Overcoming the Yoyo Effect
By Grant Bester
After spending so much time with my gran as a kid, I grew an abnormal addiction to food. As clichéd as it sounds, my first attempt to change my lifestyle began with a crush on a girl. An unhealthy diet led me to lose 21kgs in 7 weeks. After this amazing transformation from a teddy bear to a prawn I was still rejected by the girl. Sickly thin was not the answer! So I started going to gym.
At the young age of 17, I began subjecting myself to rigorous training. The muscle started piling on rather quickly yet all the training gave me an appetite of note. Before long, I was just as big as before yet with much more muscle. From this point on, finding a balance between training and diet was my mission. After seven years of bodyweight fluctuations, I finally found something that worked, besides exercising 2-4hrs a day. Research!!!
I finally decided enough was enough. I had completed my degree and worked for 3 years and still despite having all the confidence in the world, my self-confidence was lacking. For 3 weeks I read so many articles, diets, strategies etc. I could actually write a book. This is what I learned:
- All the knowledge in the world is no good without a game plan.
- The scale is your worst enemy. Don’t watch your weight. Use your eyes!
- Just because something works for someone else, doesn’t mean it’ll work for you.
- You are what you eat! Don’t eat whatever your parents make you!
- Eat in moderation!
- 5-6 small meals a day!
- Drink plenty of water and eat enough fibre.
- High protein diets are the best
- 5-2.2kgs of protein per kg bodyweight depending on your body type
- Carbs are a necessity to replenish amino acids and build muscle, especially those from vegetables, but there’s a right time for everything.
- Fast carbs first thing in the morning and after workouts.
- Getting the body you deserve is 80% diet and 20% exercise.
- 30min of exercise a day is all you need to stay thin.
- On the other hand, building muscle is dependent on your body type.
So, back to number one, game plan! This is the gist of my eating plan:
- Determine your recommended daily calorie intake:
- Calculate your macros:
- Eat healthy foods
- Garlic, curry powder, healthy fats (e.g. coconut oil and extra virgin olive oil) and foods high in fibre (e.g. oats, lentils and sweet potato) are great for losing weight.
Unfortunately, exercise is one of those things that is totally dependent on the individual. You need to find out what works for you. However, here are some tips:
- Ectomorphs need short workouts with maximum intensity and long rest periods
- Endomorphs need long workouts with low to medium intensity and short rest periods
- Compound exercises are said to be better for weightloss
- Split muscle group exercises are better to build muscle as you need to give your muscles time to recover. Make sure to work apposing muscle groups and get plenty of sleep!
- Walking is better than running. Not only is it easier on your joints but it’s better for weightloss without losing muscle.
- It’s always a good idea to switch things up! Change your schedule so your muscles don’t get too used to your workouts. Change the order of your exercises, the intensity, reps, rest periods and eventually the exercises you do themselves. This prevents your body from reaching plateaus.
As mentioned earlier, the scale is your worst enemy. During weightloss, the body also builds muscle. And muscle, weighs more than fat. There are also plenty of other reasons for your body weight to fluctuate. The least of which is what you’ve eaten that day, water retention or what time of day you’re weighing yourself. Use your eyes and stay motivated by looking at yourself in the mirror. Take pictures of yourself and look at the progress you’ve made. Post your accomplishments on Sleekgeek
My gym partner referred me to Sleekgeek. The one thing he assured me is once the compliments start coming in and you realise just how much you’ve achieved, you’ll start pushing yourself harder and harder. Eventually all the good habits become second nature. The trick is staying motivated and having a good support structure in place. And that is why I’ve enjoyed being part of Sleekgeek. Whenever you need a morale boost, some advice or something as simple as a recipe for a delicious healthy meal, there is always someone ready to listen and help!
SUBMIT YOURSTORY AND WIN R500 Wellness Warehouse Voucher
Grant wins a R500 voucher courtesy of our sponsor for the “YOU CAN live life well” series Wellness Warehouse to be spent on their online store with free delivery nationally.
I believe very strongly that ordinary every day people like you and I derive great inspiration from the achievements of people who seem similar to us. If they can do it.. damn.. so can I! Right?
So through this program we will continue to tell people’s personal stories.
I want to great an archive of hundreds of stories of people who have changed their lives while others believe they cannot.
Submit your story to email@example.com with the Subject line “You can live life well”
- Your story in your own words covering at least (How you got to a point of change, how you made the change, tips and advise for others)
- A selection of before and after photos
- As many words as you need to tell your story
In advance, we regret that not all stories may be published. Your story is as important as anyone’s story but we can only publish one a week and the editor will make decision on this.
If your story is published you will receive a R500 voucher to the Wellness Warehouse online store with free national delivery.