No matter what your eating style. Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, the following principles covered can be adjusted to suit your needs. I will preface by saying that I definitely write with a Paleo and Precision Nutrition bias. Simply because it is where the bulk of my knowledge comes from and they are the basis around the principles I follow myself. At the end of this post you will find links to a few of the resources, readings, and materials that have helped educate me. I highly recommend picking any of them up if you are looking to further educate yourself and simply dominate your own nutrition. Plus, I want to give credit where it is due.
Proper goal setting:
First things first. I want to make sure you have realistic goals in mind. Quick fixes usually require some sort of deprivation….NOT cool. I write about how to embrace a realistic nutritional approach that compliments your lifestyle as opposed to your lifestyle having to revolve around your nutritional approach. With some hard work you will find it easy to change your body in ways never expected and be able to maintain it for the long haul.
So this is the time to be honest with yourself. Are you able to commit yourself to getting active 3-5 times per week. Eating healthy 90% of the time? Think of it like this. If you eat 5 times a day, 7 days a week, that’s 35 meals. Can you make 31 of them follow the principles outlined in the FREE habit chart?
If not, you may want to move on to another website. I hate to be brash but that is what it is going to take in order to get you where you want to be.
No sugar-coating here…. (see what I just did there).
You may have some pretty lofty goals. Like to lose 100 pounds or to put on a ton of muscle. That’s cool but lets shrink the change a little. Start a little smaller. How about concentrating day by day. Instead of focusing on a number lets focus on eating proper each and every day. You may find that you need to take extremely small steps in order to achieve your goals. No worries at all. It’s not a race. I know it’s easy to get impatient but look at it like this…
No matter how slow you go you are still lapping everyone on the couch
So don’t be afraid to take those baby steps. One of your goals might be like the one below.
Goal: To eat a serving of vegetables with all of my meals today.
or maybe like this…
Goal: The switch from my regular soda to diet soda.
Try one small goal at a time. You are much more likely to stick to it, not get overwhelmed, and feel good about yourself once you have achieved it.
It’s a roller coaster ride for sure
Every week will be different. Hell, most likely every day will be different. But that’s a good thing. Life would be pretty boring if there was no real spice to it. Understand that each day, week, month may be a new experience. You may feel different, see bigger results one week, have a week or two with stagnant results. Just stay the course. Over the long haul it will pay off.
Try and mix it up. Both exercise and nutrition wise. Not only does it get boring doing the same thing over and over again but your body gets use to it and becomes extremely stubborn (think grumpy old men). Your body is going to fight you. It is going to do it’s best job to slow down, relax, and do as little work as possible. It’s up to you to keep it on its toes.
Every few weeks (4-8) it’s a really good idea to change… 86 that. It’s necessary to change your exercise and nutrition habits. Don’t be afraid to try something new. Some new foods, new exercises, even new hobbies. Not only will it be good for your health and progress but it will be good for your spirit as well. And I don’t want any grumps stopping by. I want happy, smiling faces, and lovey-dovie emails coming my way.
Start small, start simple, start keeping track
Start small. Instead of jumping in all gung-ho, simplify things a bit for yourself so you don’t get overwhelmed. For instance, if you currently don’t eat breakfast get in the habit of doing so. If you drink a few sodas or caloric beverages each day (maybe an overload of creamer and sugar in the ol’cup of joe) try to eliminate those first and take in nothing but water and “0” calorie beverages. It will be much easier on you to change a few things instead of trying to change a shit ton over night.
Keep track of your results! I put it in bold and added an exclamation point (which essentially means that I am yelling at you) because this is vitally important. How else will you know what is working and what isn’t if you don’t keep track? Here are some ways to keep on top of things.
2. Body composition: Taking body fat measurements and weight will be a great barometer of progress. Body fat tests can usually be done by any skilled professional. Look online for a biosignature practitioner near you. They are typically the most qualified. I highly recommend doing a hydrostatic test or “dunk tank.” It is relatively in expense, fast, reliable, and convenient. Here are a few services:
3. Measurements: Measure your waist, thighs, hips, chest, arm, neck. Just get some numbers you can go off of. Not sure how? Here is a great outline
4. Performance: Are you getting stronger, faster, more energy, do you feel better? Keep track of your results in the gym by recording weights used, times, and even how you feel on a daily basis.
Recording your results will allow you to figure out quickly if something is working for you or not. We each will respond to different stimuli. Getting to know your body and how it works is half the battle.
Lastly for this post
Enjoy the journey. Don’t get to wrapped up in the day-to-day progress. Some days will be better than others. If the scale isn’t moving, or the pants are not a little looser don’t stress. Just relax, stay the course. Tweak a few things if you need to and don’t hesitate to contact me if you need some help.
What steps are you taking to get you closer to your goals? Are they the right ones?
Contact me if you need help clarifying anything.
Resources: Precision nutrition, Paleo Solution, Switch, The metabolic diet, Sports nutrition guidebook, Good calories bad calories, The Search for The Perfect Human Diet, Smart Goal Setting: 92 Tips For Using Short Term Goals To Create A Great Life
Or Visit the Paleo and Nutrition resources page found here.