We are incredibly fortunate to live during a time in which we have access to infinite amounts of information with a mere click of a button or tap of a finger. Internet articles, YouTube videos, Facebook posts, tweets, podcasts and blogs are available in excess, with every topic covered—diet and fitness being no exception. On top of that, we get a constant influx of information from media, friends, family, coworkers, gym mates, etc.
This is great news, right? There is all of this amazing information, a lot of it from a variety of reliable, smart and credible sources. Hooray! I’ll have all the answers! I’ll know exactly what to do in the gym and exactly what to eat. But, information can be conflicting and is constantly changing. Not to mention each source suggests that their information, their method of teaching/training/eating is THE way to go. So how’s a gal to know what to do? There are too many options!
I want to try each workout, implement each new dietary mantra … try it all and find the best! It’s too much. It’s overwhelming. And the thing that I’ve learned is that doing too much at once just stalls progress.
So instead of freaking out and running to Jim after I’ve read an article suggesting that maybe my current workout isn’t the best because it doesn’t include what the author suggests (which I may or may not have done before), I remind myself that I have great confidence in my trainer and the program he builds. He asked me a very specific question when I started: “What do you want to accomplish?” I wanted to get stronger—I have. I wanted to get leaner—I have. I want a bigger booty—it’s getting there. All of those things have happened by sticking with a simple and straightforward approach that doesn’t change every few weeks just because I’m influenced by some new option. Same goes for the other Miss Fits. For example, I noticed one of them doing a dumbbell press during her warm-up, which I hadn’t seen her do before. So I asked her why she added it and she simply answered, “Oh, I just really want to get better at the bench press.” Now, she had a lot of good options that she could have chosen to address that goal, but she chose to modify a small part of her warm-up rather than do a full workout overhaul. She had a new specific goal, and she and Jim implemented a simple plan.
With my diet, I’ve learned through trial and error that it doesn’t have to be this giant burden of calorie-counting, macronutrient managing and tedious timing. I don’t have to be a die-hard follower of any dietary mantra or follow strict rules. When I’ve tried to implement too many of the things I’ve learned about all at once, I’ve ended up cranky, hungry and usually falling off the wagon completely. Now, I just keep it very simple. Eighty percent of my diet is meat, eggs, vegetables, nuts and fruit. I add a pad of butter and a shake of seasoning, then cook it, bake it or grill it and call it dinner. I eat when I’m hungry and don’t eat when I’m not. It’s simple, but not always easy, mind you, because it does take time and preparation. A lot of foods that I used to love have been eliminated, but I’ve learned that this is what works best for me.
So if you’re like me and get overwhelmed, try to make a plan and stick with it. You’ll never know if it’s right for you if you give it up two weeks later because you heard from a friend that she’s seeing great results following the “X” diet, or you read a new article that says the “Y” workout is the best around. Give your plan a shot. Be mindful that what works well for one individual may not work for another. If it’s truly not right for you after you’ve given it a good old-fashioned try, figure out WHY it didn’t work and adjust accordingly. Remember, you’ve got plenty of good options.