We're 10 weeks into the year! How are your New Year's Resolutions going?
I don't know about you, but everywhere I go, people are talking about Marie Kondo’s Netflix show, Tidying Up. Kondo encourages you to reduce your closet, for example to those items that “SPARK JOY,” and then getting dressed in the morning can always be a joyful occasion. I read the book 2 years ago and seriously pared down my possessions (many of you know how many shoes I used to have!) I have found that it more joyful to own a few quality items I love instead of a lot that I just like. And getting dressed in the morning is quicker and simpler!
So what does this have to do with New Years Resolutions? I think Marie Kondo is encouraging us to FOCUS ON WHAT MATTERS. By reducing the number of items you own to pay attention to and take care of, you can take better care of the ones that truly matter to you.
I recently stumbled across Mark Manson’s blog post How to 80/20 Your Life and was introduced to the Pareto Principle, or what is now often referred to as the 80/20 Principle: 80% of the output or results will come from 20% of the input or action.
Every week, I speak to clients who are spending valuable time, money and energy on the 80%: the activities that aren't reaping the output.
For example, whether muscle gain or fat loss is your goal, your time, money and energy are split between working out and nutrition. And if you’re like most people I’ve met, you’re spending 80% of your time, money and energy on your workouts. But 80% of your results will come from the 20%: your Nutrition.
What if instead of spending 2 hours planning and preparing your food for the week you spent 4 hours? What if you even spent a little less money on your workouts and a little more on QUALITY Nutrition? (Or spent less money on supplements and protein drinks and reinvested that money in fresh vegetables?!?!)
Applying the Pareto Principle in real life is all about FOCUSING ON WHAT MATTERS: the 20% of your activities that are reaping you the most result. THEN, applying more time to the activities that reap you better benefits, thereby reaping MORE benefits!
Within your workouts, this can also apply! Are you spending 80% of your time on exercises that work one body part? You’re probably getting the most results out of the exercises you’re spending 20% of your time on: full body recruitment exercises like deadlifts, squats, push-ups, pull-ups (basically, THE BASICS!) What if you spent 80% of your workout on these and only 20% on the biceps curls and similar single muscle group exercises?
Within Nutrition, I find people worrying about small things: Are sweet potatoes better than white potatoes? What supplements should I be taking? Do I need a pre-workout? Does this protein bar have any net carbs? INSTEAD, may I suggest focusing on the basics, where most people can get the results they're seeking!
- Eat mostly whole, minimally processed fresh foods.
- For Fat Loss, Eat slowly and stop eating when you're 80% full
- For Gainz, drink more calories in a Super Shake
- Have lean protein and vegetables at all of your meals
- Get most of your fats from healthy plant-based sources (avocados, olive oil, almonds, etc.) rather than animal sources
- Choose “smart” complex carbohydrates most of the time (starchy vegetables, whole grains) rather than simple carbohydrates (sugars)