Get In Shape By Finally Exiting Your Cake-Workout-Cycle-Of-Doom

Make these two little mindset shifts to get fitter and slimmer without hating life and everyone around you…

Chris Davidson
Over 40 Freakin Awesome
3 min readJun 5, 2024



So let me explain the Cake-Workout Cycle Of Doom 😱 …

because after 15 years of coaching folks over 40, it’s the most common mistake I see with clients’ relationship with food and exercise.

When we see Exercise as a tool to lose weight, we feel we need a tough workout when we’ve been indulgent. Like having a big slice of cake.

Similarly, when lots of indulgence has caused weight gain, we feel we need lots and lots of punishing exercise to undo what we’ve done to ourselves.

This all leads to a messed-up relationship with exercise and food in general, which, as we get older especially, leads to messed-up outcomes for our health, wellbeing and body shapes.

So here are a couple of little mindset ‘shifts’ it’s important to make if we want to get in shape, and stay that way, without hating life and everyone around us!



The question at each mealtime or each evening on the sofa can’t be:

“What Do I Feel Like?”

because everyone in their right mind feels like cake, burgers and booze!

Especially if you’ve had a tough day, you will almost certainly lean on those kinds of foods and drinks, as some kind of reward for surviving what life has just thrown at you.

But that leads to problems despite the short-lived glorious feeling of having the exact things we ‘feel like’. So instead, the question needs to become:

“What’s The Right Thing For Me To Have?”

Then the answer is much more likely to be:

“The thing that’s best for my health and body shape goals”.



As soon as a coaching client says something like:

“I had a really indulgent weekend, so I did a really long workout that killed me”.

I need to nip it in the bud. Why?

Firstly, exercise burns nowhere near the number of calories we feel it should, given all that huffing and puffing.

So the extra 100 calories a ‘harder’ workout burns is a drop in the ocean compared to the extra 1000 calories you had over the weekend.

But more importantly, exercise and working out need to be things you look forward to doing multiple times each week for years. If it’s a horribly gruelling experience then who in their right mind would want to do that to themselves week in week out?

Exercising isn’t a tool to use to fast forward fat loss, it’s a tool to build a strong, fit, bulletproof and ultimately great-looking body as you get older.

By all means a few times in each workout take yourself to an uncomfortable place — a couple more tough reps, 30 seconds longer on the treadmill or whatever…

but don’t push yourself stupidly hard the whole time to make up for that big slice of cake you had!

What’s YOUR relationship with food and exercise like? Healthy or Needs-Work? ⬇



Chris Davidson
Over 40 Freakin Awesome

Coach for busy, out-of-shape Over-40s • Dad of 3 • Irishman • Trainer • Writer • Free Over-40s Fat Loss, Fitness & Lifestyle Programs :