Alessandra Daniele, B.S. Exercise Science, CPT, EP-C
I tend to be a diehard individual. When I start a book, I feel the need to finish it within that same day. When I find a new food I like, I will eat that same food for weeks straight. When I first started my fitness journey, I didn’t take a single day off for months because I didn’t want to fall behind. Giving 100% is definitely not a bad thing, however sometimes that “all or nothing” mentality may be doing you more harm than good. Fitness for instance, should definitely not be “all or nothing”.
From my experience, many of my clients who were “new” to fitness in some aspect felt the need to have this mindset. Whether it was with their nutrition, their obsession with not missing the gym, or just simply giving up when things didn’t go perfectly.
Let’s take macros for example. If you are someone who feels the need to hit their macros exactly down to the gram every single day, that is an all or nothing approach to dieting. If you are someone who goes on a diet and then has a cheat meal that turns into a cheat day because “you already messed up”- that is also all or nothing. This approach is not the answer especially to fitness and nutrition and can even become dangerous at a certain level.
The reason why most diets fail is because they are not sustainable. Things like restricting entire food groups, eliminating sugar and saying goodbye to carbs are all methods that will eventually fail. Sure, you may be able to keep this up for a while, but what happens on your birthday when you want a piece of cake? What happens when you’re out to dinner with your family and there’s uncertainties about what your meal consists of? Life happens and will disrupt your sugar-free quest to greatness at some point or another. This is where flexible dieting surpasses the current fad diet simply because there are no restrictions, and a lot more freedom.
I think one of the reasons why a lot of people may be hesitant to start a diet or fitness regimen is because they feel the need to give up their life in order to do so. Fitness is not about being quintessential. You don’t need to give everything up in order to achieve a healthier lifestyle. To me, fitness is about being healthy for YOU. This includes consuming MOSTLY nutrient-dense foods, moving more to increase your health, taking time to reset your mind and breathe, and with all of this become a more contented individual. Fitness is not a one-way street. There are so many paths you can take to get to your destination, it is just a matter of finding one that best suits you.
For more information on flexible dieting or help with starting your fitness journey, email us at FitnessTeam@sd-evolution.com.