Stop Over-Complicating Things

Life is already complex enough. Why make fitness and nutrition complex too?


People have a tendency to overcomplicate things. This is especially true when it comes to deciding on a workout plan and nutrition regime. For some crazy reason, people think that things have to be complicated in order to work. It’s like the more complicated it is, the better it will work.


This is of course the exact opposite of the approach you should be taking. That goes for fitness, nutrition, and life in general. Why complicate things when simplification will work just fine. Save yourself from the pointless stress and hair pulling. Now let’s talk about what simplified fitness and nutrition looks like.


First, to start with fitness. Truthfully, you don’t need any fancy machines, or expensive name-brand pieces of equipment, or rows and rows of equipment you have no clue how to use. Are these things nice to have? Of course, but simply not necessary. During my time in Iraq we had a rusty barbell, a few plates, and a kettlebell. That is all that we needed to get into shape. The deciding factor to getting in shape is the level of effort you put in to your workouts, not the quantity or brand of equipment you have.


Now, on to nutrition. If a few people overcomplicate fitness, than a whole lot overcomplicate nutrition. How many different promotions do you see for “diets” that promise fantastic results in as little as a few days? Watch the tv or read a few health magazines and your head will be spinning in no time. This week carbs are bad for you, next week they’re the best thing ever. Protein is bad, wait, protein is good. Fat is bad, nope just kidding, you can’t get enough fat. Nothing is consistent, and it’s certainly overcomplicated.


To simplify the nutrition aspect here’s what you need to do. Eat a variety of foods in as close to their naturally occurring state as possible. That’s it. Pretty simple right? Beef you find in the supermarket is pretty close to it’s natural state, Slim Jims are not. Oranges are in a natural state, orange juice is not. The further these things get from their natural state, the more chocked with preservatives and artificial ingredients they become.


Keep things simple. Put in the effort to lift hard and heavy in your workouts and eat foods as close to their natural state as possible. Case closed.


Jon Griffith specializes in optimizing performance for firefighters & police. Jon is a personal trainer, firefighter, and former U.S. Army infantryman. He lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and 3 cats.

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