Exercise Conundrum: Diets Suck

Diets are so passé.

We get it.

No seriously, we do. You are on a diet. In fact, you are not on just any diet, this diet is a special diet. This is the 10th diet you’ve attempted in the last 2 years and you swear by it. The small progress you’ve made towards your goals in the health and fitness world is due to this super-promising, risk-free, pound-shedding, fat-melting diet.

As a fitness professional, it’s a shame when we see that your hard work and dedication to your goals is thought to be the result of some mainstream diet. You equate your success to the ingenious of a standardized one-size-fits-all program. See, it’s not the pills and potions, or the magical point system that causes you to gain the results you see: it all breaks down to one simple concept.

Energy In < Energy Out = Weight Loss

Energy In > Energy Out = Weight Gain

Understanding the science behind these diets could not be simpler. You are fat because you eat too much. The amount of calories you consume is more than your body needs to fuel itself. Medical conditions and medications aside, there is absolutely no excuse for your inability to control your weight.

You work to procure the results from the diet without understanding what is actually going on. Popular diets such as: Weight Watchers, Atkins, Paleo, Jenny Craig, and others are all restricting the options you have available for consumption and thus the total amount of food you eat. If these diets are so effective with the meals they recommend or sell, why are you limited on a point system? Surely if the foods are ‘healthy’ you should be entitled to eat them as you are hungry.

Stop looking for answers in a diet and start implementing changes in your lifestyle.

The unfortunate and grim truth of the matter is when the diet is finished you will resume your old habits. We need to understand that the underlying cause of your results from a diet can be applied in our own lives. Here are 5 steps you should take to kick diets to the curb and keep the results that you work for.


Your body has a physiological makeup that makes your needs different than everyone else. Your lifestyle works in conjunction with your physiological makeup that further makes your body’s needs (energy intake) special to you, and only you.


Keep a log of everything you eat and the calories that you consume. Although scientific formulas exist to estimate how much you should be eating, the benefits of learning through trial and error are numerous. Popular applications such as MyFitnessPal, make this task streamlined and efficient. No excuses.


The days of “Oh, it’s just a snack,” are long gone. Anything and everything you eat has significance and should properly be documented as a meal. By spreading your meals out through the day this should help alleviate hunger pains and give you feelings of satiation.

4. Join a Health Club

Sure you could do it on your own, but will you? We already know this is the 10th attempted diet in 2 years. Having a financial obligation and others around you with like-minded goals and aspirations will not only provide you with support, but will also hold you accountable. 168 hours in a week, and you can dedicate 3 to focused exercise.


Quit setting goals for yourself that are short-term and sync with the duration of a diet plan. Know that humans have limitations in the amount of adaptation that can occur in any given time frame. Set annual goals for yourself that can be measured with weekly and monthly check-ins. You can’t determine the length of an item without a ruler. Be realistic with your goals and make sure they are S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound).

Now go on, carry on with your life with the knowledge you have garnered. The next time someone asks if you have been dieting be sure to let them know:

Diets are quick-fixes and don’t solve the problem. I’ve committed myself to a lifestyle change because diets suck.

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