To most people, diet refers to going without. If you are on a traditional diet, you eliminate all the tasty, often not so nourishing food from your diet and try to 'starve' yourself to perfection. Whilst the determination is there, most get confused in its application. I ask you this, what is a diet - for you?
Different people with different goals, lifestyles, stresses etc, all need unique dietary requirements to suit their own needs. Your diet must reflect not only what you are doing, but what you are also trying to accomplish. In the traditional sense, if I were to go on a diet, I would cut my calorie consumption down, live on salad and most likely exercise like crazy as well. Now would a traditional dieting approach work if my sole goal was to build maximum muscle - nope! This is where traditional thinking needs to be changed, and this is the reason why I do not like the word diet.
From now on, we will use nutritional plan. Your nutritional plan can often make or break your efforts in the gym so it is something that needs to be right - for you. To best devise what the ideal nutritional plan is for you, you must ask yourself the following 5 questions and be able to give an answer to each:
- What are my goals?
- When do I want my goals by?
- How determined will I need to be to reach my goals?
- What can I do to guarantee my goals?
- What do I need nutritionally to reach my goals?
When you come up with your own answers, you will see that your nutritional plan will be different to someone else's. If your goal is to lose a lot of unwanted body-fat, it would be different to say that of a tri-athlete's. See what I am getting at. We are all unique individuals with different goals and limitations, so we need variation from one another. As long as we follow the basic dietary guidelines, which are detailed in this website, then our goals are only a short step away.
Remember, the word diet often means calorie deprived, hunger inducing, result limiting eating plans, where a specific nutritional plan means results, results, results. Say good-bye to that carrot and cabbage diet for good and say hello to efficient, goal producing, functional nutrition.