60 seconds or less: Protein

Posted on February 25, 2019

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(Last Updated On: February 25, 2019)

This is part of the Real Talk With Client Series. Click here for the rules. Go here to see other topics.

“How much protein should I eat?”

You’re new to the exercise and diet world:

Don’t worry about it. All we’re concerned about at this stage is getting you into a sustainable exercise routine.

Just by coming into the gym a few days a week, that’s a pretty big disruption to your normal schedule. Changing your eating is an every day, multiple times per day, change. To do that at the same time is asking a lot.

Get into an exercise routine for a few weeks, then we’ll talk more about eating.

You’ve been exercising consistently for about a month:

Don’t worry about protein yet. Since you have ~35 pounds you want to lose, focusing on protein isn’t necessary at this point. First, you want to focus on calories. Reason being you can eat a certain amount of protein and not lose weight, if you’re still eating too many calories. Thus, we first start with the most important factor.

Once you’ve been counting calories for a while, once you get the weight moving in the right direction, then we’ll talk about protein.

-> How many calories?

“But, but, but…”

The 60 second rebuttal for protein lovers

For 99% of people, they will never ask about protein again after the above. If they exercise and get a handle on their calories, they end up plenty happy.

The personal training world loves to say protein is great for appetite control, and maintaining muscle while losing weight. Everyday people with no lifting background are going to gain muscle no matter what they do -IF you can get them to show up to the gym- the general population isn’t overweight because of appetite issues, and everyday people are not willing to eat e.g. a gram per pound of bodyweight of protein to begin with. They don’t care about being bodybuilder shredded…so they don’t need, or care for, bodybuilder dieting.

Long story short, questions about protein almost always have an answer of “Don’t worry about it.” If someone does have appetite issues at, say, dinner? “Try making the meal more protein based” is about as far as you’ll ever need to go.

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