*The title of this post was taken from the Radiohead song of the same name*
Moderation seems to be the buzzword in the diet and exercise world.
“You can eat anything in moderation.”
“Moderate exercise can improve heart health.”
“Drink alcohol in moderation.”
And there is great truth to those statements.
What you don’t see is diet books called “The Moderate Amount Diet” or the new exercise program called “Moderately Fit.”
They would NEVER sell.
It’s a strange world we live in where one of the best tips you can receive from any doctor, dietitian, trainer etc. involves the word moderation but it never gets accepted.
So, we buy the books that promise extreme results in minimal times and we eat the foods that claim fat-burning/melting results with minimal effort and we end up with minimal results due to minimal effort and usually a fantastic rebound after we’ve gotten that mess out of our systems.
And it’s not just the books we buy, the exercise programs we enroll in or the supplements we mistakenly believe in: it’s in the other areas of our lives too.
We work too hard, we sleep too little, we binge on television, we only use the drive-thrus, we do 1-click purchasing, etc.
Everything at the height of convenience and pushing red on our lifestyle meters.
As I write these words, I have to remind myself: Jason, don’t be a hypocrite.
There’s a beauty to convenience. It fills a need (perceived or otherwise.)
And maybe there’s hope for people who find that running red on their meter maybe isn’t the best path for every avenue of life.
If you feel like you’re running at an 11 on a scale of 10, try pulling it back a bit.
Push at a 6 or a 7 for a while.
That might mean that you have to settle for one pound of fat loss a week instead of three pounds.
It might mean that you should do HIIT (high intensity interval training) once a week instead of four. You can walk on the off days or just get in some strength training.
Your caloric deficit could be 300 calories shy of maintenance instead of 800.
You could actually leave work after an eight hour day instead of outlasting your colleagues and staying for twelve hours (sacrificing a healthier meal, a good workout and possibly a decent night’s sleep.)
If you find that you’re constantly tired, not seeing the results you need with your health or maybe you’ve just been a pain in the ass to be around, ease off the gas for awhile.
It’s okay to breathe. Be mindful and see where you can scale back the intensity.
And in a culture where the badge of honor is how extreme you can get, maybe a little moderation is the piece you overlooked.
No matter how un-sexy it actually is.