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Listening to Your Body

Before I get into this post, today marks the 3 year anniversary of me starting the program that literally has changed my life, P90X! I remember sitting on the couch when the doorbell rang and the UPS guy dropped off my P90X program. As soon as it arrived, I opened the box, read through both the P90X Fitness and Nutrition guides, assembled my pull-up bar, and then popped in the first DVD, Chest & Back. Little did I know that the program would not only change me physically, but allow me to become passionate about fitness, and eventually become financially independent as a full-time Beachbody Coach and earn Top Beachbody Coach 2010.

Anyways, these past 3 years since starting P90X have been a learning process. Before I started P90X, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing in terms of nutrition, or even fitness for that matter. I was a weight room junkie, and always thought that french fries were decently good for me since they were potatoes. I mean it makes sense, right? Over the course of 3 years I have done a ton of research on diet, but really, it wasn’t the research that helped me learn the most, but rather personal experience and listening to my body.

When I was going through my first round of P90X, I dropped weight fairly quickly. Within the first two weeks I lost 10 lbs, and by day 90 I had lost about 25 lbs. On top of that, I dropped my body fat down from about 17% to 7%, all within a 90 day time frame. When I started my second round of P90X, I noticed that my energy levels were always low, and my workouts weren’t as intense as they used to be. I just completely bonked, and even became irritable because of how tired I was. At the same time all this was happening, I was craving carbohydrates like it was my job. Remember, I stuck with very low carbs during my first round (Fat Shredder Phase), and that’s what I saw all the results with, so why wouldn’t I continue following the same thing? I quickly found out it didn’t work this way. My body was trying to tell me that in order to function properly and adjust to my new healthy lifestyle, I needed to increase my calories and carbohydrates. What happens is that when your body fat becomes low and you build a good muscle base, you burn MANY more calories throughout the day than you did before. Your metabolism is now faster, and your body draws energy from carbs because there isn’t much fat left. If you don’t keep up with the demands, you will have negative side effects like bonking, being wore out, and irritability. Plus, you will quickly hit a plateau with your workouts and more and likely become frustrated. Usually when people increase the calories and carbs, that’s when they begin to see more changes.

Because I have been following programs like P90X, Insanity, One on One, Turbofire, and P90X Plus for over 3 years, my body is constantly changing, demanding different foods and changes, and if I don’t listen to it, then I stop seeing results. For example, I’ve been trying to put on some muscle mass for the past 2 months. During the first month I put on about 3-4 lbs and got a lot stronger, but noticed that the amount of food that I was eating before wasn’t satisfying me. I literally would get done eating dinner and be starving 45 minutes later! Instead of ignoring the hunger pains, I began eating more throughout the day. The point is that since I have been paying attention to what my body is demanding, I have been experiencing greater results than I ever have before.

However, there is a fine line here. Don’t think I’m telling you that you should eat whatever your body demands. If you crave sugar, it would be best to stay away from it because it would negatively affect your results. I used to crave Reese’s Cups when I started P90X, but didn’t listen to the cravings because I knew what it would do to my results. That was just my old unhealthy habits calling out my name. If you find yourself craving certain foods like sugar, then eat something like a fruit or even Shakeology, which will quickly satisfy those cravings.

Listening to your body is VERY important if you want to take your fitness to the max and reach all of your goals. If you don’t listen to what your body demands, then you can easily slip into a plateau and not see any results until you make the necessary changes. Remember, though, you still have to be very smart about what you put into your body. It’s not going to help to eat a huge bowl of ice cream because you crave it.

If you’d like to make me your coach so that I can be here to help you through your fitness program, click here! Also feel free to email me at coachspence8@yahoo.com with any questions.

One comment

  1. Kevin G. /

    Solid post man. P90X has changed my life too. One thing that has helped my cravings is before I eat anything I read the nutrition label. It has gotten to the point where I automatically associate food with its nutrition label, so whenever I have a craving for something bad (ice cream) I suddenly remember that nutrition label that says its all fat. Im never going back to what I was. Nothing tastes as good as being in-shape feels.

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