We’ve got some pretty amazing people running our Lean Eating programs.
Collectively, they’ve got more letters after their names than alphabet soup. They know 27 ways to cook kale and encourage fussy eaters to try it. And they know how to turn their clients into lean, fit, healthy veggie-eating superheroes.
You’d think that because our coaches are “experts”, they’re perfect. They probably never have a bad hair day, a bad workout, or a bad meal.
Guess again. Even JB himself confesses that if he has junky food in the house, he’ll eventually eat it — even though he’s officially an “expert”!
This got me to thinking…
- Hey, are “experts” actually, you know, human?
- How do they use their PN wisdom to stay on track?
I threatened to take away their Super Shakes unless they confessed to their secrets. And I asked them three questions:
- What have you learned from hard experience? (And what do you still struggle with sometimes?)
- Fill in the following sentence: “Despite being an ‘expert’, I still…”
- What was your lousiest workout?
This week, I’ll start with mine. In upcoming weeks, we’ll hear from both the men’s and women’s coaches.
And I think you’ll discover…our Lean Eating coaches aren’t all-knowing, “naturally athletic”, “perfect” deities… they’re real people just like you.
They’ve been where you are.
- They know the darkness of the human heart at 10 pm when hearing a bag of chips call their name, or at 4 pm when facing the tray of brownies in the office kitchen, or at 2 pm rushing around to do errands with a car full of screaming kids.
- They know what it’s like to feel scrawny, or flabby, or weak, or tired, or stressed out, or injured, or distracted, or stuffed (regretfully) full of sugary treats.
- They know what you’re going through… because they have the same challenges that you do, and they are committed to living the PN lifestyle every day.
That’s why they’re so darn good. And why they’re collectively responsible for helping over a thousand people to date lose literally tons of body fat, and gain hundreds of pounds of muscle, in our Lean Eating programs.
Here, I’m going to let you in on some of their secrets. But first, I’ll start with mine…
From experience, I’ve learned…
…fitness and good health are irreplaceable.
Don’t ever sacrifice them, give them up, or allow them to go away through inattention and carelessness. Aside from your loved ones, everything else in your life can be replaced. Health and wellness never can.
And you won’t care about how your thighs or abs look if you’re in pain, or can’t move well. If you can move your body, and move it well, and if it feels good when you get up in the morning, celebrate that.
Our Lean Eating program will get you lean, sure. It’ll get you fit. It’ll get you strong. It’ll make you look better naked.
But most importantly, Lean Eating gives you a much, much better relationship with your body and your health, as our 2009 winner Cynthia Berg describes.
Looking better is great. We’ll handle that no problem. But you’ll feel and perform better too — better than you ever imagined!
…to prioritize health and fitness… really prioritize it.
People say health is important, but they don’t actually live as if it is. Consider all the facets of your life: where you live, what you do for a living, who you surround yourself with.
I quit a stressful career so that I could be well. I live in the city, which on paper looks more expensive (though, if you factor in all costs, it’s not) so that I can be well. I schedule time every day to move and be active — especially outside — so that I can be well.
Factor in all the costs of your life: economic, physical, social, mental, emotional. Your health is worth more than a job. It’s worth more than a commute. It’s worth more than stressful, emotionally draining relationships. It’s worth more than TPS reports.
Put health at the top of your list, instead of “have a big house” or “impress the neighbours” or “make my parents happy” and let your choices flow from that.
…I care for my insides, my outsides take care of themselves.
Pursuing quality and my own values in everything I do, every small action, gets me much better results than working on measuring up to some externally imposed standard.
When I worried about measuring up, I inevitably failed at it. I was always too this, too that, not good enough — often not even in the ballpark.
Now I think about making everything I do intrinsically good and inherently valuable… even if nobody sees it. We apply this insight in our habit-based coaching approach in the LE program.
Despite being an expert…
…I still overeat sometimes.
I love food. I love cooking. I love eating in good restaurants, and I live in a city with a thriving, cosmopolitan, international food scene. Plus, I run a food magazine. And genetically, my body’s wired to survive an Eastern European famine.
Maybe there’s a person out there who’s iron-willed or ascetic enough to eat 3 oz of steamed fish at every meal, even in this environment, but that ain’t me.
Luckily, I truly love nutritious, healthy food — so that’s usually what I overeat. I’ve done stuff like eat an entire roasted butternut squash, an entire watermelon (OK, a smallish watermelon), or half a basket of fresh, in-season, local peaches. (Enjoyable at the time, but not recommended afterwards.)
…I still BS myself sometimes.
“Must be aging,” I tell myself, when the pants feel a bit snug. Yeah, if “aging” means “had Thai takeout”, the Lalibela Ethiopian platter, and “all you can eat sushi” last week. Those pants aren’t just snug, they’re on fire, liar!
I’ve learned that compassionate and caring yet firm — and even sometimes brutal — honesty with oneself is invaluable. Don’t fib to yourself. Live with integrity and authenticity. Besides, Santa Claus is watching you.
…it’s sometimes hard to take my own advice.
Especially when it comes to rest. But I’m getting better.
…I sometimes feel like I’m making baby steps, and still learning.
I’m really focused now on learning by feeling (just like LE coach Jason Bonn will tell you), and really paying attention to outcomes (just like LE Alumni coach Roland Fisher). Physical feelings and measurable outcomes don’t lie like thoughts, subjective perceptions, and imagination do.
Our bodies always tell us the truth; we just have to learn their languages, and listen.
…I sometimes wonder why anyone would take my advice.
It’s really easy to focus on all the ways in which I’m not “perfect”.
Unlike many of the PN peeps, I’m not an athlete. I’ve almost never won anything, and I was invariably picked last for teams as a kid. I’m a slow runner and even pokier cyclist. I suck at team sports; I can’t even catch a ball. I work a desk job.
In other words, I’m just a regular person.
The only things I have going for me are that I really, genuinely love good nutrition and being physical; I’ve lived the PN lifestyle for many years through ups and downs; and I want to share the joy of this with other people. Struggling with tough experiences helps me understand what all the other “regular people” in the world go through when they try to make positive changes in their lives.
….I have a coach.
Yep. Coaching and support is essential to success. Even coaches need coaches. And a PN-trained coach is the best coach there is. Luckily, we’re also launching a certification program to spread the good stuff.
My worst workout…
One day I was in the gym, just stinking it up (figuratively). I failed on clean reps with my warmup weight. I kept bashing myself in the kneecaps. Finally, I was so pissed off, I kicked the bar. It rolled, bounced, and rebounded to smash me in the shins.
Another time, I tried training with the flu. I came in, did a set of squats, and then just kinda had to lie on the floor for a while till the room stopped spinning.
In grappling, you can really have some bad days.
Sometimes you’re on your game and black belts quiver in fear before you. (Sort of.) Other days, you actually do a running face plant in front of thirty young men. Or a teenage kid on his first day kicks your ass. I had my arm sprained by said teenager who’d probably learned his armbar from watching UFC. Yep, I’ve been grappling since 2006, and I got owned by an adolescent newbie who probably couldn’t even grow facial hair.
And who could forget the time I was demonstrating at an Olympic lifting workshop? Got up to show a full snatch, miscalculated the bar trajectory, and threw it behind me with a huge crash while literally falling on my ass. This, in front of an audience, captured on video for all eternity. Sigh.
Yet, just like I encourage my clients to do… I kept coming back to the gym, and sticking with it.
Check out Be Your Own Nutrition Expert and Lessons In Change from Your Peers for more “learning from experience” tips! And stay tuned for next week when I let you in on the Lean Eating women’s coaches’ secrets!
Coaching from the world’s top nutritionists. $250,000 in cash prizes each year. Are you in?
Registration to join Precision Nutrition Coaching kicks off on January 13th, 2021. If you want to get in the best shape of your life and take a shot at the $250,000 in prize money we give away to coaching clients each year, we strongly recommend you put your name on the presale list below for Precision Nutrition Coaching.
We can only work with a limited number of clients. And spots sell out every time we open them up. So adding your name to this list gives you a huge advantage. First of all, you get the chance to sign up 24 hours before everyone else. Even better, you’ll receive a big discount at registration.
So put your name on the list below. Because, as always, clients are accepted on a first come, first served, and when spots are gone, they’re gone.