Clean Dopamine – Part 3: Cold Turkey and Hard Penalties

Like in many areas in life, you can not do everything at once. Thus, I focus on my diet as a whole. I need to get rid of the sweets, acquire alternatives and set up rules. And should I break these rules, also define just punishments.

Write down goals in detail

With brain dumps it is also possible to define precise targets here as well. This is important in order to even know where I want to go. But also the rules and the associated penalties must be defined, because otherwise I would keep justifying my unhealthy consumption with various excuses.

My goal is to eat healthily and exercise regularly. For this, I radically change my food, and from today to tomorrow, at that, without continuing to find excuses to postpone it. No excuses and no more procrastination! Tomorrow I am going to start for real!

So, during the next 21 days, I will not consume sweets, find and implement healthy recipes, and also exercise regularly and actively. Why only 3 weeks? It is proven that a habit is installed within 3-4 weeks. If I show iron discipline during this time and can motivate myself well by reward and punishment, then it is certain that after this time I can still keep the "clean" course.

Eating healthily and exercising in the next 3 weeks

  1. Radically change eating habits and eat healthily
    1. No eating sweets/chips (no exceptions!)
      • Chocolate, gummy bears, lollipops, candies, cookies and also chips are taboo
      • Alternatives are fruits, vegetables, plain yoghurt and untreated nuts
      • Prepare a bowl of cut vegetables every evening and place it where you are
    2. Find 7 healthy recipes
      • These 7 recipes will turn to lunch for a full week
      • The recipes should be healthy and simple
      • The prepared meals should be suitable for freezing so that it´s possible to prepare them in bulk
      • The prepared meals should be microwaveable (in the office)
    3. Grocery shopping to prepare meals for every day of the week
      • Buy in larger quantities, as the meals are going to be frozen
      • Make sure that as many ingredients as possible are organic
    4. Prepare food to take to the office every day
      • Prepare lunch to take for work in the evening. Either it has to be prepared or taken out of the freezer
  2. Ride the bike to work 2 x per week
    • If it´s raining, car or public transport are okay
  3. Find a sports club and attend training regularly
    • Join a kickboxing club and attend at least 2 times a week
  4. Push-ups or sit-ups after getting up in the morning
    • 10-15 minutes of exercising
    • One day push-ups and one day training for the abs alternately

Rules for the health challenge

  1. Any sweets, such as chocolate, cookies or gummy bears are to be given away, stored in the cellar or trashed (no bingeing). Everything has to be disposed of 1 day before the cold turkey, including the trash can liner with the sweets that got trashed. Don‘t keep any sweets in the flat, unless you aren´t living alone and the sweets belong to someone else. In the latter case, ask the person in question to not leave the sweets out in the open.
  2. Write the date for the start of the challenge into the calendar and from that day onwards, follow the rules strictly. The challenge has a run time of 3 weeks.
  3. Should you consume sweets during cold withdrawal, the penalty kicks in.
  4. Should you miss exercising 2 days in a row, the penalty kicks in.
  5. If you hold out 21 days, there will be a generous reward.

The reward

Once this challenge is over, I may indulge in two things:

  1. Eat a bar of any kind of chocolate without bad conscience (if I even want it until then)
  2. A professional massage

These rewards are not forfeited when I happen to break a rule. Should I be subject to a penalty, I‘m still entitled to the reward. Should I break a rule, however, and not abide by the penalty, I failed this challenge.

The penalty

Should I consume sweets:
- Eat 10 carrots and 2 peppers the same day (in addition to the daily dose)
Should I fail to exercise 2 days in a row:
- 100 push-ups the next day (in addition to the daily exercise). Short breaks are allowed.

Are you starting a challenge tomorrow as well? Then I wish you much success with it. There are tough times ahead of us and we will be doubting ourselves and looking for excuses to justify our non-action. We must be strong and keep our goal of leading a better life if we reach it, firmly in mind all the time. With this vision, we will knock out this and even much more!

Here is Clean Dopamine - Part 4: Results of the Healthy Challenge