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Eat off your own plate

29 May 2017 6 Comments

When we sit in a restaurant chatting and waiting for our meal to be served, we can’t help following the waitress with our eyes as she carries out everyone else’s meal. When it’s our turn, and the meal is placed in front of us we feast on it with our eyes for a start. Just looking at the meal starts the saliva flowing.

Then as we eat our meal, savouring  each mouthful, our focus is totally on our own plate. We’re not looking at what the guy at the next table has on his plate, the more we’re focused on our meal, the better the digestion is going to be. An important part of efficient digestion is firstly to be relaxed, a glass of wine shared while we wait for the meal to be served, helps relax us and the wine itself contains health promoting nutrients.

A second part, often overlooked is the link between our eyes and our meal, presentation is very important. The colours of the vegetables, the smells of the food all contribute to the quality of the experience.

You may wonder where I’m going with all this. I’ve seen so many athletes who are always looking outside their own square meter at what someone else is doing. Always wondering what the next guy has on his training program. A common cause of failure to achieve your dreams can be, not having faith in your own plan.

Just like the menu in the restaurant has many fine dishes you could choose, there are many “right ways”, just as there are many wrong ways. Once you have made the choice, stick with it. Focus on your own plate and enjoy the experience. When you don’t focus totally on your own plan, when you’re always looking around, you’re never going to get the full benefit of the plan you have.

In the hundreds of people I have worked with over 25yrs, the ones who have simply done the job, stuck to the plan, are the ones who have achieved great things. Among these people some have often gone through times when they haven’t set a PB for a couple of months, but have stuck at it, then all of a sudden started making progress again. The road to the top is not one straight line, there’s often flat patches where we seem to not be gaining as our body is adapting, before the next surge of progress.

It’s not uncommon for an athlete to become impatient, to want to be gaining at a faster rate, but keep in mind, you can’t hurry biology. When we train we’re stressing our body in order for it to adapt to that stress and to become stronger or more efficient at the task, then we stress it again and wait for the response. The best way to hurry this process up is with the best recovery feeding, as much sleep as we can fit into our lives, and to do any recovery work very easy.

To keep the improvement happening at the highest possible rate, we have to put health first.  Back the the meal I spoke of earlier, to get the best nutrition out of that meal, we have to have the best digestion. All of our energy production, our immunity, our recovery from training, depends on efficient absorption of nutrients. The sight of our meal, the smell of it, the friendly atmosphere we share when we’re eating, all influence the efficiency of our digestion. Eating at your work desk, reading a book while eating, even watching the TV news will affect adversely the quality of your digestion.





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