The Original Lie
Ahhh… I’ve heard the myth my whole life… “It’s easier to lose weight in the Summer because of the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables.” Seriously? Do you know how many calories and grams of carbohydrates are in some fruits? I struggled with this hard truth for years, not understanding why the weight didn’t just fall off of me in the Summer. Nevermind that I could,and did, eat an entire watermelon alone in an evening. I’m not talking about the personal size watermelon. I’m talking about the size for a family.
I know people who eat massive amounts of fruit in the Summer and have this struggle all Season. There is a common misconception that fruit is “Free”. Nothing is “Free” except water. Go ahead and wrap your brain around this and you may still lose some fat this Summer.
The idea that an abundance of fresh fruit and veggies is a help to weight loss is a little ridiculous anyway because regardless of how many peaches or cups of blueberries we eat, we can still scarf down a platter of fried chicken at the family picnic. Those extra calories from all that fruit just add onto an already out of control diet. And then… It’s “just” fruit, “Free”, right? So when Aunt Pat brings out her “Prize Winning Fresh Peach Cobbler” we think that we can still have dessert, and usually do. There is a deception that we are eating “healthy” because we have eaten multiple servings of fresh fruit so surely a little cobbler can’t hurt…
But I Work Out
And then there’s the deception that all that outdoor activity will somehow magically erase a freezer of homemade ice cream. Oh, I’ve been there. That’s how I know about these things. In the Winter we’re house bound a lot. When we can get outside and start walking, hiking, cycling and swimming we think that we’ll “burn off” those extra calories and the party mentality takes over and we just go wild. Look here on the blog, immediately after the Calorie Counter Pro and you’ll see the calories burned for various activities. As David says, “You cannot out-exercise a bad diet.” No matter what fad diet “science” tries to tell you, it’s “Calories In/Calories Out” that matters. Keep up with your grams of carbohydrates also. You need good lean protein to build muscle and if you eat too many calories in carbohydrates, you won’t have enough left for protein. Personally, I like about 100 grams of carbohydrates a day.
If you drink alcohol, it’s even worse because the inhibition lowering quality of a couple of Margaritas will make the whole platter of ribs look like a single serving container. Food tastes better after a few drinks also, so it’s even harder to eat sensibly. Add the calories that you drink in the alcohol and in some cases, the huge amounts of carbohydrates in the form of simple sugars, and you are toasting to your destruction. Quite often we use bits and pieces from everything from modern medical research to Biblical texts to justify drinking all Summer at every occasion and party. Justification won’t erase the calories, the carbs or the fat around your waist. Drinking “responsibly” will still make you fat.
Plan To Win
I eat a little bit of fruit in the Summer, a little, not a platter. Count your calories and your carbs and incorporate it into your daily allowance. Enjoy all that wonderful outside activity but don’t even think about using it as excuse to gorge yourself at the barbecue. Look at the activities as a seasonal tool to increase your fitness that you won’t have in the Winter. Take advantage of that instead of letting it take advantage of you. I strongly urge you to forgo alcohol. It has little to no place in an intense training program. If you insist on incorporating it into your life, again, count your calories and carbs for the drinks and all the food that comes with it.
With some planning and forethought you can have a glorious Summer and make progress on your fitness goals. Don’t listen to myths and tall tales and wishful thinking concerning these three things. Take control and be the Master of Your Fate.
Create Your Life.