Do you know what you want your goal to be?
Is your goal 100% aesthetics based? Meaning you want to lose body fat or gain muscle.
Is it to perform at the highest level? Like a specific event competition.
Maybe you want longevity and health primarily.
All are amazing goals but it is important to “know what you want and what you are chasing.”
The Triangle of Awareness
This concept is important to grasp.
Can you have great Performance, Aesthetics, and Health all at the same time?
I’m gonna make the claim that you cannot be “exceptional” in all three at the same time.
If you have amazing aesthetics and plan to maintain that there are gonna be some sacrifices that are gonna be made as well as some health benefits.
If you want to have amazing health then “most” often there typically will be some performance decreases and some aesthetic changes that will be left on the table.
If you want to be amazing in the Performance category then you WILL sacrifice health and possibly some aesthetics to perform at the highest level.
Each of the three require a completely different approach and mindset but as you can see all have there own significant pros and cons.
Let’s discuss each category and some of the specific things we can implement and mindsets on how to approach each.
With a performance based goal it is about how well we do in the gym.
Most often a person with this goal/mindset is chasing a competitive endeavor of some sort.
This could be a Running race, CrossFit Competitions, Climbing, or Weightlifting Meet of some sort.
Performance based goals require the highest recovery demand and make your body accrue a high amount of fatigue.
When you have a performance based goal/mindset you body will need to be pushed very often and your nutritional requirements will need to be geared to support you doing well in the gym.
For most this will mean a higher carb amount as well as protein levels that support recovery.
If your goal is Performance based, then your approach to workouts daily need to also be approached that way.
It is important to know that with that you will be sacrificing a bit of aesthetics and health to get there.
This at the core is what a lot of people want (including me).
I like to look a certain way as most people do because of how it makes me feel and the confidence that accompanies that.
The thing we all need to wrap our heads around from time to time is that with a Aesthetics or body composition goal/mindset we will be sacrificing a few things there to.
Now this doesn’t mean that if you have significant fat to lose that having this goal can be negative in any way.
What I want to hammer home is that to take it to an extreme (very low body fat % or Lots of muscle) you will be sacrificing some health and performance.
After you have been training for a long period of time it is very hard to lose fat, gain muscle, and perform well all at the same time.
If you are in a calorie deficit you will sacrifice performance and the added stress puts strain on your body (losing weight is stress to the body). This doesn’t mean we should not do it at all.
What I am saying is that it simply is a stressor that needs to be accounted for.
I hope by now you can see a them starting to develop.
Balance is the name of the game right.
But really, who doesn’t want better health?
Isn’t that why we workout in the first place?
Wanting health to be at the highest possible level we need to have the mindset that everyday in the gym cannot be a race.
Everyday in the gym cannot be a day to perform at a high level.
We need to eat and fuel our body for sustainability.
This doesn’t account for if you have weight to lose. This is not what I am saying.
What I am saying is that once you have healthy ranges of body fat and muscle we need to make a shift in mindset and nutrition to make sure our health markers are being accounted for.
With health being your goal/mindset we sacrifice aesthetics and performance. Whether people want to believe it or not being super lean all the time (VERY LOW LEVELS OF BODYFAT) is not sustainable or good for you. Who would want to be Dieting forever?
Eating tons of calories and gaining muscle all the time also (to an extreme) is not good either.
The name of the game my friends is BALANCE and AWARENESS. We need to know what we want out of our nutrition and training.
Have you asked yourself what you wanted lately?
Do you find yourself racing and trying to perform every day but you want to lose weight?
Do you find yourself wanting to lose weight but try to race everyday too?
How about… Do you want to be healthy, lose weight, and perform?
Ask questions to yourself.
What you probably need as do most is CLARITY. What do you want? What should your mindset be?
Find balance. Find direction. What do you want out of your training and nutrition?
Triangle of Awareness by: Jason Phillips (IN3 Nutrition)