It happens about 2-3 times a year when I find myself being totally hooked on sugar.
It usually happens during the winter months when I am not feeling my best and energy levels with motivation and self-control are pretty much non-existent. Sugar sends a lot of serotonin to the brain which make sugary food seem like a huge comfort blanket during those extremely dark and cold days of winter. Because of the serotonins, eating sugars becomes a vicious circle, more you eat, more difficult it gets to break away from the addiction.
This is something that I battle with right now. Earlier in the year, I had my diet in order and I followed a very strict and controlled meal plan. This restricted diet combined with my winter blues and fatique pushed me back to sugars and now, 3 months in, I wake up each morning more determined to cut down sugars and get my diet back on track. I have failed every.single.day.
My behavior is not rational. I might have just finished a huge meal and feel completely stuffed yet not satisfied because I need sugar. What makes this more difficult is that sugar addiction (at least in my case) is an emotional hunger, not a real one. It's a feeling of emptiness in a way. Sugar, somehow, makes me feel emotionally full.
Right now, eating sugar is more like a habit. I am so used to coming home from work and and stopping by a store to buy my daily sugar-fix to avoid making dinner at home. I know that there is food at home because I do meal prep each Sunday. I stop by the store "just in case" a sudden sugar craving hits.
What usually helps me to overcome my sugar addiction is to replace it with a new obsession. This isn't exactly the healthiest solution or a long-term plan but it does help as it forces me to shift my focus elsewhere. At the end of the day, I will only need a distraction for the first 5-7 days after which life without sugar is a no-brainer.
(Also, because of all the problems with my stomach and different intolerances I shouldn't be having dairy products to begin with).
So. What I am going to do this time is leave my bank and credit cards home for the week. I have stocked my fridge with berries, peanutbutter, low-carb protein puddings, tea and avocado as well as prepared a meal plan for the week to make sure that I'll have enough proteins and fats (and carbs in moderation) to minimize sugar-cravings in the evenings. I have also made sure to schedule after work activities to make sure that when I get home, I only have time to shower, eat dinner and go to bed - no extra time for get bored and start snacking only because "I have a few hours to kill".
This is ridiculous but for the first 5-7 days, very necessary. I have done this so many times before so how hard can it be this time around? I am stronger than my addiction, so bring it I'm ready!
I pay a lot of attention to skincare and makeup but my nails are something that don't get the attention and care they should. Even thoug perfectly manicured nails and healthy cuticles are relatively minor details, they do give your overall appearance a very polished and classy feel.
I am not lying to you when I tell you I don't remember when was the last time my hands looked good. My cuticles are extremely dry and look untidy whereas my nails do not grow. I hate using a nail file, I don't even own hand lotion let alone cuticle cream.
How does nail care feel like a massive task? In truth, paying a bit more attention to my hands and nails would probably not take more than 15 minutes from my day so why is it so difficult to turn nail care into a habit and stick with it?
My first step towards better looking hands should be to always always remember to wear gloves when cleaning and washing dishes. As I currently live in a small studio alone, I haven't installed a dishwasher so I hand-wash my dishes about 2-3 times a day. Add to this, I give my bathroom a good scrub about once, sometimes twice a week to keep it spotless - no wonder my hands look like they belong to a builder.
Second step is to moisture. I am terrible at using hand lotion (again, WHY does it feel like such a massive challenge) even thoug I moisture other parts of my body religiously. Hands, nails and cuticles, not so much.
Third step would be to take a few supplements or start using a nail strengthener like this one from Trind which is actually very very good when used correctly.
Having made this awfully long statement, I challenge myself to add Nail Care to my everyday "beauty routine".
I'll start by placing a tube of handlotion by my bed so I can (try to remember) to apply it each night before going to bed. Once I get that going, adding cuticle cream / oil should be a no-brainer. I know KICKS stocks Sally Hansen Nail Treatment Vitamin E Nail & Cuticle Oil that is affordable and hopefully keeps up to the promise of nourishing nails and cuticles. Luckily, applying nail strengthener is already a habit so phew, one less step towards perfect hands.
I'll get back to you in a month's time to report back if I've managed to turn nail care into a habit - this on eis a challenge!
As long as I can remember I've been a morning person. I enjoy getting up early to start my day with a 1.5 hour gym session before going to the office. This gives me such an amazing energy boost that I'll get most of my tasks done before lunch time (which for me is closer to 3pm, not 12am). I have more will power and determination in the mornings, too whereas I tend to lose focus and become a bit restless towards the evenings.
Because I am at my most active early in the mornings and during the day, it's clear that I really struggle with evenings. I am lousy at making plans or attend after work events unless I give myself a head start and plan ahead, just to have a right mindset and prepare myself for another active 3-5 hours ahead.
I usually start on the day before. I make sure to turn the lights off an hour before bedtime - which in my case is around 21:30 (wake-up time 5:10) to get enough sleep. Turning the lights off early gives my body and brain to calm down and relax properly. TV is not the best way to relax but I am used to having some Netflix as part of my evening routine so it does help me to unwind and relax (a book will do it way better, though)
I always make sure not to drink coffee or balck tea after 3pm because coffee takes 6 hours to leave the body. I also avoid eating anything right before going to sleep because digesting can disrupt sleep.
Morning of the event I never break my usual routine. I still complete my morning work out but I plan my outfits better - if I feel confident and look good through the day, it's easier for me to carry that confidence on to the event. Because I know it will be a long day ahead, I also eat better during the day than I normally would - my meals are normally very low on carbs but if it's an after work event where alcohol will be served, I want to make sure to have enough carbs in my system to avoid a total crash.
About an hour before the event, I start preparing myself - slowing down and slowly removing my thoughts and focus away from work. Once I feel calm and relaxed and ready to "restart", I do a few minor touch up's and always walk to the venue. Fresh air and walking really help after a day spent indoors mostly sitting down and looking at the computer screen.
After a long, succesful day out and about, I always plan my weeks ahead to not have gym-time after an event to fully recover from the night before. I'm slowly staring to get a hang of this, and becoming a better evening person!