The first time I saw this quote was in a Reebok ad. Since then, I’ve learned that it was taken from a statement attributed to George Patton: “The more you sweat in peace, the less you bleed in war.” That statement is far removed from the topic of this article, so let’s stick with the Reebok ad.
The meaning of the Reebok quote was clear: the harder we work in training, the less we suffer in performance, that is, on race day.
While athletes will see that as common sense, I’d like to take the concept a step further to food – and specifically to sugar addiction.
Recently, I was reminded of how true the statement is when a man at work was eating cookies after his lunch. Someone else at work warned him not eat them in front of me, but the cookie guy confidently replied, “Joan doesn’t care.”
How Great Is It Not to Care?!
He was absolutely right. That made me think about how fortunate I am to have gone through whatever struggle was associated with my sugar journey – because I now have the ability not to care what other people eat, no matter what it is and even if it’s right in front of me.
Last holiday season, a different man at work was deliberately eating – in front of me – some cookies made by a woman on the staff. He was trying to eat them in a way that would tempt me – closing his eyes and making noises of pleasure as he ate each bite, and so on.
I’ve told that story to a few of my clients, and they react strongly to it. Perhaps they’re imagining how difficult it would have been for them, or maybe they’re thinking he was acting kinda jerky. But what the cookie monster in the story didn’t realize was, “Joan doesn’t care.”
How Tough Is It to Get There?
Working through a sugar addiction and quitting the stuff takes less time than people think. If you do it the right way, you can be through it in under a week.
Of course, if you want permanent results, it doesn’t end there. It’s necessary to eat differently, to deal with the cravings that will come up fairly frequently at first, and to stick with the new food plan so the cravings diminish and finally stop.
That’s the key point – the cravings stop.
Eventually, you reach the point of not caring what others eat or don’t eat. Call me a bad mother, but I don’t even notice what people eat unless someone goes out of his way to make noises.
Truth? I almost felt sorry for that guy. He was intentionally being mean (considering what he was trying to do) but had no idea how little it would affect me.
To me, cookies aren’t food. I don’t see them as temptations. I ignored two boxes of them sitting for weeks on the desk right next to me without a care. And just so you know, I used to love cookies. And brownies. And cakes, and ice cream, and fudge, and more.
I don’t bleed on race day – and every day is actually race day – because I was willing to sweat for a short time in training. That’s true freedom from sugar. And it’s there for you.