Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Why do diets fail?

Structure is key to real success no matter what your goals are!

Structure is the key to lifestyle change. Many of us use the word “diet” with short-term deprivation, something we can go “on” and go “off” of. This is already setting us up for failure. To many decisions to make, yet we really don’t make smart decisions. We know we must cut calories, so we eat less of everything, and our body rebels. How about we actually sit down and think things through, set some realistic goals instead of just calling anything and everything a “diet”, or maybe starting some new hip fad diet because you want something fast. You need to plan in advance so that you avoid having to make dozens of daily decisions about diet and physical activity. Investing in a structured exercise program and nutrition, frees your mind from decision fatigue. As the saying goes, “Failing to plan is planning to fail”. There’s too much pressure on what’s labeled as good and bad foods (sugar, for example). Nothing is good nor bad, you just have to be accountable for your macro intake! I love this article by Menno of the “sugartruth”. 

Overall lifestyle change should be your priority. If you don’t keep your diet on check, or at least very healthy, you can't get optimal results. As well workouts should be individualized depending on your fitness level.  I love this guy Menno's train of thought. There are so many great coaches, physiologist, scientists etc. that have great advice and information. Instead of me writing a really long blog, I decided to share links to these articles that might help you understand more about why diets fail.

As a female, I think we have it harder. I will give my opinion because I've been the yo-yo dieter, the confused one looking for easy tricks, and fell for well-advertised products. 

Diets fail because:

  • There is no structure.
  • Unrealistic goals are made.
  • We obsess about number and calories.
  • We give up if we feel like we've messed up.
  • We don't know where to start.
I Am human and LOVE FOOD! Sometimes I have abs other times I don't.

When you see results it will motivate you, but being so lean all the time isn't healthy just be happy with any changes you see. I too suffer when I am not as lean as I want to be, even athletes go crazy, but we are realistic too.

The best answer I can give is to first get moving and get into lifting. Then start a healthy lifestyle by taking processed foods out and limiting them. Never put foods in a bad/good category because you will crave what you can’t have. Finally start increasing protein to help with hunger. That doesn’t mean go drink a shake (although adding a shake into your diet isn't bad, especially post weight training), it means include more meats, dairy, fish etc. This will hold you down (especially if you include fiber; vegetables). Now once you feel ready to learn, invest in someone who knows what they are doing and can guide you to learn about macronutrients and micronutrients.  If you're going to invest in anything it should be on your health and in knowledge. 

People are impatient. They want it fast and live in this dogma of fad diets and misconception. I was at fault too! I definitely understand why women are impatient especially the menstrual cycle messes everything up even more, but it is very important. I will discuss more on menstrual cycle and its importance in a different article. I leave you with this, we are humans and might mess up, but we shouldn't give up!

These are pics of me off season. I look into the mirror and wish I could be lean and not suffer, but it's not realistic. Instead I've learned to admire what I've built, and know that it's not over yet! There are 2 seasons for us and its not just for psychological benefits but for physiological ones too. You too can achieve your goals, just learn to be realistic and do it correctly. We all struggle, but sticking to it and getting back up when we fall is true success.

 Watch this video that another great researcher Alan Aragon talks about fad diets:

 Lyle Mcdonald’s article on why diets fail:

 Last but not least, another physique coach whom I admire and respect is Menno Henselmans. He wrote a great article about why diets fail and the advice of “eat less, move more” is bad advice. He talks as well about structure and its importance for a healthy active lifestyle. 

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