In the first installment of my fitness blog, I talked about the five components of fitness and how they impact your progression toward a fitness goal. Anyone who has the goal to change their body composition (i.e., fat-to-muscle ratio) must have a plan of action for each of the five components.
Far too many fitness enthusiasts have good intentions and a weak plan of action. I’ve observed this in scores of gyms throughout the last three decades that I’ve been involved in the fitness industry. Your average gym member will go to the gym regularly, yet has no nutrition plan to back this up. Or they eat healthy and skip workouts almost every week. Neither of these scenarios is a recipe for success, obviously.
For the next five installments of my blog, I am going to go into some detail regarding each of the five components. Today we will talk about component No. 1: Proper Nutrition.
PROPER NUTRITION: What does this mean? It means having an effective pattern of eating every day that compliments your training schedule, fits into your daily routine easily, includes foods you actually like to eat and produces results. You may ask, “How can these things be true of a diet all at the same time?” The answer is “Easily.”
The challenge with coming up with a meal plan for anyone is the fact that everyone is an individual and there is no one diet plan that will work for everyone who has the same goal. One of the first things I look at when assessing what a client may need to eat is their individual rate of oxidation.
Oxidation, simply put, is the rate of speed that your body turns food into energy. Why is it important to know if you are a “fast oxidizer,” “mid oxidizer” or “slow oxidizer”? Because this piece of information allows me to pinpoint the exact BALANCE OF PROTEIN, CARBOHYDRATES AND FATS THAT IS APPORPRIATE FOR YOUR BODY. That’s right. Unless you have an idea of your oxidative type, you really cannot know how to most effectively use foods as a tool to achieve your fitness goals.
After a simple test to determine oxidation, I then have the client fill out a food preference sheet. This allows me to see what foods they like…a huge factor contributing to the success of any food plan! There’s no reason to eat foods you hate day after day to lose fat or gain muscle. A simple balance of nutrients using healthy foods the client enjoys will get them to their goals…AND KEEP THEM THERE!
Lastly, I take a look at the client’s daily schedule, allowing me to determine the best times for meals and snacks; times that will not interfere with their work schedule, lifestyle, etc. This way they know they can fit these meals into their lives easily, effectively and consistently!
When a client starts eating according to a plan that is laid out with these components in mind, progress begins right away and continues until they meet their goals.
Do not underestimate the importance of component No. 1. It will make the difference between spinning your wheels in the gym…and stunning success.