How long do you think it takes to create a habit? Originally it was thought that it only took 21 days, but if you have ever been on a diet before, you'll know that is not true.
Actually in fact right now the theory is that it can take 66-365 days to create a habit. It is tough to determine because there are a lot of factors that go into breaking old habits.
For instance, if you have been writing with your right hand for 50 years, it will take much longer than 21 days to make your left hand comfortable with writing.
So when it comes to creating healthy habits, what can we do to make the habits more convenient so that you can be more successful?
What To Expect From This Episode
- [2:45] What got Kathleen into fitness and health
- [5:00] Kathleen wasn't always fit and it took her mom pushing her for her to be interested in health
- [6:15] You have to make the choice of improving your health, someone else can't make that choice for you
- [7:30] How can you make health choices a "non-negotiable"
- [10:30] At one point can a healthy habit become an unhealthy habit
- [14:15] Are there common health habits people struggle with the most
- [17:30] How do you determine which habit you want to work on, and then how can you break it down into actionable steps
- [21:15] For people who are really social and love to hang with friends, how can they make the bad habits inconvenient
- [25:30] If you make unhealthy decisions, take note of how you feel afterwards and see if it is something you want to change
- [27:30] When you make healthy choices and then you go back to the habits you used to have, you'll get a good idea of how bad you felt before
- [29:00] How do you handle friends or family who question your choices
- [31:45] Should you have to explain the reasons behind your decisions to affirm to others it isn't because of them
- [34:00] What are some final thoughts on making healthy habits more convenient
Transcript For Episode (Transcripts aren't even close to 100% Accurate)
Bryan: [00:00:15] It used to be thought that it only took 21 days to create a new habit. And anyone who has ever done a 30 day diet or fitness challenge can tell you that is not true.
In fact, the theory now is that it could take anywhere between 66 and 365 days to create a habit, which is a pretty wide range. If you ask me and while starting a healthy habit usually has good intentions behind it. Oftentimes these short term stretches don't support you very well for the longterm gains.
What's up everyone. I'm Bryan Carroll and I'm here to help people move more, eat well and be adventurous. And today Kathleen Trotter is going to help us to make healthy habits more convenient so that it becomes harder to fall back to our old unhealthy habits. She walks us through different processes to find the habits that are the best to change for you and how to break them down to make it simple.
So let's get into my interview with Kathleen. Kathleen Trotter is a fitness expert, media personality, personal trainer writer, life coach, and overall health enthusiast. She is the author of finding your fit, a compassionate trainers guide to making fitness a lifelong habit. And Kathleen's passion is motivating others to find their fit.
Welcome to the show, Kathleen.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:01:37] Oh, it's my pleasure. I'm excited to be here and help your listeners find their fit. And I loved you. Call me a health enthusiast, which I just that's. That's what it is, because I think that too often health becomes something. Overwhelming. It's an obligation. It's demoralizing.
It's exhausting. and of course then why would anybody want to like do it? Cause if it feels just like yet another thing that you have to do and, and when you can become enthused about something that you're doing, or at least when you can learn not to hate it and you can feel the results, then you just want to go and tell all your friends, like, go for a welcoming, let's start, let's go to this dance class.
Or, you know, let's drink like this amount of water a day. I feel so much better. Right. So we just have to have more people they're like, yeah. Hey, spread the word. Pay it forward.
Bryan: [00:02:20] That's a great point because a lot of people really dread trying to make healthy changes. So, and we'll definitely be talking about how to enter into healthy habits a lot easier and make it more convenient later on.
but let's learn a little bit more about your background because you have, it seems like the full package you got the life coach part, the nutrition part, the training exercise part. So tell us more about you.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:02:41] Okay about me. yeah, I really believe that knowledge in fitness and health is not enough.
Listen to Derek Sivers quote is my favorite it's if knowledge was enough, we'd all have six pack abs and we'd be billionaires, right? Like you have to be able to take the knowledge. We know you should walk more, you should exercise, you know, you should lift weights, you should go to sleep. But how do you take that knowledge?
And actually. I meant it. So that's why the life coaching for me is really key because that's where you learn how to have the right mindset and the self talk that takes you from knowing you, quote unquote, should do it to actually doing it. And I know firsthand that should, it's like really oppressive because I grew up the first half of my life.
I was unfit. I was overweight. I kind of ate women, ate my way through my parents' divorce. I hated being active, like, but you know, I would lie to get into gym class. I snuck food and it really felt like something from the outside that people were saying, Kathleen, you should do this, you have to do this.
You know, I'd go to the doctor and they'd be like, you have to exercise. And, my mom was like, Kathleen, you have to like, what are you doing? So as soon as it became something that was intrinsically driven by me, that's when I started to see more and more little wins. And the little wins turned into medium wins, which turned into bigger wins, but it had to start at this really small place, a place, an entry place that I could handle and an entry place that fit where I was like, I did meet myself where I was.
So, basically I was like 16, 17, I guess. And my mom just said to me, listen, I get that you don't like sports. I get that. You don't want to be active with your peers, but we have to find a solution like some way being active has to be a nonnegotiable. And she got me a membership to the YMCA and I started walking for 10 minutes and that was it.
And you know, if somebody has said to me, You know, to be fit, you have to go and do an hour of football. I would be like, screw you that's I can't do that, but I could walk for 10 minutes. So that little wind kind of spiraled me. And then it was 20 minutes of walking and then it was lifting some weights and then it was taking some aerobics classes and then it was teaching her.
I was classes and then it was going to school for kinesiology. And then, and then it was getting my personal training certificate instead of just. It's spiraled, but it started with my mom saying like, we have to find the fit that works for you. And we have to meet you where you are.
Bryan: [00:04:51] Wow. That's powerful.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:04:55] My life story at you. But I think it's key because I think a lot of people look at me and other fitness professionals and they think, well, she's, it's easy for her. Right? Like she wakes up every morning and she's motivated and like, But I'm not motivated, so I'm not going to do it. You know, it's hard for me.
It's easy for her. And I am here to tell all of your listeners, first of all, it's never been easy for me. I was not born fit, but it's still not easy for me. It's easy. You're for me because I've taken out a lot of the things that, sort of are my triggers in my life. I don't have food that I know I'm going to binge on in my house.
I've set up a lot of habits. That sort of nudge me in the right direction. I've taken a lot of the friction out. I've made it easy for myself and I've made the unhealthy choices much more inconvenient, but it's still hard. And I still wake up so many mornings and I'm just like, I don't want to work out.
I don't, I want to sleep. I want to sleep. but then I just remind myself, like you feel better when you work out. So, you know, it's about the, but that's a self-talk right? Like that's sort of circle back. Like you have to be able to know what to say to yourself when you don't feel motivated.
Bryan: [00:05:53] And I think you hit it right on the point when you were talking about, Other people telling you what you need to do to be healthy.
Like you need to exercise, you need to eat better. And that never seems to work. Right? Like you mentioned, you got to make that choice.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:06:09] Well, you have to thrive in your own lane. Like, you know, I look at my parents for example, my dad, you know, he, he plays hockey four days a week. He bikes around Montreal.
Like he's very fit. Yeah. My mom's also very fit, but she does totally different version of fitness. She walks the dog, she gardens, she does yoga. So both of them are living. One of the philosophies that I talk about in my first book, finding your fit, which is that exercise is a non negotiable for both of them, but how they exercise differs depending on what works for them.
and that doesn't mean. My mom always wants to do her yoga practice. It just means that she doesn't despise it so much, that she's going to constantly talk her way out of it. You know, like you can fit a square peg into a round hole for about a day. And then you're just sort of like this program is not for me and longterm, right?
Like longterm, you can't make yourself do something that you absolutely despise.
Bryan: [00:07:00] And you mentioned the nonnegotiable. Which I think a lot of people want to believe that fitness exercise and nutrition, health, all that stuff is non negotiable in their life. But it also seems like it's very easy to put it off and then try to come back to it later.
So how can we start. Actually making it a non negotiable,
Kathleen Trotter: [00:07:22] such a good question. I think first of all, you just have to lean into that. It's a process and it takes a really long time. Like I've been at this for 20 years and I still have days where I don't want to work out and I'm still have days where I'm unmotivated.
but. You know, my better days are more often and my better days are sort of better. And my sort of bad days are less frequent and they're a little bit less severe and I can course correct faster. So if I veer off path, I'm like I can get myself back on the health wagon faster. But I think it's about setting up systems.
Honestly. I think really what it comes down to is appreciating that motivation is an emotion and emotions come and go like that is what emotion that is inherent to an emotion. Right. It doesn't stay with you bad. Good. Everything eventually dissipates. So I think a lot of us, when we feel really motivated, we're like, Oh yeah, I'm going to work out on Monday or I'm gonna eat really well tomorrow.
And then tomorrow comes, Monday comes January. Okay. You know, January 1st, you're like, yeah, I'm going to be really, really fit. And then February 1st comes in here. You're not exercising. So when you're in those periods of high motivation, you have to use that to set up the systems that save yourself from your future, less motivated, less energized self.
So whether that's, let's say, you know, that part of the reason you don't work out is that you don't get enough sleep. Okay. So then maybe the system that you have is setting up a really good. Bedtime routine. So you actually sleep. So then you can get yourself to the gym, or maybe, you know, that the reason why you're often, derailed from your exercise is that things come up with family life.
So then maybe you really have to set a schedule where you do your work it's in the morning. So nothing can derail you throughout the day. Right. Or maybe you're derailed because you you're really good until like eight o'clock at night, and then you're exhausted. So you go to the fridge and you sort of binge on whatever you're kind of mindlessly bingeing on whatever's there.
so maybe you just need to get those trigger foods out of your house, but those are all like looking at your life in advance and figuring out where the potential problems could be troubleshooting them and creating different systems that, that make the healthier habits. Easier, as I said, this sort of like nudge you towards them and then make the unhealthy habits less convenient.
Right? Like, you know, I love chocolate, but at 11 o'clock at night, if I want chocolate, I'm not going to go to the store and buy something. Like I'm too freaking lazy. Like that's just not going to happen. But if it's in my cupboard, I wouldn't be like, Hmm, chocolate. I love that. Right. So part of it is just like the setting up of systems and knowing that you're going to have days where you don't want to work out and you're good to have days where you want to eat crap.
So how are you going to support your future self. Like maybe you're somebody who only works out when you have somebody waiting for you like yet. So you need an exercise buddy. So go for it. Get an exercise, buddy. figure out what you need and support yourself.
Bryan: [00:10:02] And I know you've talked previously, but before about healthy habits and then unhealthy habits, how do you determine the difference between what would be considered a healthy habit and an unhealthy habit?
Because people can take something that we would consider healthy in way over do it. Like if you exercise. You went from zero to 12 hours a day of exercise. That was probably a little bit too much.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:10:28] A lot of life has just, you know, wisdom and wisdom comes from experience and then analyzing your experiences.
So, I mean, I actually think that's a brilliant question because I've been there. Right. So I went from being very inactive to exercising overexercising and sort of in my early twenties, having a pretty severe, I would call it orthorexia. So not, I wasn't starving myself, but I was veer being overly, prescriptive, but every single thing that went into my body and all of my exercise and I was overexercising and it led to sort of injuries and, and burnout and exhaustion.
so I've been. On both sides. And I think that idea of finding the middle, I mean, listen, that's just hard with everything in life, right. So I think it comes from experience and I think it comes from having a growth mindset. So I love the work of Carol Dweck and she just would say, you put the word yet in front, after everything.
Right. So it's like, I'm not a runner. I'm not a runner yet. I'm not, I can't eat healthy. I'm not eating healthy food yet. I don't know the balance between, you know, overdoing my healthy habits and not doing any of the habits yet. So, you know, if you say to yourself, you want to be active then in a month or so journal or do some type of analysis to ask yourself, okay.
So are my new habits serving me or not? And really that's the case, right? Like, Less than ideal habits, really don't serve you. And they're more, they end up being almost like a must do a compulsion. And instead of the like Buddhist terminology that they own you versus you owning them. Right? Like, so when I was really unhealthy, if somebody said to me like, Oh, I know you're supposed to go do a workout right now, but like, it's your birthday?
And I want to go celebrate, then I'd be like, Oh no, I couldn't get my workout. Like that was like so scary that the workout was owning me. Right. So in retrospect, I can look back in my twenties and I can see those things and I can be, Oh my God, that wasn't healthy. I couldn't necessarily see it in the moment.
so, you know, maybe you decide that to every month you just take 20 minutes and you just have a little bit of awareness and look back at the month. And so to say, like, what are the things that are serving me and how can I reproduce those? What are the things that aren't serving me and how can I learn.
To, soften those just a little bit. And where can I find that more of a balance, like so much of health, is that appropriate response? It's like, you know, cause we can get in our own way by having these really binary is like, this is good. This is bad all or nothing. almost like a perfectionist mentality and, and in the end often not perfectionism really.
Damages us because, you know, often people will say to me, well, I can't do it perfectly, so I'm not going to do it at all. Like, it's, it's that unconscious thing of like, well, you know, I couldn't do my entire workout, so I just didn't do anything. versus like saying like, Oh, I couldn't do my entire workout.
Why don't I just go for 20 minute walk? So it's, it's similar to what you're, what you just asked me, which is health wisdom comes from this ability to sort of find that middle ground and step back and. And look at your choices kind of from, from the balcony and looking at all the traces underneath it below, like looking at the dance floor and being like, okay, so where do I go a little bit too strong?
Where do I need to put up a bit? You know, when am I self sabotaging, how am I self sabotaging? and then just be kind with yourself and just be like, okay, let's, let's figure out where we can go from 90 from here. That's a better, better journey, better place, you know?
Bryan: [00:13:39] I know every single person's going to have different habits that are more specific to them and what they tend to do and not do.
But have you found any, common patterns between a lot of different people that you've worked with that you see come up a lot? Like maybe it's a sleep issue or something like that.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:13:57] Yeah. That's not a really good question. I love that. You're you're making me think. Well, I think a lot of us, are just aren't aware.
So we really overestimate our healthy habits and underestimate our less than ideal habits. So people will say to me, you know, like I had a treat. you know, a couple of times this week, and then when we do it, we ask them to do a journal. they've actually had a treat like three times a day, so it's no longer a treat.
Right. so that's definitely one, mindless eating is another one, like where people are just really unaware of, you know, grabbing almonds off of like the, have a bowl on the table. And every time they walk past their desks, they're kind of grab a bunch or, mindlessly eating when they, when people cook is a big thing too.
I've actually had a number of especially moms. Yeah. Take my group coaching class. And they've realized that they are almost eating like three dinners. They kind of cause they kind of snack while they cook and then they, they eat their dinner and then they stack as they're kind of cleaning up. so I had one woman actually lose 21 pounds without changing anything over there.
over anything in her diet, other than the fact that she, when she was cooking, she had a. Bottle of water. And every time she went to pick up the food, she was cooking, she just drank some water. And she said it was amazing because then she only was eating when she was sitting at the table and she was really mindful about that.
So I think that's a big thing. I think across the board though, people just really, I call it, they use hope as a strategy. So they, they, they create these fitness wishes. So it's like, Oh yeah, I really need to get more sleep. I'm going to get more sleep, Kathy. And I promise, or I'm going to work out. Yeah.
I want to work out a promise without. Then saying like, how do I make that happen? Right. So let's take sleep for an example. Cause that's a really good, it's like a Swiss army knife habit where it really impacts it has a positive cascade effect on everything, right? It helps your body and your brain recovers.
If you're out a lot, it's going to make you your body and your tissues may stay healthy to help for your brain. It's good for your energy. It's good for your hormones. Like it's just across the board really, really important. you know, the less you sleep, the more sugar you're going to crave, all that kind of stuff.
So if people say to me, like they need to get more sleep, I'm like, okay, well, a good night's sleep starts in the morning, right? Like a good night's sleep. First of all, how much sunlight are you getting in the morning? Because sunlight in the morning is going to set your circadian rhythm. Right. It's going to help you get more melatonin in the evening.
Okay. when are you stopping having coffee? Like if you're having coffee up until five o'clock at night. Well, of course you're not sleeping at night. Are you setting a bedtime alarm, like three hours before you're supposed to go to bed? That sort of just says to you like, okay, that is three hours from now.
Right? Because so often it gets to be 11 o'clock and people are like, Oh man, I supposed to be in bed now. And then it takes them an hour to get ready for bed. Right. So I dunno, I think, yeah. I think if people are listening and that they can just sort of think, where do they wish for their health versus planning for their health?
and hope is great. Hope is a really good first step, you know, a wish wishes, a good step. Motivation is a good first step, but they're all just first steps. And then you have to take the time to know yourself and implement strategies based on who you are and what you know about yourself
Bryan: [00:16:48] earlier, you were talking about, your crutch with chocolate and you breaking down how, you know, different steps that you took to make sure that you aren't always digging into the chocolate.
Can you. Walk us through how to figure out a habit that could be potentially unhealthy, that you want to switch over to become a healthy habit and how to break it down into actionable steps so that, you can make those little progress. Yeah. Those little wins to get to the point where it's the healthy habit.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:17:20] Well, first again, I just want to say to your, to your listeners, like my. Relationship with chocolate has been over like 20 years. So this is not something that I figured out in like 24 hours. So please know that, I think what's interesting is to start to think of where you have those almost like fights in your head.
So I'll just give you an example of, I have these fudge bars that I really like. So I would be in Loblaws, which is the Canadian sort of big grocery store. And I stand in front of the frozen department and I, my angel on my head, my, my shoulder would be like, you know, Kathleen. You shouldn't bring those home, because you are just going to eat them.
And then the devil would say, Oh, Kathleen, you're a fitness professional. You should bring them home. You can have one a week. Like that's the healthy thing to do. And then the angel would say, no, Kathleen, you know the rule, like don't bring things into the house that you don't want you or somebody you love to eat.
And then the devil would say, Kathleen, You don't want to be like sick and have an eating disorder, like not having these fudge bars. It means that you're going back to your eating disorder ways, you know, like I'd have this fight. So first of all, take a moment because everybody listening has had that fight about something where they just inside their head.
There's like a push pull and then step back and just try to figure out, like, where are you self sabotaging? Like in that example, I knew from hears of data, like an all experiences, just data, I knew. That I couldn't bring these bars into the house. And I knew that process like fudge bars with like all these chemicals are not good for me, but I also know that I really truly believe in what I call the Lovett rule, which is, you know, have small portions of things that you love.
And don't just binge vine on crap that you don't love. So it's not that I didn't want to have the fudge bars ever. I just didn't want to have six of them in one night at home. so I knew that that sort of devil had. They were using a sliver of truth to self sabotage, like, and there was a sliver of truth, which is saying you can never have fudge bars.
Again is probably reverting back to that sort of orthorexic eating disorder behavior. But that doesn't mean I should bring them into the house. So what I did was I now bring a box at the beginning of the summer, over to my mom's house. And when I want a fudge bar, I go over and I hung out, hanging out with her outside in her backyard and I have one bar.
And I thoroughly enjoy it. And I spend time with my mom and she loves seeing me. And she normally has some shortbread cause she does not like chocolate chocolate. And then I leave and I've had one bar. I feel great. One of something that I love is totally cool. And so it goes back to your question earlier, right?
And you asked me about that middle ground, like there from years of data. I found a balance. and so I think the thing is, is when people are listening, figure out what their trigger is, figure out where you have that battle in your head and then figure out how you can learn from yourself. Right? Like I knew from experience what didn't work and we all are, you can see, we are data, like all life experiences, data.
And as if you can look at it, instead of things being failures, if they can just be learning points and then you can figure out a sort of better solution.
Bryan: [00:20:21] Perfect. And then, you know, to try to make unhealthy habits a less convenient or very inconvenient, let's say someone is a very social person and you know, they're very extroverted.
They love going out with people. They go to restaurants all the time. They go out with their friends and drank yada yada, yada, but they also know that at some point they need to start eating better. Eating out, less drinking, less, but part of them really wants to go do all that social activity because they thrive off of that.
Totally. Absolutely. How do you make that inconvenient?
Kathleen Trotter: [00:20:56] So, first of all, I love what you just said about this person. Cause they, it sounds like they know themselves, which I think is really key. I think the first step with all of this is knowing yourself and meeting you where you are, right? Because the person who likes to go out five days a week and drink is never gonna.
The goal of like, well, I'm just going to drink nothing and stay at home and like have no friends, like that's just not realistic for them. So part of all of this stuff is just having realistic expectations on yourself. So that's the first thing. And then it's all about adding a little bit of friction to all of your, less than ideal behaviors and finding that middle ground.
So for somebody who really likes going out, what I might say to them is a couple of things I would say, okay, if you're going to go out on a, let's say you're going to go out five days in a week. Why don't you decide on two of those days that are going to be more special days out, and make sure that the rest of your week is really, really good.
So all the foods that you do at home is really good. And then the nights out that are not as great. It's not that that's fine. Like it's a, it's, it's all relative to what else? All the other choices what's really bad is if you know, at home, you're having microwave pizza, every single meal, and then you go out and have chicken wings and beer, you know, I'm gonna have 5,000 calories, the combo of those two things.
Aren't great. Right? But you can do a combo of, you know, at home you're having healthier food and then you decide it's going to be a treatment. So that's one thing, knowing, and being aware of how the big picture week will work. And then how do you make it more inconvenient would be a number of different things.
So you could look at the menu before you go and decide in advance what you're going to eat. Cause often we get really caught up in our emotions. So if you know, in advance, what your sort of moderately healthy or. Treat option is going to be, so let's say you decided I'm going to have the burger. I love the burger, but I'm going to have a solid dog fries.
As soon as you arrive at the restaurant, you save the waiter. You don't even look at the menu. You say, I don't need the menu. This is what I'm going to have. So that would be an example of how you kind of set yourself up for success by making it harder, to have the bad food. Cause you're not even looking at the options of the bad food.
And then I would also say like, tell somebody your goals, it's way harder to have, you know, 15 beers and, you know, burgers and fries. If you've stated in advance to, I don't know your significant other or friends that you're going out, that this is what you're doing. and, and then the third thing would just be like to start.
To identify yourself as a healthier person. Like everything we do in life is a vote for the person we want to be. and part of the reason why it's not hard for me to eat well and, you know, drink my water and, and I don't drink alcohol and all that stuff is one, cause I know it makes me feel better, but two it's really part of my identity.
so. If you're, if you're going out, instead of saying like, Oh, I have to have the healthy food, because you know, again, to go back to the externally imposed, this is something that's being externally imposed on me, blah, blah, blah, blah. If you can say like, no, like I, my future self wants to be healthier version of me, and this is like, I'm owning this and I'm proud of these decisions.
That's a huge thing too. and then you can bet, like you could say, like, you could literally say to yourself, like I'm going to bet a hundred bucks that I'm going to do really, really well today. And if I, for the next month, you know, stick to all of my plans and I get to either you can positively or negatively reward yourself.
So you could say like, I get to buy a new exercise piece of clothing, or you could say, you know, if I get in and I have to give my a charity that I hate this a hundred dollars, or I have to give my spouse a hundred dollars, or I don't know, you can get other people involved in like a challenge, friends, family,
Bryan: [00:24:23] So oftentimes when people are making, different changes in their health, especially around food, There they start feeling better, right?
They start noticing more about their body. They notice like certain foods impact them a little bit more than other foods. And, they just become a lot more aware of what's going on with their body. So in the, in that situation with someone that is cleaning up the rest of their food and then going out and they're still drinking or having the 15 beers on the burger and fries.
And then they wake up the next morning and they're like, man, I just feel like crap.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:24:54] I think that's great data. That's what it is. Right. Like how awesome is that? What I would say to a client if they came in and said, I feel like crap, what I would say is that's amazing because when you're making a hundred percent terrible decisions, You're eating all crap, processed food.
When you eat crap processed food, you don't feel worse. You just feel like you're normal. And if you're making really good choices most of the time, and you go out and you feel like crap, that's showing your body that you're, that you are in a healthier state because that bad, those bad choices impact you more.
Okay. so I think that's great. And I would encourage the person that, that they did that to sort of note that journal it or say it to their spouse or their kids sort of say like, wow, I do not feel good when I make those decisions. And then the next time they're going to go out, say to themselves in advance, like.
Okay, last time I had these 15 beers. I didn't feel the right. So maybe can I have 10 beers instead of 15? Or can I, can I have, can I commit to having a glass of water in between each alcoholic drink? Like that's another way of making, unhealthy choices, sort of slightly more friction is if you have to have a drink.
In between, and then your belly gets really full and that's harder to drink. but it goes back to what I was saying last time, it's all about growth mindsets. It's not about going out and having the 15 beers and then feeling crappy about yourself and spiraling into like, Oh, well I had this 15 beers.
I'm never going to be healthy. I'm lazy. I'm I'm whatever, whatever, whatever. And then you make poor decisions. It's about saying like, interesting. This is data. So let's use it, let's analyze it. And then let's remember this for next time and implement that data next time.
Bryan: [00:26:24] That's a great response because I was gonna, you know, say sometimes people, they don't like that feeling after, they start making changes and I try to have something that, they used to have all the time.
They don't like that feeling of, what they used to feel like. So pointing out that, you know, this is how you always felt like, but what you're experiencing when you feel good is how you should be feeling. That's a really good awareness for them to understand that. Oh, what I was doing before was not the best thing for me.
And I actually prefer to feel better.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:26:54] And I think that you make a really valid point of just, you know, those little wins are really key and pointing out those little wins and things that people often. Framing themselves as, as, as a loss, like, you know, Oh, I feel like crap. And then they think of that negatively.
If you can reframe that awareness as a win, you're more likely to make more positive decisions. And every time you're doing it from a place of. This feels better. And this is, I want from me, there's so much likely more likely to continue, right? Like people will say that all the time and be like, well, how do you not drink?
Like, is that not so hard? I'm like, well, no, I haven't drank in like, I don't know, 16 years. And it's not even an option for me now because I've spent so long not drinking that. Yeah. Anytime. If I ever try, I just feel so crappy afterwards that I'm like, why would I ever do this to myself? so it's not hard for me not to do it because I love how I feel when I do it, but it's taken me 20 years.
Right? Like this is not again. I really, anybody gets anything from this podcast. It's like, Please like this is a process and be kind to yourself and have grace with yourself. And all that matters is that you're progressing forward. I always say my clients like working is winning and awareness is winning.
So you just have to keep going little by little and accumulate those little wins.
Bryan: [00:28:08] How do you handle friends or even family? That question every little change that you do.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:28:15] Oh, that is a really good question. okay. I would say two things. I really actually try not to personalize it because most of the time, I don't know.
Have you ever heard the quote, any judgment is self judgment? So when people are critical of me About my choices. I really try to remember that it's probably in some way, coming from a sense of insecurity on their part, or they feel that my choices. I'm criticizing them with my choices, which I'm not like if I say no, thank you.
I don't want any pie or whatever. Then they think like, Oh, you know, she's saying I shouldn't have pie or she's judging my pie or sh or if that person made the pie that she's judging, you know, if the pie is good or so I try to remember that everybody's fighting a battle that we know nothing about, and I have no idea what's going on in their life.
I don't know, you know, the struggles there. They're with their health or their weight or their partner's weight or their partner's health. So I try to do that. And then here's the key. Do you know dr. Zeus, do you guys have, do you ever read any of his children's books?
Bryan: [00:29:12] Yeah. Yeah.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:29:13] Yeah. Okay. So there's this amazing quote and the quote is those that matter don't mind and those that mind don't matter.
So I just think of the people in my life who support me, who loved me, like my mom, like my partner, James, and like, they love me. And they, you know, James is not like, Oh, well I made this bread and you're not eating it. So therefore you don't love me. Or like, they. If they were concerned about me, like, you know, in my twenties, when I had my orthorexia and you know, my mom was concerned and she definitely said something.
but because I know it was coming from a place of love, I listened to her. Right? Like, so the people who. I care about, and I know matter to me, and I know that I matter to them, I will listen to them because it's constructive feedback. but they're not normally the ones that are criticizing. Normally the people who are criticizing are those bystanders.
That don't really matter to me that I don't care what they think of me. And it's not about me, it's about them. So I just try to remember both of those things. I don't know, I love Brenae Brown. And she has this thing where she says, take a piece of paper and write the five people that you respect and you care about down on that piece of paper.
And if those five people say something to you, then you, you sit up and you think, Oh, interesting. Like they might have, they probably have something interesting for me to listen to. And then if it's other people than that, like people on your Instagram or people on your Facebook or relatives, that don't really matter, you know, if they sort of snip inside, like, Oh, why aren't you having dessert?
Or, you know, Oh, you look like you've gotten a little bit heavier, whatever it is. They're not on your piece of paper with your number five people. You'll let it go water off a Duck's back.
Bryan: [00:30:43] So that was going to be actually, my next question is, a lot of people feel like they have to explain their decision, whether it's, no, I don't want to have that pie, but it's not because of your pie, you know?
And they try to explain what it is. is it better in most cases just to leave it as, no, I don't want to drink tonight and not explain or. Is it better to try to help them understand that it's not really about them. It's more, it's just a decision that you. Are going to stick with
Kathleen Trotter: [00:31:15] no, I mean, I think it just really situational.
I mean, so I think communication is always really, really key, but I think it depends on where you are, you know, are you at a work event? And then maybe the answer to that is to just to have like a glass that has water in it, and then people will just think you're having a drink. Like, so there's some instances where it's nobody's business.
and you can just do the thing that's sort of the simplest, But, you know, if somebody says something outright, you just have to judge, like, how much do you want to get in with them? How much are you, how much is saying anything could actually change their mind. Like you also have to ask yourself, like, is this person saying it because they're kind of malicious and kind of rude?
Like, is it a snide comment? Cause those are just like water off a duck. Back or is it, they they're kind of well meaning or they really have made a beautiful dessert and then, you know, they are going to be a little bit hurt and think it's about them, you know? So if it's somebody I care about and they've put a lot of effort into having a dessert and I don't want to have it, like, I'm going to be much more, you know, open about why I might not want to, or I might just decide like a value judgment of, you know, what having a bite of this is, it's worth it for me.
For their feelings to have a bite, like all this stuff has kind of value, judgments and cost benefits. So sometimes the answer is, you know, I really care about this person. I don't really want the dessert and I'll have one bite. I won't have the entire piece, but I will say like, thank you so much for all the work you've put in.
but most of the time, the people who love me, like my mom, she knows me enough not to have me over for dinner and serve like a bunch of cherry pie. I don't like cherry pie. So she'll either serve chocolate or she won't choose to serve anything for me at all. You know? So, I don't know. Yeah. Just have to judge the situation and, you know, I think it circles back to what you asked me before.
It's, it's sort of another example of just having the wisdom to choose the route that works in that moment. And if you make a choice that you're not proud of, like, if you say the wrong thing, then just having the wisdom to sort of analyze that. And, and then the next time say something a little bit better, you know, we're all only human and we can only do the best we can.
Bryan: [00:33:05] Well, so far you've shared a ton of really good information. Is there any final thoughts that you want to share around making healthy habits, convenient, making unhealthy habits, inconvenient or anything around that? All of that?
Kathleen Trotter: [00:33:18] Yeah. So healthy habits, convenient, really creating systems blocking out time to make healthy food prepped in the fridge.
So like I call it assembly. So, you know, cutting up a bunch of vegetables, maybe, You know, cooking some chicken, having some beans or whatever. So when you are hungry, because the problem is, is when you're really hungry, it's so easy to just be like, screw it. I'm going to microwave this. I'm going to order food there, but you want to make the healthy foods in your home just as fast.
as the unhealthy stuff. So if you have a bunch of things that you can assemble into a healthy meal in your fridge, I think that's a, that's a key thing. And that goes sort of with exercise too. I like to encourage my clients to have what's called a plugin playlist. So they just have a list of things that you can do in five minutes, things that you can do in 10 minutes, 15, 20 minutes.
And so if you find yourself with an extra 10 minutes, you don't have to waste your cognitive energy and space and time thinking, like, what should I do? You can just look at the list and be like, Oh, in 10 minutes I can dance for 10 minutes, you know, and just put on some music and dance. Or in 15 minutes, I can do a 15 minute AMRAP workouts.
That's as many rounds as possible. So, you know, you could do like squats, pushups, lunges, and bent over like banned rows as many times through for 15 minutes. But if you have that sort of broken down, again, it's just when you're, when you're in a sort of stressed, angry, sad, frustrated, As situation it's so easy to add, just opt for the easiest thing.
so you want to make sure that the easiest thing is also a fairly healthy option and you're really being kind to your future self. So I don't know if that that's helpful.
Bryan: [00:34:46] Perfect. And then my final question is what do you do each day to keep yourself healthy?
Kathleen Trotter: [00:34:51] Oh, I love, love, love listening to podcasts.
So like this morning I had a, a meeting downtown. So I walked there and I walked back and it's about 45 minutes each way. And there's almost nothing that makes me happier than walking and listening to a podcast. So that's really great spending time with friends and family. Exercise is huge. I mean, so the one thing we didn't really touch on is just this idea of, what's called present bias.
So our cognitive distortion that's really the very common in most of us is that we think the emotion that we have in this moment is the emotion we're always going to have. So, you know, if we're really tired or sad or depressed, it's easy to say like, Oh, well I don't want to exercise cause I'm tired and it's.
Much more advantageous to say like, yes, I'm tired in this moment, but if I exercise, I will feel better. and the reason why I exercise every day to make myself feel better is because I spent years like 20 years in therapy. And I spent many years of my earlier life being quite depressed. And, what I've learned is that if I don't want to be depressed, I have to exercise.
I have to move every day for my mood. And I really use that. Not that. Self-talk of the worse, your mood, the more important your workout. And yes, you might be tired now, but that's a cognitive distortion in your brain and your brain is saying like, Oh, you're tired, but that doesn't mean you're going to be tired in 20 minutes.
And if you work out, you will have more energy, you will feel better about yourself. You will have a better perspective for the world and you'll just be a better fitter, happier, more productive version of Kathleen. So, yeah, combination of podcasts, exercise, and, spend time with people I care about.
Bryan: [00:36:23] What's some of your favorite podcast you've been listening to. I'm always looking for new ones.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:36:28] Okay. So I love Brittany Brown has a new podcast unlocking us. It just came out in the beginning of March. It is so good. one, the first one she put out it was called, FFT. So, bleep first times, and it's just about how hard anything, the first time you do anything is and how you have to lean into anything.
New is going to be hard and get past that discomfort and have realistic expectations. So I think that if anybody listening is trying a new thing, like a new sport or finding, you know, anything at work struggling or whatever, that's a great one of hers. That was the first one she did. I love that. I love, The Tim Ferriss show that are so good.
And he just put out a new short form version called tools of Titans, which is just like quotes from people who've been on his show. They're like 10 minutes, snippets of wisdom. So good. And I don't. I like, I like so many of them, but the one, yeah, the other one is it's called the one thing. It's a business podcast based on the book called the one thing.
and it's, it's a lot of what I just talked about. It's this idea of, you have to know, you have to put your big rocks in the, in the stream first, so everything else can flow around it. Right? So if your, your big rock is to prioritize exercise, then you have to look at your schedule and figure out where that big rock is going to go.
So everything else can sort of flow and. Yeah. So I would say those three. I mean, there's lots of them, but I've loving those three right now.
Bryan: [00:37:44] then people can find more about you @ kathleentrotter.com and you also have your group program. Do you want to talk about that?
Kathleen Trotter: [00:37:52] I would love to. Yeah. So Kathleen trotter.com is my website.
And, we're recording this in COVID, so there's actually a whole COVID sanity pack on the website. So if you, if, that's useful for people when this comes out and there's also information on my group coaching. So I do this five week group coaching it's over zoom. it's not fitness coaching, so it's not like we don't exercise on the coaching.
What it is is connecting the dots between wanting and doing. It's what I talked about at the beginning of the program that, yeah. Knowledge is not enough. So what the five weeks is, is we do a week on the nutrition mix, which is a concept from my second book a week on workout mix a week on, mindset mix.
And we basically, everybody has a goal going after the first lecture kind of thing. People tell me their goal, and then we spend the five weeks implementing the goal. And each week is a little bit of a lecture, but it's always a check. It's also a check in on how the goal went and then you kind of growth mindset, the goals, what can you learn from things?
and one of the things you get with the group coaching is unlimited email access with me for the five weeks of the coach coaching. So it's a really good opportunity because, you know, I've been doing this for 20 years and so I've gone, I've gone through a lot of it, both with myself and clients. So it's a great opportunity if you have a goal, but you're also struggling with, you know, past.
what would be perceived as failures or frustrations? It's a great way that you can just email me and say like, okay, you know, I, I am trying running, but it's not easy. What do I do? And I then I'll say like, okay, so here's some resources that you can use and it's great. It's really fun. I love it. And it's great for me to meet different people from around the world.
You know, like in one group, I'll have somebody from the West coast and somebody from down South and then somebody from the East coast and a couple of people from my hometown, Toronto, and it's great. It's really fun.
Bryan: [00:39:31] Awesome. And are you on any social media as well?
Kathleen Trotter: [00:39:34] Yes, I'm fit by Kathleen T on basically all the socials, Instagram and Twitter and Facebook.
I haven't yet. I'm not on tech talk yet, and I'm pretty trying really hard not to join. I have enough, I feel like I have enough social media inputs going into my life. so yeah, so Instagram and Facebook and Twitter primarily.
Bryan: [00:39:52] Well, thank you so much, Kathleen. There's a lot of really good information in here, especially around that habit creation and how to make them more convenient.
which pretty much all of us can utilize. So yeah. Thank you so much for coming onto the show.
Kathleen Trotter: [00:40:05] Oh my pleasure. I loved it. You're great to chat with.
Bryan: [00:40:07] Have you identified a habit or two that you would like to change? Take the steps we laid out in this episode and see if you can make it work for yourself and then you can reach out to either of us and let us know how well it worked for you.
Next week, we have a special episode to release. So let's go and learn more about Diana Rogers. I am here with Diana Rodgers. Hey Diana, what is one unique thing about you that most people don't know?
Diana: [00:40:34] one unique thing about me that most people don't know is that I trained to be a fine furniture maker before I got into farming and writing and becoming a dietician.
Bryan: [00:40:45] And what will we be learning about in our interview together?
Diana: [00:40:49] so I have a film and book coming out called sacred cow, which is all about why meat is healthy, good for the environment. And we also talk about the ethics of eating meat.
Bryan: [00:40:59] And what are your favorite foods or nutrients that you think everyone should get more of in their diet
Diana: [00:41:04] meat.
Bryan: [00:41:07] And what are your top three health tips for anyone who wants to improve their overall wellness?
Diana: [00:41:12] Don't be afraid of eating meat. it's, it's the most satiating food you can eat. It has the lowest amount of calories and the most nutrients, drink a lot of water and, get good sleep.
Bryan: [00:41:23] The book sacred cow only has a few days before the preorders will be over and you can get access to the bonus material.
So make sure to head over to summit for wellness.com/sacred cow, to get the book. You'll hear my interview with Diana next week. So until then keep climbing to the peak of your health.
Learn More About Kathleen Trotter