Friday, August 20, 2010

80-10-10 Rule

Have you ever heard of the 80-10-10 rule when it comes to diet and exercise? Basically what you look like is determined by this simple formula...

10% Genetics - This is difficult to do anything with, it was what you were born with...but it really doesn't make for a good excuse either since it's only 10%, right?

10% Exercise - What?!?!? All that sweating in the gym only accounts for 10% of what I look like? Granted, exercise is vital for a healthy mind and body but don't fool yourself into thinking that you can out train a poor diet.

80% Diet - Yup, 80% of what you look like is determined by what you eat everyday. Kind of makes you think, doesn't it?

This is a principle that I didn't understand AT ALL until recently. I have been working out since I was 15 years old, thinking that it kind of gave me the right to eat whatever I wanted. If I knew that I was going to be overindulging that day, I just did extra cardio to make up for it.

But then I could never understand why I wasn't getting the results that I always wanted. Sure, exercise kept my weight from getting too high, but it never resulted in the toned body that I wanted to have. Then a light was turned on for me at the beginning of this year. I realized that what I put into my body each day was going to determine more of what I looked like than the hours I put in at the gym each day. This was and still is a hard concept for me. I feel like I can easily control my gym workouts, setting aside 60-90 minutes each day to workout is something that I enjoy doing. But controlling what I eat for the other 16 hours of the day is quite a bit more difficult for me! I have such a sweet tooth and sometimes can go really overboard when I choose to indulge (like eating a half gallon of ice cream in one sitting is probably within my reach!!) I have to choose day after day, meal after meal to make good food choices. It certainly isn't easy and I most definitely make many mistakes along the way, but I am finally learning after 30 years how best to fuel my body. I am changing my mantra from "Train to Eat" to "Eat to Train" and it's a whole shift in my diet and exercise philosophy. But I am seeing results, and that's what keeps me going along this healthy path.

I have learned a lot about myself over the last few months and the reasons behind why and when I eat. Everyday is a new beginning, a new step along this journey to a healthy life. Some days are better than others, but I am getting there. Are you ready to come along too?

Talking Point: How do you feel about the 80-10-10 rule? Do you struggle more with getting in exercise or eating healthy? What are your struggles?

1 comment:

  1. I don't know, I think genetics is more than 10%, mainly because I know people who eat fairly healthy, and exercise, and they still don't have the "desired" build that people I know who don't exercise or eat healthy. Which doesn't mean that exercise and diet can't make a difference for everyone. And as far as energy level goes, and overall health, it makes ALL the difference.