As a fitness coach, this is probably THE question I get asked the most: What should I eat? With so many diet trends out there promising this or that, it can be quite daunting, and confusing to most of us. Heck, I know what I am supposed to do, and sometimes even I’m tempted to try the latest “quick fix”. But you see, that’s the thing. There isn’t one, I can promise you. I have literally tried every single “trick” in the book. The quick route, is often one of the most miserable ones to get there, then IMPOSSIBLE to sustain. But no one wants to hear that. They want to know, how long does it take, and is there a way to do it quicker? And they will do whatever it takes. They workout like crazy, decrease calories crazilly down to 1,000 per day, reach the goal (barely alive, but it was reached) and then what? Realize they are hungry and begin to eat more, and as SOON as they increase calories, guess what? They begin to gain the weight back. BECAUSE they have not trained the metabolism how to work for them, and instead kept the body in starvation mode to keep the weight off. It is a vicious and depressing cycle, I know, I have personally been there.
I like to relate “dieting” to going into debt financially. Is there a way to get that big ass dream house and fancy sports car much faster than you can actually afford? Why yes! Yes there is! Head over to the bank and have them loan you whatever you need. However, after a while, you get tired of working all of those overtime hours, giving up weekends and your social life to worko your second job, and forget about having any energy for sex or working out. You’re too tired. You are now a slave to the house and car. Its impossible to keep up and you are looking for a way out. Why not just save up your money, and over time, easily purchase your dream house, no stresses of having to pick up an extra job just to pay for it. Now you can leisurely enjoy the home. Doesn’t that sound much better? Put in the work first, get that out of the way, then enjoy the fruit of your labors.
Working out, eating healthy, and transitioning into a healthy lifestyle, works much the same way as building our savings account. It takes longer, and there is still hard work and sacrifice and things to learn, but the reward is long term and lasting, and teaches you a lot along the way. Like how to maintain a fitness level that allows you to eat without feeling deprived all of the time. I mean, how would you like to begin your weight loss journey, learning how to manage you training and food KNOWING it is becoming a permanent change? Work for the long term plan.
From my own personal experience, the answer is NOT low calorie, or low carb. The answer is moderate calorie intake to establish a baseline for calories, paired with 3 days intense training, 3 days moderate training, 1 rest day. I have found with 90% of my clients this works the best! To configure what your calories should be to start (calories you can eat without gaining or losing weight) you can find calculators at bodybuilding.com, iifym.com, and there is also a good one at katyhearnfit.com/macro-calculator. These calculators will give you an idea of how many grams of proteins, fats, and carbs you should be taking in per day as well as an overall calorie intake.
I hope this helps you!
Love and fitness,