1) Consistency is KEY
You will not lose body fat if you are not consistent with your approach. If you do well during the week and then not-so-well on the weekend you may, at best, finish where you started.
It was no coincidence that the weeks where I was most consistent (weeks 1 and 2) produced far better results than weeks where I over-indulged on the weekends (Week 3).
2) You can utilize damage limitation
Following on from point 1, you can salvage a bad weekend by being very disciplined with Calories and exercise in the Monday/Tuesday following (this involves a hard deficit). Usually this was accomplished by fasting until at least lunchtime and increasing activity.
However, as discussed above, you’re just doing damage limitation here – you’re not losing fat. It’s much easier to not consume Calories (the second and third helping of something) than it is to try and correct for it later on.
P.s. this is not a particularly fun way of doing things if you’re planning on getting results. An explanation I often use with clients is that for every time you have a feeling of ‘oh S*** I’m full’ you need to have a time of ‘oh S*** I’m hungry’ and wait until it passes (which it will).
3) Tracking gets easier
Tracking your food intake is hard to get started with – it takes a bit of brain power on the front end – but it gets much, much easier the longer you do it. It’s like any skill, it takes some dedication and some practice.
4) It's easy to forget
Tracking your food is always enlightening, even if you’ve done it before. This isn’t my first time tracking my food but it has been a little while. Even during my normal day-to-day I look at labels and I’m at least aware of how many Calories I’m eating. But, it’s not until you actually track how many Calories and in 4 beers and 2 cupcakes that you ‘realize’ how many Calories are in them.
5) Having a program helps, like really helps
Having a program set out for me, which had targets that I needed to hit made me want to do cardio. Let me be clear by saying that I HATE steady state cardio, I know some people get a kick out of it but I’m not one of those people. However, having a cardio target was all I needed to add an extra 20 minutes of cardio after my weight’s workouts.
A great example was that my wife and I went to the gym and she was ready to leave having finished up to her workout. I needed to hit my Cardio target (a certain number of Calories burned) so I stayed behind while she drove home. I stayed an extra 20 minutes to hit my number and then took the 30 minute walk home (likely much to her annoyance).
I know for a fact that if I didn’t have a program there is no way I would have stayed late to do cardio and decline the ride home for a 30 minute walk under the Texas sun.
Bonus: I'm really glad I hired a coach
Having a coach makes all of the difference. My coach and I didn’t have a ton of contact throughout the week, occasional messages and a videochat once a week. However, knowing that you’re accountable to someone was all I needed to be able to push that little bit extra.
If you’re wondering whether coaching could help you lose weight then feel free to reach out to me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org