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Lessons Learned from Years of Yo-Yo Dieting

Lessons Learned from Years of Yo-Yo Dieting

When it comes to losing weight and getting lean, I’ve struggled with all of the same stuff you’re struggling with right now. The biggest thing that’s allowed me to be a better coach for my peeps is the fact that I’ve made (and learned from) most of the nutrition mistakes in the book. Being able to say “I’ve been there, and I can help you” is a powerful coaching tool for me.

But this isn’t about me, it’s about how you can learn from my mistakes so that you build the body you desire and deserve.

Lesson #1

Exercise alone is not enough to get lean. “You can’t out-train a bad diet” is cliche, but true. No matter how hard you push yourself in the gym, you’ll look soft if you drink too much and eat like a child.

Your diet must be the foundation of your fat loss plan. Controlling calories is the only way to lose body fat, and you can’t rely on killer HIIT workouts to do that for you – you have to eat the right amount of calories and a good balance of protein, carbs, and healthy fats to fuel your body and stimulate fat loss.

Lesson #2

Super low calories work super well… until you crash and burn.

Starved yourself and lost weight? Well, duh. But eventually, your body adapts to super low calories because it likes homeostasis. When that adaptation occurs, fat loss slows. You’ll have to drop calories even lower, at which point your body adapts again, slowing your progress. Each time you drop calories, you lose a little more weight and break down a little more of your soul.

Eat food. It tastes good and keeps you alive. Just watch your portion sizes. All you need is a slight calorie deficit (100-300 calories below your body’s “maintenance” level) to lose weight. Nothing extreme about that.

Lesson #3

Most supplements are a scam. Yeah, I know, they promise you’ll lose fifteen pounds in ten days. But most supplements are full of questionable ingredients, are unregulated by the FDA, and can potentially do more harm than good. Supplement manufacturers are allowed to claim their products do basically anything.

I’ll repeat from above – just eat food. It tastes good and keeps you alive. You just have to watch your portion sizes.

The best supplements for fat loss are 7+ hours of sleep, eating protein and plants, and moving your body daily.

Lesson #4

Strength training is absolutely essential to building a leaner body. I tried a lot of different workouts in my 10-plus years of training. Running (gross), HIIT, and weights. I’ve noticed the best results with resistance training… not just for myself, but for my clients, too.

You don’t have to live in the gym to benefit from resistance training – two to three strength workouts per week is plenty for most people who just want to look and feel a little better.

Cardio has a place for heart health, endurance, and a little extra calorie burn. But it shouldn’t form the basis of a fat loss program.

Lesson #5

Hiring a coach can be a game changer.

If I had $1 for everyone who’s come to me, frustrated that their diet/exercise program hasn’t been effective, I’d have a lot of dollars. Having someone to support you when you want to quit and make objective, informed changes when things aren’t going according to plan is priceless.

PS: I have a coach. Why? Because I plan a dozen other peoples’ workouts/diets. I don’t need to be planning my own. And more importantly, because having a coach gives me someone to be accountable to, someone to ask questions, and someone to tell me to get my head out of my ass when I’m not following the plan.

Lesson #6

Finding an eating style that works for you is the only way to sustain results.

Sure, you could lose 20 lbs on keto… but what if you like beer, bread, pasta, and pretzels? Good luck sticking to keto! If you want to drop pounds quickly and put them back on again, go ahead and stick with those fad diets.

But how’s that working for you?

Instead of trying the next fad diet, find an eating lifestyle you can stick to for months or years. This may evolve over time, but it should be sustainable over long periods of time.

Lesson #7

The number on the scale or your pants or dress size won’t make you any happier.

I used to think that all my problems and insecurities would disappear if only I could look leaner or see my abs or whatever. But in the process of getting that lean, I realized that it wasn’t worth missing out on all the things that make life worth living – all the social situations you feel like avoiding so you don’t “ruin your diet” will make you far happier than seeing the scale drop 1/10th of a pound.

You know what will make you happier? Working on all the shit that’s actually making you miserable (hint, not your weight) like those bad habits that lead you to eat too much, drink too much, and move too little. The things that keep you feeling weak and miserable and somehow unworthy of being the person who takes control of their life.

 

When I say “I get it” …

I learned all this stuff the hard way over the last decade or so. I experimented with low calories, low carbs, paleo, various supplements, and a variety of training styles. So when I say, “I get it,” I’m not just saying that. I’ve been where you are. 

That personal experience (along with some nifty research and certifications) has enabled me to help dozens of people just like you to lose weight in a sustainable manner without crash diets or super-high intensity training programs. I’m thankful for those experiences because they help me to help you.

Want some help taking control of your fitness?

Shoot me a message and we’ll talk about what’s holding you back from getting in the best shape of your life.