A funny thing about coaching people to lose weight…

Most are willing to work really hard, train like animals, and deny themselves all sorts of goodie to get fit.

But, very few are willing to do this one thing that is perhaps the most impactful action we can take to improve our nutrition and thereby burn more fat, control our calories and portions, and lose those stubborn pounds.

Any ideas what it might be? Food journaling? Counting calories or macros? Eliminating sugars and garbage carbs?

Nope, none of those things, although all of those are quite helpful.

No, the thing we find our clients to be the most resistant to is… meal planning.

For some reason, they just don’t seem willing to invest the 30 or so minutes it requires each week to plan out what they’d like to eat over the next week and then translate that to a shopping list.

Yet, doing so will bear an ENORMOUS dividend in the quality of our nutrition, and by extension, the quality of our lives. It also saves us money.

Trust me, we hear every imaginable excuse…

“I’m much too busy, just don’t have time for that.”
“My husband does all the shopping and cooking, so…”
“I never know what to cook.”
“You’ve never had to cook for my kids.”

Look, we get it. Life these days is rough. The demands of work and family can sap us of our energy and leave us motivated to do nothing more than sit in a trance and binge watch Netflix for hours.

The conundrum, you see, is that we all have fantasies of what we someday could look and feel like. We intrinsically sense that there’s something better. And most intrinsically sense that we do have what it takes if we could just get ourselves moving.

But, sadly too many fall back on tired old excuses.

As I’ve noted in earlier missives, we don’t get the life of our dreams. Instead, what we get are the worst possible circumstances that we will tolerate.

Those excuses are just lies we tell ourselves. Let’s shoot some holes in them…

I’m too busy. Well, what if you didn’t binge watch that ninth consecutive episode on Netflix and used that time instead?

My husband (or whomever) does all the shopping and cooking. Who’s the boss of you? You are an adult, with full autonomy to make decisions for yourself, correct? If a loved one is doing the work, but you’re the beneficiary of their efforts, I am confident they would welcome your input and be more than a bit relieved that they didn’t have to do all the planning on their own.

I never know what to cook. Heard of Pinterest? Literally megamillions of recipes posted there, all free. Don’t have a single cookbook in your house? No worries, there are gozillions on Amazon. It can be on your doorstep the next day. If you need suggestions, we’ve got a bunch that we love.

My kids are finicky. Well, whose fault is that? “But, Paul you just don’t understand, they will only eat certain things.” This begs the question… if it’s not good for us to eat, why are we feeding that crap to our kids?! I mean we don’t allow kids to drink alcohol because we know it’s bad for them, but we’re ok filling them with all sorts of other contaminants and garbage because they don’t like foods that are good for them? Hmmm…

So, what sort of life are you willing to tolerate? Are you content with how you look and feel? If not, ask yourself this…

How much worse will it have to get before you reorder your priorities?

OK, how about we take the next 2 minutes,  look at our calendars, and identify the 30 min we need to earmark for planning out next week’s chow?

If you’re really not sure where to begin, no worries. We’ve got you. Julie is a tremendous resource and example. Reach out to her: julie@midstrong.com. She WANTS to help you get unstuck.

Or, if you’re really fed up and ready to get unstuck once and for all, please consider our 12-week Nutrition Coaching Program. In those three months, we incrementally and methodically teach and ingrain the habits we need to transform our nutrition from something that holds us back to something that propels us forward. Here’s a link to learn more.

Thanks very much for listening and for your patience while I preached from my soapbox.

Be well,

Paul Reilly

Paul is the Owner and Founder of MidStrong. He created MidStrong in 2017 to train men and women in midlife who are busy with work and family to build muscle and burn fat so they can look and feel better than they did in their 20’s. MidStrong is making Functional Fitness training safe and fun, and inclusive. He and his wife, Julie also own and operate MidStrong locally, their bricks and mortar business, previously called ACCELERATED Strength & Balance. It is a boutique fitness center specializing in training folks in and around Westborough through the challenges of midlife for more than five years.