In the time I’ve spent working with clients as a personal trainer, I’ve noticed there are a few things that all of my success stories have in common. None of those things include diets with excessive calorie or macronutrient restriction, deprivation, or crazy workout programs. None of the success stories did pyramid scheme diet programs that included shakes and “metabolism boosters” with a hefty price tag. They all do what most people don’t like to hear: eat a balanced diet and exercise.
1) They all food journal… EVERY DAY… no matter what. I believe in food journaling because, if you’re overweight, chances are that you eat too much or you’re not making appropriate food choices. For example, it’s easy to walk by the candy dish in the office and pop a 20 calorie candy in your mouth without even thinking about it. Over the course of the day, and the week, those 20 calorie candies add up. Food journaling will make you aware of the “extras” that are adding up and preventing you from reaching your goals. My success stories log everything, good AND bad, every day.
2) They’re honest with themselves. I don’t know if you know this, but I always know when you’re not honest in your food journal or about your exercise habits. Bodies tell the truth. It doesn’t much matter if you are not honest with me, but the real issue is that you’re not honest with yourself, and will never reach your goal if that’s the case. We are all human and we eat ice cream and pizza and get lazy and don’t exercise sometimes. Nobody is judging you for that. My success stories accept when they are derailed and jump right back on track.
3) They find balance. Being aware and pro-active is healthy, being obsessive is not. My success stories are able to stay on track without being obsessive about food and exercise. Do you have to give up some things on a daily basis (ie donuts and cupcakes)? Yes. Does that mean you have to avoid going out to eat or bring your own diet food to a restaurant? No. It’s a great idea to get 30-60 minutes of exercise in daily, but if you don’t, it doesn’t mean you should throw in the towel. Some exercise is always better than none. Finding your own balance means you will be happy while working toward your goals and you will be able to maintain when you reach them!