Three Ways To Do Better on Any Nutrition Plan
When I first started nutrition coaching in 2007, some of my clients got fantastic results. Others, unfortunately, missed the mark.
At that point my approach to nutrition was simple. I’d encourage people to get as close to the perfect diet as they could. I’d say “Do this diet. Try it for a month. Here are all the rules. We’ll re-do your measurements in a month and see how much progress you make. Good luck!”
Turns out that was an overly simplistic method. Go figure.
Luckily I learned early on that it’s not just about what you eat or knowing what the perfect diet is. It’s about executing a nutrition plan consistently. And for that, you need effective implementation strategies. Knowledge is only power if you can apply it. That’s the trick.
If you struggle with consistency, here are three of my most useful and simple tips to get you on the right track.
As the saying goes, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. The #1 most important thing you can do and should do is to plan your meals ahead. This can range from hiring a meal delivery service, batch cooking most of your food on the weekend (highly recommended), or simply making a menu for the week and ensuring you have all the necessary ingredients. Having a few prepared foods, like you can get at the Big Carrot’s hot food bar, is an excellent insurance policy.
KEEP A FOOD JOURNAL
As simply as this is, writing down what you eat improves accountability. Multiple studies show this. It shines the spotlight on what you’re eating, thereby improving awareness and enabling better decision making.
HAVE THREE SPECIFIC THINGS TO FOCUS ON (OR FEWER)
If you’re trying to get healthier but you haven’t managed to stay consistent with big diet overhauls in the long-run, pick two or three big goals for the next four weeks. Here are a few examples: avoid sugar, reduce caffeine, get to bed at a certain time, stop snacking after dinner, eat vegetables at least twice a day, chew your food thoroughly and slow down your eating, eat a higher protein breakfast, exercise portion control or limit alcohol.
Try to make each goal simple and easily measurable. Then track them each day. For most people, I recommend setting your sights on an 80-85% success rate. That means you accomplish your objective 5-6 days out of the week.
Once you’ve mastered one batch of new habits, add a couple new ones. Pick things that you know you can be consistent with.
Remember that small changes, when done relentlessly, add up.
Peter Roberts is a sought after nutrition consultant and strength and conditioning coach in Toronto. He’s been the head coach at Quantum CrossFit since 2010 (East York’s most highly rated gym) and consulted with Canada Basketball and Rugby League Canada, among others. He provides free fitness and nutrition resources on his site peterrobertscoaching.com to teach people how to get fitter and feel great without it being a struggle.
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