“The best way to break a bad habit is to drop it” – Leo Aikman
Let me tell you a story that changed my body forever AND I HOPE IT CHANGES YOURS TOO…
I was 19 years old and just finished stuffing my face at the unlimited bowl special at Flatop Grill.
If you’ve never been to a Flatop Grill, imagine an unlimited buffet full of meats, noodles and lots of pita bread.
That’s right – ALL YOU CAN EAT.
More importantly, I was overweight at that time and you can imagine how much guilt I felt for going buck wild on food that I didn’t need to eat.
That’s me on the right (UGH), back in 2009…
At 220 pounds I was unhappy with my body and decided it was time to do something about it.
At 19 years old, I began what turned out to be my greatest passion, HEALTHY EATING.
Let me tell you it didn’t come without learning the hard way…
I began reading blogs and asking advice to anyone I could find in the health industry. There was a common theme among those I sought help from.
I would take a couple powders, a handful of pills and cruise on to get a better body. I thought this would be easy. Awesome!
BOY WAS I WRONG.
After spending hundreds of dollars on misleading supplements and frustrated to the point of not wanting to eat, I asked myself one more question…
Why not minimalism?
Instead of including hyped supplements into my diet and adhering to a strict routine, what if I focused on cutting out my less healthy habits?
I remember thinking to myself, if I could remove the bad habits from my diet, wouldn’t I would be left with only good or less unhealthy ones?
I decided to give it a shot and the results changed my life. Within a week I noticed a difference in my body mass and for the first time, I was actually starting to see a better body.
There were 5 core habits in particular that I dropped to make my greatest transformation. Some of these you may not struggle with while others you may. I don’t recommend dropping all 5 habits at once as that can significantly disrupt your daily routine.
Doing so can be overwhelming and you’re best suited to ease into any behavioral change.
Try one or two at time and see how you adapt. Progress into all 5 and I bet you’ll notice a difference.
1. Eating Every 2 – 3 Hours
Have you ever found yourself stressing over preparing meals throughout the day and then obsessing about eating them every 2 – 3 hours? In my experience, I have found that telling someone that they have to eat every 2 – 3 hours is more of a deterrent than a catalyst for long term goals.
3 reasons not to eat every 2 – 3 hours:
*It’s demanding – Unless you have the freedom to work as you please, remembering to cook and carry your meals with you will become exhausting.
*You will lose joy for eating– Constantly thinking when your next meal will drain your appetite.
*Constant stress on your digestive tract – Eating more frequently gives your digestive tract less time to rest and ultimately less time to purify yourself. The increase in activity can also lead to an increase in gas.
My NEWER less-obsessive advice centers around not letting yourself go longer than 4 – 5 hours WITHOUT eating. It’s not over the top and advice you uphold for a long-term strategy.
Assuming you are awake for 14 – 16 hours of the day which is reasonable for most, you will be eating at least 4 meals. I like to work SMARTER not HARDER.
The effects lost on your metabolism by not eating every 2 – 3 hours are null. The biggest determinant of weight loss goals is not how often you eat or the rate at which your metabolism burns food but rather the quality of the food you’re eating.
2. Using The Phrase “Everything In Moderation” Too Frequently
THE HOLY GRAIL OF WANNABEE NUTRITION GOERS. Using this phrase too frequently is a common occurrence that I come across among friends and family members who want a better body but lack the self control.
These are people I refer to as the wannabees. I say that because they’re aware of the importance of eating healthy and choose NOT to act but rather just ACKNOWLEDGE its importance.
The cliché, “everything in moderation” is proven history backed health advice. However, using it too frequently or as a an excuse for eating a cheeseburger everyday can have counter-intuitive implications.
3. Avoiding Cheat Days Because You Want To Adhere to A Strict Diet
Many super amped up newbies begin a nutrition program with the thought of avoiding cheat days. Cheat days are beneficial beyond just satisfying your palate with a savory slice of pizza now and then.
They are liberating celebratory meals that allow you to pace yourself for the long haul.
The absence of cheat days generally only propel those who compete professionally or have experience dieting. I recommend treating yourself to a cheat meal once every couple days. As you become more comfortable with your new habits, then cut back on them.
4. Cutting Out Carbs Completely
Carbohydrates provide your body with the energy of life, glucose. Abstaining from them completely is dangerous. It’s important to reduce your carbohydrate intake significantly, as processed carbs can be one of the biggest determinants of weight gain.
For nutritional dieting purposes, carbohydrate should constitute 20% of your diet. The best times to consume your carbs are in the morning after your body has been in food deprivation mode for 6 – 8 hours and following a workout, as your glycogen levels will be depleted.
5. Weighing Yourself Too Frequently
Most of us use a scale to measure our body composition because we believe its a reflection of our progress.
However, there are many factors that can’t be measured by the scale. Factors like hydration levels, clothing and time of day all determine the accuracy of the scale.
For more more obvious reasons, weighing yourself can be your greatest source of motivation or paranoia.
We ought to not think of a healthy lifestyle as strictly the numbers on the scale. Less numerical measures like energy level, the vibrancy of your skin and physical appearance are less demanding forms of measuring progress.
LET THE CONVERSATION BEGIN
There are more than 5 unhealthy habits that when dropped can improve your overall well-being. I want to know the most influential habit that kept you from getting a better body. When you dropped it when did you being noticing results?