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I talk to my Mom on the phone almost everyday, sometimes two or three times a day. It’s a common occurrence for one of us to say ‘I was just calling you!’ as we pick up the phone. If there is such a thing as a soul mate, she may just be mine. She is the person who just KNOWS.
At a young age, I can remember my Mom telling me about my energy bank account. Good news everyone, this concept has nothing to do with calories! ‘Well that was a great deposit’ she would say after going for a walk or spending time in the garden. ‘I’m running a little low’ she would remark after a long week of working 12 or more hours a day.
Traditional thinking tells us that in order to lose weight we need to consume less calories than we burn, lets call this the ‘calories in vs. calories out’ model. There are many physiological reasons that this concept is short-sighted but we can leave that for another post!
The foundation of the energy bank account has to do with mental energy. In my opinion this is the biggest missing link in most nutritional plans. Food will always be an emotional, and social connector for us, so we must address it this way.
The energy bank account model is based on two questions: what gives you energy (deposit) and what costs you energy (withdrawal). Just like your financial bank account, we feel best when we are above a zero balance. The following variables will help you determine what is a deposit and what feels like an energy withdrawal for you.
So what does this have to do with how we look? I ask you this: what do you feel like eating when you have been burning the candle at both ends, when your mental energy bank account is in the negative? I would be going for anything fast, most likely starchy carbohydrates or something sweet rather than vegetables and lean protein.
When energy is balanced and we are in the positive, the chances of us taking the time to cook great food or make great choices is increased. Thus the conundrum of the traditional ‘calories in vs. calories out’ model does not take into account our mental energy! The mental energy factor is what dictates how much and when we eat in the first place!
The big take home message of this post is any plan that is individualized for you and your specific personality, sources of stress and daily schedule will always be superior to a program that challenges you to change who you are.
We discuss this and many more ways to personalize your plan in our Monthly Coaching Group – The Blast Fitness Lifestyle Club open now until Wednesday April 30th! Sign up here.