WHY I STOPPED WRITING MEAL PLANS

When i first started, i use to write customized meals plans and they were great ( if i should say so myself). A combination of a well designed meal plan and a tailored workout program lead to some amazing results. However, the more experience i got, the more people i met, the more people i helped, the more i came to the realization that by writing meal plans, by telling my clients what to eat and what not to eat, i was not helping them at all. Sure, meal plans are great short term but what are they actually learning long term? What happens when they wake up one morning, take a look at the plan and not feel for anything that’s on the menu? what then? what do they eat? they wouldn’t know because they become heavily dependent on the plan and can’t really think outside of it.

Being told what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat is great but what purpose does that serve you in the long run? do you actually learn anything when it comes to nutrition? does it actually make you want to put an effort into learning about nutrition so you can equip yourself with knowledge that you can someday pass onto someone else and help them? or even knowledge that will allow you to decide on what to eat for yourself to fuel your health and fitness goals without needing someone like me to hold your hand through the process? sadly, it doesn’t. Meal plans are just that, plans. Plans that some day you may wake up and not want to follow but are then stuck because you don’t have any other back up plan that you could follow.

So one day i decided to stop making meal plans. Instead, I TEACH and COACH my clients on HOW to eat healthy, how to eat to fuel their goals, how to eat intuitively. I teach them how to listen and learn about what their body likes and doesn’t like. I teach them how to help themselves without always needing me, teach them how to eat confidently and make better choices with confidence. You see, the trick isn’t to cut out food groups. NO. It’s never that and if you ever come across a nutritionist who tells you to stop eating carbs or bread or rice or never have that slice of cake, look for another nutritionist!! (unless there is a medical reason behind it)

A sustainable, healthy nutrition isn’t about never having that slice of pizza or never having that cake. It’s about balance, its about organised eating. It’s about sticking to the foods you love but cook them healthier. It’s about learning what your body likes and what it doesn’t and listening to it and responding to it accordingly. It’s about having a healthy relationship with food and not let it prison you. It’s about not feeling guilty for having that piece of cake and knowing it is OKAY to indulge with balance. It’s about spending time to LEARN about what a healthy nutrition is and how to eat for your goals and not about starving yourself just so you can loose a couple of pounds on that scale. It’s about enjoying meals with your family and friends and not about avoiding social gatherings because what may be served may not be in your plan.

I stopped making meal plans because they serve no purpose in the long run. I wanted to give my girls something permanent, i wanted to equip them with nutrition knowledge that they will always have whether i am around or not. I wanted to equip them with the confidence to make the right food choices to fuel their goals without having to depend on some plan.

This journey is hard enough as it is without having to stick to some meal plan that you don’t enjoy. Sure, you will enjoy the meals for a short term but then what happens after 3 months? 4 months? what do you then when you are bored with the meals on there?

I stopped making meal plans and i haven’t looked back because when my girls can still enjoy their cakes, cookies and pizza and still come to tell me “heyyyyyy i am closer to my goals and i didn’t even have to diet and i love my food” that’s all the proof i need that what i do now works!!!

FOOD IS GLORIOUS, FOOD IS WHAT FUELS US, FOOD IS NOT THE ENEMY, FOOD IS LIFE!!!

Till next time xx

Yusra Es-haq

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