FHP 633 – It’s YOUR Choice

FHP 633 – It’s YOUR Choice








Hey guys, this is Cori from Redefining Strength. Welcome to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. This is the show where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m not going to ever fill this episode with sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a review or leave a five star rating or even better share with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone. So let’s jump right in.

It’s your choice. When we want to work towards a new goal, we think, okay, I have to cut things out, or I have to make changes, and we feel and act like these things are being forced on us, but it is ultimately our decision how we enact the dietary changes or the workout practices that we need to use to reach our goals. And yes, will there be sacrifice along the way? 100% change is hard because it’s not what we’ve always done, but every change we make, every habit we implement is our choice. And if we start leaving foods as good or bad or saying we can only have these and we can’t have these, all of a sudden we take away our own agency, our own power, and we stop seeing it as a choice. Instead of we say, Hey, it’s my choice to eat more broccoli.

It’s my choice to eat more vegetables because it hits my macros and I feel really fabulous. But it’s also my choice to include that cupcake at times or to not include that cupcake. And sometimes to reach a goal, you do say, Hey, it’s my choice not to have this for time period, but at some point I make a different decision. I might make a different choice and I might include it. I want you to really assess though what you are choosing to include and the habits and the trajectory they’re putting you on, because the more you recognize you have the choice, the more you can say, I want to include this, or I don’t want to include this. And the more you also start to change your language to, I can’t have, I am not able to do this, or I have to do this to, I want to do this, or I will do this, or It is in my power to make this choice.

You give back your own agency. So I really want you to assess what am I telling myself I can’t, I can’t do, it’s not part of it. It’s something I should feel guilty about versus telling myself, Hey, this is my decision. These are the sacrifices or decisions I’m willing to make to reach my goal. And it’s because I value myself. It’s because I value the changes, and I see that’s all that’s possible, knowing that my lifestyle is going to evolve over time. But really start to assess the choices you are making and the path they’re putting you on, and change how you’re talking to yourself about it so that you don’t just see it as restriction being forced on you, but you see your own agency and the changes you’re making.

Thanks for listening to the Fitness Hack Podcast. Again, this is the

Place where I share all

My free workout and nutrition tips. I’m never going to run sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a rating, review or share it with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes, and it would mean the world to me and possibly change life of someone.


*Please Note: this transcript is auto-generated and there may be some errors in the transcript

FHP 632 – Everything You Need To Know About Prehab

FHP 632 – Everything You Need To Know About Prehab








Hey guys, this is Cori from Redefining Strength. Welcome to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. This is the show where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m not going to ever fill this episode with sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a review or leave a five star rating or even better share with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone. So let’s jump right in.

Let’s talk everything prehab. So first, what is prehab? Prehab is the rehab exercises. We do that mobility, stability, flexibility, work that helps us move and feel our best, but it’s done proactively. So when we’re doing rehab, we’re doing it because we’ve had an injury. We’ve had aches and pains, we have mobility restrictions, we have compensations, we have things now that we are working to reverse. When we’re doing prehab, we are doing these things as preventative care or proactively so ahead of having any issues. And a lot of times what we want to think is that our prehab is from our rehab, so our rehab becomes prehab and that we’re taking anything we’ve done to move and feel our best and we’re keeping it in proactively because you can never stop doing what made you better. But we’re also addressing other things that we know in terms of imbalances from lifestyle postures.

We’re addressing things that we’re going to be working. So prehab is not only the mobility work we do outside of our actual routines, it’s what we want our warmups to be because I think a lot of times we feel like we don’t have time for all the things we need to do to move and feel our best, but if we do prehab work as part of every warmup, we’re going to see great returns from even including potentially less time. Five minutes can go a long way, and the reason why is because if you do that three part prehab process, which I’m going to go over today, you’re going to make sure that you’re moving well in your workouts. You’re going to address the daily postures and mobility restrictions that you create from sitting hunched over a computer so that you can actually get the full range of motion out of your workouts and strengthen through that full range of motion to maintain the mobility work you’ve worked hard for.

Sometimes less is more, and when you do it consistently, that little bit is able to build and snowball versus one long mobility workout each week where you’re not doing anything else the rest of the week because you can’t out prehab work your daily postures and positions. And when you go into your workouts, you want to move your best. If you’ve thought, oh, I squat and I have hip pain, oh, I do leg lowers that AB exercise and I feel my lower back. When you’re doing these things, you’re not using the correct muscles and you’re just perpetuating the overload and injury. And if you’re thinking, well, I have great form, the one issue with that is that the more advanced an exercises you are, the more you can mimic proper form because you know what it should look like and the more you’re actually going to compensate and overload areas.

I tell you this because this whole prehab process was originally born out of me getting injured after competing in my first power lifting competition. I was actually Massachusetts, Rhode Island State Powerlift champion, so I was lifting more than I’d ever lifted and then I got injured and it’s because I was mimicking proper form and wasn’t using muscles correctly. And amazingly enough, once I started implementing this prehab process, I am now able to lift more than I was at that point. Crazy, right? So prehab isn’t just about preventing aches and pains, it’s about getting more out of our workouts. This prehab process will help you actually lift more, activate the right muscles, see better muscle hypertrophy. So if you’re looking to lose fat and build muscle, you want to do this well as well as also helping you age functionally well and stay functionally fit. So talking about the prehab process, what is it?

So this is going to be every warmup. It’s going to be part of every mobility workout. It’s going to address flexibility, mobility, and stability. Because if all three things are not addressed, we’re going to still have issues because just stretching a muscle and becoming more flexible. If you don’t have stability, you won’t actually realize the flexibility or you won’t be able to strengthen through the range of motion. If the joints aren’t mobile, it doesn’t matter how flexible muscles are because the joints won’t move through the flow range of motion. So everything has to work together. So the prehab process, foam rolling, stretching and activation, and if you’re thinking, well I do stretching or I do foam rolling and I’m not seeing that great results, it’s because that’s one component. Systems work together. Doing this three part prehab process in that order is what makes it work so well.

Foam rolling is self myofascia release. You’re taking a ball or one of the tools that I have here and the smaller and harder the ball, the more it’s going to dig in. You might’ve seen something like the rumble roar, which allows for the knobs to dig in versus something that’s a little bit softer and doesn’t have any of the knobs to dig in, or even something that’s like this foam roller here, which is even softer. So the softer the tool, the larger the ball, the less it’s going to dig in, which can be really great to start because if you tense against it, you’re not going to see the same benefit. So even if you’re foam rolling on the ground and you’re doing your upper back and that’s too much, you can go against the wall. You, there’s an area that’s harder to dig into.

You can even use something like the bench to be able to foam roll out your hamstring versus using say the roller on the ground. And you might be thinking, why do I want to foam roll? And the reason you want to foam roll is because foam rolling is relaxing and overactive or tight muscle, and so I say overactive and tight because when you’re foam rolling, things like your hamstrings might not actually be short and tight. They might feel tight and be overactive, meaning that they want to compensate for all their muscles or take over for other muscles, but you don’t necessarily need to stretch them more. So foam rolling is that first part in that prehab process in that it relaxes overactive muscles, it inhibits that neuromuscular drive, so you’re not as likely to then recruit the muscle during a movement when it wants to take over for another muscle.

And it can help with joint range of motion, that flexibility, because what you want to think is that before you go stretch something like a shoelace, let’s just say before you stretch a shoelace, you don’t want to nod in it because if you stretch it, then that’s just going to get tighter. Same thing goes for the muscle. You want to make sure that you’re using foam rolling to relax those muscles to help then mobilize the joints, activate the correct muscles, making sure that you actually are able to stretch in a proper way. So foam rolling is that first step. It has been shown to have some mild benefits for recovery, helping with delayed onset muscle soreness or doms, but you’re using it as that first step in your warmup because you want to make sure that you’re relaxing any muscles that might be tight from your daily postures and positions.

Muscles that have tended to be overused and take over. The effects of foam rolling are short-lived, so about 15 minutes after you foam roll, you’re not necessarily going to feel as relaxed as when you first had it done. Just like with a massage, you feel really good coming out and then after a while things start to tighten back up. That’s why it’s key. Use this as the first step and if you’ve been foam rolling a ton and not fully seeing the benefits add up, it’s because you’re then still a overusing muscles not only in your workouts but in everyday life, but you’re also then not capitalizing on the relaxation this provides to then mobilize joints and create that stability. So foam rolling is the first part, and again, if you’re foam rolling and you’re on this roller and you’re rolling out your hamstring and you’re like, oh, I can’t dig in as much, you can use a ball up on the bench, but you also have to think, oh, if I’m tensing against this and you’re going like this, you are not helping the muscle relax and release itself because through a process called autogenic inhibition, when you foam roll and you hold on that spot, you got to actually hold on it.

That’s going to help the muscle relax and release, but you’ve got to be able to relax as you hold. So if you’re doing something where you’re on the ground and you’re rolling out your lat even, so you might be here and that might be too much pressure. So if that’s too much pressure, maybe you take a ball against the wall, you can go up against the wall, you can put the ball there. That can be really beneficial as well. But you want to find something where you can relax into the pressure as you hold. And then not only are you holding on the spot, but then you want to think about how can I move and utilize this muscle because this is sort of a dynamic release and this can be very beneficial when you’re not going to necessarily need to activate a muscle or in the case of your pecs where a muscle might be short and tight, but then it’s also potentially underactive in some movements.

You want to use this dynamic release even overstretching potentially, and it can be very beneficial and that just means that you’re going to move the joints around it or the joints impacted by the muscle through a range of motion. So if you are working on say your hamstring, you could be on the bench and I’ll set this up here, but you could be on the bench and then you could actually extend your knee. And so by extending your knee, you’re tensing relaxing the muscle as you extend out and then relax back down. That can help the muscle relax and release itself as well. But foam rolling is that first step in this preh process. Once you foam rolled, you then want to stretch and again, there is nuance to everything. You can hold on the tight spot as you foam roll to help the muscle relax and release.

You can also use that dynamic movement to help the muscle relax and release depending on the muscle and where the tight spot is and you want to find a few tight spots in terms of how long you hold guys with foam rolling. 30 seconds is usually the minimum. I like up to one minute, but over one minute you’re not necessarily going to see any more benefits. Pick one or two spots and when you’re designing this pre-high process, what you foam roll won’t necessarily be what you activate generally won’t be what you activate, but you might even find that you formula a couple of muscles that are then impacted by the stretching that you’re doing, but you’re not necessarily doing every muscle and every component of the warmup. So after you formula, you want to stretch. Now there are different types of stretching. There’s dynamic and static, which we generally think of.

And static is when you’re holding that stretch dynamic is when you’re moving that joint through a range of motion. In warmups, I generally like to use the dynamic stretching just because that’s going to warm up your body and it’s going to start to work through a range of motion. So things like the dynamic squat stretch are great because you want to think about what movement patterns you’re doing in your workout. So you’re doing squats that day. A dynamic squat stretch is going to help you warm up all the joints involved in that. And after you’ve say rolled out your hips, maybe your TFL something or even your calves, if you have tight calves, lack of ankle mobility after you’ve rolled out those tight muscles, then you’re starting to stretch through the range of motion to warm your body up again, improve the joint range of motion for the movements you’re going to do.

So you always want to think about what aches and pains have I had in the past? What restrictions compensations have I had in the past? What are my daily postures to address those? So again, if you’re hunch over a computer, you’re sitting at a chair, your hips, you’re going to be tight. So foam rolling your hips to then do that dynamic stretch will help you then go into your workout. But you also want to consider what muscles am I working in my workout and what movement patterns am I going to do to make sure that you’re warming those up and mobilizing through them. So when you go into your workout, you’re able to strengthen through the fullest range of motion and use the correct muscles. So with stretching, you generally want to think dynamic before your workout. However, if you have had injuries, aches and pains, you have areas that you know are super tight, your hips really are limited or your ankle mobility is really poopy and you’re working on it, you can use static stretching.

So you might have heard that static stretches can reduce your power output or reduce your strength and your workouts, and while there can have some impact, most of us a aren’t doing necessarily power lifting or competing, so having maximal output is not as essential. However, at the same time, we never want suboptimal if we can help it. We have to note that these studies done on those static stretching we’re of the agonist muscles. So when you’re going into a workout where you’re going to work your quads, you might not want to necessarily then stretch your quads. However you want to think, how can I work the opposing muscle group or stretch the opposing muscle group to make sure that I’m able to then better activate the muscles? I really want to target, if you say I wanted to really target your glutes, even in a workout, you might think, okay, I am going to actually do a static stretch for my hip because in doing this static stretch, right, this static stretcher right here, what I’m also doing is engaging my glute to drive that hip into extension.

We think about stretching as stretching a muscle only, but even when you’re doing a dynamic or a static stretch, you want to think about the opposing muscle that is driving the stretch over just stretching, especially if you’re hypermobile. So if you have, you can extend your elbows pass the point. If you can lock out your knees extra. If you’re hypermobile, you are going to tend to rest on structure. And also a lot of times the muscles that are tight are inhibiting the other muscle that we want to activate. So we want to start that activation process in our stretching. So whether you’re doing more of a dynamic sort of hip stretch or you’re doing a static one, you want to think about squeezing that glute to drive the hip into extension because this starts the activation process. It helps stretch out the muscle on the opposing side of the joint and it’s going to help you really warm up your body.

So it’s key. The nuance of, again, dynamic stretches can be great in the warmup because they’re warming up, they’re mobilizing the joints, they’re moving the joint through the range of motion. However, static stretches could still be included. You just want to be conscious that you are not doing a static stretch for the muscles. You really plan to work as the pry movers in your workout. Okay, after doing the stretching, you want to think activation. Okay, so you notice that there’s a ton of different tools here I had for the foam rolling that you can use. As I mentioned, the softer the object the less it’s going to dig in, so that can be really key to start with. But there’s also different things you can use for stretching as well. If you can’t say reach your foot guys, there’s always ways to modify, and I’m going to do this incorrectly, but if you want to put your foot through the band, there we go.

My brain can work today. And then you want to pull this way, right? You can sort of stretch your hip and quad this way by pulling. So there’s always ways to modify whether you’re laying on your side to the stretch, you’re doing a standing variation, maybe you’re even holding onto a wall and you’re pulling your foot up or looping something around. So you want to think about how you can use different tools to make sure that you’re addressing what you need and modifying based on your level and your mobility. Because if you’re going to force something that you can’t do, you’re going to cause injuries, aches, and pains. Now off of that, again, we’re always thinking about previous aches and pains that rehab becomes prehab. We’re thinking about daily postures and positions. So if we’re hunched over a computer, we want to address that in our warmup, and then we also want to think about the movement patterns and muscles we want to train that day.

So we’ve done our foam rolling to relax overactive muscles. We’ve done our stretching to mobilize joints, get warmed up, improve the flexibility of muscles as well, and we’ve even started the activation process. The last component is that focus activation, and I find this is so often what we ignore, but if you don’t establish a mind body connection before you go into workouts, we’ll tend to revert back to natural recruitment patterns. And natural recruitment patterns are movement patterns. We’ve trained, these are not the ones that we have from being a baby because we’ve done so many things, so many daily postures that now have sort of changed things. Injuries change things, surgeries change things, childbirth, which is a trauma to the body. It’s a beautiful one, but a trauma to the body. Those change things guys, and that changes the way we want to activate muscles and utilize muscles.

If you’ve noticed in your squat that you shift to one side, you are overusing specific muscles and you’re even creating an imbalance. So the prehab work you do, you might be relaxing a muscle on one side and activating a muscle on another side, and you might be addressing muscles differently. So this whole process can be used in so many different ways. But the last component is activation, and in this through a process called reciprocal inhibition, you are continuing to stretch out muscles. You’re also creating not only the mobility and flexibility, but this is where you really get into that stability, which you started with the stretching by focusing on the opposing muscle driving the stretch, but you’re focusing on building that stability. Things like bands can be a great tool to use to really help you activate, but you’re not focused with this on going heavier, okay?

You always need to create progression, but the point of this is the MINDBODY connection, this is where I want you to take pride in. Hey, I can lay on the ground and I can do my body weight glute bridge, and I can make my butt cheek shake just by activating the muscles through that my body connection. That’s your focus right here, because you’re not trying to fatigue things. If you go into your workouts tired and that muscle’s already tired, you’re going to start to compensate and use other muscles to try and keep up with the weights, loads, variations that you’re trying to do. What you want to think about with this is how can I establish my mind body connection so I’m very aware of that muscle so that when I go into the compound movements, I can have that better neural drive, that better communication with that muscle.

I can feel it working to know that I am truly recruiting the correct muscles during those movements because this helps that little establish that. It helps it in an environment where you’re doing isolated moves. So you don’t want to think this is the time to be doing complicated movement squats, even lunges. This is the time to do the glute bridges. It’s to do the silly looking little donkey kicks where you’re kicking back. It’s to do the different things like if you are working on scapular health and you’re working on that shoulder stability using the foam roller against the wall to do the serus anterior work where you’re rolling out and you’re rolling up to work on that scapular elevation, that protraction that control of the shoulder blades because you’ve spent so much time seated at a computer, it’s the time to establish that my body connection through more isolated movements with lower loads for higher reps, and you’re just trying to get that little bit of pump and burn to the muscle, not fully fatigue it, but this activation will help you then create that stability and mobility of joints to go into your workouts.

Now, it’s key with all three of these steps that when you go into your workout, you then strengthen through the full range of motion. If you’ve just been working on your hip mobility and then you go squat like this and you don’t even squat to the bench that you’re going to, you are only strengthening through a limited range of motion and you’re not going to see all that mobility maintained. If you’re going and constantly sitting hunch over your computer and never addressing that and you’re sitting for long hours, you’re not going to see all this mobility work maintained. But that’s why doing it in part of your warmup or your warmup consistently throughout the week is so key over just one day and then making sure that your workouts address strengthening through the fullest range of motion, but proper recruitment patterns. What do you feel working?

If you have an imbalance, if you shift to one side in your squat, if you find that your shoulders move differently in movements, going and doing a bilateral move where you’re locked in and you can’t allow each side to move independently, not addressing that in your prehab work, you’re going to see overloaded injury occur. So you need to make sure that you’re thinking, okay, I might have an imbalance and I have to address that in an imbalanced way. Again, that might mean activating one butt cheek and not the other because one is stronger and one is weaker. It might mean doing foam rolling on one side but not the other. You’re going to have to address things independently, and this is where getting your movements assessed is super, super important. But that is the prehab process, and as unsexy as it is, as much as sometimes when you’re short on time, the last thing you want to do is that even if you take one thing and you’re like, okay, I spent time hunch over the computer, I’m going to roll out my chest to open that up, then I’m going to do the world’s greatest stretch, so I address everything.

There are a lot of great sort of movements that are full body stretches where you step outside your hand, you drop your elbow down, you rotate towards the front leg, and again, you’re even thinking activation here, how can I engage my back to pull my chest open? How can I squeeze my butt cheek to drive that leg straight? How can I focus on my foot’s connection to the ground so that I’m not rocking open and creating space? Right? Then you’re sitting back and as you’re hinging, you’re not just leaning forward, you’re thinking about how can I push my butt back to truly stretch my hamstrings, bracing my abs? You’re focusing on all these things, right? And that’s going to warm up your body. So all you did was a foam rolling for your chest. You did the world’s greatest stretch and maybe you do a loo bridge, and then you’ve addressed different things that you’re going to need for your workout, and it’s three moves.

And while that might not seem like a lot, those things pay off and that consistency done daily will really help. But you need to address the fact that you are doing specific postures positions during everyday life that then can impact what you can strengthen through in your workouts. And guys, if you’re seeing neck aches and pains, shoulder aches and pains, feeling like you’re not getting the most out of your workout, because again, even activation starts to drive that muscle hypertrophy, and if you want to even see better hypertrophy, you’ve got to be able to work through a full range of motion because we’ve seen great results from lifting and weighting down moves when the muscles are stretched. So if you want to really truly stretch a muscle, you’ve got to be able to work through the full range of motion. So make sure that you’re doing this prior to your workouts to move the best in your workouts as much as it can be tempting to skip the stuff when you’re short on time, and then anytime you can throughout the day, because this is about just also getting up and moving more. Add in a foam rolling, move against the wall, add in that chest stretch when you walk through the doorway, add in a little glute squeeze when you’re waiting in line of the grocery store, but adding a few of these different things just to focus on how you can also help yourself move better. Because we can’t simply just out mobility work, daily postures and positions. We can’t out mobility work, not training through a full range of motion in our workouts, as key as this is and as much as it really pays off.

Thanks for listening to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. Again, this is the place where I share all my free work, workout, nutrition tips. I’m never going to run sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the

Podcast to leave a rating

Review or share it with someone you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes, and it would mean the world to me and possibly change life of someone.


*Please Note: this transcript is auto-generated and there may be some errors in the transcript

FHP 631 – Stop Blaming Your Age!

FHP 631 – Stop Blaming Your Age!








Hey guys, this is Cori from Redefining Strength. Welcome to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. This is the show where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m not going to ever fill this episode with sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a review or leave a five star rating or even better share with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone. So let’s jump right in.

Age is just the number. Fitness is about ability. So I’m not here to deny that there are changes that happen with getting older, but I am here to help you define how you get older because that is something that we can control. We can’t change that number going up unless we do something dramatic and not so positive. But we can define how we feel at any and every age, and we can focus on controlling what we can control. There are challenges at every phase of life. There are things at every phase of life that we are doing that are moving us forward and that will ultimately add up and hold us back. So the sooner we recognize how our practices are impacting us, the better we can really make our whole life now, but also help ourselves move better as we get older. So I do want to talk about defining how you age versus denying that changes are occurring.

And I wanted to go into what’s actually happening with specific things we often blame on age and what you can do to really control what you can control and move forward. Because I think so often too, we blame things on age and it’s not truly that number. We’ll say, oh, I’m 70 now, I can’t do this, or I’m 60 now, I can’t do this. Or, oh, I’m 80 now. I can’t do this. I’ve had people say the same thing at 30 even, but we say X age and now I can’t do this. When really it’s like, okay, well what have I done previously in my life that might not make this right for me now? But it’s not because of that number, it’s because of improper dieting practices, improper workout practices, and I do say improper because it’s something that either A, does not meet us where we’re at right now, or B, potentially did work but wasn’t really done in a way that set us up for long-term success.

It was a fad diet. It was a quick fix. It was a means to an end right then to try and out exercise or out diet time. And ultimately what that really did was lead to a lot of buildup that we’re just now recognizing, I call it the leaky ceiling effect. We don’t realize that there’s a pipe leaking into the ceiling until it finally collapses, but it’s been going on for a while and that’s why it finally collapses. But then we blame the collapse on, oh, it’s this age or this one thing, but really it’s the accumulation over time that we just didn’t address that now is adding up. So talking about this, I wanted to go over a few things where I feel like people let themselves go or blame age especially, and we stopped doing what made us better. But growth is always possible, and I bring this up too because sure, what you had in your twenties might not look the same as what you have in your seventies.

Things do change at the same time. You can be 70 and fabulous just like you were 20 and fabulous. We can always move forward from where we’re at. There can always be growth. And the second we don’t keep striving for growth is the second that we start to lose all the progress we’ve had and we go backwards and we see all the negative things that we don’t want, whether it’s more aches and pains, not being as functionally fit, not looking the way we want. So again, we’re not denying the changes happen with age, we’re just defining how we age. So first I wanted to talk about muscle gains. Does it get harder to gain muscle as we get older? Yes, but not as much as we blame on our age. A lot of times it is harder to gain muscle because we’ve done a lot of weight loss practices that have impacted our muscle mass retention and our metabolic rate.

We have trained for longer. So as we get more advanced and more experienced, we’re able to handle more progression, more loads. So it does become harder to then build off of that because we have to create a greater stimulus for muscle growth to continue to see growth also, because a lot of times we’ve done more dieting down than really trying to build, we have a lot of cardio practices, a lot of dietary practices that work for fat loss but are the opposite of what we need to do to gain muscle. And so what happens is we’re stuck in these practices and we don’t then evolve because what worked to reach one goal is not what’s going to work to reach the next. So as we get older, again, going back to we’re not denying aging, we are less able to build muscle as efficiently because we aren’t as able to use protein as efficiently to build muscle.

We potentially have trained for longer. So we have to create a greater stimulus for muscle growth. Our recovery potentially is a little bit slower. Also on top of this, a lot of times we do have more aches and pains and we don’t have that optimal hormonal environment for growth, especially going through menopause and even into post menopause where the hormones might have settled. We don’t have the same optimal environment we did when we were younger where we could look at a weight and potentially gain a little bit muscle. It’s why when those studies are done on young men, it’s very different than what we might need as we get older. But this just means that we have to address what our body needs. Now knowing that you aren’t able to protein as efficiently, knowing that you might have to create a stimulus for muscle growth in different ways, knowing that you don’t have this optimal hormonal environment that you once did, you just have to plan for it.

Increasing your protein helps you get the same muscle building response. You just have to eat more of it. Knowing that you have to create progression in different ways instead of just adding loads or if you can’t add loads using different training techniques to still take muscles to failure, to still challenge yourself because that creates the change. Knowing that you don’t have the same hormonal environment aren’t recovering in the same way. You’ve got to change potentially your training volume or your training frequency or how you’re really creating that fatigue and even the recovery that you’re doing. Because a lot of times when we’re younger, I got away with not warming up. But you can’t do that now, and part of why you’re even seeing the ramifications of that now, which you’re blaming on age are because you just didn’t do it before. So the earlier you can catch that, the better.

But again, none of these things limit us from seeing growth. We can still gain muscle. We just have to address what is actually realistic for our body right now. And the thing is too is if you are getting older and you’re just starting back, you can have those newbie gains. But if you’re in a more advanced exerciser who’s been training consistently, you’re not, and what you might’ve gotten away with when you were younger, when you had the optimal hormonal environment of doing more steady state cardio now might not work. So you might have to adjust and address that. I do also want to touch on cortisol because I’ve heard it demonized a lot, especially when it comes to high intensity interval training and just tough training in general. You can only train as hard as you can recover from end of story, but too often we then turn to saying, oh, I have to do less of my workouts.

No, you have to do better in your recovery. You have to stop undereating. You have to make sure you’re getting the protein that you need. You have to focus on your sleep, you have to focus on your hydration, you need to do these other things so you can train just as hard because it’s user to lose it. Going off of this, I want to talk a little bit even about meal timing because I think that’s another thing we don’t address is that what we did to lose fat or maybe even the meal timing we did at one phase does not necessarily work when we move to another. If it’s harder to build muscle, you might have to change the carb timing that you have. You might have to change how many carbs you eat. You might have to change the meal timings that you have or fasting you used to work, but now it doesn’t because you have to increase the food that you get to make sure that you’re building in retain lean muscle because it’s harder to maintain it.

So you have to assess all the systems and how they’re working together off of this injuries. I know it can feel like we get older and now we’re just getting injured more often. A, our body gets wear and tear. Over the years things have happened. You do have degeneration. As we get older, our body is breaking down. That is the aging process. However, we just say, well, I’m this age now. I can’t do these things. So many injuries happen because we stop using the movement pattern. We stop working on the mobility, we stop building stability and strength through it. We can’t stop jumping. We can’t stop the power work. We can’t stop lifting heavy because when we stop doing these things, we are instantly going to see decline in all the things in our body that allow us to do those things. So injuries and what we often say, oh, I’m this age, I can’t do these things.

Yes, we have to meet ourselves where we’re at. We have to address our fitness level. And injuries are one of those things that often have built up over time. We’ve had imbalances, we have other previous injuries that we rehabbed and stopped doing what made us better. But we have these compensations that over time lead to overload and injury. And often the more advanced we are, the more experienced we are, the more we hide these compensations because we know how to mimic proper form. And in trying to mimic proper form, we overuse muscle groups, we overuse areas, or we try and do a movement variation we haven’t earned or in trying to progress week over week, we push past, we let ego get in the way instead of backing you off and taking things back to basics. And in that we create that injury. But I can tell you so often when we even blame as, oh, a deadlift hurt my back, I see people all the time getting more injured lifting or picking a pencil up off the ground or sitting down to something or getting up off the couch and they really do getting injured in the gym.

But getting into the gym is so key because it’s a perfect opportunity to train those movements that you need for everyday life unless you don’t plan on squatting down to a toilet, unless you don’t plan on getting up and down off the ground, you need to train to be able to lunge, squat, twist, turn, all these different things. So see your workouts as a chance to avoid more injuries and really retrain those movement patterns. So with injuries and with aging, seeing that wear and tear, you do have to address anything that you have previously. You have to really address any wear and tear you have. But that doesn’t mean stopping to use things. It means meeting your body where it’s at. It means including the prehab work. It means adjusting movement variations to work around. Maybe that barbell deadlift isn’t right for you anymore, but you can do kettlebell deadlift or a single leg deadlift to be able to work on that balance.

But you need to find ways to meet yourself where you’re at. And this goes for injuries at any age. And I will tell you the younger you are and the more you can do the prehab and keeping that rehab as prehab even after, because you can never stop doing what made you better, the better off you’re going to be. But injuries occur because of cumulation and overload, not just because of age. Yes, again, not denying aging. There is wear and tear, there is slower recovery, but there’s so much we can do in terms of the prehab work in terms of using our strength moves to strengthen through the full range of motion. Instead of going heavier and doing a half squat, go a little bit lighter, sit your butt down to even a lower box than you usually go to help with that security maybe in that range of motion, but try and increase that range of motion to strengthen through it.

Get moving more even outside of your workouts so that you’re not constantly sitting because I think that’s another thing we do. We sit more, we just become more inactive and we sit in these postures for hours on end and then we don’t move, and then we wonder why our body doesn’t move in specific ways. Well, we’ve spent all this time hunched over, so then we go into a workout, we get injured doing an overhead press where we’re requiring our body to do thoracic extension. We don’t have that. So addressing our daily postures and how those have added up over the years is so important. And then regress progress and even pay attention to your nutrition. What is your nutrition looking like in terms of your recovery? Are you getting enough protein to help yourself repair and rebuild? Are you even increasing potentially your collagen intake to help with those connected tissues?

Staying strong, focus on what you can control to make yourself move and feel better. Focus on even the omega threes to help reduce inflammation, but know that injuries are an accumulation of things over the years. And yes, wear and tear happens, but so often what we blame on age is just improper workout practices, training practices, adding up, and we can do so much about them to move better. And if we don’t do anything, we’re going to lose even more movement and we’re going to potentially hold ourselves back from being functionally fit all our final day on this planet. Now going into metabolism, our metabolism does slow down as we get older, and it actually slows down a lot earlier on than we give it credit for, yet we blame it when we’re in potentially our thirties, forties and fifties. But really what’s happening here is hormonal changes, improper dieting practices, adding up and lifestyle factors.

We become more and more inactive and we stay more and more inactive for longer. And that’s why these things happen. We potentially lose more muscle, especially with dieting practices. We’re trying to lose weight faster on the scale and all these things hurt our metabolism. Not to mention part of your metabolic rate is just your daily activity, fidgeting, moving, all those different things. And we move a lot less. We become a lot less active, especially when we’re even doing some of those extreme dieting practices where we’re starving ourself and our bodies like, holy moly, I have to learn how to conserve energy to function off of what you’re giving me. So we then fidget less, move less. We downregulate functions to function better off of what we’re getting, but we do all these practices and it’s not our age. It’s all these practices and lifestyle factors adding up.

So in way that it’s our age, it’s that we’ve allotted to happen for years on end. That’s what causes our metabolism to potentially adapt and change. However, it’s not broken at any point. You can change it, and that’s a great part. You can retrain your body to eat more. You can building muscle, which will help it. You can start by even just moving more. And this is not working out intensely. This is just getting up from your desk a little bit more to fidget, to walk around to do those different things. But all these things can help your metabolism. So often what we blame on age really is just all those other lifestyle factors. It does not slow down enough to say that your X age and now your metabolism is slow and you can’t eat more and you can’t do these different things. Honestly, if you’re feeling like your metabolism is slow and you’re trying to lose weight, you might be undereating.

That might be the first thing you even need to address. And yes, are you going to see the scale increase? Potentially yes, but you’ve got to retrain your body to eat more so you can build the muscles so that you can see that metabolic rate improve so that the hormones and all the bodily functions regulate back to what they should be at. And then you’re going to see that metabolic rate increase, but it’s not broken. It’s adapted, but you can reverse those adaptations at any and every age, starting earlier and implementing proper dieting practice as soon as you can can really help and training practices as well. But even focusing on building that lean muscle will help your fat loss and help your metabolic grade. Now I want to go into skin. So this is probably the thing that you have the least amount of control on as you get older.

At the same time, I’m a control freak. And so often we just write ourselves off or we feel like we can’t do improvements, but we can. So our skin does change with age. Our genetics really impact it. If we’ve lost weight faster, we might see more loose skin add up, but our fueling has an impact and so does our training. So if you’re not eating high protein, if you’re not focusing on that strength work, you’re not doing everything that you can to really improve your skin elasticity and even tighten up any loose skin that you have. And a lot of times it just takes more time. It is slower to adjust than even the scale changing or the fat loss results we see takes time for everything to tighten up. That’s a very scientific way of explaining it, but focus on building muscle. Give things time.

Focus on your protein, focus on your hydration, focus on your micronutrients. This is where that can all impact your skin health. And this is even a time where despite not being deficient in anything, despite you being very conscious of your quality fueling, sometimes we have nutritional gaps and they can actually increase as we get older because we aren’t able to utilize things as efficiently. And also our appetite does downregulate as we get older. So we have to be conscious of that and realize that even though we feel full, we might not be fueling enough or eating enough to help our metabolic rate to building muscle or even to get our skin and our body all the things that it needs. And this is where supplements can come into play and things like collagen have been shown to be potentially more beneficial as we get older.

But you want to pay attention to controlling what you can control. And this is where you do want to track and dive into those micros a little bit more, get into more of the nitty gritty details. But so often we just say, oh, I’m getting older and my skin isn’t going to be as healthy. It isn’t going to bounce back the way it did. And no, it’s not. We’re not denying aging, but we’re defining how we age and this is why we’re going to control what we can’t control with those things. The last thing I to touch on, and it goes back to muscle building, but workouts in general and the feeling of I can’t train as hard or I need to take it easier or I shouldn’t lift as heavy. We do recover at a different pace. The hormone environment is not as optimal to be able to push as hard sometimes and what our fitness level is now, how active we have been, all impact what we can do in our workouts, but you can always meet yourself at where you’re at to move forward.

So if you’ve been out with injury, if you’ve had to go back to basics, if you had to take out the intensity, you can still go back and doing that power work, doing that explosive work. All those things are so important because they improve our MINDBODY connection. And it’s not one size fits all, not every move and every form is going to be right for every person, but you want to think about how you can build back as closely to everything as possible because that means you’re controlling the movement pattern. The more powerful you are, the more you’re able to jump and explode, the more your landing mechanics are correct and the better your mind body connection. So no, you might not add in a ton of high impact because of joint issues, but the more you can build back that explosive power and that ability to control and decelerate movement, the better off you’re going to be.

Because if you want to go out and hike, if you want to go out and do things in everyday life, you’re going to have other forces acting on you. And the last thing you want to do is have something sort of shove you and not be able to decelerate from the impact or control the impact. And that’s where we end up getting injured and falling and fracturing things. So you want to think, how can I train hard in my workouts? I mentioned the fear of cortisol levels rising, but we need that challenge, that stress in our workouts. We cannot demonize that stress in our workouts. No, we don’t want to just do hours and hours of high intensity interval training. It’s why the techniques have to be utilized strategically. We want to design for the time we have. We want to design with our goal in mind.

We don’t want to just do more, but we need to focus on our recovery. We need to think, use it or lose it. There are no bad moves. What moves can I control? What moves can I earn? What moves match my needs and goals based on even my mobility restrictions and compensations? Right now, we need to think what techniques match what I need right now? But we can’t demonize hard. We can’t demonize challenge. We need those things. We then just need to focus on how we can recover better to be able to train harder. So in summary, as you get older, things are going to change, but by just saying, I’m too old. What are you really doing? You’re just writing yourself off. The second you say, I’m too old. You are too old for it because you’re not allowing yourself growth. You’re not allowing yourself opportunity to improve.

Because the thing is, if you are not doing something to move forward, you’re going backwards. And what do you really want out of life? I always want to strive to improve, to see what else is possible for myself, because I know in that growth, I’m going to feel and move the best that I can know. It might not look like exactly what I envisioned, but it’s going to be better than the alternative. And I think that’s something key that we focus on. So stop blaming your age instead. We’re not denying aging. We’re defining how we age. What are you keeping in? How are you pushing yourself forward? How are you proving that age is just a number and fitness and health and wellness and being fabulous at every age is really something that you can define. Thanks for listening to the Fitness Hacks Podcast.

Again, this is the place where I share all my free work, workout, nutrition tips. I’m never going to run sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a rating, review or share it with someone you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and it would mean the world to me and possibly change life with someone.


*Please Note: this transcript is auto-generated and there may be some errors in the transcript

FHP 630 – 10 Reasons Why We Fail

FHP 630 – 10 Reasons Why We Fail








Cori (00:00):
Hey guys, this is Cori from Redefining Strength. Welcome to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. This is the show where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m not going to ever fill this episode with sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a review or leave a five star rating or even better share it with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone. So let’s jump right in 10 reasons why we fail. Now, you may be thinking, I’m going to say, oh, your macros weren’t right. Your work workouts weren’t right. You have genetic predisposition for this not to work or it’s your hormonal imbalance. But I’m not going to say any of those things because often it isn’t that we don’t have the right plan.

It isn’t that we’re doomed because of our situation. There is always a way to move forward. The issue is, is that often we’re not really assessing what’s going on and our mindsets aren’t backing up our actions. So I wanted to talk about the 10 most common reasons. I feel that we truly fail in reaching our goals. Number one, being the biggest, most important probably if you don’t listen to anything else in this podcast, you got to listen to this one. We simply give up. That’s it. We start something, we hit a hard point, and when we get that shock of the hard, we say, oh, this isn’t for me. We don’t feel comfortable pushing through it, and we go back to our comfort zone. And so we start a new program and guess what? We get to that same hard point. We get that shock up and we go back.

So we’re never pushing that comfort zone. We’re never pushing that boundary. We’re never pushing past that hard to see what is truly possible for us. We give up and if you probably look at every time you repeat the same cycle, you give up probably near the same point. Yeah, sure. Maybe it’s one time because you had to cut carbs and you didn’t like cutting out carbs. Maybe another time it’s because you had to do six workouts a week when you really can only usually do four. But it’s always because we’ve created some system that really isn’t realistic and we encountered some hard that goes against a pattern we’ve repeated. So we turn back. If you want a new and better result, you have to embrace the hard. There is a downside to every upside. And if you can’t say, Hey, is this this downside to the upside?

Is this the discomfort of my brain saying, no, I don’t like this, so I don’t want to do that. And coming up with all the reasons why now I shouldn’t do it, to just default back into what I really want to do because it’s comfortable. It’s what I’ve always done. You got to question that because at some point you got to choose to push through it. Even saying, Hey, this is an experiment. Maybe it won’t work out, but at least I’ll show myself that I can be comfortable being uncomfortable and that will help you move forward. But I can tell you I see it at 30 days a lot of times with certain programs or six weeks or nine weeks where we hit that point where we feel like we deserve more for the effort we’ve been putting in, and we always quit at that point.

If we just kept pushing through what feels like a plateau, what feels like a dead zone would probably show that snowball. But the simple fact is we don’t keep going. So often I would tell you, stop looking for a new macro ratio. Stop looking for a new workout plan. Say, Hey, am I doing all the habits consistently? If your consistency is actually there, keep going. You’re closer often than you think. Number two, we don’t assess why something happened. So I’ll put clients on a higher protein ratio and all of a sudden things will change. Our body doesn’t like change, so it does respond, but they’ll see an increase on the scale or they’ll see a change in something else and they’ll be like, oh, it’s the protein. And I’ll be like, well, no, you’re attributing causation where there might not be any. And when we truly dive into it, yes, the protein was part of it in that they increased the protein, but in that they changed all these other foods.

They changed their meal timing, they changed their fiber, they changed their hydration. So it wasn’t really the protein. They would’ve stopped doing the protein. It was a thing they at least wanted to do. It was the thing that was most uncomfortable. So they were finding reasons not to do it. We do ourselves with doubt in that way. We go to the thing that we at least want to do, but we don’t say, Hey, what other things could actually be at work? Could be the true culprit. And so then tweaking their water intake or in tweaking the mealtime or in tweaking the fiber intake because that dropped with trying to increase the protein, which again, shifts do happen. Then there’s still high protein ratio if they maintain that, they would see results. So we have to really ask yourself, why is something happening? Why am I feeling this way?

Why might I be seeing the result? And I even bring this up because effort doesn’t equal outcome. And a lot of times what feels like a lot of effort is just something very different, something very against what we want to do or what we’ve always done. And so in even just tracking what we’re currently doing, that can feel like a lot of effort because tracking alone is hard. But if we’re tracking what we’re currently doing, even though it feels like we’re giving a lot of effort, we haven’t made one change right there. We’re just assessing right now our current lifestyle. Yes, sometimes in tracking we are holding ourselves more accountable, so we will see changes snowball because we’re becoming more aware. So we’re making changes, but a lot of times we’re doing a new habit but not truly making a change with that new habit.

And it’s hard to do that new habit and even bring those unconscious habits we’ve been currently repeating to light to try and start to break them. But that effort isn’t true, changes that lead to a true outcome. So we have to assess, okay, why am I feeling like I deserve more? Why is this feeling like so much effort? Am I actually making the change? And then from there, we can build off of it and sometimes the effort doesn’t fully feel worth it. So we have to change how we’re approaching those habit changes, but we need to assess why to get to the heart of the change we actually need to make or what may be going on that may not be working. Sometimes even assessing, Hey, is it really that I think I’m being better than I am? Are there deviations I’m not owning? Because while we think of that as like, oh, I am doing it.

Oh, see, opportunity maybe in the fact that you’re not doing it as perfectly as you could be, or there is room for improvement. I mean that growth is so key, but assess why something truly happened. Don’t just write something off as not working before you really dive in because that can make us throw out habits that we really need or that would really work for us. Number three, we only judge success based on one outcome. I know you want to lose weight. I know you want to gain muscle. I know you want to PR in that race, but a lot of times we have to see success in other ways in order to keep it the habits that will earn us that outcome. So if we see how much further we have to go to our goal, like, oh no, I have this much further to increase my time or improve my time for that race, or, oh no, I haven’t gained this much muscle.

I have so much further to go. We ignore all the progress we’ve truly already made, but we also sabotage ourselves from doing the habits that we need to keep moving forward towards that goal. Just because we’re not getting there fast enough, but inch by inch, we’re still moving forward. So we have to find other ways to measure success, to make us keep wanting to do the habits. It’s actually an interesting example, and this came up in a conversation with Michelle, but a client was like, well, I’m not losing weight as fast as I’d like. I’m not losing weight right now. She had hit a plateau and we were starting to focus more on quality foods, so adding in those fruits and vegetables, and she’s like, I don’t even know why I’m making the effort to add in the fruits and vegetables. And it was sort of an eyeopening thing because yeah, you haven’t seen the result necessarily pay off yet in weight loss, but this is improving your health.

You’re sleeping better, your energy is better, you’re feeling more full and satisfied all these other things were happening that she was ignoring. So we have to realize that in order to keep herself doing the habits that we often need to do past the point we want to quit, we have to measure success in other ways. We have to track our numbers and our workouts to see the improvements. We have to assess, am I feeling more energized? Am I sleeping better? How am I feeling? Or is my skin looking clear? What are the other things that could be a payoff from the habits that I’m doing? Because the more ways we measure success, the more ways we have to be successful, the more we’re going to embrace the process. Because habit changes aren’t always fun, process isn’t always fun, but we have to find ways to enjoy the journey, and that’s often in seeing success in other ways.

Number four, we never start at the wrong time. This is a very unpopular one, but I think it is truly the secret to success. I can’t tell you how many times over the last few years I’ve really embraced being like, I don’t want to do this right now. Okay, so I’m going to do this right now. And in doing that, a lot of times I make sustainable habit changes. I see results snowball more because there are going to be points where motivation is higher, where things are working for us so that we can do things optimally based on some ideal that we have or go full steam ahead, implementing more changes at once because we don’t have other life priorities getting in the way. But in order to capitalize on those times even better, we have to learn to move forward during the times that aren’t as ideal.

A lot of times, if you think about the weight loss cycle we see for people over the year, and even with ourselves a lot of times January, we’re more motivated. We make changes based on having that motivation based on having potentially a time where we’re not traveling, there’s not the holidays, there’s not all these different things going on. And so we implement habits based on the time and then summer hits where we’re on vacation or the holidays hit where we’re celebrating more of family and all of a sudden we can’t do what we were doing during that time. And now we have no habits because we didn’t really build that stack. We just sort of forced ourselves in the mold. So even starting during the holiday season and learning how you can handle and navigate those times to then be able to capitalize on the January motivation with those habits already stacked up.

So you further ahead going into the summer and shifting your habits based on that time can help you really keep moving forward because we have to make our lows less low. If we want our highs to be higher, we have to have that solid foundation off a witch to build. And if we’re not ever embracing doing the minimum doing those 1% improvements during the wrong time, we’re not going to truly see lasting results. So I would tell you, if you’re always waiting for the perfect time to start, you’re probably never starting fully or you’re ending up giving up on something that might be working because the habits just don’t fit instead of finding a way to do the minimum. But we have to shift our mindset, and this really goes back to even something is better than nothing. A 1% improvement over the holiday season this year is going to make a difference.

It’s not a 1% improvement over what you did in January in the holiday season. It’s a 1% improvement on the holiday season from the holiday season the last year. We have to measure times based on that same time and the habits and priorities that mattered at that time. Number five, we never embrace the new us. When you are reaching a new goal, you are becoming a new person. You are implementing new habits, you are building a new lifestyle. This is not a bad thing. We act as if, oh, you’ve changed and we see this as a bad thing. But all growing up we were constantly changing. And honestly, every single day you’re alive. You are constantly changing. Don’t you just want to control the direction of that change? I do. And so that’s why I always think, okay, with this I’m stepping into a new identity.

It all goes back to the act as if instead of faking it till you make it. Because if you’re just faking it until you make it, you’re implementing habits potentially they don’t really believe in, they don’t really feel like will become part of your lifestyle. And then the second you get into that same situation and you’re going to default back into handling it the way you’ve always handled it. And I’m not saying that we don’t want to go out and celebrate girls’ night like we’ve always done, but finding our new balance, understanding how that impacts our new lifestyle and the goals we want to achieve is really key. And I’ve had clients even say, Hey, I really sat down and said I usually have this croissant when I go out to this one place, but this time I was like, I want results in this way.

I’m choosing not to have it. And that’s the amazing thing. We’re not restricting things. We’re choosing what we’re going to include and not include, and we can make a different choice at a different point. But it’s also realizing is this really part of who I am and what I want? Do I really get enjoyment or have I gotten enjoyment in the past out of this because I didn’t have the other things I now have? So it’s assessing what truly makes me happy. Now realizing there’s always going to be the pullback to who and what we were. We can feel it. Even today, you can think about things from your childhood patterns that you repeated, holidays you celebrate in specific ways that you’re drawn to. There’s always that pull back to the old us. But a lot of times we have to say, Hey, how does this fit into the new lifestyle and building?

I don’t think we consider that enough about thinking about us as a new us with these things and not in a bad way. We’re changing to be our best selves. That’s what we’re always seeking to have is growth. Number six. We try to force one standard all the time. And this goes back to never starting at the wrong time and always waiting for the right time to start, but your life is going to ebb and flow. Your motivation is going to ebb and flow. Your priorities are going to shift. And the more we own these things, the more we can plan around them. But the more we try and force one mold onto ourselves the entire time, the more we’re going to feel like we’re trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Because what you do in January through the season where you’re maybe not traveling as much or it’s colder, and so you’re not wanting to go out and party, at least maybe that’s me, but during January, February, March, I’m like, all right, I’m a little bit more motivated to dial things in.

I’m going to do it. But in the summer, I want the chips and guac. I want to go out for that margarita a little bit more frequently. So my habits are different during the holidays, I know my habits are going to be different. I even know that I have to approach things in different ways. I can maybe get away with not tracking quite as rigidly during the summer and doing more protein minimums, calor caps. But during the holiday seasons, I use that as an excuse to not see what I’m doing and then eat a whole heck of a lot of things that sabotage my results and make me feel like I’m starting over. So I don’t like that. So I know I have to have a different habit then even though I, maybe I’m not doing the same habits I’m doing during January. So the more we can meet ourselves where we’re at and realize that our priorities will shift, and if we get busy at work, maybe we have to go back to three workouts a week.

The more we can make ourselves feel successful, the more we can meet ourselves where we’re at, and the more we’re going to see that growth through those 1% improvements. And then you might be surprised by how much your habits ultimately even out over the year because of taking this approach. And you’re not always relying on motivation, but you’ve built that discipline through doing those minimums. But just realize you can’t force one standard all the time. You’re going to feel unmotivated at points, stare into it, but do something because steering into it over trying to force something that ultimately makes you feel burnt out so you don’t do anything. Number seven, we fall prey to believing we deserve more. You don’t deserve anything. I tell this to myself a lot because I’ll be like, I deserve to see results. I’m working so hard. We don’t deserve anything.

That’s the sucky hard truth of the matter. Yes, putting in the effort, we want the outcome, putting in the effort and the daily habits does build the outcome generally, but exactly how that outcome looks. We can’t fully control. We can’t control some things that come up in our life, but we can see those things as opportunity or obstacle. And so often if we sabotage ourselves by just saying, I deserve more, and letting that feeling get in the way, we won’t take that step back to assess, Hey, where maybe am I not putting in as much work? Or where am I saying this feels like a lot of effort, but I’m not truly making changes. How can I break things down to make it feel less like I’m putting in so much effort to not the results I deserve? So how can we make that pain a little bit less so that it feels like the outcome we’re getting is worth the effort we’re putting in?

Or how can I just say suck it up buttercup and keep pushing through? Because I think this is where we often encounter the hard I deserve results. I’m pushing into this hard thing I don’t want to be doing. Instead of saying, Hey, that is what success is, struggle. And I am hitting that point where I want to quit, and I know if I push through that hard, I feel so much better. Because sometimes just even saying that stepping back and pushing through we’re like, I feel so good. I mean, think about that workout you don’t want to do when you make yourself do it, a lot of times you’re like, yeah, you feel even better for having done something you didn’t want to do. So I think we have to recognize that feeling like we deserve more often comes just because we are putting in a lot of effort.

We’re doing it on days we don’t want to do it, but those are the days that really make or break us, and those are the days we need to push through even more. So if you’re starting to feel like, Hey, I deserve more, take that step back. Assess why, see what can do to potentially steer into the skit if things are too much right now, but also just even say, Hey, I am going to tell myself to suck it up. Buttercup, push through the hard and I’m going to feel even better for it. Number eight, we don’t pause to appreciate how far we’ve come. I am incredibly guilty of this. I’m like, but I want to go over there. And I’m like, oh, I accomplished that check. Okay, now what’s the next thing? If we don’t pause to appreciate how far we’ve come though, we can get very discouraged by how far we often have to go.

And really life is a never ending journey of improvements. When you reach one goal, you’re probably going to set another one and setting one, potentially other habits are going to slide. And then you’re going to be like, oh, well now I want to work more towards this goal. So you might say, oh, I got a little leaner. Okay, now I want to add a little bit muscle. Okay, now I want to get a little bit leaner. Okay, now I want to add a little bit muscle. Okay, now I’m going to just see what I can get away with while maintaining my goal. But there’s always some focus, something we want more out of. And I think being okay with that is key, but that’s also where we have to pause to appreciate all the changes we’ve made. At times we have to reflect on how good we truly have it.

You’re not going to be happy all the time. Happy is a fleeting emotion. A lot of times we’re sort of just existing as negative as that sounds. It’s not meant to be negative, but you’re just existing. And I think even embracing that happy is a feeling that you’re going to have to strive to feel is also important in this journey. But that comes from pausing to appreciate at times, and maybe you said on your calendar, I’m going to pause to appreciate it. Maybe you set vacations where you have a little time to reflect, but set times to really recognize how your hard work has already paid off all the changes you made. Heck, even celebrate the strength that you have now in what you’ve overcome and how much more comfortable being uncomfortable in certain ways you are. Those are all wins. Those have all made you grow in some way as a person and improve this life that you have and this journey that you’re on.

But pause to appreciate how far you’ve come, not just always staying focused on what’s ahead of you. And then number nine, we ignore 1% deviations. Things add up more than we realize. All of a sudden we’ve sort of reached our goals and we’re like, okay, well I don’t have to track as strictly. And that little snack that we grab as we’re going past the cabinet, that handful of nuts we don’t log, and then one handful of nuts becomes a little extra sauce here or a bigger portion, or it’s 32, 33 grams versus 30. And while all these things are small, they start to add up and they start to lead to a mental slide. Oh, well, I skipped one workout. So who cares about being perfect with my macros today? And while it might seem small and it is small, if we catch it, those little deviations can quickly lead us off course.

I think it’s the airplane going from JFK to Japan can end up in the ocean if it’s one degree off when it takes off. Don’t quote me on that one. I had some debate about this analogy at some point, but I think that’s the analogy. But basically, we can end up completely off course through those 1% deviations that do snowball. So sometimes if you feel like you’re losing progress or the results aren’t adding up the way you want, look at where there’s areas for growth in the current systems you’re doing. It’s a lot easier to tweak than to freak out and go find something new and try and implement that and all the changes that will come with that new system. So think about how can I use what I’m already doing and make it even better? Use it to its fullest, get that little bit extra out of it before I have to go make a dramatic change.

And if you’re saying, Hey, there really is nothing to adjust, that’s where you try and make the 1% improvement off of that. Even slightly switching macro breakdown, slightly adjusting workout progressions changing up a move, but the smaller the change, the better. But don’t ignore those 1% deviations. Or if you’re starting to feel like nothing’s working, assess if there were 1% deviations that you just have ignored that are snowballing. And last but not least, number 10, we think we’re beyond the basics. The more advanced you are, the more you need to return to the basics. I think a lot of times the more we know, the more we think, okay, there’s got to be something else, or we search for something advanced or we search for some aha moment. And ultimately there really isn’t any. The longer I’ve been in this, the more I realize that everything goes back to the basics and tweaks to them to match what we need right now.

A lot of times if something isn’t working any longer that used to work, it just needs to be adjusted because our body isn’t in the same position. Our lifestyle isn’t in the same position. But results are really built off of tweaks, not massive overhauls of things. We don’t want to be knocking down the building to rebuild it. We want to fix whatever little cracks we can to make it even better. So don’t ever think you’re beyond the basics and the more you think, well, I’m advanced. I don’t need to watch this, or I’m advanced, I don’t need to do this. No, you need to do it even more because probably in searching for new and more advanced techniques, you’ve forgotten a lot of the basics or they’ve slid in their implementation, or you could optimize them a little bit more. I always go back to that basic body weight loo bridge.

No matter how much I can hip thrust or do a weight GL bridge, because I want to go back to that basics of making sure that everything is correct, focusing on the pressure in my feet, focusing on my upper body engagement, focusing on that posterior pelvic tilt. We want to take things back to the basics to make sure that foundation is solid and also knock ourselves down a peg. I think we lose that appreciation for being that learner, which also makes it hard then to be coachable, to embrace a new program to embrace change. So the more we can sort of say, I’m always going to be that beginner, I’m always going to be that learner of new things and see it as an opportunity to improve things that are below what my ego wants to tell me. I’m now above the more we’re going to see results.

You’re never above those basics, and the more you can say, Hey, I’m really advanced. I need to go back to step one, the more you’re going to see amazing improvements because hearing something said that you’ve heard said a thousand times, just set it a different time in a different context, all of a sudden, a light bulb can go off. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had that happen, but just to reiterate, all the reasons we often fail aren’t really because we don’t have a perfect plan, a right macro ratio, a right workout routine. It’s because we haven’t assessed how all the systems are working together and our mindsets behind our actions. Because a lot of times it is mentally that we are letting things slide, that we are letting ourselves out the hook that we’re not pushing through. So a lot of the work we often need to do if we want to see better results is asking why question ourself, building that self-awareness, and really stepping back at times to look at the overall system and how it’s all working together. Thanks for listening to the Fitness Hack Podcast. Again, this is the place where I share all my free workout nutrition tips. I’m never going to run sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a rating review or share it with someone you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and it would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone you know


*Please Note: this transcript is auto-generated and there may be some errors in the transcript

FHP 629 – Overrated vs. Underrated: Muscle Building Edition

FHP 629 – Overrated vs. Underrated: Muscle Building Edition








Cori (00:15):
Hey guys, this is Cori from Redefining Strength. Welcome to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. This is the show where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m not going to ever fill this episode with sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a review or leave a five star rating or even better share it with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone. So let’s jump right in.

Cori (00:28):
Alright, we’re talking muscle gains, overrated versus underrated. Of course, when I made the note about gains, I had to have the Zs on there to make it extra gnarly, but I’m so excited for Michelle and I to really discuss what we feel are the best practices and the worst practices, things that we often turn to that maybe aren’t as valuable as we think. So Michelle, jumping right in. Let’s talk about creating that calorie surplus to build lean muscle overrated or underrated.

Michelle (01:00):
So I’m a ruffle some feathers, but I think it’s one of the biggest things that’s majorly underrated When your goal is to actually gain muscle, you have to have the energy or the calories to be able to do so. It requires material to be able to build.

Cori (01:18):
So my feathers are ruffled by that. Just kidding. But I totally see your perspective in that. Often it is hard to increase calories if you’ve been in a calorie deficit prior to lose fat. It’s very hard to increase, but you need to gain muscle. However, I am actually going to argue the opposite and say that it is overrated, and this is coming from background. Seeing a lot of people do the dirty bulks and go into these extreme calorie surpluses saying, Hey, I need extra calories to building muscle. You don’t need as many extra as you think and your glycogen stores can only store so much glycogen. So I will argue overrated because there is nuance to it. Yes, you need extra energy as you build muscle. What used to be a surplus will probably shrink and become a deficit even potentially, or at least maintenance. And so you’ll need to increase further to add more lean muscle, but you don’t need to go crazy with it. So breaking things down, you mentioned underrated, I mentioned overrated. We both agree that you need to be strategic in it. How would you recommend that someone strategically creates that calorie surplus so that they aren’t making it overrated or not eating enough to actually fuel that growth?

Michelle (02:27):
Well, and you bring up an excellent point because the bottom line is you still have to have the building material right to actually be able to repair the muscles because as we build the process of building muscles means we’re going to actually tear the muscles and then have the repair come in, and that’s how we actually grow the muscle. So the biggest issue is a lot of people I think confuse body recomposition with muscle gains. And you can do both. You can have both, but if your sole focus is truly that pure muscle gains and you’ve lost the fat and you’re ready to build it is going to require that surplus. And as you mentioned, what is that surplus? How much does it actually need to be? And this is where people kind of mess up because they start looking online at what someone else is doing.

And a lot of times they’re looking at people that already have a high amount of muscle on them. So they’re trying to compare their eating habits to someone that they want to look like. And the problem with that is is they already have the muscle that’s requiring more metabolic demand. So they’re burning more with that. So their calorie surplus, even though they probably are eating way more than what you are right now, is probably not as big of a surplus as you actually think given the amount of muscle they have on. So you have to be a little bit strategic here. And it truly, like you said, it really doesn’t take that much again to be anywhere from 200 to 300 calories extra, which let’s be honest, that’s really just an added snack to your day. But we do also of course want to make sure that we’re adding the right calories from the right sources. So this is really where we’re looking at making sure we’re getting those necessary amino acids from protein sources, we’re getting the correct amount of carbohydrates so that we can protect that muscle mass when we are working it even further.

Cori (04:20):
And going back to your underrated, because as much as I said overrated, I totally get that underrated perspective, especially if someone has been in a deficit, it’s scary to first come out of it because you feel like you do see that scale jump, which you will because you now are no longer depleted. So when you’re coming out of the deficit, especially if you’re fearing gaining fat, you’re fearing increasing those calories, but you want those muscle gains, you got to do it slowly because you do have to retrain your body to eat more. As you mentioned, someone who already has more muscle on who’s eating higher calories might have been at maintenance and is now going into that calorie surplus from their maintenance to add more muscle on top of that. But they have transitioned first to maintenance. So simply coming out of that deficit, moving towards maintenance slowly might be your first step. And in that process you might even see muscle being built because you somewhat trained your body to function off of less. So with the increased calories, your body has the extra fuel to be able to add that lean muscle. And then with adding lean muscle, your body will need more. So just know that it is a slow transition out of that deficit if you’ve been in a fat loss phase. But you can’t fear seeing that scale go up a little bit because you’re no longer depleted.

Michelle (05:30):
Yes, and I think that’s honestly one of the biggest things is when you are truly solely focusing on the gains and not necessarily body recomp, the scale is not going to be your friend. Measurements are, but the scale won’t be.

Cori (05:46):
And macro is still matter a lot. There is no debating that. I’m not even going to give Michelle an opportunity to say overrated or underrated. Macros still matter a lot. We’re actually going to touch on once macro specifically in a second, but before that I want to jump to a workout overrated or underrated heavy weights for building muscle. Michelle, your opinion

Michelle (06:06):

Cori (06:09):
Alright, and so I’m going to argue with you here just a little bit and for a good reason because I do agree weights are very important and I’m doing this more to present the nuance in things and the opportunity in things, but I’m going to say overrated. And the reason why is weights are the easiest way to create progression, especially when you’re starting back, especially as an advanced lifter. Yes, you need to challenge yourself with loads, but the more advanced we are, the more we’re going to be hitting that upper limit potentially in what we can lift with different moves. So we’ve got to see opportunity in other progressions to keep driving that same stimulus for muscle growth. We’ve got to use different training techniques, different tempos, different tools. We can’t just get caught up in lifting heavier because there might be a point where we can’t truly add that much weight or add that many more reps with the same weight. So we can’t lift that many more loads without unique training techniques or equipment. But I do want you to break down why you very aptly said underrated because heavyweights are very important when we want to create that easy progression.

Michelle (07:08):
And I think I took it kind of from the perspective of someone that’s new to trying to gain muscle. So when you are new to the game, of course everything you’ve said was absolutely a hundred percent correct and there’s a lot of different ways that you can grow muscle. It doesn’t have to just be heavy lifting, but I think a lot of women specifically shy away from heavy lifting. And the problem with that is you do have to be a little bit more smart about how you go about trying to gain muscle if you are not trying to lift heavy. So it’s maybe a little bit, I don’t want to say the lazy route, but it makes it a little bit easier if you’re new to the game and you are just starting to try to lift heavier and progress with your weights that way.

And this is really just because it is going to create that muscle tension or even that time under tension that your body requires to actually be able to stimulate muscle protein synthesis. So by just creating that heavier lift or doing a heavier lift, you are going to be able to get there quicker. And it’s the same with also just having that progressive overload, being able to lift heavy and as you mentioned, progress and, sorry, excuse me. Get to that next point where you’re even lifting heavier that is going to be able to actually have a bigger effect on your body to be able to signal for muscle growth. And of course you’re going to have more muscle tears, which is going to require more rebuild or more repair. So there’s a lot of benefits to lifting heavy, but as you mentioned, we can’t get completely stuck into it’s the only way. But if you’ve been shying away from it for fear of that you’re going to get too bulky or for fear or just women in general who sometimes we don’t always lift heavy things, I would definitely encourage you to start lifting heavy and challenge yourself at actually trying to progress to heavier weights.

Cori (09:05):
I love that you mentioned that specifically because not even talking just about purely muscle gains. Heavy weights are so important for us being functionally fit to our final day on this planet. And I think as women fearing getting bulky or even the fearing of getting older and lifting heavy, that is definitely a fear I’ve seen popping up, oh, I’m too old, I shouldn’t lift as heavy. No, you need to challenge yourself even more because if you’re not creating that stimulus for growth, that stressor in your training, you are not going to cause your body to build and repair because as we get older, it does get harder to build and retaining muscle. So we need that same stimulus. We cannot fear lifting heavy, it’s use it or lose it. And so the heavier we lift, the more we can handle loads in everyday life. So not even just talking about muscle gains from an aesthetic standpoint, but that functional strength we need. Lifting heavy is so important even as we become more advanced and might have to use those other drivers of muscle growth, the other forms of progression to really see those muscle gains Going into the next topic, meal timing, overrated or underrated?

Michelle (10:06):
I’m going to go overrated on this one.

Cori (10:09):
I really wavered on this one as to whether or not I was going to say overrated or underrated because I think meal timing in general is very overrated and paid far too much attention to other than finding the meal schedule that’s right for you. But I also think that in this day and age where people are really pushing intermittent fasting and different things like that, it can be something that we ignore as holding us back from seeing the muscle gains we want because we did a specific meal timing potentially to lose the fat and that same meal timing doesn’t work now for muscle gains. So I’d love to sort of hear why you said overrated

Michelle (10:45):
And you brought up good points. Honestly, truthfully, I wasn’t even thinking that intermittent fasting route where so many people are doing that. So I’m really interested to hear that perspective. Now you’ve got my brain thinking on that one as well, but I went with overrated only because again, when people first start trying to gain muscle or even any health journey, they start looking at areas that aren’t the most important pieces. So when it comes to eating overall, yes, timing can affect things, but the biggest thing is at the end of the day, are you actually getting your needed macros? Are you actually hitting your needed caloric goal? And everyone’s a little bit different. What’s going to work for someone isn’t going to work for someone else? And a lot of times it’s really this niche area that I see a lot of people trying to follow because that’s what an athlete does and it’s because they’re trying to perform at their peak performance during their workouts or during a game or a race or whatever they’re doing athletically.

And the biggest problem I see is we get so up in the surrounding of like, oh, I need to eat this right two hours before or I need to recover within 30 minutes with this. And we get so stressed out about that that we’re forgetting about the rest of the day. Those things are great and I definitely want to encourage people to do those things, but at the end of the day, if all you did was take care of what surrounded your workout, but you didn’t adequately fuel the rest of the time, you’re not going to do yourselves any favors. And it’s almost like, okay, yeah, you had a couple good meals around your workouts, but we still aren’t hitting what we need to hit and we’re not providing the proper fuel by the end of the day for your body as a whole.

Cori (12:32):
I love that you mentioned we stress ourselves out with details that aren’t as important because that is really why I sort of wavered in my opinion on this because I think we turn to meal timing or we freak out about, oh my gosh, my muscles are going to melt off if I don’t eat within a certain time. And that’s really not the case. Meal timing is about optimizing, about allowing us to hit our macros more easily, feel fueled for our workouts, which I think is where I also wavered on saying it was a little underrated because often if someone has done intermittent fasting potentially for their training, they can yes, still time enough carbs, enough calories that at night to be fueled for that workout, but are they fueled optimally? Especially if they find that they’re a hard gainer if they’re first coming out of that deficit and especially based on the training that they’re doing, sometimes we’re not as energized as we could be.

And to really build a muscle, especially the more advanced you are, you have to have that fuel to push and be very uncomfortable in your training. So it might be a time where we have to adjust the meal timing or let go of a previous meal timing we’ve done to now have that pre-workout meal or adjust our meal timing to now break our fast a little bit closer or even extend our eating window out because we’re having to eat more calories and it’s harder in that fasting window. So I think that’s where my brain went of there’s so much nuance to what mealtime is really best, that it’s both overrated and that it’s the first thing we turn to over just hitting our macros. But it’s also underrated in that we don’t think to adjust it with a new goal where it can really pay off.

Michelle (14:05):
And I completely agree with that too. There’s definitely a lot more nuance to it.

Cori (14:11):
So next topic, jumping back to the training, training frequency, like training more than once a week, only once a week, is training frequency overrated or underrated?

Michelle (14:22):
I went underrated on this one.

Cori (14:25):
I have to 100% agree, especially because I’ve seen so many of the bodybuilding type workouts where people are training a body part once a week popping up and studies have truly proven that two to three times a week is optimal to stimulate muscle growth is especially for stubborn areas. And I think so often we think do more in one day over spreading that volume out over more days so that we can really be fresher and do more quality over the course of the week hitting those stubborn areas a little bit more frequently to drive that stimulus from muscle growth in different ways. I’d be curious to hear your thoughts too as to why you mentioned underrated. I was not surprised that we agreed on this because of the progressions we create, but

Michelle (15:07):
Yeah, so definitely you have to be able to progress. The point is, again, we have to be able to tear the muscle down to be able to build it up and one time once a week isn’t going to be enough. But what I also wanted to add for this too is the importance of actually being able to not just hit the body parts but also make sure that you’re giving the correct amount of recovery. So you mentioned three to five times a week of lifting and actually working the muscle groups, but the flip side of that is making sure that you’re having the correct recovery in between so you’re not just constantly tearing your body down without giving it the opportunity to repair. So often when I hear people are ready to hit and gain muscle, they try to put themselves through these really vigorous workouts every single day.

And while I’m not here to rain on anyone’s prey, that working out is fantastic. But if you’re jumping into that, there’s a couple of issues. One, the sustainability of it because you are going to beat yourself down if you’re not allowing yourself that proper recovery. But on the flip side of that, you are also probably not doing it with a game plan. And I think this is the most important part is actually having that game plan of what muscle groups you’re going to work and laying it out so you’re not just hitting not only just one area over and over again so that we’re able to stay balanced, but you’re able to give that area recovery time as you work a different area

Cori (16:44):
That is truly so key. If you’re training five days a week, how you’re going to break things up is going to be very different than if you’re training three days a week. And in that training frequency, you have to consider training intensity, training volume because doing a ton of volume, just thinking well more is better is not really the case because again, you’re going to hit a point of diminishing returns, you’re not going to be able to recover from it. But you want to think about how can I vary the intensity and the way I’m working areas. So this isn’t like I’m going to train my glutes, my hamstrings and I’m going to do deadlifts the same deadlifts three times a week. You want to think, okay, I want to train my glutes and my hamstrings. What are the joint functions? What are the muscle actions?

Okay, I might do a heavy barbell lift to start the week knowing that’s going to make me more sore, but do that when I’m freshest. And then later on in the week I might do a unilateral variation. Maybe I’m going to do more of a metabolic stress movement that uses a band to work my glutes or a move that is a shorter range of motion for my hamstrings or instead of the hip dominant movement to work the hamstrings, more of a knee movement. So if you think about the hamstrings, because they are worked by both hip extension and also knee flexion, you think about how could I include maybe something that’s in an extended hip position with knee flexion or in a flex hip position with knee flexion. So there’s a lot of different ways to work a muscle and we want to include that diversity over the week. So now jumping into the next topic, bringing it back to nutrition and bring it back to macros, carbs, overrated or underrated.

Michelle (18:11):
I went underrated on this one.

Cori (18:15):
Same question. I 100% agree not to interrupt you, but I 100% agree because I think especially in this day and age of low carb diets being all the fad for weight loss, we got to let go of what worked for one goal to move to another. So please share underrated why.

Michelle (18:31):
Yeah, I was ready to fight you on this one if you went overrated. Mainly as you mentioned, a lot of people just fear carbs when we’re trying to be in a deficit, when we’re trying to lose weight, that’s usually the first area that people start to restrict and I totally get why because we do live in a world where carbs are very easy to over consume. And the problem with that is once we have that fear and you have that transformation, you’ve achieved weight loss and all of a sudden we are really trying to focus on that muscle gain, we tend to leave out the carbs still. And the problem is, is it is our primary source of energy. I mean your muscle is full of glycogen, which is carbs. Your body is going to break it down into, and so it’s that energy for your muscles to actually be able to use for you to go into a workout and push yourself, you are going to be using up that glycogen.

Now the biggest problem with this is as we use up that glycogen, once it’s depleted, your body’s actually going to turn to a protein source. And one of the biggest things in your body is your muscle. So if we’re not giving our body that adequate amount of carbs to protect our lean muscle tissue, then your body’s going to start actually utilizing it for energy. And this is two things, right? This is why we focus so much on a higher protein diet because of course we want those amino acids to be able to rebuild the muscle, but it’s also to kind of help protect ourselves from when we do push things too hard and all of a sudden our body has depleted that muscle glycogen. We want to have that extra cushion with the needed amino acids. But again, this is why it’s so important to focus on that carbs because it is a protein sparing energy source as well.

Cori (20:22):
I think carbs often get demonized, especially for someone looking to lose weight. But I’ve had comments say, well, there are no essential carbs, there’s essential fats, there’s essential amino acids, but they’re not essential carbs. And I thought that was an interesting thing because it is an energy source and it is protein sparing and you do need it to really be able to push in your training. But we also see as people push in their training, this fear of cortisol levels rising. And we also see women especially having different hormonal issues because of trying to push really hard in their training and not only under fueling but potentially restricting carbs too much and in different stages ages, we might find that different carb intakes work for us and that timing our carbs becomes something we strategically need to do if we do function better on lower carb ratios.

But I can tell you I see so many women saying I’m suffering from thyroid issues like adrenal fatigue because they’re pushing hard on their training but not truly giving their body the fuel that they need. And a lot of these issues can be solved by yes, valuing that calorie surplus, but also by valuing carbs to truly fuel the training that you’re doing. And it’s not just that we’re doing this for weightlifting, but a lot of times we’re doing the weightlifting to try and gain muscle. But if you are an endurance athlete, if you are doing a little bit more cardio and you want to keep those things in, we hear you can’t gain muscle and do your cardio, but it’s also about the way you fuel to find the balance in doing things you enjoy while trying to reach your aesthetic goals.

Michelle (21:50):
Yeah, I love that you brought up the fatigue issue. That’s probably one of the most common complaints I hear is that people are feeling tired and they’re worried about like, well, is it my macros? What is it? And it’s usually that they’re restricting their carbs. And I did find it interesting that you mentioned that there’s no essential carbs and the reason why is because carbs all break down to something pretty similar in the body that your body’s going to use. So it doesn’t necessarily, there are good, better, best carb sources and we want to have quality carb sources, but it is true, there is no essential carb, all carbs are going to be utilized in pretty much a very similar fashion. The reason why I love that is because I’m going to probably again cause some issues here, but a lot of times people get so stressed on the type of carbs that they’re consuming that they forget that the type of carb needs change depending on how close you are to your workout or if you are in a workout.

So for example, you mentioned the cardio person. If you are someone that is doing a lot of cardio because you’re training for something and you are avoiding carbs, not only is this going to be detrimental, but if you’re not consuming quick carb sources during your training, you are going to have more detrimental effect on your muscle itself. So that’s really where what others would consider a bad carb choice, like a quick Jolly rancher or something or hard candy or even candied, something that’s going to break down fast into glucose is going to be a bigger beneficial for you or the biggest benefit for you. So the biggest thing I just wanted to add to that is the source of your carbs is going to be dependent on what your goal is and when you’re working out and the type of working out you’re doing that we do want to make sure that we are having adequate carbs

Cori (23:55):
And micros are very important, but you bring up a super important point that there’s got to be a balance and that so often we just demonize something without seeing the value in it and the opportunity in it. And it actually made me think about how a lot of times bodybuilders different athletes would eat jelly beans because they were a quick carb source and I was like, oh, jelly bellies are delicious. Anyway, complete side note, but moving on to number six, I want to talk about progression. How key is it? Is it overrated or underrated? And we’re talking about workout progression and designing that weekly schedule.

Michelle (24:29):
So I went underrated on this one

Cori (24:33):
And I one a hundred percent agree and I am very biased in saying this, or maybe not biased, but very adamant in saying underrated because I see so many people saying I’m working hard, I’m doing really hard workouts, I’m doing workouts of the day and there’s no clear progression. And then they’re wondering why their pull-ups aren’t improving or they see improvement one week but not the next week or they don’t fully see muscle gains. And it’s because when you don’t have something you can track, when you don’t have something you’re doing consistently that you can build off of, you can’t really know if you’re increasing weight because if you do a deadlift on one day and deadlift on a completely different day after other moves and other workouts, what you can lift might be very different, but it’s impacted by what you’ve done. But you can’t create that clear progression to know if you’re truly challenging yourself in the way that you need. So throwing it back to you, you mentioned that it’s also underrated you thoughts.

Michelle (25:20):
So my biggest thing with this, and I was the type of person that was like, I get bored with doing the same workout for multiple weeks in a row. I wanted that changeup, but then I really did discover that that consistency and the stimulus to that specific muscle doing that specific move is really going to be what’s going to cause your muscle to adapt and to actually grow. So by repeating the workouts, you provide that consistent stimulus to encourage that muscle adaptation and changing workouts just too frequently. It can actually prevent you from seeing some of that, those big gains. So again, this is coming down to, well, how quickly are we wanting to get you to that end goal? And I truly believe if you’re not approaching it with a progressive plan, you’re going to find that it’s going to take you a lot slower because as you mentioned, you’re not going to be able to really know how to even or what you’ve done so that you can push yourself and lift a little bit heavier. So it’s really about also being able to track that progress so that you know how to push yourself to get that gain

Cori (26:28):
And then pair your nutrition with it. Not to mention going back to your whole, I get bored with things thing. I think that is a common feeling. You can create a weekly schedule that is very interesting over the week and has a lot of diversity over the week. You just want to repeat that and it doesn’t have to be repeated for months on end, even just three weeks can build and then a strategic change and maybe some of the variations you’re implementing or slight training techniques. So it can be that slow progression where it doesn’t have to be super rigid, but it has to be something week over week where you do repeat it for a few weeks to see that progress but also not make yourself as sore or broken down because the first week of doing something new, you are going to be sore from all that new.

And if you aren’t conscious of that, you’re not going to repair from it or recover from it. And that’s going to make you see a point of diminishing returns. Constantly being sore is not an indicator that you worked hard enough, it’s an indicator that you’re potentially have under recovered or that you’re just doing a ton of new things and in that soreness you change the way the muscles are activating, you change the way that you’re able to push in subsequent workouts. So while something might feel tough to truly create muscle, you have to create progression. And that means working in what’s truly your a hundred percent intensity, not 90% because you feel burned out. So when you’re doing different things feeling sore and you’re feeling burned out, yeah, you’re pushing hard, but is it as hard as you really could push to truly create that growth? So it’s something we want to consider that that progression allows us to recover. It allows us to not feel as sore. It allows us to see those incremental adjustments and know that we’re truly doing what we need to challenge ourselves to create that change. So moving on to the final topic we have for today, supplements for muscle building, and I did bring up creatine with this, but I want to touch on some other ones if you have any thoughts on them. Are they overrated or underrated for gaining muscle?

Michelle (28:16):
So this is the one that I was really flip-flopping on because truthfully I think they are overrated, but I also think they’re underrated. So just to kind of explain really quickly, you can get the results you want without any supplementation, however supplements are there to supplement a diet so it can be easier on you if you are supplementing and specifically protein and creatine itself. Those are two very well tested, very well researched supplements that do help with muscle gains. So it’s one of those things like do you have to have it? No. Does it make it easier? Yeah, it can make it easier specifically if you are someone that is struggling a little bit with your nutrition intake.

Cori (29:03):
I wavered on this one too because it goes back to the, it’s overrated in that it’s things that people worry about first when they don’t have their macros dial in when they don’t have a clear workout progression and supplements will not change a broken system. That’s like putting a piece of gum in a dam that’s busting open with this hole, right? It’s not going to stop the water from coming out. You need to truly patch it. Don’t go do that anybody, but you do want to consider it because if you are a more advanced exerciser, if you are getting older going through hormonal changes where there is more chronic inflammation or you are not utilizing protein as efficiently because you’re getting older and you’re struggling to gain that lean muscle supplements can be that boost and that fixing of those nutritional gaps that despite our best efforts, we can’t always address because we simply need more even while eating in that calorie surplus, even while tracking our macros. So I think it’s a lot of opportunity to make improvements and things that we should look at. But you cannot out supplement a bad diet. You can’t out supplement a broken workout plan.

Michelle (30:09):
Yeah, exactly. And I think that’s so key to keep that in mind is, and I know it’s cliche, but I’m going to say it again. Supplements are there to supplement. They are not there to fix, like you mentioned a broken system. And I am going to kind of touch a little bit more on creatine specifically because that is something that I do think a lot of people don’t actually utilize when it can be very helpful for muscle protein synthesis. And again, there’s a lot of research out there that’s going to back this up, but having creatine does actually help stimulate the muscle protein synthesis itself because it does draw in water. Now having said that, that means if it’s drawing water into the muscle, your muscle actually will look a little bit larger because you are drawing in that muscle. But again, and I said this earlier, this is not a time where the scale is necessarily your friend because if you are also drawing in that extra water, you are going to probably see some bump in the scale if all of a sudden you start supplementing with creatine. So that’s something to be aware of that it’s water, but it’s also doing a lot of good things for you. It does improve recovery. There is some research that actually does show that it helps with the insulin-like growth factor. So the hormone that actually is relevant to muscle growth is going to improve as well

Cori (31:34):
Improve. So I have to throw in an extra one because it’s come up a couple times and I think it’s really important that we slightly harp on this. The scale for muscle gains overrated or underrated.

Michelle (31:48):
I’m going overrated on that one.

Cori (31:50):
I am going to 100% agree and I honestly brought it up because I knew you were going to say that, and I think that that’s a really important point. Going back to even the creatine in that we have to embrace the scale going up because if you add muscle, even if you don’t add fat and you just maintain your level of leanness, you’re going to see the scale increase. If you gain two pounds of muscle, even as you lose one pound of fat, you’re going to see the scale increase as you come out of that deficit and you’re no longer depleted. You’re going to see the scale increase with creatine and water retention, which you need, especially as you store glycogen to then fuel your workouts, help muscles repair and rebuild, you are going to see the scale increase. So if you get caught up in that number, you’re going to hold yourself back from seeing those muscle gains. So I would recommend you step off the scale, you don’t worry about it until you’re at the weight you want to be or the look you want to be at, and then you can step on it and see what that is to now represent the body comp you want. But you track with measurements, you track with the clothing items and see how they fit your thoughts

Michelle (32:47):
And track with the picture. The picture is going to be the biggest thing. I am going to say this, and it’s actually, you mentioned this before to me, we get, even with clothes, you have to recognize that your clothes are probably going to fit differently. So I know you had mentioned a story about, I think it was a client or maybe you, I don’t remember where they were saying that their pants didn’t fit and eventually you came to the realization that it was because they had been working on their glutes, so their butt was bigger, but if they actually looked at their waistband, the waist itself was smaller. So you have to recognize there’s going to be changes even in your measurements, but the goal is to gain. So you’re looking at hopefully gaining a larger bicep at some point, probably a bigger glute. So clothes are going to fit differently on you and that’s not always a bad thing. So as you mentioned, looking at yourself physically via picture or just being able to look at yourself in the mirror and realizing and putting a more emphasis on this is how you want to look versus this is what you want the number on the scale to say.

Cori (33:58):
I think it’s so key to bringing back to the point you mentioned about the close fitting differently because often people will be like, well, I gain weight. How do I know if it’s fat or muscle? And the measurement changes in the right areas, the muscular areas that you’re working on increases there show that you’re gaining muscle increases, say in your waist circumference where you’re not trying to necessarily build that out. That’s where you might want to say, okay, am I putting on a little bit of fluff? Do I need to assess my progression? Do I need to assess my macros? Do I need to assess my calorie surplus or deficit? Well in this case surplus, but potentially even take it back a little bit, maybe even do a mini cut for a deficit, which is a conversation for a whole nother day, but assessing where you’re seeing those measurement changes can really impact how you might interpret the results. Michelle, any closing thoughts in terms of tips if someone’s really seeking those muscle gains?

Michelle (34:52):
Just really quick because I feel like we covered a lot and definitely a lot of good information for everyone, but if you are someone that is sitting there and you’re being like, okay, they talked about progressions, they talked about the training frequency and you were struggling with even kind of understanding when we were talking about how you would actually plan that out, that is not something, it’s not the easiest thing to learn on your own. You can, but it’s going to take a lot of time and trial and error. That is really where I think the best education you can have is actually going and getting that coaching so that you have someone in your corner who’s also able to provide that guidance for you. And even with nutrition too, because you mentioned it’s so hard, the hardest thing I have with clients that have lost and they’ve gotten to the point that they want as far as being able to lose the fat and now they’re looking for that muscle gain is it really is a complete mind shift. And you’re going to have days where you are really struggling on the mental side knowing that you are doing things correctly. And so just having that person that’s in your corner or that community that’s in your corner that’s going through the same process is really going to benefit you and getting you to your success a lot sooner.

Cori (36:14):
I think that’s such a key point, the mindset behind it. Because a lot of times in our society there is an emphasis on fat loss, weight loss, and I’m all for looking exactly the way you want, whatever that means in terms of your body recomp. But I think there is a emphasis on looking smaller. And so with that being said, it can be hard and challenging to embrace seeing the scale go up when you’ve always been taught to look for it to go down. It can be hard feeling bigger or seeing changes in your body that you’re not used to. So the more you do have that security to trust in the process and not throw out something that’s working because you see something you’ve kind of always fought against in a weird way, like the scale increasing, that can be very helpful. And I want to bring it back to the progression for just a second because when I was talking about training techniques in the group the other day, someone mentioned, oh, I see these in the workout progressions sometimes the best way to learn the training techniques that work for you as you research them is to have a plan laid out.

The best way to learn what macro breakdowns is to have macro ratios laid out because then you’re testing with a strategic way of implementing. So don’t be afraid to follow a program, see what works for you, and then take from that as you’re learning about different things on your own because it can help you sort of narrow your focus so you’re not distracted by every option out there because there are a lot of different things that can work in a good way, but you don’t need all of them, and especially you don’t need all of them all the time. So make sure to stay really focused, track what you’re doing, but set that clear plan in place before you get started.

Cori (37:40):
Thanks for listening to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. Again, this is the place where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m never going to run sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a rating review or share it with someone you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and it would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone.


*Please Note: this transcript is auto-generated and there may be some errors in the transcript

FHP 628 – The Cost of Health

FHP 628 – The Cost of Health








Cori (00:00):
Hey guys, this is Corifrom Redefining Strength. Welcome to the Fitness Hacks Podcast. This is the show where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m not going to ever fill this episode with sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a review or leave a five star rating or even better share with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone. So let’s jump right in.

Cori (00:28):
Hey guys, it’s Cori from Redefining Strength, and I’m so excited to be joined by Julia today. If I could talk, that would be a good thing, but we’re going to talk about the cost of health. If you’ve ever felt like eating well, hitting your macros is just too costly. If you’re trying to work within your budget, Julia has some fabulous tips to help. So Julia, welcome. Welcome. Talk to me a little bit about the cost of health.

Julia (00:54):
Sure. So in our April challenge, obviously this month we’re working on conquering our excuses and one of them being like you said, that the cost of eating is too high, such a common one. So today we’re going to dive into why that may be, along with some tips and ideas to help you really cut those costs and overcome this excuse.

Cori (01:14):
So before we dive into that, I do just want to touch on something that probably a lot of us have heard, but what’s really the cost of not eating foods that improve the quality of our health? Because I know it’s very easy to get caught up in the short term. We do have budgets we have to work within. We do want to feed our family efficiently, but I think it’s also important that we consider some of the consequences of actions that might not impact us right now, but could add up later. Can you talk a little bit about why it is so important? Sometimes we do invest a little bit more in our nutrition now.

Julia (01:49):
Yeah, of course. So this goes back to one of my favorite quotes. If you think wellness is expensive, try illness, right? So it’s one of those things where if we’re not paying attention to it now we’re going to be forced to down the line whether we want to or not. So coming back to when we’re discussing the cost of healthy eating, it’s important to consider that the cost of not doing so can really hurt us in the long run, meaning that unhealthy dietary patterns when we’re eating high amounts of things like saturated fats, sugar, sodium, calories, they’re all linked to higher rates of chronic diseases like obesity, heart disease, blood pressure, type two diabetes, just to name a few among many others. And there have been studies in the past, there was one in 2015, which showed us that a person with three to four chronic diseases will spend annually about 25,000 on healthcare expenses alone. While those without chronic diseases will spend about 6,000 annually. So there is a huge difference from there. And from this we can see that the cost of regularly incorporating healthy nutrient dense foods into our diet, it’s much less expensive in the long run.

Cori (02:55):
And we may be thinking, okay, I understand I get this, but eating well is just so expensive. Why do you think that we often default into this? Because as we know, there are lots of ways to hit our macros, eat healthy quality foods that can fit our budget. But why do you think this is often the first thought for people?

Julia (03:17):
I feel like because we think it’s a lot more expensive and harder to do, so we kind of just write it off where instead of we’re looking at it from a food per or that’s if we’re looking at it from a food per calorie perspective. But if we’re looking at it from a nutrient dense perspective, we find that we can find healthier choices that are within our budgets if we’re really just planning and making an effort to do so. An example would be if we’re just going to the supermarket and buying something like a can of spaghetti or Chef Boyer D to feed our family where that can be cheaper. But if we’re eating out, I mean the average meal costs around 14, 15, $16, and that’s at an inexpensive restaurant. So if we are eating at home and planning ahead of making an effort to cut those costs, sticking to really whole nutrient dense foods, we’ll find that from the kind of cost per nutrient perspective with real foods like potatoes, dark green, leafy vegetables, pumpkin, even things like canned beans, we can get packed a lot more nutrition in them for the cost versus eating out would be,

Cori (04:21):
It’s actually interesting you brought up eating out because I instantly went to this one situation that Ryan had when he was in Boston and working, and a lot of his coworkers would go out to lunch and we would go to sometimes Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s or different things like that. And there would be sometimes where some of the foods were a little bit more expensive, they’d be like, oh, it’s so expensive to shop there. And he was like, but look at how much you’re spending on this one meal. What you don’t realize is that, yes, my grocery bill might be more expensive, but the way that these things are divided up over the week, my meal is actually cheaper despite even going to sometimes expensive stores per meal. Like you’re spending 11, 12, $13 on your meal and I’m spending eight when I meal prep in this way. How do you think we can shift that mindset that maybe cooking at home and maybe buying specific ways, even if you do go to more expensive restaurants to try and get more quality, or not restaurants, but grocery stores to get more quality food. It can actually be meal preps in a way that is very budget friendly,

Julia (05:20):
Of course. So this is just really where planning comes in. So so many ways that we can cut the cost while grocery shopping, as long as we’re planning ahead and being intentional about it, like you said. So that first step is really planning ahead, which means brainstorming your meals and snacks for the weeks, making a grocery list of the items that you need and that will allow you to not only cut down on food costs because you’re reducing that food waste, but also to limit the chance of eating out, like you said, because you know what you’re eating, it’s already prepped for you. And then I think the next step is really just being a smart shopper. So this means if you’re feeding a family, buying items in bulk that you can as well as just shopping store brands and being smart about it. So for a lot of items like meat, poultry, yogurt, things like nut butters, they have store brands available, which are the same ingredients as those name brands that you may see.

So you’re getting the same nutritional value for a lot cheaper. And also just being aware of sales, taking advantage of things like the frozen section. So that’s a huge one. A lot of us think that frozen produce is less nutritious and it gets a really bad wrap, but it’s actually usually harvested when it’s ripe, meaning that it often contains more nutrients than fresh for a fraction of the price. So it can be easy to fall into the marketing of expensive, healthy products, whether that be salad dressings, condiments, or even packaged foods. There’s so many different things today like almond flour, crackers, all these different things that we hear screaming that they’re so good for us, but honestly we have to remind ourselves that we don’t need all these things. For example, a can of beans for a dollar would pack more nutritional value than those crackers would for a fraction of the cost. So this is why we are here to also shop the perimeter, which is packed with whole nutrient dense foods that will offer more micro and macronutrients for a fraction of the price of most of those packaged foods in the middle. Well,

Cori (07:16):
I think it’s interesting you bring up packaged foods because I want to go off on a little clean eating thing and a lot of times labels that have to tout the food as healthy, if you think about it, fruits aren’t putting on their healthy fiber packed. We don’t see that on vegetables because we know these things are good. So a lot of these prepackaged foods that are trying to say they’re keto to fit your diet or they’re low carb or they have this health benefit, a lot of times they’re forcing things to be that way. And not that some of ’em don’t have health benefits, but a lot of times you are paying an extra price for these healthy labels for something that honestly isn’t that much better for you and you might be better served by gasp, getting the not clean variation, not to mention this sort of clean eating delineation with food makes us avoid foods that we shouldn’t.

As you brought up frozen foods, a lot of the fresh vegetables aren’t necessarily more nutrient dense or better than frozen vegetables or frozen fruits. A lot of times the frozen things are better, but even canned stuff, we’ll shy away from canned tuna from canned chicken, and a lot of those are just the meat. It’s not a ton of ingredients that are added, but we shy away from those things because we think canned stuff, chef Boyer D, right? So it’s really understanding and looking at labels even to know what we’re getting to not fall for the marketing terms that might just lead to a markup on some of the ingredients we’re buying.

Julia (08:40):
Yeah, a hundred percent. Like you said, reading the labels is huge and really just taking the time to educate yourself a little bit and get to know the grocery store. So like we said, flipping around, checking out that nutrition label and seeing, comparing the store brand to the leading brand, looking at the store brand of peanut butter versus the gif peanut butter, seeing what those ingredients look like and seeing where you can really cut the cost there. Those little things can go a huge way because we know that, I mean, the marketing today is just insane on what they have for the food. And going back to even what you said before, one of my favorite authors, Michael Pollan says, you go through the aisles and you see all these things screaming at you, telling you that it’s keto or low carb or whatever it may be, but you go to the produce section or the meat section or the seafood section, whatever it may be, and it says nothing, right?

It speaks for itself. It’s a great choice. It doesn’t need to advocate for itself. So I totally agree. I think we get caught up in thinking we need all these things and that’s why we write off healthy eating as expensive and kind of think that we can’t do it when we really just need to bring it back to the basics and remind ourselves that we don’t need all of these things. That’s just kind of another excuse that we tell ourselves. And we can do this if we’re smart about it and we plan for it and we’re intentional about it.

Cori (09:54):
And it also goes back to the food waste that you mentioned, but not only the food waste in a pinch, things that we buy, and I am very guilty of this, I think I’m going to be busy, so I buy a protein bar, and that protein bar is expensive, especially if you buy it from the store versus buying it in bulk potentially on Amazon, which could be a better option if you are going to go that route. But we buy these things that are efficient for our schedule and not realizing the markup even on those things versus if we got a big tub of protein powder and threw it in water, coffee, those different things. Or even then made our own protein bars at home. And that even goes back to your having a grocery list when you go in. So often if I’ve gone to the store and I’m just like, I don’t know, I’m going to make this week, I’ll buy a whole bunch of things that don’t get used.

Now. I’m really good about trying to freeze those things before they spoil or prep them and then freeze the prep so that I have it for later. But if we don’t go in with a plan, we can buy a lot of things that ultimately go to waste, which can make it feel like our budget is skyrocketing. So making sure that if you do get something even that you’re like, I don’t know what I’m actually going to do with this week, and you have it in your fridge, find a way to preserve it. So cook it and freeze it. Bulk prep, maybe a protein, a vegetable and a carb, more starchy carb that you put in the freezer for later. But think of ways you can make it loss. And then even don’t be afraid to get those canned items. They’re already frozen items, the items that will be there whenever you need in a pinch, because that can really make it easier to prep and stay consistent and then not add to your bill because we also do that, right? We don’t know what we’re going to cook, so we don’t end up prepping anything. And so the food goes to waste, but we end up going out to eat or grabbing something that’s an expensive quick option. And that adds to our food costs.

Julia (11:29):
And I love what you said there. I think so often we’ll just go to the grocery store kind of on a whim. We know we need to stack up on groceries, we want to eat healthy, we have really good intentions behind it. So we’re choosing all these vegetables and maybe we’re even picking up some packaged foods and we know that we’re trying to do good and trying to eat healthier and stack up on all these great foods, but if we don’t have a plan for it or any recipes or an idea of what we’re going to do with it, it really just ends up sitting in our fridge and it does go to waste. So like you said, if we can even just if we got vegetables like chopping it up, either freezing the spinach for smoothies or chopping it up, cooking it, doing it in a recipe, and then again, this is where that planning comes back in, and I’m going to say it again and again because if we plan for it, that also helps us reduce those costs.

And food waste, you’re not picking up food that you don’t need. Say if you want to incorporate those vegetables, maybe you’re going to find a recipe for a stir fry and then pick up those exact vegetables in the exact amount that you need for it. But like you said, Corey, just going back and if you do have food on hand that you feel like is going to waste, freeze it. Find a way to preserve it, find a way to use it because there are so many other options that we can do to help reduce costs there as well.

Cori (12:34):
And then explore different places to buy things because I know if I find a nut butter or something that I like, if I go on Amazon, if I go to a bigger bulk store, a lot of times I can find something cheaper, especially when you are buying in bulk, that won’t go bad. So that’s the opportunity to cut costs on certain things so that you can even spend more on other things that might be more important, like getting the grass fed beef or an organic vegetable, whatever you need. But even going to farmer’s markets, which you don’t think about often as being a cost efficient option can because you’re buying straight from the farmer, and those can be very fresh ingredients as well. So don’t be afraid to explore different stores. You might be surprised by how the costs really vary, especially based on the quantity you’re able to buy. And that’s even the great thing about prepping some of the stuff for your family, like sneaking in vegetables to different dishes, is you can buy in greater bulk, which ultimately lowers the cost and it improves your family’s health while you’re trying to hit your goals as well. Off of that, any real final summarizing tips so that people can really make sure that they’re being cost efficient when they’re trying to eat well?

Julia (13:39):
Yeah, so just honestly being honest with yourself about your efforts to cut the costs and where you can improve on things, right? Are you taking the time to research recipes and plan out budget friendly meals? Are you getting caught up in thinking that you need those expensive health foods like we talked about? Are you seeing where you can buy those items in bulk? And as we discussed, just being a smart shopper, so planning ahead to reduce those grocery costs, prepping meals with similar ingredients and then freezing them for later use. Obviously buying in bulk, like we said, taking advantage of those frozen sections, shopping the sales and building meals around those sale ingredients, checking the ingredients of items, and then seeing if you can find alternatives that are cheaper or store brands or even different stores that carry it. And then finally, just prioritizing that perimeter as well. Making sure that the majority of our diet is based off of those whole fresh nutrient dense foods can help us really, really cut the costs. But just to finally say, it does take a conscious effort to plan out those budget friendly meals, but in the long run, it will save you time throughout the week, and it’s pretty clear that those health benefits do outweigh the costs upfront.

Cori (14:48):
I did just want to touch on one of the things that you pointed out, Julia, about using the same foods in multiple different recipes. Because if you don’t have a family and you are prepping for one person, Ryan and I actually make our own meals, it can feel like you can’t buy in the same bulk, which makes it more expensive because you don’t want things to go waste. Again, that’s where buying the frozen stuff can come into play. It’s why buying canned stuff can come into play and be very helpful, but it’s also where if you plan ahead and you know can use that vegetable in multiple different dishes in different ways, you can buy in greater bulk, which can lower the cost and keep even still a diversity of foods in your diet and make prep potentially even easier, which if you’re lazy like me, it’s a win-win.

Cori (15:29):
Thanks for listening to the Fitness Hacks podcast. Again, this is the place where I share all my free workout and nutrition tips. I’m never going to run sponsorships or ask you to buy anything. All I ask in return is if you’re enjoying the podcast to leave a rating review or share it with somebody you think it might help. This will only take a few minutes and it would mean the world to me and possibly change the life of someone I.


*Please Note: this transcript is auto-generated and there may be some errors in the transcript