Pizza, ice cream and 4.5lbs of weight loss
One of my personal training clients decided that she wanted to lose a little bit of weight, so I asked her to keep a 3-day food diary so I could see where we could make a few tweaks.
Her food diary showed two different sides to the story, weekdays were filled with high levels of protein and plenty of veg, whilst Saturday consisted of a 12-inch pizza, Southern fried chicken bites and ice cream.
Now, the usual approach from PTs would be to cut the pizza, fried chicken and ice cream and replace it with something far less interesting.
This would undoubtedly have put her in a calorie deficit and contributed to weight loss.
But how realistic is it? How long would this have lasted?
After a little delving into the reasons why she ate this way at weekends, my client informed me that for her, weekend food is largely a social affair, she enjoys meals out with her friends and family. She’s not a massive drinker, food is her thing.
Now if I were to ban pizzas and meals out from her diet, is she really going to be able to stick to this long term?
Of course not.
Eating pizza is something she loves doing and I just took it away from her.
Not only that, she now believes the foods she loves to eat are causing her weight gain, which they are not. She now thinks that she can never eat pizza again without gaining weight, also untrue.
She now probably resents me as I’ve basically taken away one of her biggest loves, eating out with mates!
Telling her to not eat pizza and ice cream would have been a terrible idea.
So what did we do?
Instead of taking away her pizza, I made a much simpler swap.
Every weekday she normally ate two yoghurts. We swapped one of those yoghurts for a piece of fruit.
That was it.
Nothing fancy, but over the course of the week it reduced her caloric intake by approximately 1000 calories.
It was a change that I thought we could make that wouldn’t massively impact her life. She still got to eat pizza with her friends and she still got to eat yoghurt, just a little less, with some fruit as a replacement.
What happened after two weeks?
She dropped 4.5lbs.
Small changes, big effects.