Should you go on a diet or not? For how long if so and what you can expect? Why are so many women out there thinking they are a failure after trying various “trendy” diets with no success? Is the solution to ditch the fad diets and aim for a healthy balance in nutrition and lifestyle? The answers may surprise you.
The more you research the topic of nutrition for fat loss the more confusing the amount of information can become. Starting from the wide range of diets available, going on reviews and opinions of celebs and celebrity coaches and other experts I am not surprised that so many woman are lost and don’t seem to know what to do.
Let’s clarify that this blog post is based on my personal and professional experience as a personal trainer and coach at Synergy Fitness Studio. We have trained a wide range of women in Westport through 12-week transformation programs who had great results with us, but the initial consultations revealed many of their confusions before starting with us.
I think most diets the way they are designed and promoted set a percent of their clients up for failure by creating expectations that are not reasonable for some without making them understand the work and effort required to meet those expectations and what exactly works for them.
Instead, I believe if there were 3-4 week long diets available that emphasize the benefits of learning and experience you can encounter by paying attention to how your body reacts and encouraging to apply those learnt skills and habits for the long term, people will complete them much more content and wise set up for long-term lifestyle changes that will bring them results. Here are 7 lessons you can learn from diets when approaching them differently.
1. Track Your Food
I have recently written a blog post on why that will help you achieve your health and fitness goals. Without knowing where you start, how do you expect to know what steps to take towards that end goal? Easy as that.
2. Meal Planning is Essential for Progress
Especially for those who have never done that before getting into a routine will help to understand more about food portions, cravings, what foods are more satisfying to last till the next meal and so on.
3. Cut back on empty calories
Low carb diets will have you understand what difference it can make when you stop drinking soda, cut back on creamy coffee, ditch sweets, cakes and any other high-sugar foods that have no nutrition value.
4. Increase whole food intake
The Paleo diet restricts anything processed and is based on fresh meat and vegetables that have been available to our ancestors. Another version of low carb diet, but grains and dairy are off limits too. You may find your body does better without milk or certain grains.
5. What you eat matters
The Ketogenic diet is another example of low carb diet and the idea is that you fill up on fat, keep your protein intake reasonable and carbs very low. It is meant to put your body into a fat burning mode so you can shed fat faster if practiced long enough. The day you bail the process stops, but you can learn whether your body prefers being on a high fat diet and find new foods low in carbs that you like.
6. Low calorie doesn’t equal tasteless
I don’t mean sodas and other processed foods that say “low calorie” on the packaging. They taste awful because of all the sweeteners or other fillers. I mean veggie sticks with fresh dips, fresh fruit and naturally low-fat yoghurts or other dairy products and the like. You may find new products that are just as tasty but add much less to your calorie intake.
7. Abs are built in the kitchen
I am sure you heard this before. When someone comes to me and asks what exercise they should do more often to have a 6-pack, I always need to inform them that whilst they would want to focus on workouts that are designed to burn a lot of calories, but they want to focus more on what they put in their mouth. You can’t out train a bad diet says the cliché. You need to understand the sacrifices it takes and willing to make those sacrifices.
So, to answer the questions in the intro in order. Whether you tried many or this would be the first time, pick one that sounds suitable, lasts at least 3-4 weeks and get into it with your “learning hat” on and don’t be that focused on quick results, but seek what you can learn from it. You probably will see some results anyway. Encouraging a balanced lifestyle is well great and nice but without having information and data what works for your body and how it’s hard to create those habits for balance.
Feel free to get in touch if you have further questions on the topic!