You’ve heard it before. Getting in shape is 80% diet, 20% training.

If only it were that easy! You probably already know what you should be eating, so why isn’t it working for you? How can it be so simple, yet it’s so difficult to achieve the results that you want?

The missing pieces…

The 80/20 principle is WHAT to do, but it doesn’t give you any context on HOW to do it.

#1 ACCOUNTABILITY

Left to our own devices, most of us will tend to take the easy route after our motivation levels drop.

We start out with good intentions of eating healthily and exercising regularly, but a few weeks in work takes over and we’re back to where we started.

This is where having someone to hold you accountable is so important for keeping you on track, once things start to get tough. Find someone who cares about your fitness goals and make an investment.

#2 PLANNING

Most of us start by thinking we will just exercise more and eat less this approach will get you started but after a couple of weeks you will plateau. This is where a plan is fundamental to success.

Think of it like a work project. Would you plan out the project, agree deliverables and deadlines or decide everything day-by-day?

It’s the same for health and exercise. No plan usually means no results. But daily/weekly planning on what to eat and how to exercise is exactly what is needed if you realistically want to change your health in the long term.

Find a coach with a proven track record who has got results with busy people like yourself.

#3 TARGETS

Setting realistic goals for the short, medium and long term helps give us focus on what we need to do right now. Then taking daily actionable steps towards the goal is a lot easier and will keep you on track as you see progress.

If you only have a long term goal, like lose 10kg in 4 months, it’s easy to put it off until nearer the deadline. Weekly targets are what helps us make faster progress, losing 0.6kgs a week by 16 weeks sounds a lot less daunting then losing 10kgs in 4 months.

Treat it like a business…

The above points probably sound familiar to any work project you have been involved in. And that’s because they are. Businesses have used these tried and tested techniques for years to achieve success.

If you treat your health and fitness like a business, it will be efficient, effective and productive.

Big changes are possible with a proven plan.

To ensure we achieve what we want to, we all need a plan, some deadlines, targets to hit, a schedule, a little guidance and support.

Here are some actionable strategies that you can implement right now to achieve fat loss. Some require a greater level of detail than others.

-Smart swaps: small changes like swapping your fizzy full sugar drinks to diet versions, white coffees for blacks, sugar for sweeteners, Chinese takeaways for homemade stir fry. These small changes can accumulate to big drops in calorific intake over the course of a week/month.

-Eat more fruit and veg: sounds so simple, but guess what, for the most part fruit and veg is low in calories, high in fibre and its generally going to do a lot to control/reduce your appetite throughout the day and help towards reducing your calories.

-Reduce your eating window: you might have heard it as intermitting fasting. Magic? nope. It just means you have less time to consume more food which will reduce your daily calorie intake again less calories more fat loss.

-Track your intake: the most restrictive and time-consuming method, but equally the most effective tool we can use for fat loss. Weighing and tracking your daily intake on an app like myfitnesspal allows you to keep tabs on how many calories you’re eating and ultimately ensures you’re consuming less calories than expending – calorie deficit = weight loss.

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