I recently got this email from one of the subscribers to my email list:
Glad to receive your email.
Here I am writing to you about my obstacles that are weighing me down from achieving a desired body. I want to dedicate time in fitness and cut down on my body fat%. And I am clueless about how to start. It's been months since I have hit gym. And my nutrition is also not on point.
I am so depressed and I am really pathetic at time management. Please suggest me how to bring my fitness regime life on track.
Waiting for your reply soon.
This email is a precise representation of the problems many people have and the sadness and helplessness they feel, because they can’t get the body and the life they so desperately want. I decided to reply to this email in the form of this article, so that everyone, who struggles with similar issues, can benefit from it (of course, the person who emailed me agreed with me replying this way).
Let’s make it simple and address my reader’s goals and problems step by step.
There are two goals:
1. Dedicate time to fitness
2. Lose fat
However, there are several problems my reader has:
1. No idea how to start
2. Skipping training for months
3. Not having the diet on point
4. Being depressed
5. Being bad at time management
The best strategy to address these problems is to start with the problem(s) that will automatically solve or will make it easier to solve other problems. That’s why let’s start with time management.
Step 1: Set priorities and schedule them
A person who doesn’t have time is a person who doesn’t have priorities. If something is important to you, you will find time.
Just think of this: Most people’s priority is to go to work in order to earn money for living. Can you imagine telling your boss that you don’t have time to work? God no! You will lose your job before you can blink. If having enough money to survive is your priority, you will turn up at work no matter if you have or don’t have time, no matter if you feel like it or don’t feel like it.
If you want to bring your fit life back on track, you need to make fitness to your priority. You have to schedule in the time you will spend in the gym and time for food prep. No matter if you feel like it or not. Just like work, you need to turn up there and do your job no matter what.
Is there a zombie apocalypse outside?
Do aliens invade your hometown?
Is the flying spaghetti monster attacking you and tries to strangulate you with his long noodle-like arms?
I don’t care. If it is important to you, you will find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.
Action plan: Schedule your training and stick to your schedule. It is helpful to do the things you prioritize first thing in the morning. For this reason, it can make sense to hit the gym the first thing in the morning. Even though mornings are not the best time to exercises, if no exercise it alternative to it, because something always happens during the day that makes it ‘impossible’ for you to get to the gym, then working out straight after waking up is your thing.
And if you really, really have no time to get to the gym, then stay at home and deadlift your bed, in the ideal case with your significant other lying in it…this is hardcore! To accommodate weight progression into your deadlift training, think about improving your cooking skills and fatten your significant other, so that the weight you lift progressively increases.
I hope you get the crux of what I mean with all this:. If you can’t get to the gym, workout at home.
Amazing, the first step solved not only the problem with time management, but also the problem with not going to the gym.
Step 2: No idea how to start…training
If you have no idea how often you should train, how to create a training plan, and how to choose exercises, then read my previous article. I explain everything there.
If you still struggle with it, get the Training Plan Package I designed. The package includes whole-body workouts, upper-lower body split workouts and 3-day body-part split workouts for building muscle and strength in the most efficient way for each training stage - beginners, intermediates and advanced lifters.
If you still struggle, hire me as your online coach. I will be happy to digitally whip you through your workouts.
Step 3: No idea how to start…eating right
To make it as simple as possible for you, I will give you a one-size-fits-all advice. You know how much I like these…*cough,cough*...but is seem like, that’s what the masses prefer. Find yourself a simple trick on the internet that solves all your problems and dissolves the belly fat in no time. Oh no, turns belly fat into a six-pack…that’s a much better way to sell it.
Ok, all jokes aside. Without knowing anything about a person, it is very difficult to give good advice. However, from all the years of my coaching experience a few things some things just become plain obvious which can be successfully applied to most people.
That’s how you can put together your meals if your goal is to lose fat:
· 300 g or more of fiber-rich vegetables, e.g. broccoli, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts,…
· 20 - 30 g protein
· Half of your usual fat intake (e.g. half the amount of oil you use to prepare your meals or nuts, nut butters or seeds you add to meals)
· Half your usual carb intake (e.g. grains, such as rice, pasta, bread, oats, cereals,…and legumes, such as beans, lentils, chickpeas)
If you still have no idea how to put your meal together, just eat 300 g broccoli, 150 g tofu and ¾ cup cooked chickpeas 3 times a day and hope that you don’t turn green from all the broccoli.
However, if you don’t want to eat the same stuff every day for every meal and your ambitions are higher than just following a one-size-fits-all diet and you want to design your super cool, individualized meal plan, download the free meal plan guide I made for you
If you still have trouble figuring out how many calories, how much protein, carbs and fat to eat, check out my Customized Macros Package .
I will do the job for you!
Ok, in just three steps we solved the problem covering bad time management, not going to the gym, not knowing how to train and what to eat. The problem that is left is the depressed mood.
Most likely, this problem will get solved by itself considering that exercise has a mood enhancing effect. Living a fit life, eating healthily and seeing one’s own progress is very motivating and encouraging, that’s why I expect depression to disappear (if unfit lifestyle was what caused it in the first place).
However, there is another problem I see that was not mentioned in this email. This is a problem many people have. It is not that they don’t know what to eat, but more that they have other factors in life that sabotage their progress. Such factors can be having the ‘wrong’ food around that makes them unnecessary snack on or overeat on, or having challenging situations in life that trigger unnecessary eating, such as sadness, stress or tiredness, or having the wrong mindsets. What I mean is the all-or-nothing mindset. When a small diet break, such as eating one cookie, leads to a I-eat-the-entire-cookie-package disaster.
But writing more on this topic goes clearly beyond the scope of this article. In fact, there is so much to write on this topic, that would be enough material for an entire book. In fact, the book I write at the moment 😉 The book on why we overeat and how efficiently prevent it. Stay tuned!