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How To Enjoy A Cruise or Vacation-Without Going Overboard
On the first night of our cruise to Mexico, we met a nice couple at dinner with a cruise-mindset pretty typical of the sort of thing we heard all over the ship: "We already know we’ll gain ten pounds." With their cruise-mindset, I'll bet they did!
On the other hand, my husband and I continued to use our mindful mindset throughout the cruise and each gained just a pound - which we're blaming on the margaritas!
Overcoming the Cruise-Mindset
So how do you enjoy a cruise (or any vacation) without going overboard? You don’t need to deprive yourself but you do need to change your thinking from the cruise-mindset (CM) to a mindful mindset (MM). To show you the difference, I’ll use examples from each of the decision points in the Mindful Eating Cycle from Chapter 1 of Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat.
Of course, even if you aren't going on a cruise, this mindful mindset applies to any situation where there's an abundance of food—in other words, every day of your life!
Why do I eat?
CM: I'm on vacation so I'm going to eat as much as I want.
MM: I'm on vacation so I'm going to eat as much as I want, but not more than I need.
CM: I dieted before I came and I'll go back on my diet when I get home to lose what I gain. I better enjoy it while I can.
MM: I eat what I love and love what I eat every day.
When do I eat?
CM: Food is everywhere all the time so I can eat constantly.
MM: Food is everywhere all the time so I can wait to eat until I'm actually hungry.
What do I eat?
CM: The buffets are amazing! I’m going to try everything.
MM: The buffets are amazing! I can choose what I love and skip the rest.
CM: The food is so good!
MM: Some of the food is so good. When it isn’t, I don’t bother with more than a bite.
CM: I don't want to miss out on anything.
MM: The food just keeps showing up so there’s no need to worry about missing a thing.
CM: I’m not going to worry about what I eat this week.
MM: I eat to meet my needs for nourishment and enjoyment no matter where I am.
How much do I eat?
CM: I have to get my money's worth.
MM: I get my money's worth when I eat exactly what I need. More than that is a waste of food and makes me feel uncomfortable.
CM: I'm on vacation so I'm going to splurge.
MM: I’m on vacation so I going to enjoy some new foods and activities.
CM: I’m going to eat until I’m unconscious.
MM: I’m going to eat until I feel content then I’m going to relax with a good book.
Where do I invest my energy?
CM: I'll eat until I'm stuffed tonight but I'll hit the gym to make up for it tomorrow.
MM: I'll eat until I'm comfortable tonight. Maybe I'll check out the gym tomorrow.
CM: Why exercise? I'm on vacation!
MM: Why exercise? I'm on vacation! I can swim, walk on the beach, dance, kayak, and rock climb.
CM: I know I'll gain ten pounds.
MM: I know I'll enjoy an abundance of wonderful food and come home feeling great!
By changing your cruise-mindset to a mindful mindset, you'll enjoy your cruise or vacation without taking it home with you.
Does your healthy lifestyle take a break when your on vacation? Either way, how does that make you feel?
Michelle May, M.D. is the award-winning author of Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat: How to Break Your Eat-Repent-Repeat Cycle. Download chapter one free. Dr. May is also the founder of the Am I Hungry?® Mindful Eating Workshops and Facilitator Training Program that helps individuals learn to break free from mindless and emotional eating to live a more vibrant, healthy life.