Eat to Perform is pretty darn great about walking us through the process of getting started in the right direction—baby step by baby step. And that’s what’s making it seem pretty doable for me. Just Getting Started Day 6 almost had me backing into a dark corner, hoping no one would notice me—because it kicked off with a heart-to-heart about how we ALL need to get the inside scoop on our fat, metabolism, and calorie intake before we can get started on the right path.
This immediately conjured up horrifying images of me being placed into one of those egg-shaped container pods that would measure every ounce of my body fat—in front of a room full of toned, binkini-clad models who stood munching on celery sticks as they watched my humiliation. This, however, is NOT what Paul Nobles suggests, and for that, I am forever grateful.
Instead, Day 6 is all about becoming aware of what you’re eating. It’s only when we know what our intake is that we can begin to tweak it and modify it for the best performance and fat loss possible.
For me, Day 6 is a realization; everything didn’t happen all in one day. And chances are, you’ll need a few days of logging your food intake and really focusing on what you’re eating in order to really know whether you’re overeating, undereating, or coming in right where you should be. MyFitnessPal has helped me tremendously, especially during the past week as I’ve been focused on determining where I am with my calorie intake. And let me tell you, it’s been eye-opening. My two greatest take-aways have been these:
- I don’t eat enough calories. (Yes, I’m WAY overweight, and I need to lose a lot of fat. That means I have to get over the fat-shaming that comes along with eating MORE of what is right for me. Who cares what people think if I do what I know is right?)
- Nearly everything I eat is pre-packaged and pre-made. (Yikes! Not only does this make it more difficult to gauge my exact intake, but it also makes it tougher to plan and stay on track. And it’s more expensive! Note to self: I need to make time for my nutrition.)
Eat to Perform explains that most people, especially those who have fat to lose, immediately jump to the conclusion that they are overeating. And I would agree that it’s pretty easy to jump to that conclusion when we’re faced with a barrage of so-called information that constantly tells us we have to do more and eat less in order to achieve our goals. If you’ve ever struggled with yo-yo diets or starvation techniques to lose weight, it’s not too hard to convince yourself that even a normal amount of nutrition is too much.
You starve yourself on a 900-calorie-per-day diet for 6 weeks in order to lose a few pounds. Then, when you finally reach your breaking point and “cheat,” you let yourself get up to 1,400 or 1,500 calories a day. It feels like an enormous amount of food—compared to what you were eating—however, it’s likely still nowhere near what you need to be eating.
Aim for Healed Metabolism
Instead of looking at it as simply losing weight or losing fat, we need to look at the overall picture as HEALING OUR METABOLISM. Years of restricted dieting can do a lot of damage to our metabolism, and the first step is getting it back in check and ready to work for us. In the article for Day 6, Eat to Perform explains that two very important goals in order to improve metabolism are to 1) keep the muscle we currently have while 2) eating an adequate amount to support what we do.
The step-by-step process is important. Eat to Perform goes on to explain that one of the things that puts us in danger of failing is when we “pull off the band-aid too fast.” So take it a little at a time. Absorb the valuable information and trust your coaches and those who are helping you through.
I’ve spent a little over a week logging my nutritional intake. It’s pretty terrible, but it’s honest. I needed to know. My coach needed to know. I needed to know where I’m starting so I’ll know what steps to take next.
I’m not eating enough calories. Too much fat and sodium, most of the time. Not nearly enough protein. And I’ve learned I need the carbs I’ve been starving myself of.
Sometimes looking in the mirror isn’t fun. But it can be the catalyst to a whole new beginning—one step at a time.