I don’t run guest blogs often. But I will make an exception when the writer is someone I like and has a message that I think needs to be heard.
(A folder of inappropriate pictures and an ultimatum has nothing to do with it.)
With that in mind, the following is a guest article from Slyvon Blanco, owner of Von Blanco Fitness, his blog where he writes about fitness stuff for busy men & women who don’t have time researching fitness things. He’s also the author of No Nonsense Fat Loss: A Practical Guide to Simplifying Your Fitness for the Real World.
We live in a world where there’s always something new.
Take a quick look at your Facebook feed you and might find an article being shared about eggs being bad for you.
Or an ad for a “game-changing” workout program you can do for just 7 minutes a day in the comfort of your own home.
Or the 21 day fix that basically sells you Tupperware (like you don’t have enough of that in your cupboard already).
Or how about this: ground-breaking “science” that shows you can burn fat by putting butter in your coffee.
Yes, butter — as in the spreadable fat that has almost the same amount of calories per tablespoon as a can of Coke.
If it’s not one bullshit claim, it’s another.
And it’s doing nothing but wasting our time, money, and energy.
Knowledge Is Power. Until It Isn’t.
There’s too much information — clutter, noise, bullshit, put-butter-in-your-coffee-type theories — and too many well intentioned people giving bad advice or misleading answers. (Sorry, but I just had to let all of that out).
Unfortunately, most of the BS out there is decorated with scientific terms and intricate detail promising the solution to your problems, all “based on the latest research”.
The result? This plays on the vulnerable, those so eager to see change they’re just consuming all the crap that’s out there.
I don’t know if this is you, but most people think they need more information — that they don’t have enough resources to get to where they want to be.
In reality, we already know a lot.
In fact, there’s actually a surplus of information available at our fingertips.
So much so that it causes paralysis by analysis.
Think about it. We’re always trying to find “the best new thing.” We want to know what’s out there because it might be better than the last. We want to make good decisions, but there’s so much information to choose from it’s paralyzing, not to mention intimidating.
AHHHHHHH! WHAT TO DO?!
But I get it, I still go through the whole “paralysis by analysis” thing from time to time, it’s just not as bad as it used to be.
You see, I’d always jump from one training program to another thinking that the new one was superior (it wasn’t). I also jumped from one diet to the next because “Diet B” was more popular and promised faster results (it didn’t).
Oh, and supplements? Don’t even get me started with how many I’ve tried throughout the years (most of them didn’t do jack shit).
It wasn’t until I made one crucial decision to simplify everything I was doing that things finally started to click.
I decided that I’d focus on the Big Rocks and do nothing else until I got those down.
So that’s what I did.
And you can do this too.
You Already Know What Works
Really, you do.
We know we should be eating less crap and more “real” foods. We know that we should just show up to the gym to lift some heavy things instead of spending countless hours researching the “best” workout program (while drinking that buttered coffee).
Your efforts should be placed on the fundamentals. Focus on the few things that truly matter and less on the things that don’t.
Before buying your tub of pixie dust at GNC, start by working on your diet first. Before buying another 12-week program, finish the last one that you were on.
And if you don’t know where to start, here are some ideas:
- Get an idea of your calorie requirements (quantity). Whether we like it or not, calories are undisputaedly the #1 determining factor of body composition. If you’re trying to shed fat, you need to be in a calorie deficit. If you’re looking to pack on some muscle mass, you have to be in a calorie surplus.
- Eat mostly whole, nutrient-dense foods (quality). Our parents and great-grandparents had it right from the very beginning. Your diet should consist mainly of “real” foods that have nutritious value. Don’t overthink this one. Chances are, you already know what to eat.
- Lift heavy shit. Science has proven time and time again that strength training is the most efficient and effective mode of exercise. Essentially, it gives the most return on your investment and has endless benefits. Get on a program, stick with it, and build some muscle.
- Do it over and over again. The number one rule of fitness is consistency. Too many people are trying too many different training programs and diets without giving them enough time to reap the benefits they are looking for. Stick to one training program, one “diet”, and don’t overanalyze. The more you spin your wheels, the less you’ll progress.
The answer’s been in front of us the whole time.
Do what works, and forget about all the tiny details.