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Did You Have a Relapse? 10 Ways to Bounce Back after You Blow Your Diet

Join the Conversation. Have you had a relapse? What worked best for you? Share your challenges or successes  here, on this Sugar Shock Blog, or on Facebook.

 

As I reluctantly admitted last year, after my mother died, while I was reeling from grief, despair, PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome), and more, I had a carb relapse that went on for some 10 months, and I packed on 21 pounds.

Bestseller Beyond Sugar Shock BSFor the past two-plus years -- after I Bounced Back After Relapse -- I've thought long and hard about how and why people relapse.

Now, I'm determined to show you how not to blow your diet as I did when trauma, abuse, gut-wrenching grief and emotional devastation over loss or betrayal strike.

Since people often want to know, "How do you bounce back after a relapse?" -- as someone just asked me today -- I've assembled pointers to help you get you back on track.

Here are 10 Ways to Bounce Back After You Blow Your Diet.

1. Be gentle and compassionate with yourself.

If you slip on your diet, this is not the time to berate or belittle yourself. Instead, use your relapse as a reason to lavish yourself with kindness, understanding and sympathy. The research is mounting on the benefits of giving yourself compassion. (More about that in a future post.)

2. Accept that you're human -- and therefore imperfect.

People with food issues often expect themselves to do everything perfectly, especially "dieting," as I've discovered from coaching many people. Ironically, the word, "diet" even has "die" in it.

Of course, it's impossible to be perfect, of course. Expecting yourself to eat "right" all the time sets you up for failure. So give yourself a break.

Since you've had a relapse, use this as an opportunity to claim your humanity. That means accepting -- and even embracing -- your imperfections. Plus, you want to forgive yourself. Doing these things can be quite freeing.

3. Consider this a great time to start over.

Instead of seeing your diet relapse as a disaster, regard it as an opportunity to start over. A so-called "mistake" such as this could be just the catalyst you need to reinvigorate you.

After all, aren't you especially motivated when you begin a project? Besides, your determination can kick into high drive especially if you want to avoid or manage your low blood sugar, type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease or another illness.

4. See your slip as a Life Lesson.

In the wake of a relapse with French fries, popcorn, onion rings or other quickie carbs, sugar or other junk foods, you can use your slip as a wake-up call. Often, people begin to succeed -- as I did back in 1998 and again in 2012 after my big relapse -- when they're so fed up with their self-destructive ways that they're ready to fully commit to kicking their self-abusive habit.

5. Study your body's reaction.

There's nothing like a harsh dose of reality to make you realize that eating junk food doesn't only add inches to your hips. Study yourself dispassionately like a lab rat to discover what damage you caused by your diet relapse. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Am I more tired than normal?
  • Am I excessively moody?
  • Am I finding it tough to concentrate?
  • Am I having brain fog?
  • Do I have a headache?
  • Am I having a tough time sleeping?
  • Am I depressed for no good reason?
  • How else am I NOT my best me?
6. Record the results of your binge for at least 4 days.

Rather than beat up on yourself for blowing your diet, take notes on how bad you feel after your sugar or carb spree. Keep a journal for at least four days.

Make sure to document the emotional, physical and spiritual ramifications of your relapse. Write about your problems with over-reactivity, anger, brain fog, depression, irritability, nervousness, aches, pains, outbursts at your kids and fights with your honey..

When you carefully monitor your reactions, you'll easily remember these awful repercussions so that the next time you're tempted to succumb to donuts, candies, chips or other nutrient-poor foods, you'll probably pause and then muster up the ability to say no to that junk food.

7. Reaffirm and recommit to your 'Whys" and 'Whats."

Immediately after your binge or slip -- however minor -- realign your thoughts. Think about why you want to quit sugar or refined carbs in the first place.

  • Is your doctor telling you to clean up your eating, as mine did years ago, because if you don't, you're headed toward type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease or another potentially fatal illness?
  • What health benefits will you gain from eating better and cutting out sugar or fast carbs?
  • How will your life change on other fronts if you're eating well?

Review your list again and again. You'll find -- as I have at two major points in my life -- that your strong Whys-and-Whats lists will help you to break free from your carb or sugar addiction for good.

8. See yourself free.

Speaking of free, now envision that you're liberated. Woo-Hoo! See how exhilarated you'll feel by saying no to junk food. Keep watching your delicious success as if you're catching your favorite TV show.

Do it now. It's fun and freeing! See yourself back on the healthy-eating track. You're succeeding and your addiction is lying back there in the dust! Yes!

9. Create a Power Phrase or mantra.

Now, verbally proclaim your success, too. You don't have to say it in public, but you can quietly or inwardly affirm: "I choose and eat only healthy, nourishing foods and drinks, that peel off my extra weight, give me energy, and make me happy. I am free."

Or create your own Power Phrase. Share your ideas  here for what Power Phrase works for you.

Repeat your Power Phrase over and over -- preferably while looking in the mirror.

As you probably know, visualizing success is a powerful Law of Attraction tool that's discussed in the bestselling film and book, The Secret.

10. Reframe Your Relapse as a Spiritual Springboard.

Now that you're getting back on track with your food, you'll have a better perspective on your relapse. Most people I've coached have discovered that falling so low has infused them with a new-found spirituality, and feeling of joy and inner peace. They're more determined to treat their bodies with respect and reverence, because after all, we're spiritual beings. The same can happen to you, too.

I hope that this post, "Did You Have a Relapse? 10 Ways to Bounce Back After you Blow Your Diet" will help you get back on track.

Have you had a relapse? What worked best for you? Share your challenges or successes  here, on this Sugar Shock Blog, or on Facebook.

And remember that eating healthy foods and drinking nourishing beverages help you to enjoy a life full of good health, joy, and peace of mind.

As you struggle to get back on your feet, kick your soda habit or get more sleep, remind yourself that life is much sweeter without all those refined sweets and other unhealthy habits.

Connie Bennett, MSJ, CHHC, CPC, ACC is author of SUGAR SHOCK! (Berkley Books) and Beyond Sugar Shock (Hay House), and Crush Your Crazy Cravings™ (upcoming). Connie is a The Sweet Freedom Guide, the Crazy-Cravings Crusher, a motivating speaker, and host of the Gab With the Gurus Radio Show. Connie has appeared on numerous media outlets such as "CBS News Sunday Morning," "Oprah & Friends Radio," and "The Howard Stern Show," and she has contributed to many publications and websites such as The Chicago Tribune, ediets.com, and the Huffington Post. Connie is certified health coach, a certified life coach, a journalist and columnist. 

Connie's sour-to-sweet story began in 1998, when she quit sugar and refined carbs on doctor’s orders, and her 44 baffling ailments vanished, including horrible headaches, crippling fatigue and brain fog. Now, Connie pokes fun of her not-so-sweet past by jokingly dubbing herself an “Ex-Sugar Shrew!.” She has helped thousands of people worldwide break free of their sugar or carb addiction and from the depressing, debilitating aftershocks of overloading on sugar and culprit carbs.

© Copyright 2015. Connie Bennett, Sugar Shock Blog.
 
You are welcome to reprint this story if you use the above credits and this additional information: This post, "Did You Have a Relapse? 10 Ways to Bounce Back After You Blow Your Diet" by Connie Bennett, CHHC, ACC, CPC, was originally published on the Sugar Shock Blog. Please make sure to notify us that you've used this.

Slipped? Destroyed Your Diet? 7 Tips to Get Back on Track

Often, whenever I give a talk, I hear from people who started eating sugar again and who wanted some guidance. Here's an article I wrote to help them -- and you -- if you fell off the no-sweets wagon.

Slipped? Destroyed Your Diet? 7 Tips to Get Back on Track
By Connie Bennett, CHHC

Did you blow your diet again fall off the wagon, so to speak? Did you eat foods you promised to forego? Are you upset with yourself for "stupidly" eating sugary or fast-acting carbs?

Time and time again, my clients and readers of my book SUGAR SHOCK! complain to me about how they stumbled and fell down yet again. They desperately want to know how to get out of their muck and kick sugar, refined carbs and other horrible habits -- and for good this time.

Here are 7 tips to pick yourself up and get back on track and finally succeed.

1. Be gentle with yourself.

If you slip and forgo your good intentions, this is not the time to berate and belittle yourself. Instead use this "mistake" to lavish yourself with compassion, understanding and sympathy. Yes, you messed up, but you're human so give yourself a break!

2. Accept that you're imperfect.

People with food issues and unhealthy habits often tend to expect themselves to get everything exactly right--or perfect. That sets you up for a huge letdown. Now that you've slipped, use this as a chance to claim your humanity, which means you'll make mistakes from time to time. Owning up to your limitations can be quite freeing.

3. Consider this a golden opportunity to start again.

Instead of viewing your falling off the wagon as the most horrible dieting disaster or other fatal error that never should have happened, regard your slip as a chance to begin anew. You see, whenever you make a so-called "mistake" such as this, this could be exactly what you need! Think about it: Aren't you always more psyched when you begin a project? Also, remind yourself that if you have hypoglycemia, type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease or another illness, it's imperative that you really lick your sugar habit, exercise more and do other more healthy things for yourself.

4.View your slip as a learning experience.

Falling off the no-sugar, no-coffee or no-more-late-nights wagon could be just the instructive incident that you need to to break out of your habit. So be thankful (yes, you heard me right -- thankful!) that you "sinned" and ate those junk foods, swigged caffeine like it was going out of style or burned the midnight oil. Now study yourself dispassionately like a lab rat to see just how much damage you caused yourself by slipping. Doing so will enable you to develop deeper resolve to boldly move forward with conviction and finally succeed.

 

5. Witness the horrors of your binge or "fatal error."

Instead of wallowing in self-pity and self-hatred, jot some notes about how bad you feel in the wake of your sugar or carb spree or other unhealthy habit. Keep a four-day journal in which you chronicle all the emotional, physical and even spiritual results of your "sinning." Write about your anger, brain fog, headaches, fatigue, depression, irritability, nervousness, angry outbursts at your kids, fight with your significant other, unexpected restlessness and nervousness, etc. If you monitor your reactions carefully like this, you'll easily remember these repercussions the next time you're tempted to veer off the track, and, ultimately that will make you less inclined to slip and more likely to be able to win the sugar fight.

6. Reaffirm your commitment.

Almost immediately after your binge or minor slip, look inwards and jot down why you want to quit sugar or refined carbs or why you want to change another behavior. What benefits will you get from stopping? Keep reviewing this list again and again. Chances are good that your list will finally give you the impetus to break your habit for good.

7. See yourself free.

The minute you stray from your intended diet or goal, immediately create some positive phrases or mantras, which convey that you've already succeeded. You could say, "I only eat healthy foods. I am free." Better yet, create your own affirmation. Then, say them over and over again. Preferably while looking in the mirror. See yourself back on track, too. Incidentally, seeing and affirming your sugar success -- something I've been doing for 11 years now -- also is encouraged as a powerful Law of Attraction tool that's discussed in the bestselling film and book, The Secret.)

I do hope that these 7 simple steps will help you to get back on track and begin to better again. Remember that you're making these changes, because you want to live a long, healthy, symptom-free life full of joy, freedom and self-confidence.

As you struggle to get back on your feet, kick your soda habit or get more sleep, remind yourself that life is much sweeter without all those refined sweets and other unhealthy habits.

Connie Bennett, MSJ, CHHC is author of SUGAR SHOCK! (Berkley Books) and The White-Out Diet (upcoming). She is a a motivating speaker, host of the Gab With the Gurus Radio Show, the Smart Habits Coach™, a frequent TV and radio show guest ("CBS News Sunday Morning," "Oprah & Friends Radio," etc.), a certified holistic health counselor, life coach, journalist and columnist. Back in 1998, Connie quit sugar and refined carbs on doctor’s orders, and her many baffling ailments completely vanished, including horrible headaches, crippling fatigue and brain fog. Now, Connie mocks her unsavory sugar past by jokingly dubbing herself an “Ex-Sugar Shrew!.” She has helped thousands of people break free from the depressing, debilitating aftershocks of overloading on “culprit carbs” and other unhealthy habits. She runs the White-Out Diet Blog, the SUGAR SHOCK! Blog and the Gab With the Gurus Blog. She offers Break Free teleseminars and webinars. Connie has been widely published (The Los Angeles Times, TV Guide, eDiets.com, etc.)

© Copyright 2009. Connie Bennett, www.SugarShockBlog.com. You may reprint this article if you notify Connie in advance and provide the above-mentioned description and credits.

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Slipped? Destroyed Your Diet? 7 Tips to Get Back on Track

Often, whenever I give a talk, I hear from people who started eating sugar again and who wanted some guidance. Here's an article I wrote to help them -- and you -- if you fell off the no-sweets wagon.

Slipped? Destroyed Your Diet? 7 Tips to Get Back on Track
By Connie Bennett, CHHC

Did you blow your diet again fall off the wagon, so to speak? Did you eat foods you promised to forego? Are you upset with yourself for "stupidly" eating sugary or fast-acting carbs?

Time and time again, my clients and readers of my book SUGAR SHOCK! complain to me about how they stumbled and fell down yet again. They desperately want to know how to get out of their muck and kick sugar, refined carbs and other horrible habits -- and for good this time.

Here are 7 tips to pick yourself up and get back on track and finally succeed.

1. Be gentle with yourself.

If you slip and forgo your good intentions, this is not the time to berate and belittle yourself. Instead use this "mistake" to lavish yourself with compassion, understanding and sympathy. Yes, you messed up, but you're human so give yourself a break!

2. Accept that you're imperfect.

People with food issues and unhealthy habits often tend to expect themselves to get everything exactly right--or perfect. That sets you up for a huge letdown. Now that you've slipped, use this as a chance to claim your humanity, which means you'll make mistakes from time to time. Owning up to your limitations can be quite freeing.

3. Consider this a golden opportunity to start again.

Instead of viewing your falling off the wagon as the most horrible dieting disaster or other fatal error that never should have happened, regard your slip as a chance to begin anew. You see, whenever you make a so-called "mistake" such as this, this could be exactly what you need! Think about it: Aren't you always more psyched when you begin a project? Also, remind yourself that if you have hypoglycemia, type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease or another illness, it's imperative that you really lick your sugar habit, exercise more and do other more healthy things for yourself.

4.View your slip as a learning experience.

Falling off the no-sugar, no-coffee or no-more-late-nights wagon could be just the instructive incident that you need to to break out of your habit. So be thankful (yes, you heard me right -- thankful!) that you "sinned" and ate those junk foods, swigged caffeine like it was going out of style or burned the midnight oil. Now study yourself dispassionately like a lab rat to see just how much damage you caused yourself by slipping. Doing so will enable you to develop deeper resolve to boldly move forward with conviction and finally succeed.

 

Continue reading "Slipped? Destroyed Your Diet? 7 Tips to Get Back on Track" »

You Keep Asking, "What Do You Eat?" -- My Food Diary for You

Whenever I give a talk or take on a new client, inevitably the same questions pop up over and over again.

People want to know: "Connie, what can I eat?" or "What do you eat?"

In fact, one reviewer even took me to task for not including meal plans and recipes in my first book SUGAR SHOCK!

(FYI, meal plans were originally in my book, but my editor took out the meal plans, because adding them made the book way too long. But, rest assured, meal plans and recipes will be included in my next book, The White-Out Diet.)

Anyhow, to answer this Frequently Asked Question from you health seekers out there, I'm going to share with you for a while exactly what foods and drinks go into my mouth.

My goal here is to help you lose weight, get more energy, become more focused, feel better and learn that going sugar-free is fun, exciting and even tasty.

I'm still trying to figure out how to post my food diaries. I don't want to clutter this blog with lots of entries. Right now, I'm thinking of writing one post per week with the entire week's foods in that one post. What do you think?

Stay tuned. I'll begin this soon.

Food Diary Forms for You: Keep Track & Your Weight Will Disappear

Keeping a food diary or food journal is a faster way to weight loss, as I pointed out here, on the Sugar Shock Blog and as I often remind my clients. To help you peel off those pounds, I'm providing you with a special food diary.

I encourage you to print out many copies of this page and then track yourself like a lab rat all day long. Just imagine that you're a scientist watching the behavior of your beloved animals.

Feel free to share The Ultimate Food Diary with friends, co-workers, gym buddies, bosses, hairdressers, fitness trainers, loved ones and frenemies. In short, spread the link love, as some say.

Sugars & Fake-Sugars Tracker: The Soul-Searching Food Diary™

Name ________________________________________

Date _________________________________________

What did I eat and drink? (Any sugary foods or drinks? Any refined carbs? Any artificial sweeteners?) How did I I feel? Was I physically or emotionally hungry? (On the 1st line, state what you ate. On the 2nd line, jot down how you felt -- really hungry, angry, lonely, frustrated, furious, stressed out, etc.)

7 a.m.      _______________________________________________________________
7 a.m.      _______________________________________________________________

8 a.m.      _______________________________________________________________
8 a.m.      _______________________________________________________________

9 a.m.     _______________________________________________________________
9 a.m.     _______________________________________________________________

 

Continue reading "Food Diary Forms for You: Keep Track & Your Weight Will Disappear" »


Thank You! My Carb Confession Triggered Your Tales of Relapse -- Join the Conversation

Talk to us: Have you had a relapse? Were you embarrassed to admit it to others as I was? Let us know.

Recently, with great embarrassment and perhaps a bit of shame, I made what I call My Carb Confession.

Bittersweet_banner_final (2)I revealed that after the death of my mother and what I call My Bittersweet Last Year with Mom, for a number of months, Crazy Cravings™ pestered and pounded me while I was assaulted by grief, depression, anxiety, trauma, and the enormity of my loss..

As a result, I caved in and ate lots of crappy carbs (corn nuggets, movie popcorn, chips, etc.). The upshot? That led to a 20-pound weight gin. Aargh!

In short, for months, I'd become a Carb Fraud! But in the midst of my grief, I just didn't pay attention.

For a while now, I've been really nervous, reluctant and hesitant to share My Carb Confession,.even though for over a year, I've been back to eating cleanly.

After all, I'm an author and speaker, who's known for badmouthing sweets and quickie carbs.

But you were so supportive when I finally revealed my carb relapse.

Wow!

Little did I realize that My Carb Confession would resonate with so many of you.

So, I just wanted to say, Thank You, Thank You, Thank You, for your kindness, consideration, and wonderful emails. 

From the bottom of my heart, I want to share my profound gratitude.

I'm so relieved that you still respect me and my work to help you achieve Sweet Freedom.

FYI, as you may have read, I"ve now achieved Sweet Success. I finally shed all 20 pounds I'd gained during my trying times after my Mom passed away. My slim body is almost back!

Plus, now that my injured knee is healed and my sprained ankle are feeling better, I've been toning up doing weight resistance and high intensity workouts.

And, of course, I'm back to eating very cleanly -- crappy carbs and My Crazy Cravings™ have gone bye-bye!

Again, thank you for supporting me during My Carb Confession.

By the way, stay tuned for some new tips and tools so you, too, can Rise Above Relapse, as I now call it.

Have you had a relapse? Were you embarrassed to admit it to others as I was? Let us know.