This post is for those who are completely fed up with trying to hit a goal that seems unreachable…
You’re probably thinking: What’s the deal? Why won’t the weight come off? Or why can’t I seem to get stronger and more fit when I am putting in all of this effort? You are doing everything you can think of to make it happen…
There’s one simple thing standing between you and all that you strive for. One. Simple. Thing.
And here it is…You eat too many calories. OR, you don’t eat them at the right time, in the right proportion, based on your activity level.
Wait, don’t give me the excuse that, “I only eat healthy calories.” That’s great, but even healthy calories add up to extra pounds when we let them go unchecked. And all of us have our own ideas about what it means to eat healthfully.
Back to Basics: Why Calorie Counting Works
You may have heard about the professor from Kansas State University, Mark Haub, who performed a famous junk food diet. Professor Haub proved a powerful lesson for anyone who still has weight to lose, so let’s listen up.
In a demonstrative experiment for his nutrition class, Professor Haub ate a diet of pure junk food for 2 months. I’m talking candy bars and packaged snacks – the kinds of things you find in a snack machine.
You’d expect him to gain weight, right? Well, there was one catch. He was only allowed to eat 1800 calories each day. Yes, those calories were pure junk, but the limit was firmly put at 1800 calories.
Before the experiment, Professor Haub’s typical calorie intake was closer to 2600 calories. So his junk food diet put him at an 800 calorie per day deficit.
Boy did that calorie deficit pay off. Within 2 months he had dropped 30 pounds, bringing his BMI from overweight down to normal.
No, we’re NOT recommending a junk food diet as your answer for everything. What we are pointing out is how powerful a reduction in calories is when it comes to redefining old patterns.
Do you know how many calories you eat each day? And how much each seemingly small slip up can put you out?
If you’re not sure, don’t worry. You’re about to learn the one tool that will change everything! First we need to get to the bottom of how many calories you’re eating each day.
Yes, even those healthy calories.
Before you start whining, let me explain. Food journaling doesn’t involved lugging around a journal, writing down each food item throughout the day then looking everything up at the end of the day to manually tally calories like it used to.
These days food journaling has gone digital, and tracking your calories only takes seconds of your time.
Here’s what I need you to do:
#1: Download a food journal application to your smart phone. At the touch of your fingers you’ll be able to look up food items and instantly see your running calorie tally. Many of these programs also sync with your activity trackers as well, and automatically adjust according to how much exercise you do on a daily basis.
Our Recommendation: MyFitnessPal
If you’re interested in getting started, follow this prompt, and one of our Health & Fitness Specialists can work to educate you on what sort of things to look for, how to use the app to it’s full capacity, and how to make meaningful changes, over time.
#2: Meet with your doctor to make sure all of your levels are in check (or just to establish a baseline), and to ensure that you’re ready to initiate a change. Eat healthy, fresh foods and when you decide to indulge, make sure to do so within your target calorie and nutrient ranges.
#3: Meet with us for a consistent and challenging exercise routine that’s in sync with your new eating plan.
These three, simple steps will give you structure and clarity that you need when it comes to making food choices and will quickly result in pounds lost and fitness goals achieved.
Once your goal weight is met and your activity level is where it should be, your target calorie range will be adjusted for maintenance. Sounds good, right?