diet."? It's true! (although I got by with it a lot in my late teens and 20's!) Don't you just loathe those people who can eat whatever they want, not gain an ounce and still look lean? Trust me when I say those people are definitely the minority.
When I became interested in nutrition my eyes were opened up to the amazing benefits of a healthy diet - not just on the scale, but also with respect to energy, mood, sleep and overall well-being. I can't tell you the last time I've had an afternoon lull and wanted to take a nap!
Most people think starting an exercise program is a magic pill. They declare," I'm going to workout five days a week." The problem comes when they are consistent with their program and really don't notice a whole lot of difference. Yes, they are getting in better shape. They can most likely run faster, lift more, and the like (which is great!) but they will begin to get discouraged when the scale doesn't move and their clothes don't fit differently. So what's the solution?
Let's digress and do some math for a moment. Let's say you decide to exercise 5 days a week (because 7 days a week is unrealistic, who has that kind of time, and yes, you do need a rest day!). You only have to make that choice 5 times per week. You throw on your workout clothes and go for a walk, go the gym, pop in a video, etc. On the nutrition side, let's assume you eat 3 meals per day with a mini-meal or snack added in several days a week too. The total times per week you have to CHOOSE what to eat is 25! Five times more than the amount you have to exercise! So is nutrition five times more important than exercise? Let's put it a different way.
80% nutrition and 20% exercise.
I know this statement is not what you want to hear, but it is absolutely, 100% true. If you have made the commitment to exercise and are not seeing the results you want, it's time to analyze your food. It's also time to ask yourself some questions:
What are my goals ? Be as specific as possible.
Why do I want to change? (get more energy, sleep better, improve blood work.
Am I willing to cook more often?
Are my daily vices ( chocolate, cereal, fast food, etc) really worth how they make me feel?
Am I using food as a substitute for something else and/or is it filling a void in my life?
Answering these questions is a crucial part of moving toward success. It will help you assess your readiness to change and empower you when faced with those 25 meals per week.
Confused on how to eat healthy? Here's a great place to start. In his book The Primal Blueprint Mark Sisson developed the primal food pyramid, which is vastly different from the USDA food pyramid. The USDA food pyramid is definitely NOT the blueprint for good health, but that's a whole other post! You can also check out his blog , Marks Daily Apple, for a wealth of information including recipes, research, and success stories.