10 HABITS OF LIFESTYLE MODE
Here at Strive Fitness and Performance, one of our main goals is to help our clients lose body fat. Most people focus on trying to lose body fat year round or are in DIET MODE. While people are generally good at losing weight, most are terrible at keeping it off. They have no idea what to do when they achieve their goal, go on vacation, or fall off the diet because it is too hard.
We like to call this phase of non-diet, LIFESTYLE MODE (read more about DIET MODE VS. LIFESTYLE MODE). Essentially, lifestyle mode is a time of the year when we made good decisions but losing weight is not the main focus. Lifestyle mode or “Maintenance” is when you do just that, focus on maintaining your weight instead of losing it. This mode is essential to a healthy life because losing weight is stressful and we should be able to live our lives without freaking out when you have a family function to go to. Diet mode is essential to lose weight and change your body composition, but that mode needs to be used sparingly. You should live in lifestyle mode for most of the year and only go into diet mode when your goal is to lose body fat.
There are 10 basic habits that we focus on when we get into lifestyle mode. If you can master these 10 habits, you will be well on your way to the body of your dreams without ever counting calories or weighing food. These habits should guide your eating choices and help you make the right decisions no matter the situation you are in.
You may already be following some of these habits. That is great! If you are, then continue to do so and read on a bit more about each of them.
You also may not be following any of the habits, and that is OK as well. We all have a starting point, and knowing that point is crucial to our success. If you are not following any of the habits, start with the first one and master it for the first week. Each week, continue to add in one habit until you have mastered all of them! If it takes longer than one week to consistently apply a habit to your life, no worries! Simply try again next week.
Don’t worry about your mistakes; instead, focus on what you did well each week, and build on those successes so that you can continue to grow and learn about your nutrition.
Track and Journal
This does not necessarily mean tracking your calories, but journaling the process and actions you are taking in your training and nutrition plan can be a huge step in seeing results. This not only allows us to see what you are doing and adjust things when needed….It is also the best way to yourself accountable. Most of us can know exactly what to do, but if we have no accountability to stick to it….We won’t. So start to journal your daily diet and training, then let your coach know so they can help you with the accountability and give you steps to improve.
Plan/Prep For Success
Fail to prepare, prepare to fail….This is HUGE. Planning and preparing your meals for the week is on of the biggest steps to reaching your fat loss goals. This does not mean every meal needs to be in a plastic container, but it does mean that you have to have a plan and know what your nutrition will look like for the week.
HUGE TIP: To have the best results you will always use food journaling and your plan to hold yourself accountable and make adjustments to get the best results. Over eating….Your food journal will be proof of that. You will need to make adjustments to next week’s plan and prep. Not getting enough protein…Your food journal will be proof of that. You will need to make adjustments to next week’s plan and prep. GET THE HINT 🙂
Drink More Water
A good amount to shoot for, no matter your body type or goal is one gallon. It will keep you on the safe side and allows you to be sure that you are getting enough. Studies have proven, time after time, that drinking more water throughout the day leads to more fat loss, better performance, increased muscle and strength gains, and better health. Try drinking 12-16oz before each meal, this has been proven to increase metabolism and enhance fat loss!
Eat Lean Protein At Each Meal
To lose body fat and to build lean muscle, it is important to get a good amount of protein in your diet. This allows you to increase metabolism, burn more calories simply through digestion, and most importantly, improve muscle recover for better performance. Aim to eat 1-2 handfuls of protein with each meal.
Eat Veggies at Every Meal
I don’t think I need to explain why you need to eat more veggies, because you grandma probably did all of your life.
But just in case, we need the nutrients, minerals, vitamins and fiber from vegetables, and eating veggies is also a great way to fill yourself up and stay satisfied throughout your day. It is a proven fact that lean individuals eat veggies on a daily basis. Try eating them at each meal….If not, 4-5 cups per day
Stop Drinking Calories
On any given day 50% of Americans consume sugary beverages. 1 in 4 get at least 200 calories from just a single drink….Now we can assume most don’t stop at one drink per day and even if they do, by the end of the week it can add up to a full day’s worth of calories in just drinks. So the goal in this principle is simple, stick to zero calorie beverages as much as possible. Think water, teas, black coffee and sugar-free drinks on occasion. This alone can dramatically increase weight loss.
Earn Your Carbs
Carbs are not the devil. No matter what your friends say, you should never demonize a food group. Carbs help with performance in the gym and recovery from great workouts. For enhanced your progress and lose body fat for effectively, time your carb consumption around your workouts. Doing so will lead to: Proper recovery, more fat loss, increased lean muscle, better carb consumption. Try focusing the healthy carbs within a 4-6 hour time span. Workout in the morning; have your carbs in the morning and none during the night.
Eat Healthy Fats Daily
Eating quality, earth grown, fats is an essential dietary principle when it comes to great health and massive fat loss. Most people forget about this or leave it out because fat can be calorically dense, but that is not a bad thing. Aim to eat healthy fats daily, more specifically 1-2 thumb size portions per meal.
Eat To 80% Fullness
This may seem simple, but it can be much more difficult then you would believe. This is huge because many of us simply over eat during a meal, whether it is a healthy meal or not…Over consuming calories will still lead to weight gain. Because it takes the brain around 20 minutes to realize that the body is full, it is very important to stop at 80% fullness. This will lead to less over eating and a natural caloric deficit, without tracking your calories at all.
Live The 90/10 Rule
We all have a life…And like to enjoy that life. Within our Nutrition Coaching Programs, we want the best results…But we also realize that following these exact habits 24/7 is unrealistic and does not allow us to truly enjoy our life as much as we would like. 90% of your days and week should be compliant with these 10 principles, and on track with your fitness goals. The other 10% should be enjoyed. Allow yourself to have a rewarding treat, wine with your sweetie ore a beer with a great friend.