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Eat Whatever You Want

By: Peter Nestler

Being a Professional Jump Roper has many perks and the one thing that everyone assumes is summed up in the most common question people ask me, 'You must be able to eat whatever you want, right?' Sure I can, but it's not what you think.

A few years ago when I started my business, I worked part time as a personal trainer. At the time I was either at the gym training people, jumping rope, unicycling, lifting weights or playing racquetball. I spent about half of my non-sleeping time working out. My body fat dropped into the 4 percent range and to be honest, I couldn't eat enough food. In fact, no matter how much I ate, I was still losing weight and after a month or two I was a little worried by the situation. Thankfully, I found a balance between exercise and intake so that I stabilized my weight and things were good. Fast forward a few years and now things are a little different.

After my knee injury in December I had to tone back my workout routine to allow some recovery time. I put on about 15 pounds even though I was still working out 1-3 hours a day. What gives? The problem has nothing to do with what I eat, it has everything to do with how much I eat.

The easiest thing in the world is to get used to eating a certain amount of food based upon a set workout routine. We usually set these habits when we're young and in our best physical shape. As we get older we have a tendency to reduce the amount of physical activity we do, but we like to continue eating the same type and amount of food we used to. This is where the problem lies. It also holds the key to either maintain or lose weight.

The hardest thing in the world is to admit to ourselves that we need to change our habits. It's easy to see in others, but we all have blinders on when it comes to us. In a subsequent article, I'll give you a couple practical things I did to lose the weight I put on and how I'm going to keep it off. Can I eat whatever I want, sure, but if I'm not going to spend 8-12 hours a day working out, then the amount is the key variable.