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How to Control Snacking

For many of us what standing in our way of achieving our ideal weight and a healthy diet is succumbing to the dreaded snacking.

Getting down to a healthy weight will make you feel more comfortable on your bike and it will make you go faster, especially up hills. If that's not enough motivation then hopefully the guidance below will make you more mindful of your bad habits.

On average we have to make more than 200 decisions about food each day. Only some of them we are aware of, so we believe in becoming more of a mindful eater.

Keep a Food Diary

Log everything that you eat each day. Having it recorded somewhere will make you more aware of what you put into your mouth. It will also make you stop and think before you start eating. You can do this via old fashioned pen and paper or try using an app like 'myfitnesspal' which is currently free to use. It will also show you how many calories are in the food you eat.

Learn Your Weaknesses

Keeping a food dairy can give you more awareness, but it's also great to get to know what the cause of your snaking is and when you can become too weak to resist snacking. The first step is to identify what times of day you would snack and see if you see any patterns forming that are causing you to snack. Here are a few common causes and possible ways of over coming them.

  • Habit or boredom - maybe you just used to having a snack at a certain point of day. It's something that you look forward to in order to break up your day. Instead of stoping for a snack, take regular breaks from work and try to get in a 1 minutes meditation and reflect if you really need to eat. The same can be said if it's the first thing you do when you finish work, pause and relax through having your minute rather than eating. You should feel more energised through your one minute and certainly less guilty.

  • Stress - many of us stress eat. Again meditation can also be the antidote to stress. Just pause and breath.

  • Hunger - Probably the most commonly perceived cause. But it's important to identify if your snacking is actually just a result of stress and habit first. If it is hunger, then make sure you are eating regular meals, with adequate protein, good carbs and vegetables. Also, plan your snacks. Prepare healthy snacks such as a yoghurt, fruit or hummus and carrots. They are less addictive than cookies. Also, keep yourself reasonably fuelled during your rides and eat a sufficient meal when you get back home so you don't become ravenous.

  • Peer Pressure - There is nothing worse when you are trying to loose weight than living with or being around a serial snacker. You just have to learn to say no!

Run through the scenarios in your mind and mentally make an argument with yourself to obey the rules!

Share in the comments, are you guilty of snacking?

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