A lot of people are scared of the word ‘diet’ due to this simple fact. When a health professional or GP asks “how is your diet?”. The majority of people think “I’m not on a diet. Why would I need a diet?”
You have a diet.
You see, if you Google ‘define diet’, your browser friend will come back to you with two definitions for the word diet. The first, is what we’re actually asking for. The second, is the meaning that everybody is so terrified of.
The kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats.
A special course of food to which a person restricts themselves, either to lose weight or for medical reasons.
So, unless you’re telling me that you have been living off pure oxygen and haven’t ingested a single piece of food or mouthful of water since the beginning of time – then yeah, you have a diet.
Alright, now that I’ve got that out of my system I’d like to break down a couple of other misconceptions in relation to Personal Training and the word diet. As Personal Trainers, we are not allowed to construct and prescribe meal plans and specific nutrition. That is the work of Dieticians and nutritionists! We have the ability to give general nutritional advice, refer clients to Dieticians or Nutritionists, work closely with a Dietician to construct a dietary meal plan specific to your energy expenditure – but at the end of the day, it must be the dietician who put the meal plan together.
Unless you have a Coach who has gone above and beyond and completed an additional nutritional course (which actually increases the degree of their scope of practice), then they can not be telling you specifically what you should be eating. We give guidelines. Accountability. Support. But there are no professional development courses that will allow a Personal Trainer to construct and prescribe a meal plan. Did they study a Bachelor of Dietetics? Probably not.
We are allowed to distribute meal plans, provided that they have been constructed by a Dietician. That is within our scope of practice.
One of the first things that I have told my clients during a consultation is that “health and fitness is just as much energy in as it is energy out. You can be working your ass off in the gym 5 days per week and still not get results because you’re going home and you’re eating unhealthily or you’re not eating enough. Nutrition is important.
Next time you see me, please don’t ask me – “what food should I eat to lose fat around my belly?” Because there is no one specific food. You need to be exercising and you need to be eating clean food. Not ‘just one chocolate bar and can of soft drink when I feel tired’ or ‘fast food once per week because I can’t be bothered cooking’. You need portion control and you need to be eating multiple meals. If your goal is to lose body fat and you seem to be maintaining or continually gaining – you are at one of two extremes. One, you are either still eating complete junk or you are eating too much. Or two, you’re not eating enough. By not eating enough, your body and your metabolism is actually going to store everything it gets because it understands that it may not get much more than this in the next 24 hours.
By the way, there is such a thing as ‘skinny fat’. Just because you’re skinny on the outside, doesn’t mean you’re healthy on the inside. You need to take control of that because you could have bad surprise just around the corner. Act now – not next week.
Clean yourself up. Clean up your mindset towards nutrition. Clean up your diet.
And maybe a few weeks later, will you start to see results! (because results take time)
Work hard for it,
Owner/Coach of Function of Raw Movement