Cravings vs. Hunger
"Hunger is the best sauce." - Michael Easter
When was the last time you were actually hungry? So many times when we feel like eating we might actually be feeling cravings rather than actual hunger.
Actual hunger comes on gradually, is felt physically in your stomach, and is easy to satisfy with ANY FOOD. Cravings come on suddenly, are specific to a particular food, are habit driven, and hard to satisfy.
One of the biggest myth's in our modern food accessible world is that it's NOT OK to be hungry. We are encouraged to eat at the first sign of discomfort be that physical or emotional discomfort.
Often times we eat because we've developed a habit to eat at a particular time or after an event. There's a strong psychological component to why we eat what and when we do.
Here's the ultimate test of hunger vs. cravings. Are you hungry enough to eat baked fish and steamed broccoli. No? Then you are not hungry but are craving.
I learned that it's ok to be hungry from Coach Audy. She coached me through a 20 lbs weight loss after I finished my competitive weightlifting season in 2019. Many times our weekly coaching calls focused on how I managed my hunger. I can tell you from experience it's not managed by eating the things I WANTED. The things I wanted to eat did not satisfy my rumbling belly. Things that satisfied my rumbling belly were a very large glass of water followed by lean protein and vegetables. Yes, many times I ate baked fish and steamed broccoli.
So the next time you find yourself reaching into the fridge, pause and see if you're willing to eat baked fish and steamed broccoli. If you're not, drink a tall glass of water, step away from the fridge, and plan your next lean protein and veggie rich meal. Good luck!
Myth: CrossFit is Too Expensive
When most folks start looking into CrossFit they are surprised at at the price of a monthly membership. I know I was when I joined my first CrossFit gym in March 2010. For years I had been a member of Gold's Gym. I paid $49 a month for the opportunity to workout (on my own) at Gold's and I probably attended an average of twice a month. This may surprise you since I own True Spirit CrossFit; but, I too, struggled for years with motivation to go to the gym.
When I found CrossFit in 2010 and I had sticker shock at the $135 monthly price tag for a 12 class membership. Was I seriously considering more than doubling my gym membership to only be able to attend 12 classes per month? I mean I had been paying $49 to attend whenever I wanted to. Why would this be so much better? And why was it so damned expensive?
First, I had to compare what I was purchasing. A membership at Gold's Gym did not include group classes, coaching or programming, it only paid for access. If I wanted to attend group classes it was an extra charge. If I wanted a program to do on my own it was an extra charge. If I wanted a trainer to hold me accountable and make sure I did things correctly it was an extra charge. Everything that was included in the monthly CrossFit membership was an extra charge at Gold's Gym. By the time all of the extra charges were summed up it was more expensive that the CrossFit membership.
Second, after my first CrossFit class it was clear to me that the community and camaraderie of the group class was a much more powerful motivator than my solo sessions on the treadmill listening to my own music via earbuds. I used to walk into Gold's Gym and avoid eye contact. I used to be intimidated to go to the "free weights" section because of all the meatheads. There was no way I could ever befriend someone next to me on the elliptical because, they, too had earbuds inserted and eyes down.
Third, I no longer had to create my own workouts. I had purchased books, repeated my college rowing workouts, bought exercise videos, you name it in order to come up with a fun program that would keep me engaged. I was so frustrated with life after rowing. I had couldn't believe that after years of high-intensity erg and on the water training sessions and dry-land weight sessions that included back squats, power cleans, box jumps, etc., that now my fitness was supposed to be sustained with 60 slow minutes on the elliptical and some random "free weights." After my first week at CrossFit I was sore and happy and I felt just like I did when I was a competitive athlete. I had a coach who told me what to do and adjusted my training to meet my needs. I knew that CrossFit programming could get me back into shape.
Fourth, the cost was a motivator to attend classes. At $135 for 12 classes per month it cost me $11.25 per class. At that price I made damn sure I made all 12 classes. Not only did it make economic sense to get what I was paying for, but the fun I was having and the success I was having totally motivated me to continue.
Now, on the other side of the fence, I absolutely believe in the value of our Coaches and the efficacy of our programming, and the power of our community. I've also learned that Gold's Gym low cost and the low costs of all the other "Globo" gyms is purposeful. They intentionally set those prices low so that you willingly pay each month and rarely attend. Take a listen to this NPR Plant Money podcast on this very issue.
Finally, as a small business owner, I can tell you how important it is to support a family business. We don't have the power of a large corporate entity to do our marketing and business administration. James and I, with collaboration of all the Coaches, decide on our own best practices and ensure that our services meet the unique and ever changing needs of our community.
Myth: Six-pack Abs will Make you Happy and Are an Excellent Indicator of Your Fitness
Want to make your Coach cry? Let them know that no matter what you're able to do with your amazing body, you're just not happy because you can't see your abdominal muscles.
REALLY? Your happiness and self worth are tied up in a myth and ideal that was created by someone else and that will likely change, again, in the next 10 ten years.
Here's the cold hard truth, if you want to have visible abs you have to change what you eat, AND it's going to take some serious effort to get that lean. Men need to have about less than 10% body fat and women about less than 15% body fat to have visible abs. Do you know your current body fat percentage? I calculated this for everybody during our Spring Check-ins.
I don't know why this particular group of muscles is the cause célèbre for fitness. Why not deltoids, hamstrings, or quadriceps? There are so many amazing muscle groups that, when developed, have so much more functional power. The trend towards visible abs is recent. In the 1980's small thighs and flat bellies were the ideal women's body thanks Suzanna Summers, Jane Fonda and Denise Austin. In the 1990's step-aerobics and TAEBO got us moving and looking more lean and mean. Then in the 2000s flat and small gave way to lean and visible muscles, but not too much. We were told to be "toned" but not bulky. Give me a break.
Someday we are going to accept ourselves as we are and celebrate what our bodies can do!
So, if you still think 6-pack abs are where it's at, here's a great breakdown from the smart folks at Precision Nutrition of the effort and sacrifices you'll need to make in order to have visible abs. Good luck!
I have written before about how to use reason and critical thinking skills to help wade through all the silly bullshit you see on the interwebs. In our current situation, misinformation, silly bullshit and conspiracy theories are at an all time high.
Every day I see something on "the" Facebook that makes me scream into my computer screen. It's a time of uncertainty and people are taking advantage of our collective vulnerability to gaslight us into thinking that the deep state, big pharma and modern medicine is out to get us.
Keep calm and do CrossFit my friends, and also take comfort in the laws of math, specifically the lovely predictability of probabilistic statistics.
Probabilistic statistics is our way of determining if something is plausible, or in other words if it's probable that something is true or not.
We live in an ethos of you can do anything if you just try hard enough. Anything is possible so keep reaching for the stars. This is great for memes and encouraging Hallmark cards, and it sets us up to give credit to silly bullshit because, "it's possible".
"It's Possible" is not the same as "it's probable" and probability is the world we live in. Thinking that anything is possible is giving equal weight to all possibilities or potentialities. In the real world, the one we all live in, all possibilities do not have the same probability.
Let me explain it this way. What if I say to you, "It's possible that you can do a muscle up." Do you believe that? Based on your knowledge of your body, physicality, mobility and strength it may not be possible that you can do a muscle-up. However, with a focused training program and lots of skills progression you might be able, some day, to do a muscle up. You will have increased the probability through specific action. Some people will never get a muscle up, no matter how hard they practice and progress.
You see? Possibility is "everyone" can do a muscle up where probability is the mathematical likelihood that it can happen for people who work towards it.
Just because something is possible does not mean it is likely to be true. When it comes to conspiracy theories and other silly bullshit on the internet people are preying on our collective "it's possible" belief even though it's highly improbable that it's true. The more complicated the conspiracy theory the less probable it is purely based on mathematics.
I hope this helps you wade through all the silly bullshit that is floating in the sea of Covid craziness. When you get caught in a wave, take a deep breath and ask yourself how probable this thing is. Recognize people are trying to capitalize on your fear, and rely on your calm logic and reason to keep your head above water. Good luck!
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