We’ve never had easier, cheaper access to information than ever before.
If you wanted to, you could learn a new language in a matter of months. Free. From your sofa. In your pants.
You could decide to start an online business. In a matter of hours, you could have a website, some products and a business (that would probably fail within weeks, but that’s another issue).
If you’re into your training, you could Google a hundred different training plans, all of which are the BEST PLAN EVER.
You could find a million nutrition plans (I’m probably not even exaggerating that) that, again, are the BEST DIET EVER.
Chances are, you’ll now spend a glorious few hours bookmarking articles, nodding sagely as you read things that sound like they’re probably true, and imagining this amazing physique popping out in a matter of weeks (or days – depends what rabbit hole your Googling took you down).
Whatever you’ve found, you’ve DEFINITELY discovered that Atkins/Keto/Veganism/Plant-based/High-protein-low-fat is the ONLY and best way to lose weight/add muscle/become a superhero.
Trouble is, along the way you’ve lost the basics in the search of “optimal”.
Outside of a petri-dish, optimal doesn’t exist.
Optimal is optimal under optimal conditions. When those conditions change, what is optimal changes.
And we’re humans. So conditions change. An awful lot.
So we follow our new A-grade training and nutrition plan. And it works! We drop pounds or add pounds, depends on the goal. Everything is simply amazing. And then life changes.
That diet turns out to be expensive. Fillet steak and salmon every night costs a lot. Or, buying fresh veg and binning most of it every other day seems a bit…wasteful. And actually, eating 200g of fibre every day on your plant-based diet while eating less than 20g of protein a day is making you feel a little lethargic.
What’s optimal now?
In the search for perfect, you’ve forgotten moderation. Wow – boring point to an article, isn’t it? To be honest, I’m bored writing it, so you’re not alone.
But here’s the stone cold truth: moderation of 90% of your training and diet just, boringly, works. Go crazy on the other 10%. Get bogged down in which curls to do, what ab exercise is best; knock yourself out with that stuff. If you’ve already done your deadlifts, chins, benches, squats and rows, then honestly, the difference between barbell curls or rope curls really isn’t going to bake your cake.
Get some veg in, eat some protein (I’m always going to argue that meat isn’t an optional source of nutrients, but an essential one, but veggies are gonna veg regardless so I’ll stay out of that one) get as many carbs down your neck as you can get away with for your goals, eat chocolate or crisps occasionally, and drink a ton of water. Have some alcohol occasionally – one drink here and there makes bugger all difference unless your goals are to get on stage in your tighty-whiteys.
I reckon my way is actually WAY more exciting than searching for optimal or perfection. Moderation, done right, can be liberating – not restrictive.
When you realise that perfect doesn’t exist, you can stop searching for it and start putting your Googling into the basics.