There comes a point in your fitness journey that things just stop changing. You’ve been Beat Sabering every night, absolutely slaughtering yourself to hit all of the notes. You mix it up by throwing in some Thrill of the Fight. Hell, when you’re really not feeling it you still spend some time in Superhot just to make sure you did something. Still, your weight isn’t changing, your fitness has slowed to a crawl, a slow crawl, a slow uphill crawl with a weighted vest on. It’s time to look at nutrition.
Well, you are what you eat. Sure, it seems cliché, but it’s true. You can achieve a lot by exercising, but the best results come from the kitchen. The fastest way to achieve your potential is to compliment your VR workouts is to eat well. The most important thing to remember is this: it doesn’t have to be perfect. Much like one day off of exercising doesn’t ruin all the hard work you’ve done – one bad meal doesn’t undo the healthy ones. It isn’t about being perfect, it’s about being better.
Witness the number crunching
Calorie counting: it isn’t glamorous but it’s a good starting point. It works like this; your body consumes a set number of calories, in order to lose or gain weight you need to eat less or more than that. Simple enough right? You can work out your base metabolic rate easily enough online, but if you are completely new to this, I have a trick for you. First, start counting your calories. This doesn’t have to be spot on, it rarely is anyway. Next, either up or lower it by ten percent. Lower for weight loss, higher for weight gain. This is a great starting point.
Calorie counting becomes trickier when you’re making all of your own food for sure. The only way to get close to accurate is to weigh your food. Not much fun, but it’ll give you control over your own body that is hard to match. Fitness is all about taking control of your body, becoming your own master. This is just another step on that path.
The next step is changing what you eat. You can definitely change your weight by just changing how much you eat. The only way to really feel that change though is to change what you’re eating. Generally speaking, you want to switch to unprocessed foods. This means going fresh where possible. It is possible to get frozen vegetables that still contain most of the nutrients, but you’ll need to be careful when buying them.
Changing your meals to home-cooked and freshly made will give you a huge energy boost. Everyone knows that all foods aren’t equal, what most don’t realize is just how much of an effect this has on your body. Switching to a diet of vegetables, fruit, nuts, and lean meats will change how your body feels. It might sound odd to think of your body like a game character with an energy bar, but you are. Keep yours topped up with fresh foods and you’ll feel hungry less often and feel amazing after a workout.
Aren’t macros a computer thing?
So, your macros are protein, carbohydrates, and fat. None of these are bad, all of them play a role. This is where things get all scientific and scary sounding. It only sounds bad though, it’s actually simple if you have the right tools. So, first things first, go and download MyFitnessPal. Done? Awesome, next up, I mentioned base metabolic rate earlier, time to work that out go here. Once you’ve done that you get the app to tell you just how much of each you need based on your goals. I will go into the deep dirty details of this at some point, but it’s for another article.
VR fitness will lead to a lean body when used properly, for this, you generally want a nice balance of macros. Think 25% protein, 25% fat, and 50% carbs. This allows for enough energy to actually get through each workout while also providing enough protein to fix your body after each session. These numbers don’t have to be exact, don’t worry about any of this to the letter, it’s just a good starting point.
Okay, this is all wonderful, can I get an example?
That’s the theory of most of this. All just a little look into each aspect, but it’s important to know how you’re getting where you’re going. I am gonna go through two meal plans, so you’ve got some ideas. So, without any ado, meal plan the first:
Breakfast – One cup of oatmeal, ¼ cup of blueberries, 1 cup of coffee (not all in the same bowl) (361 calories)
Snack 1 – 16 oz Yoghurt, ½ cup of pineapple chunks, 1 oz of almonds (mix this one up, it’s good stuff) (572 calories)
Lunch – 4 oz chopped chicken breast, ¾ cup of brown rice, 1 cup of steamed broccoli (380 calories)
Snack 2 – 1 apple, 1 tbsp of peanut butter (148 calories)
Dinner – 4 ½ oz turkey breast, ¾ cup of brown rice, ½ cup broccoli, ½ cup peas (478 calories)
This is a standard meal plan, simple and easy to stick to. For round two:
Breakfast – 2 slices of peanut butter on toast (a classic) (340 calories)
Snack 1 – 1 pear, 1 oz of cashews (214 calories)
Lunch – ½ a cup of hummus, 3 cut up carrots for dipping, a pita bread (545 calories)
Snack 2 – ¼ cup of trail mix, 1 apple (225 calories)
Dinner – ½ cup peas, ½ cup spinach, ½ cup broccoli, ½ cup carrots, ¼ cup onion, 1 cup of rice noodles (313 calories)
Two examples, the second one is even vegan/veggie friendly. One important note, about the latter. It isn’t hard to get protein from this kind of diet, but your ratios are going to be harder to maintain generally speaking.
Honestly, I could write forever about this stuff, you get force fed it as part of becoming a Personal Trainer. This is just a primer though, just the appetizer as it were. The most important thing to remember is to start slow, you don’t have to be perfect straight away. If you build up to all of this slowly then you’re actually going to stick to it. The only way to get lasting results is to make these things habitual. So take it slow, step-by-step with the guide. Just, make sure you actually do start.