The 80/20 Rule
“Exercise is king and nutrition is queen: together, you have a kingdom.”- Jack Lalanne
Research tells us that the key to our physical health is the 80/20 rule- 80% diet and 20% exercise. We’re not talking about fasting and ultra-marathons, but rather your nutrition and your activity. Why is there such a differential? According to Women’s Health, “the reason dieting is so much more effective than exercise is because it takes a ton of activity to create a [substantial] calorie deficit through working out.”1 Like a needle and thread, they work much better together.
WHAT’S THE PLAN?
If you’ve ever felt weak, fatigued, or sick during or after a workout, you may not have supplied your body with the proper macronutrients for the work you asked it to do. Aim to have easily-digestible carbs and protein 1-3 hours before your workout to give your muscles quick energy.2 In the hour following your activity, more protein and carbs will aid in reducing soreness and rebuilding the muscle.3
You’ve decided it’s time to focus on your health goals. You’ve made the commitment, but do you know how to plan for the most success?
- IDENTIFY CHALLENGES- Do you make poor food choices? Do you have trouble making time for exercise? Make a list of your challenges to solve.
- CHALLENGING YET ACHIEVABLE- Set goals that are challenging, yet achievable for you. This could be getting 8 hours of sleep, increasing your strength, eating more veggies, etc.
- BE PREPARED- Make you sure you have what you need to stick to your goal throughout the day. Bring your sneakers to work so you can head right to the gym, bring chopped veggies with you as snacks, or swap your lunchtime soda for unsweetened iced tea.
- SUPPORT- Encourage a friend or family member to join you on their own health journey. You’re more likely to succeed with the motivation and perceived obligation to someone else!