SO HOW DO YOU ENJOY BURGER AND PIZZA AND STILL LOSE THE BELLY?
It is possible with flexible dieting for fat loss for sure! You gotta do a little bit of this first though.
So have you heard about flexible dieting and how it can help you lose unwanted fat?
First thing’s first! Have you ever experienced any of these when on a diet plan?
- No will power to see it through
- That you are not good enough
- Thinking you’ll never lose the weight no matter what you do
- Feeling guilty after a chocolate binge‘
- Failing’ due to a plan being too strict
FLEXIBLE DIETING COULD BE JUST WHAT YOU ARE LOOKING FOR…
Flexible dieting is a method of eating ‘bad’ or ‘non-optimal’ foods alongside a balanced diet. If your macro-nutrient, micro-nutrient, fibre, and hydration requirements are met then there is room for a bit of the fun stuff, so you can enjoy and have variety in your diet.
Not many foods are ‘bad’ unless they are too old or going off. They are just non-optimal for most health and well-being goals. Be it lose weight or build lean muscle an 80% – 20% rule of thumb is a great measure.
If your diet is 80% whole foods and 20% questionable i.e burger and chips that we usually label as ‘bad’ or junk food then it just makes the whole process easier. It is easier to keep within your calorie requirement particularly if you use a tool like My fitness pal for tracking.
So what are whole foods I hear you ask? Just single ingredient foods that haven’t been extracted of all the nutrient content by being processed. Vegetables and lean meats, with good sources of carbohydrates, such as brown rice and sweet potato etc. Make sure you drink enough water and you are halfway there.
Eating healthy food is simply better for you. Energy, sleep, skin and hair are all drastically improved when you look after your body and eat healthily. The thing is, we all know this, so why don’t we do it?
You are busy and have other priorities, so at what point do you decide to get focused. If you decide to start a healthy eating plan to lose weight, it may be worth writing down any barriers that you think may get in your way.
Use the right mindset to achieve results.
THINK ABOUT THESE KEY POINTS SO YOU ARE PREPARED:
What is your relationship with food? Self-sabotage plus risk and reward style mindsets can all play a part in taking you off track.
Have you Yo-Yo dieted before? Maybe a new approach would work for you this time around.
Are your goals realistic and what is the strategy to achieve them?
The most important thing, in my opinion, is any diet or healthy eating regime should help you, not make you feel worse.
It’s much better to be healthy and have extra energy, along with simply being happier with a better quality of life. Or you can be unhappy with no sex drive eating chicken rice and broccoli 5 times a day, I know which one I prefer and it includes more sex and feeling energized.
The best diet in the world, is a sustainable one, and one that fits into your lifestyle, so it is always good to have a plan B.
Try simply eating protein with every meal with a couple of portions of vegetables and a large glass of water. Drop out sweets and biscuits for a few days to a week, and you will be surprised the effect that will have on your body composition, (fat vs muscle)
LET’S SMASH THE MYTH OF BUILDING MUSCLE AND LOSING WEIGHT AT THE SAME TIME.
Simply put it is not the best approach. Is it possible, yes. Is it optimal, no it’s not.
Want to build muscle? Great! Find out you daily calorie requirement using My fitness pal. Then increase that number by 10%. Get yourself a strength training program and go for it.
Want to lose weight? Fantastic! Do the same as the above. But this time decrease that number by 10%.
It is much better for your goals and sanity to be working towards one of the goals rather than going backwards and forward between the two damn it.
Set yourself realistic goals and track your progress, weight, measurements and strength to see how you are improving. How about a mini-program of short, mid and long term goals?
- Short (1 Week) Example: No sweets, crisps, biscuits or fizzy drinks.
- Mid (6 Week) Example: Make it to the gym 3 times a week
- Long (12 Weeks) Example: Lose 5-10kg or gain 3kg of lean muscle and drop body fat
It can actually go the other way in the sense that you get so obsessed with healthy eating that it has the effect of stopping you being happy and enjoying life. So what are you to do?
HAVE YOU HEARD OF ORTHOREXIA?
Orthorexia is an unhealthy obsession with healthy eating, often developed by external influences and faulty education that has created beliefs around foods. Labelling foods as good and bad, and then only eating ‘good’ or ‘clean’ foods
» This can lead to other obsessions or dietary restrictions such as anorexia or bulimia
» Education/therapy and understanding of the science of foods and nutrition is a large part of the solution
This really is NOT the way to go and not at all what flexible dieting is about. Going back to why we eat healthily, I diet should enhance your life. Here is a FREE guidebook on how it can help you:
So how different is a burger and a wholemeal sandwich? Well, they certainly don’t look too different and on most occasions, a burger will look a lot more appetizing.
But think a bit deeper and it’s easy to see your average burger has very little quality meat/protein in it, is minus any valuable fibre or micro-nutrient due to it being processed for a longer shelf life and will quite likely leave shop-bought or from a fast-food chain.
It’s a quick fix and of course you are a busy bee, so as long as you can keep it to the 20% and limit how often you have such treats then it isn’t going to have too much of an impact on your fitness goals and you get those six-pack abs after all.
Health, balance and living a little can be a lot more enjoyable than tipping the scale one way of the other. Another useful tool for keeping track of how you are doing in your fat loss efforts is Cronometer, give it a go.
The Cron-o-meter will help you track your macronutrients and micronutrients so you will know exactly what is going in to your body and what you will need more or less of.
IF YOU DON’T WANT TO OR SIMPLY CAN’T FIND THE TIME TO TRACK THAT’S COOL TOO! JUST SET YOURSELF SOME EASY TO FOLLOW RULES LIKE THIS:
» One meal out for enjoyment, not a whole day
» Have a starter, or dessert, or alcohol, not all 3
» Start with protein on the plate to ensure satiety
» Always eat your meals with plenty of vegetables
» One plate at the buffet, not 3
» Don’t eat just because it’s there, just what’s on your plate
» Eat light during the day in preparation for a bigger
evening meal (Fill up on lean meats and fibrous vegetables)
» Keep portion sizes under control, and be aware of foods that have a high-calorie content and you should be OK
» And make sure to EXERCISE. Health and fitness can benefit your life in so many ways
Above all just keep a balanced approach. ‘Flexible’ doesn’t mean hammering Ben and Jerri’s and pizzas every night and having a banana to make up for it. Remember the 20% rule…
Your health is the most important factor here and it is down to us just making healthy choices. Life gets busy and stressful and we all like to comfort ourselves with ‘comfort’ food. But with flexible dieting, you can allow yourself a bit of freedom to enjoy nice foods.
There’s no need to lock yourself away from all social events and become over-obsessed with Tupperware, chicken and broccoli when to be healthy (in my opinion) is to be happy and content with yourself and giving equal attention to all areas of life.
Friends family, your partner, emotional wellbeing, fitness, learning and truly making the most out of the many opportunities that are available to us in this day and age.
This is a way you can keep both sides of the coin entertained. Have fun with the things you enjoy, while still being able to have the focus to achieve your fitness goals long term. Simplicity, enjoyment and sustainability are key with any diet.