Those Three Little Words

There are three little words I love to say. Words I live by, words that are incredibly important to your success, and words that should really become a fixture of any fitness or nutritional goals you have. By now, you might have worked out that I don’t mean, “I love you.” Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to hear that too, maybe not on the job, but the three words I’m referring to are; moderation, progression, and commitment. MPC. And here’s why they are so important.

Moderation is essential to any health and fitness goals, because effectively our bodies are designed to only accept moderation. From a health and nutritional point of view, anything is bad for you, if you have too much of it. Chocolate, alcohol, water, oxygen. Yes, even those last two. Really, our body is perfectly in balance, and an excess of anything upsets that balance. Now, from a fitness point of view, your muscles can only handle so much, and as many of us will have found out, you can fairly easily overwork them. They give up on you, they ache the next day, but overtraining can greatly increase your chances of injury. Your body wants moderation.

Progression is the least important of the three, but don’t misconstrue that, it’s still very important. Again, I’ll break it down into nutrition, and fitness. With regards to any diet, I might be slightly cheating using the word progression, but I mean changing your diet. So, if you stop seeing results, you’ll need to progress your diet on to the next level. And if you hit your targets, you’ll need to progress on to maintenance calories, whereby calories in start to match calories out. With fitness, your body will adapt to the stresses you put it under over time, so you’ll need to progress your exercises on, tinkering with the overall load, for example.

Commitment is probably the most important of the three words, because it’s the one thing you absolutely need to achieve any health and fitness goals. If you’re looking to lose weight, you need that calorie deficit, and you need to stick to it, probably for a long time. If you’re looking to pack on muscle, or train for a sport, you need to put the training hours in, and keep it up. If you’re dipping in and out of either of these, and you’re not really committing, every time you “take a break” you’re taking a big step backwards. Take time off your calorie deficit, BAM, your weight goes up. Take time off your exercise, BAM, your strength/cardio/muscle mass goes down. Unfortunately, they’re things you need to stick at, even if you just want to maintain what you’ve got or achieved.

Three words, but all things you need to succeed. And they won’t be easy to live by, but so long as you can adhere to them the majority of the time, you’re on the right track. Make sure you’re committed, plan everything in moderation, and then look to progress over time. See you next week.

Dan Miller

Body Fuel Personal Fitness Trainer