I am sure you have heard the statement before that weight loss is 80% diet 20% exercise. Is this really true?? The answer is YES! We often begin some sort of exercise regimen and wonder why the pounds aren’t falling as quickly as the sweat dripping off our face!! Exercise alone can produce some results, but to maximize your efforts the best thing to do is to clean up your diet. I cringe when I hear people say they have to work extra hard in the gym because of what they ate during the weekend or the night before. Your workouts should not be a punishment because of the poor food choices you made. Look at food as a way to fuel your body and muscles to maximize training rather than prohibit success. Our bodies need nutrient dense food to function properly. Processed food, massive portions, and fast food restaurants have changed the way we eat and making us gain weight. Our busy lives have forced us to choose these convenience foods and our bodies are paying for it. Remember that God gave us one body and it is His temple. He has intrusted us to take care of our body, and we decide what goes in. Please hear me- I am not saying you can never enjoy your favorite treat foods. This is when the 80/20 rule comes in to play again. 80% of the time eat clean foods that will fuel your body well and 20% enjoy some treats in moderation. This can be a “cheat meal” once a week or a piece of chocolate after dinner. Whatever your guilty pleasure is, it is okay to enjoy it every once in a while.

So if you are looking to lose weight, start living by the 80/20 rule. Experiment with new recipes at home rather than grabbing take out for dinner. The biggest key to success is planning ahead. If you aren’t thinking about what you will eat, you will more than likely settle for the drive thru. Pinterest has thousands of recipes and tips on meal planning. Eating at home will also save you money, win-win! I challenge you to start living this way and see how cleaning up your diet will jump start your weight loss.