Taking a flexible approach to your nutrition is awesome for a couple of reasons:
⚡️You don’t feel deprived
⚡️ You are in control of your food choices
⚡️You don’t restrict yourself from foods you love
That being said, sometimes along our nutrition journey, we forget that there are any sacrifices to be made at all. While all the above still rings true, depending on what your goals are, there are compromises and sacrifices to be made and in order to reach your goals, and you need to be okay with them.
If your goal is to get shredded…
That’s great. At one point or another, that seems to be everyone’s goal and there’s nothing cooler than looking in the mirror and admiring the fruits of your labor. Speaking of labor…if your focus is primarily on getting lean, then chances are you’re not going to accomplish the task doing the same things your friends who are not focused on fat loss are doing. This is what it takes to be shredded:
⚡️Not eating out on the regular or being in situations where you have to guesstimate what’s in your food.
⚡️Not drinking on the regular and being okay ordering a seltzer with lime instead of the vodka sodas your friends are having.
⚡️Potentially switching your exercise from fun metcons to more aesthetic-focused bodybuilding workouts.
⚡️Being a little hungry. Hunger is a precursor to fat loss and is a good thing when focused on leaning out, but you need to embrace that feeling but also keep it in check by eating for volume (all the veggies!).
If your goal is to build muscle and move heavy weight…
This is often the part that people want to skip. They want arms like Serena or a chest like Arnold, but don’t want to go through the muscle building process that comes along with it. Fat loss will not build you muscle and if you don’t spend part of your year on giving your body everything it needs to push through and recover from exercise, your fat loss efforts will make you look more ‘skinny’ than ‘shredded’. This is what it takes to be jacked:
⚡️You have to be okay not seeing the scale move down week-to-week. In a culture where we are hyper-focused on losing weight, you have to understand that that’s not the goal here.
⚡️You have to be okay with carrying a little extra body fat. In order to truly give your body what it needs to push in exercise and recover from that exercise, you need to be eating at maintenance or even a bit of a surplus. That can come with some body fat gain. Remember, you can focus on getting rid of that when you switch to a fat loss cycle.
⚡️You have to measure your progress on biofeedback (workout performance, PRs, energy levels) and not on aesthetics (scale number, what you see in the mirror).
⚡️You have to stress the basics — getting 7+ hours of sleep, taking appropriate rest days, keeping food quality high, etc.
Have questions about the above or want to work with a coach to reach your goals? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!