A Practical Guide To Staying True To Your Diet
There’s without question, that if you want to reach your health and fitness goals, you need to stay consistent. Staying consistent goes far beyond your exercise routine. In fact, the more important variable that one needs to stay consistent with is their nutrition program. If your goal is to lose weight, it doesn’t matter how many miles you run or how many calories you burn if you are consuming more calories than you burn. If you want to pack on lean muscle mass, it doesn’t matter how heavy you benched or deadlift, if you are burning more calories than you take in, you’ll never add the size you want. But in today’s busy world, it’s difficult to stay consistent.
Life is Busy. We get it. Between hectic work schedules, school schedules, and socializing with friends - it often feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day. Adding a workout routine and nutrition program to your current schedule may feel like a daunting task - but if you want to get serious about your health and fitness goals, doing both is necessary. Here are some of the tips and tricks that make sticking to a nutritional program easier to follow.
Here’s What You Can Do
- Cook in Bulk
Preparing your meals in bulk is a great way to make your nutritional program more manageable. For example, if you work a traditional Monday-Friday schedule, dedicate time on Sunday to preparing your meals for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Cooking a lot of food at once does not multiply the amount of time it takes to cook! Cooking your meals in advance allows you to think strategically about what your meals need to be each day. By mid-week, you’ll need to cook again, and you should prepare the next 3-4 days of food.
- Have Storage Containers
This is often overlooked, but having enough Tupperware or pyrex dishes is key. If you follow the above step, (and you should!), you’ll need a place to store all that food. Rationing out the meals you made in bulk to individual dishes allows you to have every meal 100% prepared ahead of time. This is important because you should never be without the right meal. Doing so may force you to eat out, or consume a meal that isn’t aligned with your goals.
- Have a Wholesale Membership
Sams Club, Costco, and BJ’s are fantastic wholesale stores that have bulk sizes of just about everything! Eating can certainly be expensive, so you’ll want to find ways to reduce costs without killing the quality. You’d be beyond surprised by the quality of food you can find at these wholesale stores, and also beyond pleased with their prices!
- Use Supplements
The right supplement program will help you replace the nutrients you do not get with your food. Having a protein shake, or a mass-building shake can help replace a meal. The best thing about a protein shake is the fact that it is so easy to whip together. All you’ll need is a shaker bottle and water.
- Have a Cheat Day or Meal
Staying super strict with your nutritional program is challenging. Unless you are dieting for a bodybuilding or figure show, need to cut weight for a competition or have specific medical needs that require you to follow a specific diet, you should allow some flexibility in your diet. With that in mind, disciplined flexibility is what you should seek. For example, perhaps you dedicate a meal or two on the weekend to eating whatever it is you desire. Pizza, wings, burgers, ice cream - whatever! You’ll feel emotionally fulfilled, mentally recharged, and can get right back on your nutritional program the very next day.
- Recalibrate your Nutritional Program
If you went on a nutritional program with specific goals in mind, you need to recalibrate your program as you progress toward your goals. For example, the nutritional program you follow to lose 20 pounds is not the same program you need to follow once that weight is lost. If you want to gain lean muscle mass, you may find yourself having a casein protein shake before bed. Once you’ve reached your lean mass target, is that shake still needed? There is no right answer, you may have a new goal of adding 10 more pounds of lean muscle mass. But you should readjust your nutrition plan as you progress towards and reach your initial goal.
Don’t Give Up
Nutrition is incredibly important. Not only does the right nutrition program help you improve your overall health and wellness, a nutritional program can also help you reach your fitness goals. It doesn’t matter if you’re looking to lose weight, add lean muscle mass, or recover quicker, you can do all of that through good nutrition and supplementation. Staying consistent with your nutritional program will be a foundational piece to your overall fitness success journey.