There are a lot of diet and health fads out there, and most of them have been debunked by experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The most common dietary recommendations are that you “eat less” and “move more” — both of which are based on the assumption that everyone will do what you say. The problem is, many people do not do what they are told because they do not want to do it. The reason is simple: they are not willing to change.

It’s a common phrase for people to give advice while claiming to listen to their bodies. But how often do we really listen to our bodies? I spent last weekend at the South by Southwest conference, and while there I heard more than one person say how they drank alcohol when they felt like it, ate whatever they wanted, or skipped the gym every now and then and it still worked for them. But why?

The theory of “listen to your body” and “do what works for you” may seem logical, but is actually quite misleading. While the two sounds like a healthy way to approach dieting, eating clean and exercising, it’s not necessarily a good idea. There is no one size fits all diet. We are all built and conditioned differently. So, what to do instead?. Read more about 30-day challenge food and let us know what you think.

Clichés like “listen to your body” and “do what works for you” may appear to be sensible advice. However, unless you know how to use them, they aren’t very useful. . Because most people don’t, I’m going to share these four crucial tactics with you today. . You’ll discover how to gain the self-awareness you need to achieve your health and fitness objectives more quickly. .

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The human body is not the same for everyone.

Neither are our objectives. Or even our own lives. Or our definition of “wellness.”

They shouldn’t be, either.

Despite the fact that we have many similarities, each person is unique. And fitness and nutrition advice should take such disparities into consideration.

That’s why, on one hand, hearing messages like:

“Pay attention to your body.”

“Do what feels right to you.”

“Remember to be mindful.”

“Learn to eat intuitively.”

“Pay attention to your hunger cues.”

These messages, in general, are a good contrast to the other, more prescriptive messages we hear from health and fitness professionals — the “eat this, not that” stuff.

However, while they sound appealing, they aren’t particularly successful.

These pieces of “advice” are a collection of clichés that feel irritating and without any type of actual direction on their own. .

Here’s what I’ve learned from watching over 100,000 clients go through our Coaching program.

This advise will do more harm than good until you provide a clear structure to help individuals learn how to “listen to their bodies” and “do what works for them.”

Why?

Most people, on the other hand, have long since lost contact with their bodies’ cues.

Hunger and fullness cues have long been overridden by rigid calorie limits and drowned out by the highs and lows of emotion-driven binges after years (or decades) of dieting.

They have no idea what “works” for them or how to start figuring it out.

They are perplexed and overwhelmed. I’m both hurt and enraged.

They are perplexed.

As a result, handing them a flashlight and some generic advice about “doing what works” usually backfires:

“I’ll never be able to get in shape again.” What is the point of attempting?”

Instead, people require a thorough blueprint to assist them in tuning in to their bodies’ signals and discovering what works best for them.

I’ll discuss the framework we use at to assist our clients learn (or relearn) how to listen to their bodies and build a deep understanding of which nutrition and exercise routines work best for them in this article.

In addition, I’ll walk you through the exact tactics we employ with our clients so you can apply them to yourself (or, if you’re a coach, your clients).

First, some background information.

Body awareness is essential for better eating and exercise habits.

It’s really beneficial to be fully aware of your body and to be able to comprehend things like hunger cues, how emotions influence your activity and eating decisions, and how stress manifests in your body.

It’s one of the key distinctions between people who struggle with diet and exercise their entire lives and those who have a good relationship with their bodies, food, and fitness.

Successful people have developed the abilities to be mindful, pay attention to their emotions, and tune into their bodies’ signals through practice.

Fortunately, acquiring self-knowledge — or, to put it another way, listening to your body and learning what works for you — is just that: a talent.

It can also be cultivated by a series of tactics and practices, just like other abilities.

Learn how to “listen to your body” with these four tactics… and improve your self-awareness superpowers.

One thing to keep in mind is that, like any other ability, this takes time to develop. Self-awareness, in particular, can be a difficult task for some people. (As Benjamin Franklin put it, “three things are really difficult: steel, a diamond, and knowing oneself.”)

That’s why working with a coach is the most effective way to improve your skills.

A coach can provide you a step-by-step strategy (or curriculum) to help you develop these skills, similar to how a music or language teacher has a pre-determined approach to help you develop music or communication skills.

Even more crucial, a competent coach can provide objective feedback and assist you in identifying your blind spots (we’re all human, and it’s perfectly natural to deceive ourselves – it’s nearly impossible not to).

However, there is a lot you can do on your own.

Here are the abilities that we help Coaching clients develop and teach to our Certification students so that they can apply them to their own clients.

Assessments of “food and feelings” are the first strategy.

The idea is

Assessments, also known as worksheets, diaries, and journals, can be used to objectively examine and analyze your diet and exercise habits, as well as how they make you feel.

An assessment allows you to record data so you may analyze and make sense of it later; in other words, it allows you to collect data for you (or your coach) to interpret and make sense of.

This is an excellent initial step toward gaining self-awareness since it allows you to gather data rather than relying on generic feelings or concerns.

What is the best way to put this strategy into action?

These tests function best when they’re utilized right at the start of a nutrition plan (or coaching program) to help you modify your eating habits and achieve your body composition or health goals.

Examples of assessment instruments

1. Journal of Eating Habits

You can uncover causes for eating (and the feelings that come with it) that have nothing to do with hunger and fullness by tracking what you eat and what you’re thinking while eating.

The goal is to observe and record — without passing judgment — in order to get insight into your own motivations. You may notice trends that you desire to break over time.

The Eating Behaviors Journal is available for download.

2. Worksheet on Behavioral awareness

Use this test to figure out why you’re bingeing or eating emotionally.

While our overeating tendencies may appear to be spur-of-the-moment, research suggests that the groundwork is created several hours in advance (by our daily rituals, habits, mindset, and automatic thinking).

Overeating is merely the final link in a long sequence of events. You have a much better chance of never reaching to the last link if you can break the first link.

This practice can help you become more aware of the common threads that run across your binge eating episodes. It could be the time of day, the situation, the meal, another person (or being alone), or a sensation – or any combination of these.

Download the Worksheet on Behavior Awareness.

3. Keep a journal of how food makes you feel.

Use this exercise to learn more about how your body reacts to different foods.

Tracking physical sensations, particularly unpleasant ones, might help you identify trigger foods, as well as sensitivities or intolerances, that are obstructing your health goals.

The How Food Feels Journal is available for download.

Worksheet for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay

This worksheet will assist you in developing the habit of recognizing and responding to hunger and fullness cues. As a result of this activity, you will be able to:

  • Recognize genuine (physical) hunger signs.
  • Only eat when you’re actually hungry.
  • When you’re 80 percent full, stop eating.
  • Keep track of your thoughts and feelings during mealtimes.
  • Differentiate between “need to eat” and “want to eat” or “should eat.”

The Hunger Games Worksheet is available to download.

Practices to raise awareness (Strategy #2)

The idea is

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The ability to focus and tune into your own body is extremely beneficial in many aspects of health and fitness. It’s especially crucial for folks who desire to change their eating habits.

Many of us have lost our ability to be present and aware when eating, and we have long ceased listening to our own hunger and fullness cues.

Fortunately, being aware and present — also known as mindfulness — is a talent that can be learned with practice, just like any other.

What is the best way to put this strategy into action?

Use these techniques on a daily basis, ideally after you’ve done a few assessments to establish a baseline.

For 2-4 weeks, commit to using a specific technique every day; after that, you can do the practice whenever you feel distant from your body.

It’s important to realize that the goal here isn’t perfection. All you have to do is practice every day, and the skill will organically develop. You’ll be blown away.

Examples of best practices

To understand how to properly listen to your body, try these three Coaching techniques.

Once again, this should be simple. If a practice is too difficult, make it easier (for example, instead of a 5-minute mind-body scan, try for 2 or 3 minutes at first).

And don’t try to perform all three at the same time. It’s preferable to concentrate on just one at a time.

Practice #1: Take your time eating.

Take a few additional minutes at each meal today to simply… pause.

After each bite, put your utensils down. Take a deep breath and relax. Take a mouthful and pay attention to the taste and texture of the meal.

Taking another breath or a drink of water is a good idea.

Relax.

Wait a few moments longer. Take another bite if you’re still hungry.

Repeat.

That is all there is to it.

If you’re having trouble slowing down, set a timer. When you’ve finished eating, count how many minutes have passed. You now have a starting point from which to improve! Cool.

And if you add just one minute of meal time per day, you’ll have decreased your eating pace by roughly 15 minutes in just two weeks.

Practice #2: Eat until you’re 80% full.

You’re probably familiar with the sensation of being “packed.” After your fourth helping of dessert, you have to relax your belt and breathe in small huffs, which is the post-holiday meal experience.

Let’s call it 150 percent full, which means it’s way overflowing.

You may be familiar with the sensation of being “very hungry.” Let’s call it a 0% full situation.

It’s 80 percent full somewhere in the middle.

When you’re 80 percent full, you’re just satisfied. I’m not hungry anymore. (Or simply a smidgeon of hunger that fades in a few minutes.)

But not completely. Not to mention crammed.

Try to discover the 80 percent spot on the spectrum at each meal. (That first habit of eating slowly comes in useful again.)

You won’t know what it feels like to be 80 percent full right immediately, but you don’t have to get it “perfect” or perform any hard arithmetic to find out.

Simply eat a little slower and a little less at each meal until you know (and can consistently hit) the 80% threshold.

Practice #3: Scan your mind and body

What exactly is a “mind-body scan”? A mind-body scan, while it seems like something aliens might design (along with probing your, ahem, bottom), is actually fairly straightforward.

Step 1: Find a peaceful location.

Take 5 minutes every day to find a peaceful spot where you won’t be interrupted.

This could happen right before going to bed or right after waking up. In your workplace. After your workout, sit on a bench. You’re sitting in your parked vehicle. Walking. Yoga, stretching, or foam rolling are all good options.

Even the bathroom will suffice.

All you need is 5 minutes of uninterrupted silence.

Step 2: Pay attention to your physical sensations.

Piece by piece, start from the top of your head and work your way down to your toes.

Take note of how you’re physically feeling.

In your eyes, how do you feel? What about your ears? Is that your nose?

Do you have your jaw clenched? Do you have tight or loose facial muscles?

What’s the way you’re holding your head? Straight? Are you being pushed ahead like a turtle? Is your head tilted to one side, as if you’re a curious dog?

Do you have a tight or open chest? Whether you’re breathing deeply or shallowly, it’s important to pay attention to how you’re breathing.

What happened to your shoulders? What’s going on behind your ears? Are you hunched over? Are you dangling haphazardly? Is one more important than the other?

Is there a cool air on your face? Is the temperature in the room warm or cool? Are you perspiring? Shivering?

Do you have a scratchy sweater on? Is it possible to feel the label on your shirt?

You get my drift.

With this step-by-step “scan,” work your way down to your toe nails.

Don’t pass judgment or make hasty changes. Simply observe, as if you were a scientist.

If you want to, jot down your observations. You may detect trends after two weeks.

Step 3: Pay attention to your feelings and thoughts.

After you’ve completed your “body scan,” go over your feelings and ideas.

Again, don’t pass judgment or make meaning of it. Just keep an eye on things and take notes if you want.

Step 4: Make a list of three questions to ask yourself.

Now consider the following:

Currently…

…how am I physically feeling?

…emotionally, how am I feeling?

…what exactly am I thinking?

It’s fine if you can’t put your feelings and experiences into words.

Simply keep an eye on things. That is all there is to it.

You don’t have to complete all three of the aforementioned techniques (eat slowly, eat until you’re 80 percent full, and do a mind-body scan) at the same time. Instead, pick one to focus on for a few weeks and do the reps. After that, you can continue on to the next step.

#3: Observations on a daily basis

The idea is

Take a few minutes each day to record your observations as you continue to work on increasing your awareness.

This allows you to transform your experiences into actionable input about your body, health, and life.

This doesn’t have to be difficult or time-consuming; simply practice becoming more aware of what you’re learning and keep track of it.

What is the best way to put this strategy into action?

Use this tactic on a daily basis, in addition to the above-mentioned awareness-raising techniques.

(By the way, these types of questions appear at the end of everyday lessons in Coaching to allow you to reflect on what you’ve learned.) This questioning technique is best learned as part of a coaching program, although it’s still worth attempting on your own.)

Question examples

As a starting point, consider the following questions. Depending on whatever topics are most resonant to you, you might think of questions to add (or remove) when doing your assessments and daily practices.

When practicing slow eating, you might want to think about:

  • What struck you about that meal? Were you able to eat carefully, and are you satisfied with your meal choices?

Consider the following options when practicing eating till you’re 80 percent full:

  • What makes you feel uneasy about eating till you’re 80 percent full, other than physical hunger?

Consider the following while performing a mind-body scan:

  • What did you notice about your physical state?
  • What emotions did you see yourself experiencing?
  • What thoughts did you catch yourself thinking about?

You might want to keep track of the following as you continue your mind-body scan practice:

  • As you perform the mind-body scan, what are you learning about yourself?
  • Are you beginning to notice any…
    • Patterns or inclinations of interest?
    • Is there a link between emotional and physical feelings? What is the location of your emotions in your body?
    • Are there any relationships between bodily or emotional experiences and thoughts or behaviors?
    • triggers?

Reflective journaling is the fourth strategy.

The idea is

Use specific, “Socratic” (critical thinking) questions as a springboard for reflective writing, a technique for increasing and solidifying your physical and emotional self-awareness.

This type of exercise may cause you to consider the following:

  • Your habits and decisions in terms of eating and exercising
  • What is working and what isn’t for you?
  • Changes in the body (weight loss or gain, strength, size, speed, endurance, etc.)

Every few weeks, we offer clients Socratic questions, asking them to ponder and write down their responses. They work out how to utilize what they learn through evaluations and practices to make progress toward their goals through this exercise.

You can follow suit.

(Coaches, this is something you can do for your customers as well.)

What is the best way to put this strategy into action?

Once a month, use reflective journaling.

If you don’t have a coach or a curriculum, set a monthly reminder on your calendar to ensure you don’t forget.

Question examples

The following are some examples of Socratic questions that are likely to assist you increase your awareness and self-knowledge while also moving you closer to a specific objective.

After you’ve been working on your goal for a few weeks, ask yourself these questions:

  • What have you worked hardest on in the last several weeks?
  • What accomplishments have you been most proud of in the last few weeks?
  • What healthy activity will you take to give yourself a high-five for all of your hard work?
  • What are some basic habits you’d like to revisit and/or improve?
  • What is the next meaningful step you can take right now to get started on the path of doing things better?

When you’re a little further along in your plan / journey, ask yourself these questions to help you:

It takes time to figure out what works for you and to tune in to your body’s wants and messages. Consistency, or the ability to keep going, is one of the most critical success characteristics.

So, to keep going and learning, try answering the following questions:

  • Take a look ahead: What are you looking forward to the most over the next few weeks?
  • What superpowers do you have that will make progress more likely now that you know your goals / what you’re working on or working toward?
  • What obstacles are you likely to face in the next weeks now that you know what’s on the horizon?
  • How can you get ready right now to ensure that those things don’t get in the way of progress?

When you’re stuck, ask yourself these questions:

  • What do you think you’ve “done wrong,” “messed up,” or “failed” in the last several weeks?
  • Why haven’t you accomplished your objectives yet? What is preventing you from achieving your goals?
  • What do these blunders reveal about yourself or what you might require in order to succeed?
  • What advice would you provide to yourself if you were your own coach?

Finally, keep in mind that, while journaling and answering thinking questions is a fun activity in and of itself, the objective of these activities is truly twofold:

1. You’re unlikely to find any other way to obtain information on yourself.

2. To develop the talent of “paying attention” or “listening” to your body via careful practice.

What to Do Next: Some Suggestions from the Experts

1. Think about what it means to you to “listen to your body.”

Take a moment to consider why you’re attempting to “listen to your body,” “find out what works for you,” or any other similar advise.

What do you hope to accomplish? Is there a specific aim you’d like to achieve, such as a better food connection or improved stress-reduction habits? What is the significance of this to you?

Any journey will be more successful if it has actual meaning and purpose.

2. Select one of the strategies listed above.

Then try out one of the exercises.

As much as possible, approach the procedure with interest. Try not to be too harsh on yourself or the practice. Let’s see how things proceed. Make a list of observations.

(Coaches, please feel free to distribute these to your clients.)

3. Create a ‘Owner’s Manual.’

Try out the notion of the “Owner’s Manual” on your own. Make it a habit to gather knowledge about oneself on a regular basis. Make a list of everything you learn.

Consider the Owner’s Manual to be a living, breathing document that allows you to develop, grow, and learn more about yourself.

Begin right now: What do you know about yourself already? What may you include in your Owner’s Manual now?

4. Establish a support system.

With the assistance of someone else, whether it’s a coach or trainer, a therapist, or a mentor… even a spouse or friend as a “awareness partner”

They can assist you in overcoming your own blind spots and remaining resilient as you try to better understand yourself.

Why not ask us if you don’t have somebody on hand… That is why we are here.

Do you want to be the healthiest, fittest, and strongest version of yourself?

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Over the last 15 years, we’ve used the Coaching technique to assist over 100,000 people lose weight, gain strength, and improve their health… for the long haul… no matter what obstacles they face.

It’s also why, through our Level 1 and Level 2 Certification programs, we teach health, fitness, and wellness professionals how to coach their own clients through similar issues.

Interested in becoming a coach? Join the presale list to save up to 54% and get a spot 24 hours before the general public.

On Wednesday, July 14th, 2021, we will be accepting applications for our upcoming Coaching.

If you’re interested in learning more about coaching, I recommend signing up for our presale list below. Being on the list provides you with two distinct benefits.

  • You’ll get a better deal than everyone else. We like to reward the folks that are the most enthusiastic and motivated since they always make the best customers. If you join the presale list, you’ll save up to 54% off the general public pricing, the lowest we’ve ever offered.
  • You’ll have a better chance of getting a spot. We only open the program twice a year to ensure that clients receive the special care and attention they need. We sold out in minutes the last time we started registration. By signing up for the presale list, you’ll be able to register 24 hours before the general public, enhancing your chances of getting in.

This is your chance to transform your body and your life with the guidance of the world’s greatest instructors.

[Note: If you currently have your health and fitness under control but want to help others, look into our Level 1 Certification program.]

If you’ve ever tried (and failed) to lose weight, then you have probably heard the advice to “listen to your body.” However, this advice is rarely helpful if you’re trying to lose weight and keep it off. Health experts have been studying how to lose weight, and the best advice they’ve found is to adjust our diet and exercise based on how we feel. This doesn’t mean to eat lots of carbs and skip working out. It means to eat foods that promote good health and to exercise when we feel like it.. Read more about precision nutrition meal plan and let us know what you think.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is listening to your body Important?

Listening to your body is important because it helps you know when you are in pain and can help you avoid injury.

How can I get better at listening to my body?

Listen to your body. It will tell you when it needs rest, or when it is too tired to keep going.

How do you listen to body cues?

The body is a complex system of systems that can be hard to understand. Its important to listen to your body and pay attention to the signals it sends you.

This article broadly covered the following related topics:

  • 30-day challenge food
  • precision nutrition behavior change
  • what can i eat on the 30-day challenge
  • intuitive eating challenge
  • mindful eating challenge
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