Last weekend, hubby and I returned from a two-week, cross-Canada road trip.
OK, realistically we only went as far as Red Lake, but after so much time in the car it seemed like we must have covered Canada in it's entirity. Not that I felt the trip was boring - we had a wonderful time visiting friends and family, attending the Battle for Canada Festival in Winnipeg with our church, fishing – it's just a lot of sitting. And I am not a sitter.
For those of you who follow me on social media, or belong to my group, you've probably seen me post workout videos, seen a few live videos walking home from the gym and just general talk about the importance of daily movement. I just feel better when I'm more active and I know a lot of you out there feel the same and swear by, even rely on, that daily workout, walk or swim to stay in shape.
As much as I am that self-proclaimed gym rat, exercise and movement are just one piece to the health puzzle and will only get you results for a season when that's the only thing you're using to achieve health and weight goals.
Real, lasting, sustainable results that you can live with come from the inside out. What and how you fuel your body, along with having the right mindset is what will allow you to win with your health, even if, and when, something happens to knock you off track with those workouts.
There are six components to health – nutrition, exercise, water, stress, sleep and supplements. Think of them like spinning plates. You've all seen those performers with the plates spinning high atop a stick, adding in another and another, keeping them balanced in such a way that those plates keep spinning. When one starts to slow down or wobble, a slight shift in the balance gets it back spinning again. Had the balance not been checked, those slight movements not been done, they all would have come crashing down.
Think of each one of the six components as a spinning plate. Each one is addressed in the way that serves your body and is a plate successfully set spinning atop a stick.
I use plates because nutrition is the one that makes the biggest impact, whether it's successfully spinning, or crashing to the floor. Food, in comparison to exercise determines about 80 percent of your results when it comes to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight.
That doesn't mean you should stop exercising, not at all. What it means is your health and weight is made in the kitchen, not the gym. And while I'm addressing weight, just because someone is skinny, or thin, does not mean they are healthy.
This is where the diet industry has sold you lies, telling you that if you just, stop eating carbs or stop eating fat or just take this pill/shot/drop and the fat will melt off etc., you'll get the results you've been looking for.
You just may get results, and by results I mean the number on the scale (for a moment) might be favourable. But how will you feel? How stressful will it be living like that?
The nutrition plate wobbled (gave up carbs) and wobbled (counting calories) and wobbled (crazy workouts) and finally was so out of balance the plate fell off the stick and crashed. That's when the weight comes back on and the cycle tends to repeat. I hope you can't relate.
It's not that people are lazy, or not trying hard enough. Clearly they want to have results or they wouldn't buy the book, take the pills order the food, count the calories, etc., etc., etc., It's just that they have been given bad information.
Diets are big business and if you have the information and tools you need to keep those plates spinning, achieving your health and weight goals without dieting and able to sustain those results for the rest of your life, it would put them out of business.
The fact is, achieving your health goals and achieving and maintaining a healthy weight is simple. It all comes down to balance. Learning to eat the foods you love in a way that serves your body and your soul.
Did you know that having chicken with pizza is more balanced than an apple? An apple is a carb, and eating carbs alone will spike your blood sugar. Pizza is a high carb food too, but adding in the chicken helps to prevent the spike for a better balance.
Am I saying never to eat an apple and just eat pizza? Of course not. My point is that when you know how food works you can use it in a way that works for you. And once you learn that, you have it for life and you'll never have to diet again.
Using food to create hormonal balance, stabilize blood sugar, increase circulation, optimize digestion and support collagen resilience is a thing. It can be done.
When your food is balanced and on track, and your nutrition plate is spinning, it's just that much easier to adjust the wobbles of the other plates and keep them in the air too.
If you want to learn more about balancing and how to keep those plates in the air, join the 8 Weeks is All it Takes Facebook group
This article is written by or on behalf of an outsourced columnist and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.