One of my first blog posts was called “The Ugly Truth” and though it was filled with lots of useful information, I felt it necessary to revisit some of those ideas, and also some common misconceptions that many have regarding health, fitness, weight loss, Beachbody, and Shakeology.
Misconception #1: You have to eat less to lose weight.
When I was in college, I started an at-home workout program (from Beachbody, ironically haha) but didn’t follow the suggested food plan. I ate 1200 calories, didn’t eat back any of the calories I burned, and a majority of those calories were from convenience foods lacking in nutritional benefits. Did I lose weight? Of course! Did it stay off? Not on your life! I gained every pound back, and even more, the minute I ate more than usual or skipped a work out. When I started this journey over in February, I was nearly 215 pounds and the program I was following had me eating 2000 calories. Yes, 2000 and it was a TON of food. And I still lost weight and inches. It’s all in WHAT you eat, not necessarily the amount.
Misconception #2: Eating healthy is too expensive.
With a lot of what is in the media regarding food, diet, and nutrition lately, a lot of people think that eating healthy means eating all fresh foods, organic, vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. and those options aren’t always as cost-efficient or as convenient as other things we are used to getting. Each person has their own dietary needs and some follow certain guidelines because they need to rather than want to, for various reasons. While eating some of these ways can be extremely beneficial, for others it is just not necessary. My husband and I spend $75-100 a week (total, not each, and amyn times less) on groceries for the two of us and that includes lean meats, fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, whole grains, dairy, and yes, that even includes Shakeology for BOTH of us. Think about how much you spend each week on fast food, coffee drinks, going out to dinner, and/or other convenience foods. Is it more than $3.50 a day or $25 a week? I pay less than that and every time I drink Shakeology I know I’m getting essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that come from whole foods, that curbs my cravings, helps my hair and nails grow, keeps me full until my next meal, and helps me to stay healthy (sickness is limited to seasonal allergies!). Most convenient foods are full of additives and are high in sugar and sodium that is very harmful, especially for those with any health issues or those prone to them.
Misconception #3: What hasn’t/has worked for someone else, won’t/will work for me
Remember that everyone is different. There is no “one size fits all” in regards to nutrition and fitness. I wish it were that easy! There are a lot of different options out there and if you’ve tried something and it hasn’t worked, don’t give up. Try something else! I did WW twice and couldn’t handle all of the freedom it gave me. I could eat all fast food and drink empty calories and still stay in my points, and I knew that wasn’t the best thing for me. But it has worked for many of my friends and I’m super proud of their success! I tried four or five different diet pills, but didn’t like how they made me feel. I was jittery, plus nothing suppressed my appetite to keep me from making poor food choices anyways. I’ve tried low-carb, no-carb, high protein, low calorie, super restrictive, etc. etc. etc. and nothing worked for me until I realized that for me it was all about portion control and balance.
Misconception #4: As long as you work out, you can eat whatever you want.
As much as we all would love to believe this statement, it just isn’t true. For those of you trying to lose weight, food choices (see how I didn’t call it a diet?) are 80% of the battle. If you just make changes in what you eat, you’ll see the pounds start to come off even if you aren’t hitting up the gym, using an at-home workout, walking, running, or whatever. If you’re trying to stay within a certain amount of calories, you can always eat back at least a portion of what you burn with a workout, but your body needs FUEL to make the changes you’re hoping to see. Food choices should work together rather than against each other to help your body recover, build muscle, and burn fat.
Misconception #5: You can never eat fast food, desserts, or chocolate, or drink beer or wine ever again if you expect to be healthy and lose weight.
If these are items you couldn’t dream of letting go, you’re in luck…you don’t have to say goodbye! I’m sure you’ve heard it before…”All in Moderation.” You can indulge from time to time, but if your daily menu consists of these items more than anything else, it might be time for an intervention. Many of these items are lacking in nutritional value, and have no real benefit for your body except for comfort and, for some, stability. There are plenty of choices eating out that are healthier than a super-sized fast-food sandwich, fries, and milkshake, with a pie on the side. There are a lot of delicious desserts and chocolate options that are satisfying. Plus an occasional alcoholic beverage or two (even three) won’t hurt too much, but limiting that consumption to one day rather than multiple days during the week will leave your body feeling better.