When it comes to losing weight or body fat, everybody wants results yesterday. People often search for the quickest fix or route, the latest fad to solve their problems and in most cases that don’t really care about the consequences all the much – especially when it comes to their health. This is unfortunately the way society is at present, achieving your desired body image is more important then health to most people. They would rather look good, then feel good.
Its the idea of getting those results in 6 weeks instead of 6 months, its the idea that all your problems will be solved once you have your dream body that draws people in. It is a known fact that if you offered someone results in 6 weeks where they would feel terrible, or 6 months and they wouldn’t feel terrible they would in most cases still pick the 6 weeks.
But what would the 6 weeks take? Excessive training everyday, starvation on poverty calories and most likely a lack of any form of education or knowledge base which will leave you finishing it virtually impossible to sustain and maintain any results you achieve. Fast results could vanish just as quickly. This route in most scenarios will in the future lead to a person yo-yo dieting, restricting and bingeing on food and winding up with messed up forms of body image issues and a terrible relationship with food. Both to a point where they see nothing but their own flaws, and they let every thought and decision that has to be made around food and drink consume their emotions. Yes you may have gained the results you wanted, but at what cost? Ask yourself where do you go then? If you cant answer that then common sense will tell you you’ve went the wrong route.
Now lets look at the longer route. By now when we’ve mentioned dieting and the long term most people will have let out a big sigh, rolled their eyes to heaven, will have lost any enthusiasm they had and will most likely have lost interest. How can we make this long approach sound more appealing?
Lets give it a try.
First of all, everyones goal revolves around losing body fat in some way, shape or form. Contrary to everyones beliefs, fat loss is a SLOW process. You cannot force fat off, or choose where it comes off or push your body in to losing fat. This is one of many reasons why dropping your calories to basement levels and quadrupling your training and cardio levels in one massive fat loss attack isn’t the best answer. So if we have accepted that the fat loss process is slow, then a long approach would suit it better wouldn’t it? Yes, you would be right.
You also wont have to feel as poorly as you would on the rapid approach. Calories wouldn’t have to be as low, food choices wouldn’t have to be as restrictive and you wouldn’t have to spend hours upon hours trining and doing cardio each week. You would just need to be consistent That really is the task that will have the biggest impact. Straight away in your head your probably thinking this sounds more realistic? More sustainable? You should, and if any attempts to PERMANENTLY lose weight and fat are to be achieved shouldn’t it be realistic and sustainable? Yes, your most probably right again.
Lastly, it gives you time to form long lasting habits. Habit – a word so often forgot about. That motivation you have to get in shape, eat well, manage stress, get good sleep, skip out on drinking alcohol on the weekends – this motivation isn’t permanent. There will be times you have no motivation, times you find tough mentally. This is where people fall on their subconscious habits to decide their actions. If you have poor habits, such as fast food and partying you will most likely revert back to these actions leaving you off track and disappointed. However if you have over time developed smart food choices, smart decision making when it comes to social events and you have developed the mental fortitude to keep discipline in tact and keep your goals your main priority – these will be the habits you fall on to when motivation is low. Have you ever wondered how those people who always seem to look after themselves stay motivated all the time when its so hard? Truth is they don’t. They get tired and lose motivation at times just like everyone else. They have just developed good habits that they do naturally without even thinking about them. This is a state I feel everyone should aim to achieve.
All above points take time. Yes, we as humans are impatient and we always want that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Sadly we cant force lasting results when it comes to nutrition and training, however if we put in the work and give it the patience it needs it will be worth it in the end. You will achieve a position you are happy with, one you worked for and one you earned.
As always, treat nothing as an absolute. Nothing in fitness, nutrition, fat loss etc is black and white. Some approaches work for some, different ones are needed for others. No one human is the same, we should not all follow the exact same approaches. Everything is always context dependent and the answer to everything is always IT DEPENDS. However from the hundreds and hundreds of people that come through the gym doors – the smart approach is always the best one.
We will leave it up to you to decide the route you wish to take…