Last week we started a series about, “What do you do when progress stops?”
In our first installment we discussed monitoring your daily movement and ways to improve your day-to-day activity. If you missed that one, click below and catch up.
Now let’s move on to everyone’s favorite topic… Nutrition!
The next reason you may have stopped seeing results is that your nutrition habits have gradually declined. I’m not big into saying nutrition is 72% of your results or making up numbers that you may see elsewhere, but suffice it to say it is a BIG part of your progress or lack thereof.
Here’s what this looks like in a real world example.
You might have made some initial progress by following our core principles of nutrition:
– Have lean protein at each meal.
– Have a fruit or vegetable at each meal.
– Include a small amount of healthy fat at each meal.
– Focus on eating nutrient dense foods.
So for example, dinner might be grilled fish, mixed veggies, and some roasted potatoes.
One day you don’t feel like fish, so you switch it to 99% lean ground turkey – still fine.
Then you think to yourself, man that’s a little dry. I’ll use 90/10 ground beef. Fat and calorie count increase.
Perhaps next you don’t necessarily want roasted potatoes anymore, the bag or “organic sweet potato fries” is probably close enough. Again, fat and calorie content increase.
Then, maybe things get a bit busy and there’s no time to roast those veggies, so you just throw some lettuce and tomato on top of the beef. Now, fiber and nutrient density decrease… you’ll be hungrier sooner than before.
You also know that it’s ok to have a little cheese now and then so you throw that on top of the beef.
Finally, what’s the point of eating it all with a fork and knife, you can have bread as long as you keep the serving size in check.
Now, just a few weeks later you’ve gone from a great meal of fish, veggies, and potatoes to eating
…bread, ground beef, cheese, lettuce tomato, and sweet potato fries
Most people just call that a burger!
Of course I’ve used an extreme example, but it shows how incremental small but regular changes can put us over our daily caloric intake and keep us from reaching our goals.
So what to do then?!
Well if you were running a business or household and you noticed there wasn’t the same amount of cash flow you’d probably look over your bank statements right?
This is no different.
When clients are stuck, I almost always ask them for a 3-5 day food log that includes Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
We then sit down and go over each meal with a Yes or No approach.
Was this meal compliant with your goals or not?
Depending on where you are in your journey, if we’re not hitting 80-90% compliance I wouldn’t expect to see much progress.
The number one error here is trying to jump right back to 100%.
This is often overwhelming, leaving most just wanting to quit. Instead, I’d suggest trying to be just a bit ‘better’ than before. Here’s an example:
Let’s say that over your last 21 meals ( 3 meals per day, 7 days a week) you noticed only 14 of them are compliant. Leaving you with 66% adherence.
Can we be just 10% better? It’s really only improving 2 meals.
So your goal for the following week would be 16 compliant meals.
Until we’ve mastered this incremental improvement, we don’t add on any other goals!
We then repeat this process from week to week until you have slowly nudged your way back to that 80-90% level.
So in short, if you’re stuck, here’s what I want you to do:
– Audit what you eat for the next 3-5 days
– It MUST include the weekends (this means alcohol too!)
– Give yourself a grade
– How many of those meals fit the core principles listed above?
– If you fall below 80-90%, improve by 1-2 meals each week.
I hope you found this information easy to understand and simple to implement. If you are still overwhelmed and you want to discuss some specific issues, remember I’m offering complimentary 30-minute problem solving sessions with all of our clients for the rest of August! Let’s hop on a call and get you moving in the right direction.
Keep moving forward,