Food Isn’t A Reward And Fitness Isn’t A Punishment

Aug 1, 2016

Food Isn’t A Reward And Fitness Isn’t A PunishmentHave you ever found yourself saying things like “I’ve done really well with my diet so I deserve this treat” or “I’m going to have to go to the gym twice to work off this extra slice”?

While these are most likely said with good intentions, they can be harmful to the way you view healthy eating and fitness.

So many of us will use food as a kind of reward and fitness as a type of punishment when we ‘fail’ our diet plan. By doing so, we create a painful and unhealthy cycle of ‘treating’ ourselves only to feel like a failure later who should be ‘punished’ by exercise. In order for you to truly enjoy a healthy life style, you will need to understand why this mindset is dangerous and how to break the cycle.

Food Is Not A Reward

While it can be tempting to use food and drink this way, you are causing yourself to associate food with happiness and pleasure. Which can make it a lot harder to cut down on, especially during times of stress. At the same time, you feel it is you have to ‘earn’ and any failure in eating habits is cause for you to deserve ‘punishment’. Food is not something that should be earned nor should it be a reward.

Food is simply food. It is what your body needs to function properly and for you to live. True, some foods are obviously better for you than others, but this does not turn them into a ‘reward’ to be earned. Instead, these ‘rewards’ should just be seen as foods you need to moderate within your diet because above all else you deserve to be happy and healthy.

Exercise Is Not A Punishment

The fact that you feel that you deserve punishment in any sense of the word is harmful in itself. That aside, fitness should never be about punishing yourself. It should be about bettering yourself. Improving yourself. You should be able to look forward to working out and leave the gym with a sense of strength and power. If you are using this as a way to punish yourself however, you will take away some of the most meaningful parts of exercising.
Remember that you are not exercising because you deserve punishment. You are exercising because you deserve to be strong and healthy. Because you deserve to be the best you possible.

This View Does Not Motivate Progress

Not only does this type of view harm your own progress, but it can greatly harm the progress of others too. We have all had that friend or family member who has tried to shame others into putting down a slice of cake or into losing weight. While they may truly have the best of intentions, they are harming you by equaling your worth to your weight or lifestyle choices.

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