I thought I would take a break from complaining about hot water and lemon and smoothies and examine how following a diet is a little like some of my favourite not so guilty pleasures – reality shows!
I am the lowest common denominator when it comes to TV. Although I do love some amazing comedies that have won Emmys (already revealed some of my favourites), reality TV is Queen (I could say King, but I’m Canadian and our monarch is Queen Elizabeth II thank you very much). My top faves are The Bachelor/Bachelorette (not for the romance, for the train wreck), Survivor, The Voice and The Biggest Loser and each, in its own way has a lesson to be learned. If you’ve never watched this shows, then my condolences, you are missing out on fun, sometimes smutty goodness!
· “I’m here for the right reasons” – the ladies and gentleman of this fantastic franchise often proclaim that someone is on the show for the “wrong reasons” (fame) and that they are here for the “right reasons” (love). When you are on any type of diet or eating plan, you have to be doing it for the right reasons. Although I am using Dr. Oz as my guide, I am doing his 2 week program not to lose weight (although it’s a nice benefit), but to see how I feel by eliminating certain foods from my diet. I am going to be following the DASH program (Dr. Oz approved), again, not just as a weight loss tool, but to improve my overall health. I love bread – more than I love most people. Mean people suck – admit it! I do notice in just under three days a huge difference though in how I feel by not having wheat and I HATE admitting it. I’m more awake in the morning, my energy (depending on the time of day) is improving, my skin looks better which I didn’t expect to see so quickly, I haven’t had any heart burn and my stomach isn’t in knots after I eat. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t diet to lose weight, because that’s smart and healthy if you need to. What I am saying is that the goal of the program is to make you healthier and to find something that is sustainable for you to be on for life. If you are dieting because you want to look better and you think you will feel better about yourself if you are smaller, then I think you will fail. It’s a nice side effect, but the whole point is to enjoy a long and healthy life.
· “True Love Is Like A Leap of Faith” – they always make someone jump off of a bridge, scale a building, go zip-lining and then come up with a cheesy metaphor like this to describe the experience. Whenever you try something, it is a leap of faith – you don’t know how you are going to feel on the plan, you don’t know if it will work for you and you even know if you will be successful long term on it.
· “EEES OK” – Juan Pablo, the current “Bachelor” says this all the time! They even did a segment in the “Women Tell All” about his use of this. In diet speak it means (to me), that it’s ok if you aren’t perfect, and it’s even ok if you fail because you will sometimes. The point is to do your best and to commit to something that will help you be healthier.
· “Will You Accept This Rose” – c’mon even if you don’t watch the show you have to know what this is all about! For purposes of this entry, it just means, there are many options to choose from, kind of like the Bachelor/Bachelorette has many options to choose from. You have to think about what your needs are, what you can live with long term and what will make you feel good (more energy – we’d all feel good if we could eat chocolate 24/7. If you tell me you don’t like chocolate, well, we can’t be friends – I don’t trust you).
· “Outwit, Outplay, Outlast” – truer words were never spoken – it’s a metaphor for business and life. It’s also a metaphor for a diet plan. You have to Outwit by making modifications that are liveable for you (like me having coffee and black tea even though it’s forbidden). You have to Outplay – by thinking ahead. It’s all about the planning when it comes to eating better. You have to be somewhat organized and it’s even a game when it comes to eating out. You have to make the right choice, but the only person you are playing is yourself. WOW that was deep! Mildly self-helpy too! I have to remember this line. Outlast – how many people have started a diet with the best intentions with a friend? I have and sometimes, they have decided it’s not the right time for them or they get bored, etc. It’s about you deciding to Outlast by continuing on a path that works for you. It’s great to have the support of a friend, but if you aren’t doing it for the “right reasons” (see The Bachelor/Bachelorette) having a buddy isn’t going to help.
· “The Knock-Out Round” –this is where “The Voice” whittles down the initial acts to a much smaller number by having a competition between two singers. We all get to a point on a plan where you give up – it’s become too difficult, too restrictive, takes too much planning, we are too busy…too, too , too. We become the eliminated contestant simply because we give up. This is where you have to decide what’s important. I love bread – and I will eat it again, but I’m going to eat less, and look for alternatives. I just can’t see not eating it for the rest of my life. By saying “EES OK” to eat it, I’m not setting myself up for failure.
· The Bro-mance Between Adam and Blake – I love it – it’s the best part of the show for me. That’s it – just wanted to say that.
The Biggest Loser
· This is obvious and inspiring. There are some challenges with it since there is prize money on the line and some of what happens on the show are made for TV moments. I do love the show, and there are also very genuine moments where people start facing their demons and I’m the sucker that cries every single time.
· “Hard Work. Dedication” – Dolvett’s signature line during workouts. The fact is, living a healthy life is hard work. It’s easier to eat yoga mats, I mean Subway than it is to chop up vegetables. If you are lucky, there are some people that will help you, like my mother did by making the detox vegetable broth for me. Like most people, when I’m out of my house from 8am onwards, the last thing I feel like doing is cooking, but that shouldn’t stop me from making better choices if I’m out. It’s also easier to sit in front of the TV instead of exercise – but that’s where the combination of hard work and dedication comes into play.
· “It’s a journey” – I could do a drinking game based on this line from all reality shows. Right now, it’s water shots only though. Yes, I know it’s a journey, but it’s time to come up with another word. Change doesn’t happen in a day and few adjustments can really help. I’ve seen it myself. The issue becomes when you get impatient. It’s not an overnight thing – the JOURNEY to a healthier life takes time.
I’ll tell you more about how much I spent on the 2 week plan tomorrow – I think I’ve OUTstayed my welcome for now!