if one suddenly decides to pick some new nutrition plan and start changing old habits many difficulties might appear. usually the person is hit by the huge variety of plans, strategies and opinions in the media. however choosing the best and the most right one is not the hardest thing to do while sticking to it and maintaining the habit is. therefore i would like to share some ideas that might help achieving this.
1. defining a goal
that is the most important thing to do before starting to look for some information. you must clearly decide what would you like to do with your body and health. you should understand that whatever the goal is, it will most likely take a much longer period of time than it seems in the beginning. therefore just sitting down, grabbing a piece of paper and writing down something like
“i would like to gain some muscle” or
“i would like to lose some fat”
is an amazing start. you can also think about why do you want to achieve this, how much muscle would you like to gain and so on, i.e. just think about the goal. do not just grab it from somewhere or even worse do not try to base it on someone’s opinion. be yourself, be sincere and have in mind the necessity of consistency.
if you ask why do i consider this step so important here is a quick answer: once a person knows what he or she truly wants, it is much easier to stick to some kind of routine which will lead the person towards the goal. otherwise if doubtful it will be extremely hard to maintain the consistency.
2. measuring the aim
it is said that nobody should set their goals too high because in such case a quick give up and failure is highly probable. however in my opinion you should raise the bar for yourself as high as you want to. there is a very simple trick: the output is proportional to the input. therefore if you want to be much more above the average you will have to perform with a much better input than the average person does. since you are the master of your behaviour, you are the only one who is responsible for defining what is too strict and too much for you. however, the higher the goal, the more consistency and discipline it requires. but again – you have the power to decide.
3. learning the basics
this is a step where the majority of people do mistakes. instead of learning about how the body works, how the energy is stored and used later, etc., people tend to just copy-paste some nutrition plans from the web and try sticking to them. unfortunately usually this does not work for a long time. and to be worse these well known ideas and plans are quite often a total nonsense. i have in mind something like these:
- 6 days of fresh juice diet
- not eating after 6pm
- eating a banana before sleep makes you fat
- i am getting fat because of looking at carbohydrate rich foods
and so on. there are countless examples on the internet. however people stick to them and think that they are doing an amazing job. that is because of the lack of knowledge about basic concepts.
do not be afraid to spend some time researching. do not look for exact plans that realise one or other principle. build some theoretical background. once again if you are wondering why such information is crucial, here is an answer: once you know the basics, you become able to create the nutrition plan and alter your habits in a way that is sustainable for you and is not just a copy-paste list from some bodybuilder’s website. this will increase the probability of sticking to the plan significantly.
4. applying the knowledge
once knowledge sits down to your brain, it is the very time to start applying that. at this point in time you are not afraid of the major flood of bullshit information in the media: you are capable of distinguishing what is good and what is bad for you. now you can apply it to your everyday routine and adjust in order it to fit you as best as it can. do not be afraid to experiment. try counting macronutrients, try ignoring them. try fasting, try eating many times a day. you know yourself the best and therefore can decide what approach you are going to follow. it should not be like taking a random shoe from a pile of them, trying it on and then if it hurts adjusting the way you position your foot on the ground. this is completely the other way around – you know what your feet are like and you can pick a shoe that suits you the best and does not cause pain while walking.
5. being consistent
now this is the key. it does not matter which approach you have chosen in order to reach your goal. for example if the aim is to lose weight you must understand that the caloric deficit is the key here. and from here it is only up to your imagination how you are going to create the deficit. and as i have mentioned earlier, you can experiment and look for the comfortable shoe but you must not forget the basics and stick to what drives these basics. this consistency is essential and will lead you towards the goal no matter if you eat once or six times a day.
the key idea which i want to share here is that once you know the rules and understand the game it is much easier to stick to it, play it and win it. it is worth investing some time in reading the rules and thinking about your own strategies rather than just picking a cheat sheet that has been created by someone else and has completely nothing to do with you.