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Is The 90-10 Principle The Best For Diet/Nutrition And Weight Loss?

Let’s talk about cheating.

Actually, scratch that.  Let’s talk about Rewarding.  I don’t like to focus on the negative when it comes to bettering your lifestyle and “cheating” is negative, whereas “Rewarding” is a positive.

I’m a big believer in giving yourself the opportunity to splurge a bit on food and not be so freaky deaky with your diet.

If you’re trying to lose weight, chances are you have some fixes to be made in your nutrition and sticking to a new, strict routine for a few weeks can be maddening…hence the Rewarding.

Personally, I like the 90/10 Principle where you stick to your diet and eat strict 90% of the time and splurge 10% of the time.

Sticking to that ratio will all but guarantee your success.  Actually, if your workouts are on, you could probably do 85/15 or, hell, even 80/20 as long as the 20 isn’t full of donuts or processed crap and consists of REAL food like real ice cream.

I’m getting off topic…

What I was going to say is that this is a good plan to follow and will guarantee your success…

…IF you know what 10% (or 15%) looks like.  If you “eye ball” too much, you’re probably going to be consuming too many calories at one sitting, or consuming too many calories overall which will at best stall your results and at worst make you gain a little weight – which is the exact opposite of what you want.

Let’s do some number crunching shall we?

Not appropriate diet food…

Let’s assume that you have figured you need to consume 2000 calories per day to lose weight (by the way, I’m not a big number guy…I don’t pay attention to calories unless I’m eating at restaurant or eating something out of a box).

You’ve also taken it a bit further and broken those 2000 calories down to meals and snacks so you have an idea how much you can eat between meals without breaking the calorie bank.

All very cool indeed.

Okay, let’s go a bit further…

2000 calories over the course of a week is 14,000 calories.

10% of 14,000 is only 1,400 calories per week for your Rewarding.

Do you know what 1,400 calories looks like?  Do you know what 1,400 calories of typical splurge food tastes and feels like in your stomach?

I have news for you…

It ain’t much.

The following are some typical foods and their calorie breakdown for your enjoyment and regurgitation…

  • 10 Frito’s have 160 calories – how often do you just eat 10?
  • A “Kids’ Menu” serving of Mac ‘n Cheese at a restaurant here in Lincoln has over 500 calories – a Kids’ Serving!!
  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups have approximately 240 calories per 2-cup package.
  • 1/2 Cup of Chocolate Haagen-Dazs ice cream has 270 calories.  I’m a big fan of this type of ice cream because it’s real, but you have to know what 1/2 cup looks like…hint, it ain’t much.  Don’t use a big bowl if you’re having ice cream because you’ll easily get over 600 calories.
  • A typical light beer has anywhere from 90-120 calories – unless you’re drinking those new “water beers” that have 50-60 calories.  Still those numbers add up quickly, especially when combined with other foods.  Alcohol also loosens you up so you may make even poorer food decisions (among others 🙂 ).
  • 1 slice of Pizza Hut hand-tossed cheese pizza has approximately 220 calories, but this can vary widely depending upon how big you cut your slices.

See what I’m getting at?  I’m not trying to get you to stop eating those “cheat foods” you enjoy, I just want to give you some real numbers…

What if you were to spread those 1,400 calories out over the course of the week.  Maybe you’re one of those folks who want to stick to a regular way of eating all the time – which is ultimately the best way to go – and you want to allow yourself a little “Mini-Reward” each day rather than splurging on one day of the week.

Rather than 1,400 calories you’re down to 200 calories per day.

Again, do you know what 200 calories looks like?

Do you know what 200 calories of typical “splurge food” tastes like and how quickly it disappears?

Like I said, I’m not doing this to scare you or steer you away from your goals and cause you to throw your hands in the air and say “Screw it!”

Quite the contrary.  I want you to succeed more than you know, which is why I’m sharing this information with you.

The 90/10 principle works very well, yet the vast majority of folks have no idea how to put the 10% into practice or what the hell their 10% actually is.

Just like G.I Joe said, “Knowing is half the battle.” and that’s true.  Knowing what your 10% is, how to properly implement it and how much Rewarding you can do will determine whether or not you succeed.

Sure it may be shocking at first, but if you stick with your plan, and your plan is something that’s actually somewhat enjoyable, your tastes will change and what you crave today will no longer be what you crave once you reach your goal – again I’m assuming you’re sticking to a sensible plan and not a fad diet or something freaky like regular colonics to get you fit and trim.

How’s that for a way to close out this post?  Remove that visual by thinking of something cute like puppies and kittens.

Have an awesome day!

Ed, aka “The Fit Dad”

P.S. – The latest issue of Fit Parent Force Monthly is up and ready for your reading/working pleasure!  The Workout Of The Month is called “Book Ends” and the magazine dives in to the murky waters of supplementation and I give you 9 awesome ways to increase the intensity and effectiveness of your workouts, without adding too much total time to the workout itself.  I went beyond the old standbys of “Decrease rest, etc.” to give you real tried and true tips and tricks.  To download this month’s issue and check out the workout and workout videos, click here.

If you’re not a member of Fit Parent Force Monthly, click here to check it out and get on board because it’s AWESOME!

Oh and you may be wondering why you’re getting September’s issue so soon after August and that’s because I’m moving the release dates up to the first of the month rather than the middle of the month.  It just makes more sense doing it that way 🙂

About The Author

Ed Scow, also known as "The Fit Dad", likes long walks on the beach, snuggling, hand stand push-ups and pretending to work. He's also a fitness & nutrition expert, proud papa and husband to a smokin' hot wifey.

Number of Entries : 169

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© 2015, ELS Wellness, Inc. and Ed Scow

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