The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight.
In Part 1 of this article series, I explained:
In this second part, I’ll explain how to interpret and utilise your bodyweight data from the beginning to the end of a fat loss phase in order to diet and maintain the results successfully.
As stated in the previous article, the only data that matters in the context of muscle gain and fat loss is your bodyweight average per week and/or per month, which is what I’ll be referring to in the rest of this blog post.
Passion provides purpose, but data drives decisions.
To achieve any goal, you need to collect and analyse data.
Without it, you wouldn’t know
In other words, without data, you can’t make the right adjustments to your plan.
You could still accomplish your goal, but you’d probably run into one of these two scenarios:
However, having data isn’t enough to secure effective and efficient results. Inconsistent and unreliable data, or data that you’re interpreting incorrectly, can be just as damaging as the absence of it.
For example, with fitness goals such as fat loss and muscle gain, a common mistake is to focus too much on day-to-day fluctuations on the scale, which are normal, and too little on your average weight increases or reductions over a longer period of time, which is what matters most for these fitness endeavours.
This multi-part article series will provide you with the knowledge to assess your bodyweight data in order to achieve fat loss or muscle gain.
In Part 1, we’ll delve into:
In the rest of the series, we’ll cover how to adjust your diet and training protocol in response to changes in bodyweight.
Success isn’t always about greatness. It’s about consistency. Consistent hard work gains success. Greatness will come.
Reflecting on the past two years of coaching people online and in person, I created a list of the advice that my clients have found most helpful in the pursuit of their goals, but that seems to be underrated in an online fitness space rife with detox teas and abs-blasting workouts.
This article breaks down these tips into the following categories:
There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.
Training and dieting plateaus are normal to an extent, but they can cripple your results if they are too frequent.
Being able to assess your training in an objective manner and to identify why you’ve plateaued, is going to be essential to chart a path out of your current funk and to create a preventative strategy for the future.
This article breaks down the following common reasons for a plateau and the troubleshooting approach to each one:
Start with the reason that seems most likely, apply the suggestions for that alone, then wait at least four to six weeks before re-evaluating whether you’re still “stuck”.
Why not try all of these solutions at once?
Though it might seem slower to produce results, this trial-and-error approach is the most effective in the long run. Altering too many variables at once will make it challenging, if not impossible, to figure out which change was the most helpful.
Now, let’s tackle the first reason:
What’s wrong with extreme dieting and hard-core fitness plans is that they don’t take into account the rest of your life.
95% of diets fail, so diets don’t work.
… Or do they?
If you take a look at the scientific literature, there’s actually plenty of evidence to the contrary. For example, we know that diets inducing a caloric deficit are effective for fat loss regardless of whether they’re high in fats, carbohydrates, or protein.
In other words, any diet can work as long as it involves a caloric deficit.
The real problem is maintaining the resulting weight loss.
For instance, a review of nearly 30 long-term studies on weight loss and maintenance in the American population showed that more than half of the weight lost was regained within two years, and 80% was regained within five.
For this reason, experts consider maintenance of 5 to 10% of your weight loss “a great achievement”.
But why is it so hard not to put weight back on?
When a new client signs up for online coaching to lose fat, what often stands out to me is their mindset: In their experience, a diet is a short-term, excruciating “eat chicken breast and a green leaf for every meal” endeavour, not an attempt to change their lifestyle for the better in the long run.
After a few weeks or months of this torture, they go back to the same way they were eating before, regain weight, start another diet, and so on.
This vicious cycle is unfortunately common because most diets give you rules to stick to, whether you like them or not, instead of habits that you can incorporate into your long-term lifestyle.
This article is perfect if you haven’t had much luck maintaining fat loss after your previous diets, because it does exactly what those diets didn’t do: It teaches you five habits you need to have in place not only to lose fat, but to keep it off, too.
If you’ve been spinning your wheels with countless diets for as long as you can remember, you don’t want to miss this one.
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