I think I may need to go on a diet…an information diet, that is. I am an information junkie, especially fitness information. Since I started my fitness journey last year, I LOVE to read about different ways to make vegetables more interesting or which exercises will help build a better booty. I read fitness magazines, blogs and Facebook pages almost everyday. My appetite for fitness information gets totally out of control during my competition prep…I bombard my brain with images of women who are ripped and shredded to the bone. I love to see how their competition prep is different from mine…are they doing something that I should be doing? Now that I’m in “off-season” mode, my appetite isn’t as voracious, but there’s still some room for improvement. When done in moderation, acquiring knowledge about how to be healthier if totally fine. But, like anything overdone, it can lead to negative outcomes. I know I’m not alone in my addiction. We all have information at our fingertips that can be immediately delivered by our SmartPhones, iPads and laptops…and that’s just from the internet. That doesn't even include the stuff you hear from other people, read in magazines and watch on TV. Lots of information coming at your ALL the freakin’ time. I’m not surprised that people are confused about what’s the right thing to do when it comes to truly being healthy and fit.
FITNESS INFORMATION OVERLOAD
Why am I making such a big deal of too much information? Well, too much of a good thing, can quickly become a bad thing. When people get too much info, especially if it's conflicting or incorrect, it can lead to feelings of overwhelm, which could result in someone just throwing in the towel and resorting to their old, unhealthy ways. That's the best case scenario. At worst, information overload can cause you to do some outrageous, even dangerous, things. Some of the crazy stuff I’ve heard recently: “To lose weight quickly I need to workout for 2 hours a day and have about 3 proteins shakes/day” or “My trainer said I shouldn’t eat strawberries because they have too much sugar” and my favorite, “I read on xyzfitness.com that I shouldn’t have carbs after 2PM”. WHAT??? Trust me, you would NOT want to be near me if I stopped eating carbs at 2PM…me without carbs is not pretty! But I’m digressing.
When people approach me with a piece of misinformation that they’ve been exposed to, I always say "do what’s best for you". If it doesn’t make sense AND it’s hard for you achieve/maintain, then it’s not for you. Nutrition and fitness are NOT one size fits all…what works for one, doesn’t always work for everyone.
So, here’s what I’ve decided to do to control my appetite and reduce my own information overload:
- limit my information sources to Oxygen Magazine, Clean Eating Magazine and 1 or 2 blog posts from some of my fitness friends
- pay more attention to what works for me…which foods, exercises, and relaxation techniques allow me to live my best life
If you’re in need of an information diet, here are a few things you can do:
- pick 2 or 3 reliable sources of fitness info (melissatoler.com being one of them!) and stick with that information for a few months
- experiment with different foods and workouts to see what works for you; if what you’re doing makes you look good AND feel great, then you’re on the right track
- find someone you trust who has had a successful (mentally and physically) fitness journey and get advice from them
Bottom line: being healthy should NOT be complicated. Sure we all have our difficult moments, but if you’ve been killing yourself to stick to a restrictive diet or a ridiculous workout routine AND you’re not seeing results, abandon ship immediately and regroup.
Are you suffering from information overload? Come on over to my Facebook page and share your favorite sources of fitness information.