It Doesn't Happen Overnight
We see people in the gym everyday who focus on weight loss. The funny thing is that when we see someone everyday we don’t see the big picture of change in body composition. It’s not until we don’t see them for a couple weeks and then see them again that we recognize change. Well, it works just the same way when you aren’t losing weight, but instead are gaining weight. Much of the time weight gain and de-conditioning go unseen. So, what’s the best way to keep from gaining weight or getting out of shape? After all, it doesn’t happen overnight.
Have a movement practice. Do something that keeps you moving. Ideally it’s fun, challenging, and involves a team or a community. On a basic level, just make sure that you are moving everyday and are consistent.
Know what works for you with nutrition. You don’t have to be a crazy, strict paleo, vegan, keto, fad-diet person. Just know that most of your food should be minimally processed whole foods that are prepared from scratch.
Have a routine around taking care of yourself and your body. These are lifestyle habits that don’t have to be perfect, but you should have some boundaries for yourself.
7 drinks max per week for women; gentlemen 14 drinks max in a week
7-8 hours of good quality sleep a night.
In general, stick somewhat close to these things and you won’t swing to far from health and fitness.
Now if you don’t have these habits in your life, it can be hard to tell if you’re out of shape or overweight. Seriously, it’s not that easy to self asses. If you haven’t been in the practice of good sleep, moderate alcohol consumption, nourishing nutrition, and a good movement practice… then how can you tell if you’re in a bad place with body composition and fitness?
Sit down for 2 minutes and then take your resting heart rate. Do 10 - 20 push ups, then stand up and take your heart rate again. If your heart rate is more than 20 beats higher than what it was when you were resting, you might want to think about getting involved with a movement practice.
Get a dexa scan or a skin fold measurement. These are the best ways to find out what category of body composition you fit into. Sometimes body weight and BMI don’t take into account body type and muscle mass, so they might not be as accurate.
Can you go 2 weeks without drinking alcohol? Can you go 2 weeks without eating highly processed foods? My point here is that if everything is in moderation it shouldn’t be too difficult to get rid of some of these temporarily.
What do you do to make sure you aren’t spiraling out of control? Do you have a coach who can help you stay focused?