Health: Expectations vs. Reality

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#1 One guilty night of cheating on your ultra-clean diet

Expectation: Oh, I’m so gonna look fat tomorrow.

Reality: Oh, my tummy is just as flat as yesterday and my jeans fit well too. Probably that was just water weight.

#2 Working out daily

Expectation: The first thing I’ll do when I wake up tomorrow is wear my running shoes and go out for a nice long run to start the day on a good note.

Reality: This day is perfect to sleep. Let’s hit the snooze button and start the running fiasco tomorrow.

#3 Body image issues

Expectation: I have to look slim before I attend my friend’s wedding otherwise people will poke fun at me and I won’t look good in group pictures.

Reality: All that matters is I’m there with my friend on her D-day and guess what I look great when I wear my prettiest smile. And pssst! There are plenty of camera angles that make me appear slim!

#4 Low self-esteem

Expectation: I have noticed people don’t take me seriously when I don’t dress well and look good at work.

Reality: I’m here, I’m in the moment and I’m grateful to have another opportunity to make it big at work. With a positive mindset, I have realized, people appear nicer than ever.

#5 Self vs Others

Expectation: I won’t stand out if I don’t wear my makeup today; or worse, I won’t fit in with my peers

Reality: One wide-mouthed smile, a little nod of approval to everyone I meet, a few deep nasal breaths are all I need to exude good vibes.

#6 Detox fads

Expectation: I’ll go for a body detox with juice fasts, saltwater master cleanse and possibly water fasting.

Reality: I don’t have to forgo solid/tasty/real food to achieve body detox. Out goes sugar and processed food. Lentil soups, stir-fried veggies and peanut butter ice-creams are in!

#7 Losing belly fat

Expectation: I’ll join a yoga class, alongside doing 100 crunches a day to get a slim, flat tummy. Also, I’ll limit my caloric intake to 1000 calories a day.

Reality: What has worked for others doesn’t work for me. I’ll stick to doing one thing- be it yoga class or 100 crunches a day but be consistent with it for as long as I can.

#8 Culmination of fitness

Expectation: The day I get a 24-inch waistline, or atleast when I hit the 100-pound mark is when I’ll assume my fitness journey has achieved successful completion.

Reality: I am able to pushups finally. I can run a mile without feeling the need to throw up. I may have lost 100 pounds but I still can’t do pull-ups. I guess fitness is an ongoing journey and it’s the small wins along the way that matter. The end goal is forever out of reach and that’s what makes the journey even more captivating.

#9 Celebrating weight loss

Expectation: I’ll stuff my face with burgers, cookies, pies and cheesecakes once this healthy eating fiasco has come to an end.

Reality: Wow! I have no cravings for sugar or fast food. And I don’t believe how easy it is to pass a day without chocolate.

#10 Making healthy food swaps

Expectation: I’m going to start eating a healthy salad for lunch just so I can meet my 1300-calorie budget and lose 0.5 lbs per week.

Reality: Sometimes I do stick to salad lunches and other times I grab a hotdog from the cafeteria on impulse. Guess what I still meet my weight loss because I just realized it’s whether you meet the WEEKLY caloric budget that matters.

#11 Putting a stop on healthy lifestyle

Expectation: I’ll switch back to my milk teas, after-dinner desserts, and double-chocolate cappuchinos once I lose the extra 25 lbs.

Reality: I’m so happy to have embraced healthy eating. It’s like every morsel of food I eat is an opportunity to pamper and nourish my body. Doesn’t matter what weight I’m at, I’ll be eating healthy like 80% of the time I live.

#12 Living without tea

Expectation: I can’t live without drinking my milk tea, however acidic/inflammatory it may be to the gut

Reality: The detox tea I have started to drink is equally relaxing and tasty one at that! Plus, there are so many healthy ways to kick up the flavours a notch!

#13 Abstainer

Expectation: I will complete the 30-day no-sugar challenge and it’s gonna be a no-sugar life for me hereafter.

Reality: Well, I did complete the 30-day no-sugar challenge and I don’t know what to do with my life anymore. I guess it’s okay if I consume some sugar every now and then, but I’ll keep it less than 5 grams per day.

#14 Setting out goals

Expectation: The only reason I am going to switch to a vegan diet is to get over the weight loss plateau

Reality: Afternoon crashes, brain fog, bloating are a thing of the past. Also, I perform better at my workouts and meal prep is an enriching experience each day. Weight loss is just one of the many benefits, though a welcome one nonetheless!

#15 Ab workout challenges

Expectation: This 14-day ab workout is a boon sent from heaven for all my belly fat woes. Watch out bitches. A hot sexy bod is on the way!

Reality: Well, it’s safe to say my waistline hasn’t budged an inch. All that has improved is my ability to hold my breath while uncomfortably straining my neck forward during the nth crunch.

#16 Seasonal priorities

Expectation: I can binge all through winter and not take care of my weight because tank tops are for the summers. I’ll resume gym in spring.

Reality: I didn’t realize that a 10-minute workout, hot bowls of soup and journaling when the night gets colder by the hour can bring so much more comfort than mindless, guilt-ridden nights of binge-eating.

#17 Entitlement to food

Expectation: It’s my birthright to eat. It’s what is expected of me. I don’t quite feel like I’m living up to my potential if I don’t try everything laid out in the buffet.

Reality: I am amazed at how less I can eat when I really listen to my body and stop eating when I’m full. Also, I don’t feel like I have deprived myself of gustatory pleasures.

#18 On finding motivation

Expectation: As a lazy ass newbie, the only way to get motivated to workout is if I listen to the encouraging words of a gym instructor.

Reality: Why don’t I fire up the speakers and dance to my favourite music. Oh, the sweat, the endorphin rush and the thrill of doing froggy moves in solitude! Who needs a gym for that!

#19 Working out with self vs. others

Expectation: I am going to feel great when I workout in a team. Common goals will foster friendship and I’ll make some great friends

Reality: Wow, where’s the time for all that! I think I’ll just learn the moves and do it in the comfort of my home later.

#20 Being judged

Expectation: Oh great! Here comes the sweat. Those svelte gym-goers probably hate me now. Also, I look like a pig and now my top clings even more uncomfortably making every ounce of flab stick out prominently.

Reality: Everybody is doing their own thing.The sweatier I get, the better I feel. And that’s the whole point of not hitting the snooze button this morning and paying gym membership in the first place!

#21 On finding peace

Expectation: With signing up for this yoga class, peace of mind is going to be mine!

Reality: It’s all about techniques. Nobody tells me how to feel good in my body. Also, the constant pressure to master a certain pose is not helping.

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