s.

family feet picture

And let’s not forget the most important lessons.

To live less rigidly (and allow for mistakes), to love more fully (especially ourselves)…

sibling love

…and to eat jelly beans with wild abandonment.

THAT, is healthy living.

QUESTIONS:  Did I describe you up top?  Are you going to do something about it? 

splendid…lindsay

  1. Katie @ Katie Without Restrictions says:

    I LOVE that very last picture!! Absolutely precious.

    You definitely describes the old me in the first part of this post! I also spent years (too many!) in that cycle. Finally, thankfully, blessedly, I am in the slow process of changing my thinking and changing my behavior. It’s hard! But it feels fantastic.

  2. STUFT Mama says:

    Yes lady- the 80/20. Love it, love this post. :) I think a lot of people struggle with this here on earth, but knowing when to turn to The Man upstairs is when the strength comes. Dang it, I never bought any Peeps this year. :) Love ya!

  3. Danica @ It's Progression Not Perfection says:

    Yep! I’ll admit I started thinking that way last night but I’ve come far enough to know that I had to stop that way of thinking at least! You’re right on with this post–it’s all about balance and I do an overall very good job of balancing how I eat and how much I move my body. Deep breath, life goes on.

  4. Angela @ Happy Fit Mama says:

    I was part of the all or nothing crew years ago. I’m a constant work in progress but now that I follow the rule of eating what I like but smaller portions and moving more I actually weigh less than when I was so concerned about every morsel going into my mouth.

    Great post! I hope it helps turn on a switch for many people to realize diets don’t work!

  5. Kelly @ No Sugar Sweet Life says:

    Great post. I do have to admit – I started a 15 day clean eating / juice fast today… but I promise it wasn’t Easter candy induced!! I’ve been planning it for about a month :) I love the 80/20 rule. So good. And so liveable!!

  6. Laura says:

    Yes, you nailed it… balance is key. There is nothing helpful or healthy about beating ourselves up for an indulgent day! Thanks for your honesty, too.

  7. Ashley @ Freckles & Spice says:

    I absolutely loved this post! I use to think it was all or nothing. I was miserable and then about once a month I would have a all out binge. It was not healthy mentally or physically. 80/20 is where it is at. Life is not worth living if you don’t indulge every once and a while and truly enjoy it!

  8. Dominique says:

    Definitely #1 (replace “candy” with “a slice of cake and a storebought cinnamon roll”), 3, 5, and 6 (sort of…more meal-planning/brainstorming) for me! Thanks for the reminder about balance- it is much needed by many folks today (especially- dare I say it?- the food blogging community?)!

    Also, your kids are just adorable! After seeing the last photo, my ovaries are having a party.

  9. Kalee says:

    I totally agree with the 80/20% rule! We went to a brunch yesterday, and I filled up on an (tasty) veggie omelette and fresh fruit. Then I had a waffle with whipped cream for dessert. I’m not going to lie, I ate over my calories yesterday, but I am not beating myself up or going into a cleansing fast because I know I eat healthy and workout 80% of the time. I love this post because if you keep “cleansing” and eating your “last meal” you can’t succeed and it is so hard on you mentally!! Thanks for the reminder! :)

  10. Lauren says:

    Yup. I totally get this post. I tend to struggle with this on regular days too, but like you said – I’m forever a work on progress. I’m living the 80/20 life and learning to accept it – so much more fun and fulfilling to focus on what we have than to beat ourselves up over what we *think* we are lacking in.

  11. Katie @ Peace Love & Oats says:

    THANK YOU for this post today! I realized this morning that I’d gained 7lbs over the past few months from emotional/boredom eating and not listening to my hunger cues. I freaked. I felt gross. Your post is helping me remember that I can’t go back to all or nothing because that’s why I’m here in the first place! Deep breaths.

  12. Bridget B. says:

    Mine was more like way too much processed meat; oddly, my chocolate addiction was only moderate. I fully believe in the 80/20 plan and intend to live it today. A big salad is calling my name at lunch! PS. You (and your children) are just beautiful!!

  13. liz says:

    Ok. So that is totally for me -yep, was just headed down this road this morning. Hm – instead of continuing, i’ll go ahead and eat food, just make sure it’s good-for-me food. And I’ll move a little more the next few days to make up for yesterday’s yeast rolls, sour jelly beans, and cute little hollow chocolate bunnies! I actually did better this holiday than others as I was able to get everyone out to play volleyball and later I went on a 3 mile walk/run w/ my sis in the evening. Happy balanced life peeps!

  14. Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy says:

    I love this! Numbers 1-3 describe my day yesterday, almost exactly. I don’t feel bad that I ate chocolate, though. I’m going to normal workout class tonight, and if I feel like it, I’ll allow myself some Easter candy after dinner. Everyone deserves a treat every once in a while :).

  15. Lindsay @ In Sweetness and In Health says:

    LOVE this! Ugh, I have been in this all or nothing place so many times, but lately I’ve definitely been working hard on not doing it…and it’s amazing how much happier and better I feel overall! Beating ourselves up is not worth it at all. Enjoying the food in the moment is!

  16. Jess says:

    YEAH!!! LOVE this post and everything it stands for. This is totally where I am today — focused on balanced and healthy living, NOT feast or famine, NOT “good days” and “bad days” but making everyday a healthy, fruitful, nourishing and tasty day. Not one where I beat myself up endlessly for not having self-control. I am so much happier (and more fit) living this way where balanace and consistency are key. AWESOME post!!

  17. Anne says:

    I used to do that and it was just a terrible, abusive cycle. In that last 3-4 years, I have been loving the freedom that comes with an 80/20 lifestyle (and am at the same weight)! Also, I used to think that if I didn’t have an hour to workout, what was the point? Now, even if it’s 20 or 30 minutes, that’s definitely enough time to work up a sweat or just MOVE! There is so much more freedom (and forgiveness) in this way of life!

  18. Tara Burner says:

    I did NOTHING of what you described!
    I ate NO candy
    I ate no ham (ewwwww)
    Did not wear mascara and probably never even brushed my hair
    I did church online
    Though I do have a huge goal I’m working on but that has nothing to do with anything of the above lol
    then again I usually am the oddball so no surprise I did nothing here!

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