Something marvelous has been happening in the past few years with available information.
The phenomenal is what we refer to as information overload.
We live in a time when you can swipe, search or download just about any information your need out there.
Information is moving faster and becoming more plentiful, and people everywhere are benefiting from this change.
In this particular article I am specifically referring to fitness and health information overload.
When it comes to information, it turns out that one can have too much of a good thing.
At a certain level of input, the law of diminishing returns takes effect; the glut of information no longer adds to our quality of life, but instead begins to cultivate stress, confusion, and even ignor ance.
Information overload threatens our ability to educate ourselves and leaves us more vulnerable as consumers and less cohesive as a society.
For most of us, it actually diminishes our control over our own lives, while those already in power find their positions considerably strengthened.
This keeps us from focusing on what matters, I call these “BIG PICTURE” (things that create the biggest impact on your fitness world) and leaves us chasing down the information overload of “SMALL PICTURE” (things that confuse and leave us second guessing ourselves in our fitness world).
Information Overload Made Simple & Catchy
When something sounds simple or catchy, it‘s more believable.
When an idea’s easier to believe, it’s easier to get on board with.
Want to shred fat? Cut out the carbohydrates.
What is the most important meal of the day? Breakfast
Eat six small meals a day to speed up your metabolism!
Want to build mountains of muscle? Here, drink this protein powder (and make sure you do so every 3 hours just like the guy on your favorite supplement ad does).
The examples above are only tiny bits of info you can take in while reading a magazine cover or glancing at an Instagram post.
See them enough and you’ll soon believe carbs are keeping you fat, Breakfast is number 1, six meals a day is the holy grail and to build muscle, you’ll have to swallow all those protein shakes.
*note— whenever you hear a short catchphrase that sounds overly simple or catchy…
Ask yourself this:
“Do I believe this because it’s fact, and I’ve researched these statements, or because it ‘sounds legit’ based on what I’ve heard many times and serves my own bias?”
“signal-to-noise ratio,” engineering parlance for measuring the quality of a sound system by comparing the amount of desired audio signal to the amount of unwanted noise leaking through.
In the Fitness information age, signal-to-noise has also become a useful way to think about social health and stability.
How much of the information in our midst is useful, and how much of it gets in the way?
What is our signal-to-noise ratio?
We know that the ratio has diminished of late and that the character of information has changed: As we have accrued more and more of it, information has emerged not only as a currency, but also as a pollutant.
YouTube–YouTube is the most popular dedicated video-sharing applications, with more than a billion users, nearly 33% of Internet populace.
Instagram– As of 2018 1 billion monthly active users.
Fitness and Instagram influence- Messages on fitness inspiration pages such as ‘clean eating’ (eating foods perceived to be healthy and unprocessed) and guilt for eating ‘unhealthy’ foods may encourage people to diet or restrict certain food groups.Social Media is powerful and can rack up a lot of noise in our heads. Click & Tweet!
Unsafe detoxes, fad diets, and cutting edge workouts, can quickly spread on social media.
They can poorly influence those just looking to live a healthier lifestyle.
The Fitness information from social media alone can change our perception of reality.
There is an illusion of truth social media, ads, books and articles create by exposing us to pieces of information multiple times.
How’s information overload killing your fitness journey?
Lets talk about two different kinds of people.
- People who learn information from research and asking questions.
- Then people who ACT and then learn from experience and research.
The people who spend all their time reading and studying information, typically never get to far at the goal at hand.
This is due to Analysis paralysis( a decision or action is never taken, in effect paralyzing the outcome.)
In other word this people tend to be always over-thinking their goal. (focusing on “Small Picture”)
This is when people are bias about the information they seek.
They seek more information thinking it will help them make better decisions, but it does the opposite and keeps them from taking action.
This is the person who never starts losing weight because they “don’t know enough”.
The people who ACT and learn from experience tend to be more successful at their goals.
This is because their first step is “Big Picture”, taking action.
We all know eating healthier whole food and regular exercise is good for us.
This is the person that sees immediate results and learns through experience with research.
If you don’t take action information overload can have an impact on your pyche.
PSYCHOLOGY OF information OVERLOAD
Information overload straight up Freezes us in our cerebral tracks.
The psychological reaction to such an over abundance of information and competing ‘expert’ opinions is to avoid coming to conclusions.
You can’t choose any one study, any one voice, any one influence for a point of view.
So what do you do? It turns out that the answer is, you don’t do anything.
You reserve judgment. You wait and see what the predominance of opinion evolves to be.
As the amount of information and competing claims in the fitness industry stretches toward infinity, the concern is that we may be on the verge of a whole new wave of indecisiveness: paralysis by analysis.
In this way, technology brings with it yet another internal contradiction : as health and fitness information speeds up our world in the name of efficiency and productivity, it also constricts rational thinking.
- Body image Comparison
- Program fitness gurus didn’t write or actually use
- Steroids and the supplement industry
- Diets that promise results
These thoughts and false claims leave many depressed, stressed and second guessing themselves down the information rabbit hole.
“but hey my argument is backed with studies”
We also depend on fitness information’s integrity, and not a little discipline.
Because nearly any fitness and health argument imaginable can now be supported with an impressive data set, the big winner stats!
This is what is called the fitness ‘stat wars’
Just scroll through any fitness Youtube video or any other social media platform, you will see endless stats and studies backing their claims.
Its the claims that make money and whats a better pitch than cherry picked stats?
Lets face it basics (“Big Picture”) don’t sound as sexy as the latest fitness maxim backed by stats, pitched by a ripped expert.
The Basics “Big Picture”
You can take action right now.
It does not take hours of research to learn what matters most when it comes to weight loss or muscle development.
There are a few guidelines that are Big Picture and produce REAL results , without all the bells and whistles.
These basic guidelines take practice and discipline to learn but you can take ACTION right now.
your “Big Picture” fitness journey transformation list
- Decide what your goal is. Fat loss or muscle gain
- Find your maintenance calories.
- Goal for fat loss ( set calorie deficit ) Goal for muscle gain( set calorie surplus )
- Pick a diet and roll with it long enough to see results.
- Take the time to figure out your personal preferred meal frequency. 2-3 meals , 6 meals , etc. (for busy schedules read here) *Note- all that matters is overall intake within 24hrs.
- Keep a log of your food intake.
- Pick a training routine centered around progressive overload.
- Track your workouts
What you know VS What you Do
Knowledge is different from experience knowledge.
Any one can explain how to do something but to truly believe in something you must do it your self.
We’ve all been through the stage when we’re learning something and we’ve been instructed how to do it but you just can’t seem to get it right away.
Then that moment it clicks, you’ve done it. So you know it’s possible! Some time goes by and you do it a couple more times!
At this point your new weight loss or muscles gaining skill becomes second nature, you believe in it 100%.
Most likely you already know most of what you need to start your fitness journey.
Understand this, it’s completely different knowing how to do it, as in being able to write it down vs actually have done it yourself.
Small Picture things aren’t necessarily bad.
- Yes some people do react to carbs differently than others.
- Hormones can play a part is weight loss.
- Starvation mode isn’t real.
- Macros are individually personal.
You need to earn your right to practice the Small Picture things.
First learn the basics before you try to overwhelm yourself with everything else.
How to you expect to understand Small Picture if your can’t even be successful with yourself at Big Picture?
Focus on what is going to get you immediate results, what matters is taking ACTION NOW.
Stop worrying about what this Instagram influencer said or this article recommended.
Life will end up passing you by while you’re too busy chasing the ‘silver bullet’.
Get out there and start failing one step at a time closer to success and SMASH your Fitness Journey GOALS!
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