Hey , I’ve got to be honest with you…


Today’s lesson is about something that many of our members struggle with.


Energy balance.


By now, you know that we are definitely not pushing any kind of restriction that many people associate with dieting.

(Hey there! Rather listen? Click the link below to do that!)

Am I Done Yet? Audio Lesson



I did this exact diet once.  The results were out of this world- but it wasn’t sustainable!


You know better than that.



Remember our portion sizes?



All that you need are these bad boys!  And, at least for now (eeeek!), everyone in the group has got them…


We built our portions off of our own hand size.


  • Protein:  2 palms for guys, 1 palm for the ladies
  • Veggies:  2 fists for the guys, 1 fist for the ladies
  • Fats:  2 thumbs for the bros, 1 thumb for the h-, er, um ladies
  • Carbs: 2 cupped handfuls for the guys, 1 cupped handful for the ladies


But is that it?  Now we just need to eat mindlessly?





Introducing the Bell Curve


You’re already familiar with what a bell curve is.  If you’re not, just smile and nod yes.  You’ll recognize it in a second.


This particular bell curve idea was introduced to me by Georgie Fear’s book, Lean Habits.  I took the time to draw this out for you today.


Fun fact: I drew this upside-down.  And backwards.  Because my handwriting is more legible that way.




On the left side of the bell curve we have undernourishment.  Don’t do that.



On the right side of the bell curve we have overeating.  Don’t do that either.


So what do we do, Chris?!


Ah!  I’m glad you asked…  But that depends.


We started with the hand-based portions.  Those are a GREAT starting point, but they are just the beginning.


Now we need to investigate how we feel.  Just like last week’s lesson, but now we get into some intra-meal detective work.



First, we need to know- what’s the goal?


Look back at that bell curve.  In the middle “sweet spot” we have some variability to match our goals.  Those sweet spots are hit by following the principle of eating slowly, and mindfully.


If we eat too fast, we won’t give ourselves enough time to recognize how we really feel.  Eating slowly is very important.


But what about mindfulness?  If we eat slowly, but get distracted by the TV, conversation, or anything else that draws from our attention, we can still miss our bodies signaling telling us to slow our roll.


Slow down.  Be mindful.


Fat Loss


For fat loss, we need to eat enough to be nourished, making sure that we are satiated for the next 2-4 hours, but NOT FULL.


Precision Nutrition calls this eating until you are 80% full.  Georgie Fear says eat until you are satisfied, and no more.  Use whatever works for you.


Taking it a step further, we need to befriend a little appetence between meals.  We can’t break at the instant we crave food.  We’ve got to embrace that REAL feeling in our stomach that says, “Hey , I’m ready to devour the calories up in here!”  Not yet duuuuuude, not yet.  Sit with it for 30 to 45 minutes.


Monitor your progress.  Adjust as needed.





In order to maintain, we want to follow the same principles of eating until we are satisfied, hopefully holding us over for 2-4 hours, but not really befriend our penchant for welcoming hunger as much.  Again, never eat until you are full (i.e. meals shouldn’t reach the point of discomfort- we’ve all been there, you know what I mean), but you can get a little more satisfaction than your fat loss Doppelganger.


But the big difference with maintenance is that we are going to eat when we feel hungry.  Rinse.  Repeat.


Again, monitor, and adjust accordingly.



Muscle Gain


So you want to put on some size?  You lucky son-of-a-bitch.  For you, longing for food is a thing of the past.  Now you eat like clockwork.


You’re still going to eat slow, and mindfully.  Shocker, I know.


If you want to do this right (yes, yes you do), you don’t want to gain an unnecessary amount of body fat in the process.  So, you’ve got to pay attention to how you feel during your meals!  Now, we will eat until we are full, but not uncomfortable.  Looking at the bell curve, you’re over there on the right-hand side.


IT IS VERY IMPORTANT that you don’t eat to the point of discomfort.  Do so, and you won’t be primed for your next meal in 2-3 hours.


If this happens, you either wind up stuffing your face and feeling sick all of the time (fat gain), or you under-eat as a result going forward and stay cemented in maintenance land.


Just like fat loss and maintenance, monitor, and adjust accordingly.



Get to work!


Now the work is on you…  Be honest with the goal.


Eat slowly.


Be mindful.


Monitor and adjust accordingly.

In 2010, two dudes Chris and Todd, started the business that would eventually become Strength Faction.

You know how they say the rest is history? Well, it’s not.

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