FIT BIT: Facing Temptation

by tinareale on September 11, 2012


Temptation. It happens to the best of us. And we all fall to it at times.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t believe in “perfection” or never letting loose with your eating habits. Strive to do your best for your health and your body 80-90% of the time and don’t fret the other times where life happens – like that big slice of birthday cake you enjoyed on your birthday or the family cookout over a holiday weekend. In fact, I have found that by living with balance temptation becomes much less of a struggle. However, situations may happen that are still temptation in a desire to do something that pulls you away from your goals.

Enjoying things within reasonis different from constantly setting aside goals and the efforts it takes to reach them. Things WILL come that can derail our efforts and don’t provide our bodies with the best nutrition, fuel, and care that they deserve.

In order to face down temptations and conquer, it helps to have a plan for how you will handle those situations.

At a social event, scan the options and choose to only indulge in the things you enjoy versus mindlessly picking over the table for hours. At work, make a plan to have healthy snacks available so when the months old cheap candy from the office jar calls, you don’t need to go there. At home, involve yourself in other activities and things around the house instead of hanging out snacking in the kitchen pantry. At the store, don’t go shopping hungry so the box of overly processed “snack cakes” don’t end up in the cart.

Still indulge in the things you truly LOVE (not just like okay), so you don’t feel deprived. Then plan ahead to those situations that try to steal your progress and success, so you can stay committed to treating your body well.

What temptations do you face that hinder your goals? How can you plan to face them? Does this apply to your goals in other areas of life?


1 Andrea September 11, 2012 at 6:44 am

Great post!! There are times when I want to indulge. But there are times when it’s really not worth it. So I’m totally with you- give into temptation when you want to and decide when you want to choose a healthier option! It’s not worth giving into temptation if you aren’t satisfied at the end! Thanks Tina!!

2 MizFit September 11, 2012 at 6:45 am

It’s all about the pre planning and setting myself up for success here!!

3 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey September 11, 2012 at 7:24 am

I hear you – there are times where I don’t really “want” something, but I’ll have it anyway which is pretty stupid!!

4 tinareale September 12, 2012 at 1:15 pm

I’ve learned to try and avoid that. Hate having something that doesn’t satisfy! I have a feeling that won’t be a problem for us our weekend together. ;)

5 Coco September 11, 2012 at 7:56 am

Ooooh yesssss! Planning ahead can make such a big difference. I did not plan ahead for the dessert receptions at my conference on Sunday (yes, there were two!) but I did plan ahead for the lunch and banquent yesterday and it was much easier to decide that I did not want the ooey gooey desserts.

6 Alex @ therunwithin September 11, 2012 at 8:05 am

I love the statement you made about temptation reduces with balance, I have to agree with that!

7 Angela @ Happy Fit Mama September 11, 2012 at 8:12 am

It IS all about balance and planning. Great post!

8 Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning September 11, 2012 at 8:39 am

Awesome post and tips! I try to live that 90/10 (or 80/20) rule- and it’s not too hard because my body feels better when I don’t eat crap. And when I do indulge- I make sure it’s worth it. I’m not going to waste my calories on something that I don’t really love (like some kind of processed, boxed cookies), and make sure that every single calorie is “worth it” (like a cone with REAL full-fat ice cream). I think so many people just eat food “because it’s there.” That’s something that I always saw when I was a teacher. We’d have staff meetings and there was ALWAYS a table of junk food and people would load up their plates. I was never once tempted, because I’d rather save my calories for something good- and not just eat food because it’s there. Besides, who normally eats doughnuts at 2:30 in the afternoon?
I’ll step off my soapbox now.

9 tinareale September 12, 2012 at 1:17 pm

Haha! Love your soapbox. Rant on, girlfriend, rant on. ;)

10 Tiff (@LoveSweatBeers) September 11, 2012 at 8:52 am

I give into temptations at restaurants since I generally order something I really really like. However, I try to apply a little willpower when at a party or something since the finger foods usually aren’t worth it to me. Chips n’ room-temp dip? No thanks – I’ll just stick to my beer. haha

11 Kaitlin @4loveofcarrots September 11, 2012 at 8:59 am

this is a great post. After years of deprivation I have learned to allow myself the treats I truly want. I once read that if you have a sweet tooth you should tell yourself if u truly want it you will make it at home later, 9 times out of 10 I forget that I wanted a sweet treat earlier in the day.

12 tinareale September 12, 2012 at 1:18 pm

Oh, that’s a neat tip! Having to make something myself alone would hinder me wanting to have it. Haha!

13 Fiona @ Get Fit Fiona September 11, 2012 at 9:17 am

Such a great post! Looking at it from the point of view of only cheating with things I absolutely love makes a lot of sense.

14 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table September 11, 2012 at 9:40 am

I have the biggest sweet tooth ever. I’ve learned to sate it with healthier options, but sometimes I have to just walk away from it. Literally. When I was makIng all those treats thIs weekend I couldn’t stop taste testing… So I took myself out of the situation and went for a walk. It actually worked!!

15 tinareale September 12, 2012 at 1:18 pm

Next time walk (err, drive) to my house and I’ll help you out. ;)

16 Heather (Heather's Dish) September 11, 2012 at 9:53 am

i think the social functions this is honestly one of the hardest things for me to do – it’s so easy to just pick and snack for hours while talking rather than just eat the things I know i’ll enjoy and stop there. one thing that helps is having a drink (water preferably) to sip on!

17 Tamara September 11, 2012 at 10:06 am

Agree, agree, agree!
Planning is key; it’s my lifesaver!
And I like to save my indulgences for things that are really ‘a party in my mouth’!

18 Sam @ Better With Sprinkles September 11, 2012 at 10:11 am

Love the point about reducing temptation with balance. If I don’t let myself eat anything sweet for a little while, I go nuts as soon as I get near ice cream or chocolate. I’m a lot more controlled when I allow myself sweets in small portions more often.

19 Yellow Haired Girl September 11, 2012 at 10:13 am

Excellent post! Social functions are difficult for me. It can turn into a free for all. Balance is key!

20 Jess September 11, 2012 at 10:14 am

I’m ALL about planning ahead and strategizing when it comes to situations that will involve food temptation. like you said, come armed with a plan, choose wisely and mindfully and focus on the experience (the socializing with friends, making memories with family, etc.) instead of the food. It takes practice but it can be done, sort of like any habit you try to make or break, right?

21 tinareale September 12, 2012 at 1:20 pm

Love that you mentioned focusing on the experience. Remembering that those events AREN’T about the food but about the people and celebration. Great point!

22 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More September 11, 2012 at 10:29 am

Couldn’t have said it better myself – it’s all about planning. My biggest thing is to always have healthy snacks on hand, especially if I’m traveling or out running errands for awhile.

23 jobo September 11, 2012 at 10:52 am

Love this post! So so true, and it all goes back to harnessing mindfulness, doesn’t it? I do the very same thing at parties and try to NOT sit near things I KNOW I cannot stop eating once I start and go for a few good picks. And/or stick to wine hehe ;-) Same with food at the grocery store, I know I cannot buy baked cheetos without ODing on them, the entire bag, later. so I honestly haven’t bought them in oh, almost two years. LOL.

24 Christine @ Love, Life, Surf September 11, 2012 at 11:04 am

I completely agree that it’s about having a plan for how you will handle various situations but also having a plan for how you will handle yourself during those times when temptation does win out.

25 tinareale September 12, 2012 at 1:21 pm

Ohhhh….love that…”having a plan for how you will handle yourself during those times when temptation does win out”. So important to know to just go back to balance without a defeatist, negative attitude.

26 Amanda Perry @ Sistas of Strength September 11, 2012 at 12:01 pm

Wine wine wine. I just can’t say no sometimes. It’s just so good. :)

27 Elizabeth September 11, 2012 at 1:16 pm

Amen on planning being key. I find if I plan for an indulgence here and there, I am far less likely to go bananas (or more accurately, salty snaaaaacks!) when a craving strikes.

28 Christin September 11, 2012 at 2:07 pm

So true!! I struggle with change in general, so I always find it tough to make good choices and fight temptation when I am dealing with moderate to big changes in my life. I need to be on the lookout and see food as a way to maintain consistency when undergoing changes, rather than a reward system for dealing with change! :)

29 Ericka @ The Sweet Life September 11, 2012 at 2:42 pm

It’s almost always some kind of overindulgence with food and drink for me but I guess it could also be the temptation to be negative or lazy. I know all it takes is a little preperation and it’s about time I did something about it.

30 Lauren @ Sassy Molassy September 11, 2012 at 2:56 pm

For me, I’ve got the healthy snacks down for work days. I pack several healthy options so that I’m not tempted to eat junk. I can get derailed at parties or sometimes at night when I snack as I’m making dinner and then end up overeating. I think being prepared in any situation is the most helpful for me. Making a mental plan before I go somewhere. Like last night we went out to a sports bar for dinner and I already knew I was going to have a salad (and a beer).

31 Heather September 11, 2012 at 6:12 pm

I totally agree that planning is the best tool for those situations! I always fall into temptation with food when I dont have one (go in hungry, etc. etc.)

32 Danielle @ Clean Food Creative Fitness September 11, 2012 at 8:00 pm

This is such a great post! It is all about a balance and I love how you embrace that!

33 Leonor @FoodFaithFitness September 14, 2012 at 2:23 pm

I plan ahead. I indulge when I want to, that way I don’t overindulge from depriving myself.

34 Bek @ Crave September 15, 2012 at 2:27 am

This reminds me of something I actually just wrote about and discussed with my therapist- having a plan for when the craving/binge feeling hits!

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