The Hunger Game
Most of us have forgotten what true hunger feels like physically and what it feels like to be satisfied. It seems that as soon as we feel we might be just a tiny bit hungry, we eat until our bellies are full and we do it quick! It’s ok to feel a little hungry and you should work on really getting to know your hunger cues, how you feel when your satisfied and when to stop.
The two most important habits I get my clients to work on are ‘Eat Slowly’ and ‘Stop When 80% Full’.
These two habits, when done consistently are very powerful when it comes to improving your body and health…
So, here I’m going to share with you a snippet of a lesson from my online coaching program, powered by ‘ProCoach’ and my partners at Precision Nutrition.
’The Hunger Game’
Start by asking yourself these questions…
- Are you hungry right now?
- How do you know?
- Take a minute. Check in.
- Put your hand on your belly. What do you feel?
- Do you need to eat right now?
- Do you want to eat right now?
- Do you feel like you should eat right now?
If you’re having trouble with this, you’re not alone. Most of us have forgotten what it’s like to feel truly physically hungry (or satisfied).
So make a game of it as you practice. (check out the graphic at the bottom of the post!)
Touch and go
Imagine this. You’ve just been shipwrecked on a desert island.
Would you be the guy who starts to freak out once his stomach starts rumbling?
Or would you be the guy who shrugs, gets to work making some pointy sticks, and hangs in there until he can spear a tasty island rat for chow? He knows that hunger isn’t an emergency. Because he’s been practicing his 80% full.
Yeah, being hungry kinda sucks. But you’ll survive.
Your muscles won’t dissolve if you don’t get dinner by 6 p.m.
And being a little hungry puts you in fat-burning mode.
Hunger comes and goes in waves.
Most of the time it’s just a little uncomfortable. Nothing you can’t handle.
Try “touch and go” with being hungry, or anything else you notice today.
Pause. Observe it for a few minutes.
Then move on.
“Man, I could totally go for a cheeseburger right now! This is a serious craving! Huh. That’s interesting. Am I really hungry? [waiting] Kind of. OK, I’ll wait a little while longer and see how it goes.”
Think about stopping at 80% full — and observing your hunger and fullness — as merely pausing.
It’s not forever. Touch and go.
Today, try playing the hunger game.
When you notice yourself wanting food, pause for a moment.
- Are you physically hungry?
- What are the body cues that would tell you?
While you’re eating, pause.
- Are you satisfied?
- What are the body cues that would tell you?
We don’t want you to starve. We simply want you to pause.
Wait. Check in.
Notice what your body is saying.
Enjoy the freedom of 80% full
Eventually, once you get the hang of it, 80% full will start to feel awesome. You’ll finish every meal feeling leaner and lighter, instead of bogged down, burpy, and bloated.
And you’ll love the freedom this gives you.
Because now YOUR body is the boss. YOU are in control.
You won’t need a food scale, measuring cups, calculator, calorie counter, or any strict “food rules”.
You’ll have your body and your own awareness.
Tomorrow, we’ll tell you what to look for. But we want YOU to start with learning YOUR own unique body signals.
Give it a try.
80% full trumps everything else
Eating slowly, to 80% full, is more important than any other habit in this program.
- At 80% full before you finish your veggies? Fine. Stop eating.
- Not physically hungry even after 4 hours of not eating? Fine. Wait until you’re hungry.
- Halfway through your protein when 80% strikes? Fine. You’re done. That’s why Tupperware was invented.
Get the idea? Slow eating, 80% full, and most importantly, eating according to your physical hunger cues, trump everything else.
When in doubt, use this mantra: Feeling, not formula.
- Eat when you feel physically hungry.
- Stop when you feel 80% full.
- Forget about any other “rules”.Simple…
This is s sample of the type of coaching that we do at ‘re:bourne fitness & nutrition’. It is a habit-based approach which in my opinion is the most effective way of coaching long-lasting and sustainable change.
Be Happy, Be Healthy….Nick
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