What's The Deal With This "Balance" Thing?

There is nothing wrong with being strict and disciplined with your nutrition, especially if you have a very specific goal...that is, UNTIL it gets to the point where it consumes your life, becomes all you think about, causes you stress and anxiety, and takes away from you living life to the fullest. Training and nutrition should enhance your life, NOT make you miserable.

You hear the term "balance" a lot lately, and the thing is, balance means something different for everyone.  For some people, it's eating intuitively, not following a plan. For others, it's including daily treats to fit within their macros. And for some, it's just realizing that they can eat something besides chicken and egg whites every meal.

What does it mean for ME? Well, it means NOT tracking every morsel of food I eat; it means not constantly worrying about everything I eat being "bad" for me; it means eating processed foods(gasp!) occasionally(cereal!); it means going out on the weekend and having a meal to I eat whatever I want with NO GUILT; it means going to family functions and eating whatever is served there; and it means NOT eating all organic, all natural foods ALL the time. Basically, to me it means living life NOT worrying and stressing about food or my abs all the time.

What balance ISN'T is an excuse to just eat crappy food all the time. It isn't justifying you making poor food choices more often than healthy choices. It's not an excuse to be lazy and just eat whatever you want. But it IS allowing yourself to be human and NOT perfect. It IS allowing yourself to eat your favorite foods sometimes, even if they're not healthy. It IS enjoying time with friends and family without stressing about what you're going to EAT. 

I feel so much more freedom now not worrying about eating super strict and "clean" all the time. Am I still very meticulous and structured with my eating? Yes, and I'm sure I always will be. Because I DO want to be healthy and maintain my physique. So that means that I watch my portions, weigh and measure my foods most of the time, eat lots of lean meats and produce, etc. But there can come a point where it goes too far to the extreme and is no longer healthy mentally, or even physically, sometimes. 

Are you truly enjoying the way you eat, or are you just tolerating it? 

Are you obsessed with your appearance and scared to eat certain foods? 
Do you choke down foods you hate just because you think you HAVE to eat them? 
Are you afraid that you will get fat if you go "off plan" for one meal? 
Does going a few grams over your macros for the day stress you out? 
Do you panic if you can't eat your planned and prepped meals?
Do you eat super strict only to binge when you do "allow" yourself to eat those foods that you consider "bad"? 

To me, all of those are signs that MAYBE your dieting/nutrition has gone to the extreme, or is heading in that direction.That's when it can go from healthy eating to disordered eating. And that is when finding "balance" can be a lifesaver. I know, because I've been there.

What does "balance" mean to  you?


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