How To Recover When You Get Off Track
... I get it!
Life is full of surprises and we can't always control every situation, no matter how prepared we may be. It can be super frustrating when you've taken the time to carefully pre-plan and pre-log an entire day of food and macros, only to find yourself eating out at a restaurant that was never part of the plan. You might find yourself wondering, “Will I ever be able to stay on track with everything life throws my way?”
The answer is yes, most definitely. All it takes is a willingness to learn how to adjust your mind and macros so when the unexpected happens, you'll be ready.
1. Don't panic.
It's not the end of the world, even if it feels that way. Take a deep breath and try not to over-stress. All that will do is increase your cortisol which will negatively affect your metabolism, making it harder to reach your goal.
2. Assess the situation.
First, open your tracking app (MFP, Lose It, etc.) to see where your macros are for the day. Second, delete all pre-logged macros (meals/snacks) that have NOT been eaten. Third, log all unexpected macros eaten to see where your macros are, and how many you have left. Lastly, fill in your remaining macros with clean food sources and stick to the plan as closely as possible.
3. If all else fails, aim for calories.
When all else fails and you know you are not going to hit your macros, aim to keep your calories in check. Just because your macros are off doesn't mean you should throw your hands in the air and say “screw it.” That may feel good momentarily but we all know it's not worth it in the long term. Regardless of how ski-wampus (Like my terminology? Haha!) your macros may be, you can always resort to tracking overall calories to keep you on track to reach your goals.
4. Don't beat yourself up.
If you’ve found yourself unable to reach your macro goal OR calorie goal, then just keep moving. Feeling guilt and shame when you “fail” is unhealthy and unnecessary, so don't start down that path. Your self-worth has nothing to do with hitting your macros, or sticking with your diet. Absolutely nothing! You are still a good person, a good mom, a good wife, a good daughter, a good friend ... food can't change that. Acknowledge your effort and desire to do better and then give it another go tomorrow.
The bottom line is, one off-track day is better than an off-track lifestyle. Everyone has these days so avoid the guilt and the shame and remind yourself that tomorrow is a new day! Remember, you didn’t come this far only the come this far.