Fitness and nutrition can seem confusing and complicated, in no small part thanks to the abundance of information and misinformation inundating our social media and news feed daily. With the impatience and short attention spans of consumers, coupled with the frustration of not getting the results wanted, fitness started getting complicated. Home workouts went from simple, repeatable workout tapes and straightforward home gym setups to terms like “muscle confusion” and fad diets that cut out entire food or nutrient categories as a ploy to sell more and keep people interested. In this case, as in most — complicated doesn’t mean better.
There is a refreshing trend happening in the fitness industry. The reputable trainers that have excellent client retention, solid knowledge and experience working with a multitude of client demographics are doing their part to help cut through the noise. We’re seeing more and more actual, working trainers getting clients to understand that simpler is better. This straightforward, science-backed, simple training and nutrition methodology isn’t new; it’s a refreshing and healthy change to see the basic habits that build lasting transformation come to the forefront of the industry and start reaching the public.
Training and nutrition don’t need to be complicated. When people start training at home, at the gym or with a trainer, they have specific goals in mind. Whether the goal is aesthetic, strength-based or general health-based, the process is simple and straightforward to get results. It’s not a low-effort endeavor, but it’s also not complex — it’s all about building better basic habits that are sustainable so you can achieve your goals and spend your life living as your healthiest self after your initial goals are achieved.
The trick is that there is no trick, and simple fitness and nutrition are all that’s needed. Three strength training workouts weekly, short cardio sessions for your cardiovascular health that you actually enjoy doing, and being more active between your workout sessions are all it takes to get stronger and build endurance. Eating enough protein, high-fiber fruits and vegetables, carbohydrates for energy, and building balanced meals comprised of mostly whole foods, along with increasing your water intake and decreasing your alcohol intake, will help you meet most of your nutritional goals. Showing up for your workouts consistently and being on top of your nutrition 80% of the time is all it takes to get stronger and healthier.
Taking your time to slowly build out these habits as you start on any new fitness plan is how you ensure long-term success. Your workouts should be challenging but not incapacitate you. Your nutrition should still involve food that actually tastes good. Building one fitness-related habit at a time outside the gym is how you stay the course and have small wins along the way to celebrate and help motivate you to keep going. Fitness and nutrition shouldn’t be about deprivation and punishment but simple, repeatable, enjoyable habits that contribute to your life outside the gym. More and more trainers are working to spread the knowledge that what you do in and out of the gym matter, and the whole point is to develop healthier habits that make you feel good and live better.
If you’re following trainers online or watching endless YouTube content on what you should or shouldn’t be doing, start looking at it critically. Chances are that if someone wants you to use daily fitness supplements, cut out food groups or embark on a 30-day challenge, they’re trying to sell you something. If they’re sharing knowledge on not just a quick fix to get you to drop weight fast or do daily 90-minute HIIT workouts, and instead are touting the habit-building needed to actually live as your healthiest and strongest self, that’s who you want to be aligned with.
Fitness and nutrition aren’t complicated, but those first steps toward building better habits are hard. That’s why so many are looking for the easy way out. Listen to the trainers who know how to not just get results but help change habits to keep you in a healthier mindset with simple, straightforward training and nutrition.
About the Author
Sarah Leahy, CPT is a Minneapolis transplant in East Austin, certified personal trainer, award-winning interior designer and former gym owner. She offers in-person and online training with an emphasis on strength training and building confidence in and out of the gym. Leahy’s passion for strength extends to your business, with a full offering of gym design and business consulting services.