Weekly column by fitness expert Cashel Hayden for the Waterford News & Star, in association with Kingfisher Fitness Club
TODAY I want to discuss how to help make our dieting journey much easier and how it can be made much less overwhelming. As we approach summer I see dieting growing in popularity again as people look to “get in shape” as they put it; usually for an upcoming holiday/special occasion. Below I hope to outline three approaches to implement into our dieting phase to make it much more sustainable and help us limit the cravings that may arise.
‘We must look to incorporate as many foods that we enjoy into our diet’
Be careful how you spend your calories!
Less calories does not have to mean less food! Yes, you read that right. Smarter food choices can significantly help us maintain decent portion sizes, while still sticking to our plan. While we may have to lower our calorie intake as we enter a caloric deficit – this does not have to mean we must largely decrease the volume of food we consume. We simply must focus more on foods with a higher protein content and lower fat content.
To be most efficient here we can swap in leaner meats; for example swapping turkey rashers in for our traditional bacon or swapping in chicken breast in place of breaded chicken. Making sure to utilise low calorie sauces and the herbs/ spices that are widely available to make these meals much tastier!
Incorporating an extra portion of veg into our meal will also help make our meals much more satiating – both satisfying our hunger, while boosting our intake of important vitamins and micronutrients. A win, win!
Be smart with your fluid intake
If we were to assess how many calories we consumed through our fluid intake – we would likely be surprised by the amount. The good news is that there is a wealth of low calorie drinks out there, designed to taste the exact same as their full calorie counterparts! Fond of your can of Coca Cola on your lunch break? Why not switch it for the Coke Zero version? If we were to make this switch we would be saving a whopping 138KCal! The same can be said for most low cal/diet versions of your favourite drinks.
Include foods you enjoy each day
One huge mistake I’ve experienced myself and with clients is the misconception that to diet we must eat a certain subset of foods and not stray from this until we have reached our destination. In truth, I have found that while everyone’s level of discipline is different, we must look to incorporate as many foods that we enjoy into our diet. This can be as simple as having our favourite bar of chocolate each evening and including meals we enjoy, such as chicken curry or whatever tickles your fancy. Once these meals are designed to fit within our prescribed calorie intake they will likely have more positives than negatives. These might include helping to limit/prevent cravings, reduce stress and increase the sustainability of our plan!
These are just three things we can make ourselves aware of when dieting. It is important to remember that while we must maintain a certain level of discipline when dieting – we are not robots! We must live a little and make sure we include the little things in life that we enjoy.
To anyone out there rocking their diet or just starting out I hope this helped! I will leave you with a quote I heard earlier this week by the influential Tony Robbins. I feel it resonates well here.
“There are two pains in life: the pain of discipline and the pain of regret. Discipline weighs ounces, but regret weighs tonnes” – Jim Rohn
Lastly, I would also like to clarify that I am not a registered dietician. All advice disclosed here is simply advisory based on my qualifications as a fitness professional and personal experience and knowledge gained working with individuals and helping them reach their goals.
The advice given is not designed to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any health problem – nor is it intended to replace the advice of a physician. Always consult your physician or qualified health professional on any matters regarding your health.
I hope someone out there found some of this information useful here, just some food for thought.
For any questions in relation to this topic or training, nutrition, etc. or for coaching inquiries simply message me on my business page on instagram @coachedbycashel_ or by email – [email protected]