The Value of Nutritional Consistency and How to Achieve It
We are what we repeatedly do, right? When starting out on a path towards a health, nutrition or fitness goal, consistency in behaviours over long periods of time can be the key difference between success or failure. This should not be new information! Certainly, the coaches here at LiftOff understand and promote the importance of building strong foundations of habits and behaviours in order to achieve success in any lifestyle change.
Modern society bombards us with a multitude of things to be stimulated by. Sights, smells, sounds and feels. That can lend itself to a state of being on constant alert, with our senses permanently heightened. This in turn can become extremely triggering, particularly for those susceptible to the need to respond to every notification on our phone, every smell of donut, or every excuse not to go to them gym.
When thinking about embarking on any nutrition related goal, be it fat loss or muscle gain, achieving consistency with eating patterns in our daily lives is key. So how do we set ourselves up for success amidst the various stimuli and when being pulled in so many different directions?
The answer? Take the pressure off!
Let me give you a simple example. Do you feel overwhelmed by the pressure to put up Masterchef winning dinners every night? Well don’t! No one expects that! Instead:
- Find a few meals you enjoy cooking and that you can batch cook and freeze for when life is really busy. Repeat these. Weekly.
- Base them around a solid protein source, carbohydrates and as many vegetables as you can. Then make the portion size appropriate to you.
- Write a weekly meal planner at the outset of each week so you know what you’re cooking each night. This makes the shopping list easier and removes extra decision making pressure from your day.
Other tips for achieving consistency
- Build yourself a schedule for your day that factors in your feeding times. Don’t let yourself get too hungry so you succumb to those triggers when you walk into the coffee shop and smell/see those fresh cakes.
- Keep your snack game strong! Utilise high protein snacks, fruit, dairy, or a protein supplement (if necessary, depending on your goal) to keep you full during those times that you know your energy dips.
- Don’t allow food prepping to become an additional chore! Choose to do it at a time when you’re already in the kitchen rather than having to set aside a specific time in the day to do it. Already cooking dinner? Prep some overnight oats for the next morning while your pasta is boiling! Time utilised whilst dinner making saves precious time in the morning when your breakfast is already ready.
- If you have meals that work for you and you enjoy doing them, then KEEP DOING THEM! The only one putting pressure on you to switch things up is you!
What if I mess up?
On the days that things go slightly awry, I always aim to employ a bit of self reflection. Try to find one behaviour that you did that day that took you one step closer to your goal. I’m pretty sure you’ll be able to find one.
”Consistency – the quality of achieving a level of performance which does not vary greatly in quality over time.”
Keep going. When you trip, fall or stumble, go back to the point where you maintained a level of consistency. Then keep going a little bit more.
If you would like more information on this topic, or to receive any other coaching or nutrition advice, then please get in contact.