3 Habit Based Hacks for Healthy Eating

So you know lots about nutrition? Big whoop!

Knowing is way different than doing.

The research is pretty clear that being well educated on what foods you should eat has a pretty minimal impact on what you actually will eat.

My job as a nutrition coach is not about calculating ideal micro nutrient ratios and formulating the perfect concoction of foods to get clients results. I’ll leave that for the people in lab coats.

Nutrition coaching langley

 

It’s my job to create behavior change. Real lifestyle changes that are simple enough to stick with, but still get great results!

Here are 3 habit based nutrition strategies that go beyond saying “eat more veggies”. They will all seem pretty common sense, but I bet that you don’t do all of them!

Habit #1- Make the good food easier to access than the junk food.

Reading readers digest the other day, I found this golden nugget:

The average woman who kept potato chips on the counter weighed 8 lbs more than her neighbor who didn’t. Those who had even one box of breakfast cereal that was visible weighed 21 lbs more than their neighbors who didn’t.

 

What you see is what you eat.

Pretty simple. Hide the junk in the back of the cupboard (or better yet in the basement) so at least you need to go through some effort to get it. If it’s easy to eat, there is no reason NOT to eat it.

Move the fruits and veggies up to eye level in the fridge rather than hidden in the crisper at the bottom. They won’t go bad outside the crisper, because you will eat them sooner as you’ll be confronted by them every time you open the fridge.

Most people like the taste of junk food (myself included). If it’s easier to grab, and it tastes better, why would you ever grab the fruit from the fridge?

The goal is to make it as easy as possible to eat high quality food, so it doesn’t take as much will power and determination to get what your body craves.

Habit #2- Eat slowly with no distractions

Believe it or not, people were eating the correct amount of food long before myfitnesspal came into existence. I am actively against calorie counting in most cases. It’s a lot of work and mental energy for something that has a 20-25% margin of error.

Your body is pretty smart. It has 2 main mechanisms to tell you whether you are eating the right amount:

  • Hunger
  • Satiety (fullness)

If you eat slowly, and without distractions your body will do a good job telling you how much to eat.

 

Here’s what you need to do when it comes to meal time:

  • Set the timer for 20-30 minutes
  • Put your phone away
  • Turn off the TV
  • Sit at the table
  • Chew your food slowly and savor it
  • Enjoy conversation with family and friends

The relaxed pace turns off the sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) response most of us live in throughout the entire day, and turns on the parasympathetic nervous system responsible for the ‘rest and digest’ response.

This results  in lower stress levels, and better food tolerance!

I’m no psychologist but slowing down from your hectic life and the constant need to be ‘plugged in’ for 20-30 minutes improves quality of life beyond a change in body-weight. Spend some time with your friends and family. Your relationships and mental health will thank you.

Habit #3-Plan your excursions to the center of the grocery store carefully

Pretty much every grocery store is laid out in the same way. The goal is for consumers to have to walk to all 4 corners of the store before leaving. That way everyone walks past as much merchandise as possible before leaving.

If you saunter up and down the center aisles, the odds are pretty high that something unhealthy will catch your eye.

All the healthy staples are around the outside. Fruits and veggies are in one corner. The bakery is in another. Meat is in another, and milk and eggs are inevitably the farthest thing from the entrance.

A quick trip to Google turned up this map which is a pretty good representation of the layout of my local store aside from the alcohol seen in the states:

Stick to the outside of the store when you are shopping, and make quick jaunts into the center aisles only for the things you need. If you are getting something from the middle section of the store, it should be on your shopping list prior to entering the store.

Remember the golden rule of nutrition. If it’s in the house, it will get eaten. The best place to make healthy choices is at the grocery store.

Habit #4 (Bonus) Surround yourself with good support

The people who you surround yourself with make all the difference when making healthy choices.

For more mentorship on habit based nutrition coaching book a free consultation and I’ll help you come up with a concrete plan of action to help you reach your goals.

REQUEST A FREE CONSULTATION

 

For a starters guide to athletic nutrition, download our ‘21 Super foods and Athletic Meal guide‘ below. It’s 100% FREE!

21 Superfoods, and Athletic Meal Guide

Jenna Duffin – Client of the Month

Congratulations to September’s Client of the Month, Jenna Duffin!

Here is a conversation that I had with her parents about the success that she has seen and what she loves about training with EDGE Strength & Conditioning.

Jenna DuffinAnita: At the beginning, Jenna was nervous, apprehensive and did not know what to expect. She knew that she was limited by her lack of flexibility and foot speed. Her first few sessions were alot of hard work. She is now genuinely enjoying her workouts and feels exhilarated afterwards. She looks forward to each and every workout session.

Josh: What made you decide you wanted/needed to start training with EDGE?

Anita: Jenna had all the basic skills she needed for volleyball, but needed to take her training/fitness to the next level.  She had an introduction to EDGE through one of her skills camps at Agoge volleyball and really enjoyed it.

Josh: What results have you achieved as a result of your training with EDGE?

Anita: Jenna has improved her vertical jump, flexibility, her endurance, and her confidence.

Josh: What do you like best about our program and working with a strength coach?

Anita: The best part of the program is that the work-out sessions are varied and new goals are set on a consistent basis between the coach and the client.  We like that Josh formulates the work outs specifically for Jenna’s goals and does so with safety in mind to prevent injury. Jenna is learning how to work out the correct and productive way.

Josh: What would you say to someone on the fence about joining our program?

Anita: Do not hesitate. Josh is a genuine and professional coach doing all he can to help achieve your goals.

 

 

Single Leg Romanian Dead-lifts- Exercise of the Week

We use this exercise to teach proper hip mechanics. When this exercise is done properly, the movement should come primarily from the hips with a slight bend at the knees and ankles. You should maintain a neutral spine throughout the exercise (no hunching forward). This can be added to a warm-up for anyone, or as a main exercise for people with poor balance and hip stability.

EDGE Strength & Conditioning is a training company committed to developing elite level athletic performance in BC’s Fraser Valley. We have training options for everyone from youth to university & pro athletesTo stay up to date on new articles follow EDGE on Twitter, like EDGE on Facebook or sign up for our Newsletter.

Front Squat- Exercise of the Week

Squatting is one of the key lower body exercises. Here Chris demonstrates the front squat variation as part of his training for first university season.

EDGE Strength & Conditioning is a training company committed to developing elite level athletic performance in BC’s Fraser Valley. We have training options for everyone from youth to university & pro athletesTo stay up to date on new articles follow EDGE on Twitter, like EDGE on Facebook or sign up for our Newsletter.

Thoracic Spine Mobility 2- Exercise of the Week

The flexibility of the upper back (thoracic spine) plays a huge role in health of the shoulder. This is a great exercises for improving that flexibility. Add it to your warm-up routine to help prevent injuries.

Here is another post on the importance of T-Spine Mobility.

EDGE Strength & Conditioning is a training company committed to developing elite level athletic performance in BC’s Fraser Valley. We have training options for everyone from youth to university & pro athletesTo stay up to date on new articles follow EDGE on Twitter, like EDGE on Facebook or sign up for our Newsletter.

Blast Strap Inverted Rows- Exercise of the week #3

Training the shoulder-blade to move naturally along the rib cage is vital for preventing sore shoulders. Blast Strap rows as demonstrated below are one of the most well used exercises with EDGE athletes to develop healthy movement of the shoulder-blade.

EDGE Strength & Conditioning is a training company committed to developing elite level athletic performance in BC’s Fraser Valley. We have training options for everyone from youth to university & pro athletesTo stay up to date on new articles follow EDGE on Twitter, like EDGE on Facebook or sign up for our Newsletter.

Where do you rank?

This email was recently sent out to the members of VCCE as a part of a weekly sports psychology update. It is well written so I thought that I would share it with you.  It is written by a sports psychologist Carl Nienhuis

People like to compare themselves to others.  We do it all the time.  Sometimes we want someone else’s car or clothes or their looks or their athletic ability; sometimes we want their personality…we want to be funny like him or sweet and friendly like her.  Sport is based on comparing people and teams to each other.  Who is better?  Who is faster?  Who is stronger?  Who will win?  There is nothing wrong with wanting to compare yourself to others…that’s what having a role-model is all about, and that is the basis for competition…but you must also accept who you are and realize that focusing on improving yourself and pursuing your own personal potential will produce greater positive change for yourself.  Consider this:

Ladder 1:

  1. Them 
  2. Them
  3. Them
  4.  Me
  5. Them
  6. Them

One way to rank yourself is in comparison to other people (Ladder 1).  This is often easier and could be very satisfying, especially if you are high up on that ladder.  However, it can also be very frustrating and stressful because of your lack of control over what others do.  There is nothing wrong with wanting to be THE best, but keep in mind that someone else’s best could be better than your best, and it is tiring to let that bother you. (more…)