Diets, Apps, and The Game Everyone Should Be Playing

13 Oct Diets, Apps, and The Game Everyone Should Be Playing

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On the eve of announcements for all the 6, 8, and 12 week summer challenges that are about to arise and circulate all over the addictive platform known more commonly as the book of faces, instead of falling victim to the gimmicks that will be laid out in front of you with promises of fat loss in the shortest amount of time that will leave you right back where you were following those weeks, let’s talk about some things that people like to disregard when it comes to their health and lifestyle.

Starting with: the dreaded word “diet”.

*insert dramatic music

In Reality

To some, the word diet can make their very skin crawl with thoughts lingering towards negative situations like not being allowed to eat their favourite foods, being restricted from not just chilling on the couch on a Sunday, and having to count every single item that they put into their oral cavity.

But, in reality, this is totally not the case.  A diet is ANY style of eating ANY creature habitually undertakes.


Now, we can go through the whole everyone is different (they are) and sometimes certain things work better for different people (they do) debate, but that’s all well and good when you do actually work out the right way to go about it.


Besides, finding your style is a hard task to accomplish.

However, a key step to working out your style is to first look at your life. Mainly, your food preferences, your movement and exercise habits, your social life, and the time of day you have available to you to actually chew food into bolus.

Next, working out your ratio regarding how much you can eat and how much you should eat is another skill that you’ll have to hone in on. Which can take some time. But how long have you been doing what you’ve been doing already? And really, what’s another 2-3 more weeks in the grand scheme of things anyway?


It’s easy to say “just stay focused on eating healthily”, “eat fresh foods”, “avoid the bad stuff”, but sometimes learning how much energy you’re burning on a day to day basis – along with understanding how much fuel you have to put back into the system to get the results you’re after – is a whole ‘nother ballgame.

That’s where diet apps can play a part, despite how much flack they may cop.

calorie-counter-appsClick above to check out what options are out there. My personal fave is MyFitnessPal.

Are They Right For You?

Addiction and obsession are usually two words that get labelled alongside many popular diet-tracking apps out there. But, like anything, people can get addicted to whatever they want.

Whilst some can’t hold back from slapping the pokies every chance they get, others won’t skip a training session, and to some, either of these activities simply displays your addictive or obsessive behavioural tendencies. But, addiction and obsession are just words, and different activities are perceived differently by every person.

So who says that pouring money into pokie machines is wrong anyway? That’s their opinion. And, of course, everyone has one of those.

I personally believe that if you maintain control over how often you use a program like a diet-tracking app, and purely use it to just gain an understanding of what kind of nutrients come out of certain foods and how much is required for the kinds of goals you’re looking for, then it most certainly can play a part in your journey.

Consume Your 6-8 Meals, Kiddies

What is really just a perfect pitch and selling point to all the protein supplement companies out there, is just a total lie when it comes down to it when you break down the logic of all of it.


Whilst I won’t go into this one in complete detail as I’ve covered it in my Meal Fallacy series and my Burn It With TEF article, what I will briefly mention to quench your thirst, is the fallacy behind the stoking of what is termed ‘the metabolic fire’.


Who even came up with that term?

Now, it may seem logical given the fact that it sounds like a legit plan of attack that every time you eat a meal your metabolism speeds up and burns more. I mean, it sounds all well and good, but this magical occurrence actually comes down to what is termed the thermic effect of food, or TEF for short. And, really isn’t all that magical.

Let me break it down.

Breaking Down TEF (again)

Basically, with TEF being taken into consideration for your overall daily burn, around 10% is burned every time you eat a meal. (Note: the use of “around” in that sentence is really something to pay attention to.)

So, let’s say we take that 10% and put it towards a sixth and final meal of the day that consists of roughly 500 calories. It doesn’t take a maths genius to realise that around 50 calories was burnt just from eating that.

But now, let’s put that 10% towards a third and final meal of the day that consists of roughly 1000 calories. Again, it doesn’t take a maths genius to realise that around 100 calories was burnt from that one meal alone.

Now let’s say you ate six meals each consisting of 500 calories. That would be 3000 total calories at the end of the day, right? Now we perform that 10% calculation and presto, 300 calories per meal. (Calculators prohibited in final exam.)

So, what about those three meals of 1000 calories then? What do they work out to be by the end of the day?? Exactly. The math matches and ipso facto, it’s all the same.

So yeah, it doesn’t really matter when you eat your meals, you’ll still achieve that TEF.

Everyone Is In Search For The F Key


From experience, when enlightening people about this meal frequency fact, it always opens their minds and eyes to much more freedom. Which is why anyone really does the things they do day in and day out anyway, right?

Freedom drives us, and when freeing up your bag from those pesky little Tupperware items, along with giving you peace of mind knowing that you can still lose weight without having to drop everything on that third hour and eat, certainly allows you to have a lot more freedom in planning for your day ahead.

The Patience Game

I almost feel like a Jedi master when I spruik these words, but even though I’m very far away from being one (unfortunately), this point is one a lot of people like to disregard when it comes to any journey.


I like to call us all the microwave generation in the fact that we practically have everything in the palm of our hand, and we’re so used to getting almost anything we want, very fast. We’ve almost become so reliant and used to that lifestyle, that when it comes to ourselves, we want whatever it is fast, too.

I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t admit that I’m the same, and even just recently something happened to me when I came back from Europe that proves this. But hey, I can almost guarantee that you’re the same.

I wholeheartedly believe that before any journey one may embark on to get to a destination of a new way – or ideal way – of life, they must first logically assess how long they’ve been in their current state.

So, for instance, say someone has been overweight for five years and wants to be at a normal weight and keep it off. In a way, they should have the patience and awareness that it very well may take them five years to get the weight off. And keep it off. For good.

Whilst of course this is an extreme example, falling victim to cheap gimmicks and fast-fix approaches always can be a sad way of trying to achieve something. I mean, who wants to end up at square one after 12 weeks of “getting beach ready” from an annual summer challenge anyway?

That’s just like Luke leaving Tatooine to become a Jedi, only to go back to being a moisture farmer after saving the entire galaxy (along with his dad).

And believe me, that would be the last thing he wanted.


So, with that third Star Wars reference, that’s it. But! Before you hit that like button and/or share it to anyone that you think this could help, just a quick heads up that this topic was dissected and discussed on one of my latest episodes of The Real Talk Podcast.

Which, by the way, is completely free to listen to at all available hours and convenient times of the day thanks to the handy pause button that’s been around since our VCR days.

You can listen to it here, via your smart phone (just search my name), or just below.

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Hayden Perno
Hayden Perno