Saturday, May 1, 2010

Information Overload

Every day I feel like I learn something new when it comes to nutrition and exercise. There are so many tips and tricks out there, that at times, it can be overwhelming to process it all! New studies come out all the time about new ‘super foods’ or how much exercise we really need each day. Then, there are all the different types of diets out there with varying approaches to weight loss. How does one navigate through so much information? To me, it’s kind of like fashion trends. Every month I get a new magazine updating me on what’s hot now and what ‘must have’ items I should invest in. It would be expensive, time consuming, and nearly impossible to follow every single trend out there. The same goes for nutrition and exercise, there is a lot of great information to choose from, but it would be simply too difficult to incorporate every single tip and trick you read about. Just like with fashion, you find the trends that work for you. And the same applies to nutrition and exercise, you have to find the tips and tricks that work for your lifestyle. Even when 80s fashion is the BIG thing, I just don’t go there because it isn’t my thing, no matter how cool it may be. It's not that it can't be cute on others, I just don't think it's cute on me. Well, the same applies for something like tofu, it may be a great healthy food, but it just isn’t my thing. But, that isn't to say it may not work great for someone else.

I know sorting through all the information isn’t easy, but don’t let it overwhelm you! Just pick out the information you feel you can successfully incorporate into your lifestyle. As I’ve said before, what works well for me, may not work well for you and vice versa. We all lead very different lives and have different advantages and disadvantages going for us. For me, I’m very fortunate to currently have a gym in my garage. It makes it very easy for me to workout at any given time. I’m also fortunate that I only have to cook for me. I can only imagine that it would be much more difficult to have a family depending on me for meals. On the other hand, I have a busy schedule between working full-time and going to school part-time. Also, I’m always on a budget, so I just can’t splurge on groceries for the sake of trying new foods all the time. We have to learn to make nutrition and exercise work for the lifestyle we have NOW. Just like we have to shop for the clothes that work for our bodies NOW, not the bodies we hope to have in three months when we lose 10 pounds. So, take a look at your life. What advantages do you have that would aid eating right and exercise? What road blocks do you have to navigate around? The sooner you identify these things the sooner you can tailor a plan that works with your specific lifestyle. For me, because I am busy and on a budget, I buy a lot of the same foods over and over again that I know are quick and easy to make. As much as I’d love to be a Martha Stewart and cook fabulously, healthy meals with tons of fresh ingredients every night, that isn’t my reality. Two nights a week I’m eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner as I literally drive to school. Of course, it would be great if we all had personal chefs and trainers helping us stay healthy, but for most of us that is never going to happen. Nevertheless, don’t let your circumstances hold you back or the overload of information bog you down. Understand your advantages and disadvantages and incorporate the tips and tricks that best work with your lifestyle.

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