A couple of weeks ago I listened to a podcast from Mark Ottobre with Scott Abel, firstly, thanks Mark and Scott for actively getting the message out and educating us. Secondly, I took away a lot from the podcast, most of which i already knew but needed to hear second hand and actually take some notes and dwell on the core message. The podcast was on figure and fitness competing and metabolic damage. Now I am not going to venture into that area with my opinion as it is just that: an opinion and not what everyone believes. But one thing I did take away from the podcast that I feel well enough educated, experienced and inspired to share with you is the term "Diet Freedom".
Scott mentioned the term, and it swirled around my head for days inspiring this blog. Diet freedom is the anti diet approach. Lets explore this.
“Don’t start a diet that you can’t maintain for the next 10 years”
How many times do you hear people say they are "on a diet"? Or they refer to their "meal plan"? They are doing the cabbage soup diet one week, paleo the next, the fructose free diet, the comp prep diet, the blood type diet, dry July and so many more. People are constantly searching for the next trend, for the next quick fix, but what happened to just forgetting about what you are eating and having diet freedom!
Many health experts now agree that “diets” essentially set you up to fail. And while there are many aspects to creating a “diet”–free lifestyle, the key is to change your mindset.
I often throw the term "Primal" around, whether its my ebook cookbook Pennys Primal Plate, my recipes online labelled Primal, my workouts and so on. Don't mistake this for a structured primal way of eating, or that there are key Paleo foods or a way of eating that should be kept, I am not the food police. There is no "diet" that works, there is no food system or education that works.
I'd prefer to think of primal eating as just that: eating for function and survival, we are mammals, we have a innate way of knowing what we want and how to eat. Simply eating for fuel is primal function at its best.
We have an emotional connection with food for fuel, it's nature, we were born to eat, to enjoy food. That has been taken away from us by implementing so many rules and structure, we should be enjoying the eating experience.
Instead of thinking about NOT eating what is bad, we should be thinking about eating what is good for us and needed. Or not thinking at all! I believe we focus too much on what we should be avoiding instead of being mindful and listening to what we actually need.
"It's not what we eat, its how and why we eat"
I also believe that this can be interpreted incorrectly, "diet freedom? wahey....I can eat whatever I like!" There is a difference between diet freedom and diet mayhem.
A note on me:
What I have learnt along the way in my fitness career is that there are many ways to eat, many ways to think and feel and be connected with your lifestyle, training and goals..... Are any of these ways right or wrong?
Many years ago I used to follow a meal plan, a diet, or a comp prep plan. Back then I wouldn't even of dreamt I'd be the way I am today. Today I eat when I want and what my body wants, it simply lets me know. I have in my head what I know I should be eating for a days adequate fuel, somedays I'm not so hungry and a meal could just be some bone broth, and other days I'm super hungry and I will eat much more. I will eat what my body needs. I think "how" and "why" when eating.
As I have lost and gained muscle over the years I've found my protein requirements have also fluctuated. Some days I train harder and at a higher volume and so I feel like more carbs for the day. If I crave something, I eat it, I dislike rubbish food so my choices are always to nourish my body.
I no longer weigh my food, ever. And I suggest you do the same, "but how do you know how much?" Your body knows how much is enough.
I have diet freedom.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this? Do you live with diet freedom?
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