If you knew the hard work and discipline it took would you want it? If you finally achieved 6-pack abs could you sustain that year round? What does health, happiness and sustainability look like to you? Everyone’s journey and goals are different, so what will work for you?
When first starting to count macros, most people will see great results cosmetically and in their performance. The adjustment of getting the right balance of macros alone, will usually alter someone’s appearance and allow them to feel better in the gym. Everyone wants to look good naked and there is absolutely nothing wrong with this! However, if your goal is to lean down and have 6 pack abs, this may come with a cost. Let’s look at an example:
Suzi hires a nutrition coach to lose some weight and “see some abs,” as well as increase perfomance in the gym. She works out 5 days a week, mixing in weights and cardio variations. She definitely doesn’t want to get “bulky” but she does dream of looking like Christmas Abbott or Kayla Itsines. In her first 3 months she is feeling amazing, leaning down, seeing muscle tone where she never has before and progressing in strength and performance in the gym. Life is good and she doesn’t mind living in a caloric deficit because the results are worth it!
6 months in Suzie is looking leaner than ever, but would still love to be stronger, leaner and see even more abs and lean muscle tone! Her performance is still maintaining but she feels she is slowly plateauing. Suzie loves the progress she has made but still wants more and is slowly burning out being on such a restricted caloric intake.
This type of situation can often results in two things: Suzie lives in a deficit long enough to where she see’s those abs and hits that all- time low body fat but is now in a daily caloric deficit that she is struggling to maintain, or she is living in a caloric deficit where she still can’t quite see that lean muscle she was hoping for, but her body isn’t producing enough energy to build the muscle she dreams of.
This is where we all must come to the realization that we cannot have peak performance, stage-ready abs and super low body fat all at the same time. Are there exceptions to this rule? Sometimes, but all in all this is just science!
Low body fat and walking around super lean usually requires living in a caloric deficit and seeing weight loss. Building muscle mass and performance requires living at maintenance or surplus calories and seeing weight gain. You cannot live in both of these worlds at the same time. In the first 6 months to a year of macro- counting you might, but beyond that you must face reality!
This process takes TIME. Painful I know, but if you wanted the quick path to the Brooke Ence or Rich Froning body, I’m sorry but you aren’t going to find it here! We are all in a never ending eb and flow of improving our mind and bodies and anything worth having does not come quickly. You must put in the work day in and day out in the kitchen and in the gym and know you’re in it for the long haul.
I encourage you to sit down and write out what is most important to you and what you are and are not willing to sacrifice to achieve your goals. Whether it is to just lose weight and get healthy, see abs or perform your best; make sure you are clear on what it takes to get there. Most of all, whatever your goals are, make sure you can sustain and enjoy the process.
A good coach will be up front and honest with you on what it will take to achieve the goals you have set for yourself. Be leary of anyone serving you a “quick fix” diet and choose a coach that asks the hard questions and wants to know more about YOU and what is going to be sustainable for your life, because it is no one else’s but yours.
All the Love,