Replace, Remove, Repeat
I was having a “comment conversation” with Jesse from Former Fat Guy and as we were discussing a post of mine I blurted the phrase “replace, remove, repeat.” It was in reference to starting out slow and then gradually, over time getting acclimated with the new changes you have made in your life.
Many people fail with their diets and workouts because they make drastic changes that simple leave them feeling empty. By drastically removing things from your life you leave yourself wanting those things and most likely go back to them. There is the occasional person that uses the drastic change technique and is successful, going to boot camps, fat loss farms, military camps, but for the most part it fails. Some folks have the inner warrior that allows them to use this method and succeed. I do it sometimes. What I do is short term drastic changes. What is that? Well, I will set a predefined amount of time that I will practice my drastic change. So say for a month I decide to not eat any bread or rice, I do that for the month and then go back to normal. It may be the difference in losing a few extra pounds or in lowering my cholesterol.
I don’t do that too often, and don’t suggest it either. What I normally do is use the replace method. Instead of permanently removing a food or habit from my daily routine, I replace it. That way I gradually get it out of my system and won’t miss it. It’s almost like the nicotine patch idea: you slowly ween yourself off of the cigarette addiction.
An example of using the replace method is instead of watching television for 3 hours on the couch, replace 30 minutes to an hour of it with some push ups, air squats, and crunches. While you’re are it, do some jumping jacks in between commercial breaks. Another example could be to drink 3 glasses of water for every soda you drink. Little things like that will make you feel way better, both mentally and physically.
So next time you are thinking about starting a new “thing,” don’t make drastic changes. You should instead try to replace something. Over time this will eventually remove that from your life. Then all you have to do is repeat that method.
Simple right? Give it a try and let me know how it goes.