Think hard about why you want to become stronger and fitter, it is different for everyone. To be successful in your endeavors, the reasons must stem from more than the superficial.
This does not mean you cannot change your body with superficial motivations but if you want to transform, rather than simply change your body, reasons stemming from an inner fire of some sort. This is compulsory in order to fuel consistent progression.
I want to explore the idea of whether you are on the path of progression or whether you are on the path of degeneration. Now I want to reiterate, this first segment is not exactly specific to fitness but here I will be outlying some fundamental concepts which will apply to your goals in changing your body composition. Whether it be fat loss or muscle gain. What you must understand in part 1 is that it is the bread and butter. It will make or break you in the long term, so read on.
There are two paths that people take in life and these two paths create two different types of people, all people fit into one or the other. One is a minority, this minority is the person you may envy if you are in the majority, let me explain. The majority are those on a path of degeneration, the minority on a path of progression. To be successful in losing fat and/or gaining muscle, you must make the decision to choose progression over degeneration.
To put this in perspective and relevance, progression would be training hard and eating what you should be eating. Degeneration would be consuming more than you know should, skipping a day you have promised yourself you were going to do cardio or binging and eating over the boundaries set for yourself. In the long term, looking at the overall scope of whether one is successful and achieves their goals in and out of the gym, progression must be > than degeneration. The greater the ratio between progression and degeneration the greater the depth of success you will acquire.
Let’s take a look at the pyramid above, we can see which variables must be focused on and with what urgency and priority; progression is first. You can have a perfect diet, but if you cannot sustain it, what good is it to you?
This is how I would like to approach your fitness goals, whether it be fat loss, muscle gain or both. Let’s say hypothetically you are a person who is crash dieting. You want to lose 19lbs of weight and choose to go on a diet for let’s say, 9 weeks. You drop your calories well below what you have been eating for the past few months due to your sudden burst of motivation. At first glance, sure this does make sense, you drop the amount of food you are eating drastically and then you lose weight. In many ways yes it can be this simple, but on the contrary, it is much more complex for the inexperienced.
The issue I have with this type of crash dieting is the fact that it isn’t a style of consumption that can be maintained for the long term and thus it is not sustainable. Remember, progress is accountable to whether one is consistent and this is reliant on whether a program is sustainable. What this means is that none of these can exist, if it’s not sustainable there will be no consistency and thus no progress, which equals degeneration and of course this gets nobody anywhere. A large percentage of people regaining weight after dieting. Go figure.
To summarize this, we can look at it as the myth of perfection. Thinking long term when dieting is, looking at the bigger picture of health and well-being rather than a sprint of suffering for a 6-week perfect diet plan. Even if weight loss is slower it will benefit you more.
Now you may be thinking this is all very informative and it makes sense that progression and sustainability should be a priority, but how can I make sure I stick to a diet plan and not fall through. How can you prevent yourself from deterring from the goals you have set for yourself and avoid degeneration.
You must figure out whether you are a moderator or an abstainer.
A moderator does not work best with restricting environments and enjoys freedom.
Have confidence in themselves to set limits.
In regards to diet. One who has the mindset closest to that of an abstainer would work better with strict, planned, organised diet and lifestyle. This would be achieved by having certain rules and restrictions on types of food that should be avoided or be eaten sporadically.
Just by looking at those 2 types of behaviors we can see how they would need a completely different approach.
Abstainers respond perfectly fine to a more rigid style. Or setting up a risk-free environment to eliminate temptations.
Moderators suits styles of eating such as IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros).
It’s important to know which mindset you are closest to so that you can make a plan based on your individual unique psychology rather than guessing and using what worked for others.
Here’s the full video on consistency, make sure to check it out and support me on YouTube.