Episode #104 – 3 Simple Strategies to Overcome Yo-Yo Dieting With Aidan D’Arcy

Picture this, you’ve been “good” all week and cut out all of the “bad” food and then Saturday comes around. Your mates invite you out and you decide to have a beer. That beer turns into 5 and then 5 turns into 10 followed by a greasy pizza on the way home. You wake up feeling defeated and you think to hell with this I’m going to just start again Monday. So on Sunday you binge eat again and it all comes crashing down.

Today, Tyson and Aidan discuss how to avoid that.

In this episode you’re going to learn:

– How to overcome yoyo dieting once and for all

– How to still enjoy the foods you love and keep losing weight

– How to change your mindset and finally get the body you want.



What’s going on, guys? It is Tyson Brown here, back with another episode of Tyson’s Fitness Tips. Today, I’m pretty pumped, because it has been a while since I’ve had a local Aussie on the podcast and someone from Sydney. I’m pretty pumped to have him on today, because we always like to hear from our backyard.

I’ve actually got connected to Aidan through one of our mutual friends named Michael, who … I’m sure, Michael, you’re never going to listen to this episode, but anyways, I just wanted to reach out there. Aidan, thank you so much for coming on today. I really appreciate it. Can you tell us a little bit more about yourself and what you do exactly?

Yeah, sure. Well, first of all, thank you for having me onboard.

My story is quite long, in terms of how I got into this industry. I’ll try and keep it pretty short. Long story short, I was a player over in the UK. Born-and-bred Aussie. Born-and-bred from Sydney, Northern Beaches, but when I was 16, I went over there; I had a couple of years over there. My heart was very much set on becoming a professional soccer player, as a lot of kids; dreams are. Unfortunately, that fell through with injuries. I had a bit of bad luck there, so when I got back to Sydney, when I turned 19, it was a matter of I just needed something to do.

Most people kind of get into this industry with that whole story of, “I wanted to change lives.” I’m very transparent with a lot of my clients. I literally needed something to do, and personal training was the next thing on my mind, being in that sort of sporty environment. Literally, I did the course, eight week. After that, I started off … This is now going back seven years ago. I started off in this industry, and man, when I had that first client, who literally turned around to me and said, “Aidan, you’ve really changed my life,” it was just like something clicked. It was a spark; it was something that just went, “Wow! I want to have that impact on more people.”

Throughout my journey, I actually fell into a bit of fitness modelling and body building, and the developed a very much all-or-nothing mentality and very much that yo-yo dieting, where you strip down, you get super lean, you then balloon up again. It was very much this gaining and losing 20 kilos time and time again, and I eventually got to the point where I was like, “I can’t keep doing this. I want to lose weight for the last time. I want to maintain a lean and healthy figure, and I want to help multiple people do the exact same thing.” That’s where it snowballed from there. I started getting some really cool results with clients, once I overcame my own demons, so to speak.

Where I am now … Cut to the chase. I’ve opened up my own body transformation study called The Body Transformation Academy. That’s up here in Belrose on the Northern Beaches of Sydney, and it’s absolutely going gangbusters. It’s exploded in the last six months, and I’m doing about 50 sessions a week at the moment. I’ve just employed a trainer, and I’m just about to bring on another trainer as well. That’s the long story short.

Happy days ahead. I mean, just before we got on this call, we were talking about how things have just kind of … People talk about overnight successes and making it big, but you’ve just said you’ve been in the industry for over seven years, and making that jump, like you said, in February … Was it last year or this year, sorry, to work on your own?

Yeah, it was February last year, I made the decision to start working as my own business, so to speak, and then from April of this year, I made the jump to go from being a tiny little garage to then opening up a proper warehouse. It’s still a private personal training study but just in a much bigger space. It’s got all the bells and whistles that go with it.

That’s awesome. Then the reason I wanted to bring you on today was … You kind of touched on it a little bit there with the yo-yo dieting and the all-or-nothing mentality. I mean, I’m sure we’ve all experienced it before, but that’s one of the reasons I wanted to bring you on, because you’ve had experience with that and you know how to overcome it.

I think that’s where so many people … They get caught up with it, right? They think they’ve got to be on the waggon or off the waggon; they’ve got to be losing weight or they’ve got to be balls-to-the-wall in, whatever they want, whenever they want. I think it’s a really bad mentality that people have, because they think that they can’t find that balance; they can’t have that healthy relationship with food and keeping fit and healthy while going to live their normal, everyday lives. Can you dive into a bit more about your journey with that, first of all?

Yeah, definitely. I guess, anyone who’s been in this industry for a long time has … You see how much the industry does transform. I do say a lot to my clients and people I know, I actually left the fitness industry and jumped into the health industry. I believe there’s a bit of a difference, because the fitness industry is very much this fitness model and body building lifestyle and very much a gym junkie mentality and following a meal plan. “You can only eat these five foods,” and very much a bro science mentality, if you will. You get that term thrown around the gym quite a lot.

Essentially, I went to more of the health industry, meaning we need to have that balance. You need to be able to find, “How can we lose weight for the last time?,” meaning how can we find that middle ground, where you’re going away on holiday and you’re not coming back 15 kilogrammes heavier because you’ve just dieted and then, all of a sudden, you’ve ballooned up because you went away? How can we just be healthy?

I know healthy is different for everybody and everybody has their own version of healthy, but that’s where I sort of went … I would look at a photo of myself when I was bulking, because you’re either bulking or shredding, right? I’d look at a picture of when I was bulking going, “I don’t like what I see. I don’t like having a wardrobe where half of it is when I’m bulking and half of it is when I’m cutting.” You’d have either a bigger size or a smaller size, but there’s no middle ground. I just got sick of always going, “Right. Now I need to lose 20 kilos. I’m going to do another show. I’m going to get onstage again,” and using that as an excuse to lose weight. I was like, “There’s got to be a better way.”

Essentially, I actually employed my own coach. I had my own personal trainer, who I still have to this day. That’s been life-changing for me, personally, being able to share that experience with my clients and letting them know that I have my own coach as well has been very powerful. Once I had my own coach, he kind of guided me through, again, finding my own balance and then changing my mindset towards food, which of course, these are the things we’ll chat about today.

But yeah, just literally what started with me was just having to change my mentality. And as you know, when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. I was changing my perspective on things. Again, this is something we can touch on later on, but I think one of the biggest things that really helped me, and what my coach helped me achieve is, to stop labelling foods as good or bad.

That’s step number one is, if you label a food as a good food or a bad food, it leads to this whole guilt mentality. If you have a “bad food”, junk food, you feel guilty for it. You’re sitting there going, “Oh, I shouldn’t have eaten that,” And then it just starts this whole spiral of, “Oh, well, do you know what? If I’ve eaten that already today, screw the diet. I might as well just keep going.” It starts to build this horrible relationship with food, because you’re seeing things as good or bad, and when you attach that label to things, it just makes you feel guilty for having those certain foods.

If we can avoid that mentality of labelling something as good or bad … And it might not even just be food; it could be something to do with your exercise or training. Instead of going, “Oh, that workout was bad today,” it’s understanding, well, why am I seeing that as a bad thing? Why is that bad, or why is that good? It’s about just being aware of that, and then taking it from there, if that makes sense.

Yeah, that makes complete sense. It’s funny that you mention that, about the good and the bad foods, because we’ve got such a stigma around that at the moment. It’s funny, because we all have our versions of what good or bad means.

Let’s say we were going to talk about good foods verus bad foods. Well, someone who’s got a completely different upbringing, in a completely different country, can have a completely different idea of what a “bad” food is versus a good food. We can’t put those things in a box and limit it. That’s another thing. Causing limits on ourself to say, “No, I can’t have that, because that is a “bad” food.”

Absolutely. It’s exactly what you said. I say this to my clients all the time. Too much of anything is a bad thing, so to speak. You can have the cleanest diet in the world, so to speak, but if you’re still consuming too many calories, you’re not going to lose any body fat; you’re not going to lose any weight. Instead of trying to be perfect and trying to eat “clean”, you need to let yourself live a little bit.

We do have so many environmental factors, and as you said, we work with people from all over the world. We have different cultures, different environmental factors … Italians and Greeks, they celebrate with food. To tell someone, “No, you can’t have that. That’s bad for you,” well, maybe that food’s actually good for them because that food may prevent them from going … This is a real life example. Instead of saying, “Oh, don’t have chocolate. It’s bad for you,” well, if you actually had just a little bit of chocolate every day and that prevented you from bingeing on it all weekend, then why is that chocolate bad for you? It’s about, essentially, finding what is, technically speaking, good for you and what may be bad for you.

I’ve use this example a few times with clients as well. If you had a starving child come up to you in the playground, and they said, “Oh, I’m starving. I’m really hungry. Do you have anything to eat?,” and you said, “Well, all I’ve got is a chocolate bar in my pocket. Sorry, that’s unhealthy for you.” For that child, that chocolate bar’s probably going to be healthy. He needs to eat something. It comes down to more of a perception, and depending on where you’re coming from will be dependent on what may be healthy for you.

What may be healthy for you right now, Tyson, might be unhealthy for me and vice-versa, do you know what I mean? If we just stop labelling foods as good or bad, it just changes that mindset to take that pressure off; take the guilt away. You just learn to play the balancing game over time.

Yeah, that’s exactly right. That’s one big thing that you said at the end: it’s over time. This isn’t going to happen over night. This is a constant learning of yourself, of your body, as to what works and what doesn’t work.

Absolutely. That was actually one of my points later on, but I’ll just straight into that one now. One of the strategies I was going to say is, understanding takes time to transform, because transforming physically requires a mental transformation too. We can’t expect to transform physically in a few weeks. It takes time, because you’re going to be … And I was going to say as well, don’t be afraid … It’s very cliché, I know, but don’t be afraid to fail. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. You’ve got to make mistakes.

I always say, one of the reasons I’ve succeeded so far is because I’ve just failed more than the average person and I’m not afraid to fail. It hurts. Failure hurts, but you learn from them, and understanding it takes time. It means that you do lose that pressure of, “Oh, if I don’t completely transform in two weeks, I’m a failure.” Not at all. It can take years to really overcome some deeply embedded behavioural issues.

This is a bit of a rabbit hole, but these are habits we’re trying to change. This is a lifestyle we’re trying to change, and a lifestyle change begins with what happens up in your mindset. A mental transformation must come first before a physical transformation even takes place.

What gets measured gets managed. In terms of that, you must start looking at tracking your food, you must take your measurements around your body, and you must take progress photos, because at the same time, it’s all good and well saying things, but unless you are actually measuring the progress, how will you know if you’re progressing?

What we do with our clients is we take their body measurements every single week, and that way, every single week, our clients know exactly where they sit because they know exactly what to work on. What is good with that as well is, because when they do see those measurements dropping, they go, “Oh, I had a glass of wine last night and I still lost today.” I’m like, “Well, yeah, because you’re learning the balancing game. You’re learning portion sizes, and these foods are okay.”

This is what I love, Tyson, is when you see that look on their face and they start to get it. They’re like, “Oh, so those foods aren’t off-limits. I can still get a result.” It’s like, “Yes. You’re getting it. This is awesome!” It’s just this awesome transformation that starts to happen. You’re almost, in a way, putting weight loss on autopilot, because, going back to what we said before, you’re not labelling things as good or bad anymore. If you get invited out to lunch, you’re not going, “Oh, it’s not on my meal plan.”

I might have a big lunch here, so what I might do is I might just reduce my raw calories for dinner today and maybe over the next couple of days. It works. [inaudible 00:22:50] the swings in the roundabouts where, if you have more calories one day, you can just play the balancing game and maybe reduce it over the next couple of days. That’s the thing. When you understand, as you said, over time … These things take time to learn. The process becomes fun, because you’re not afraid to make mistakes, you’re not afraid to have setbacks, and you can take things to the next level, if all that makes sense.

I do. That resonated with me on so many levels there, because it sounds like we teach the same things to each of our clients, especially when you talk about, like we talked about before, not getting rid of the bad foods. When they start to realise, “Oh, I can have this or I can still go out with my friends on the weekend,” it’s like, “Yes, of course!”

Health and fitness is not a separate thing from your lifestyle; it needs to be integrated into your life, because both of these things are going to be for the rest of your life, so you’ve got to make them work together instead of trying to think … Like you said before, that mentality of either, “Oh, I’m dieting, I’m strict, I’m not going out with friends, and I’m staying home on a Saturday night eating my chicken and rice,” or, “I’m getting shit-faced with my friends and I’m going to be gaining a lot of weight,” and all the things like that.

When you start to discover what really works for you, it’s going to be a juggling act, but that’s when things start clicking together in your head and you’re like, “Oh, wow, I can have balance here. I can make sure that I’m still enjoying going out with my friends and family but still being able to lose weight.”

Exactly. It’s that liberating feeling of just knowing that it is that. It’s like, “Wow, I can sustain this.” One of the questions I ask my clients every single week is, “Can you keep doing what you’re doing, day-in day-out, for the rest of your life?” I know, yes, there are going to be sacrifices at some point. It isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. There will be some sacrifices that need to be made, but overall, as you start making those …

Let’s call it the calorie savings account. As you are dropping more and more body fat, you can literally lose the reigns a little bit and you can afford to spend a bit more here and there of your calories because you’ve got a bit more of a buffer. Now, yes, there are sacrifices, but when they break through that barrier or … As we’ve already said, but just when they realise that they can still go and enjoy themselves, they can still go out with their families, they’re not bound by a strict meal plan.

Just seeing them … It’s hard to describe. It’s such a good feeling, seeing someone make that connection. It’s almost like, “Oh, it’s going to be okay. I am going to lose weight,” and their confidence just builds and builds to the point where it becomes autonomous. As you said before, your weight loss goes on autopilot, because you’re learning that you’re not restricting yourself anymore.

This is like the classic slingshot analogy. The more you pull yourself one way; the more you say no; the more you have that, “I can’t have that. I can’t have that,” … The whole slingshot. If you pull yourself in a slingshot too far one way and it gets too tight and too restrictive, what’s going to happen eventually, when that elastic band lets go, you’re going to get flung back the other way. This is that whole yo-yo diet mentality. You pull yourself so hard one way … It could be in a diet, a detox, whatever it is. You get pulled so far one way. “Oh, I can’t do this anymore,” and you let go, and all of a sudden, you get flung back the other way and you’re eating everything, you’re bingeing, and it’s this horrible mentality.

This could happen in a day, over the week, over a month. This used to be my mentality, Tyson. It used to be, “I’ve been so good. I’ve been so restrictive, Monday through to Saturday afternoon.” Saturday night rolls around, and you are just craving the slightest bit of sugar, and you go out on that Saturday night and it’s just boom. You are having two burgers and you’re having a double amount of chips. Then you go and get your frozen yoghourt. You come home and you’re just a big bowling ball on the couch. “Oh, I can’t move.”

It’s that whole restrictive mindset. It’s like, “Oh, I’m going to go back to my meal plan tomorrow because I feel so sick.” There’s no balance. I have just literally destroyed my calorie deficit for the week, because I’ve just had a massive cheat, so to speak, which is another bit of a rabbit hole. Do you know what I mean? The more you have that same sort of thing. If you label things as good or bad and if you’re following a meal plan and you’re just restricting yourself too much, it’s that whole elastic band analogy. You’re going to get pulled so far one way, it’s only an amount of time before you crack and you get flung back the other way.

I have the biggest smile on my face, because you talking about that … In the last two weeks, I’ve probably covered every single one of those things that you talked about, making a post about it, especially the … I actually talk about why cheat days are the worst thing you could ever do for yourself, because it’s so easy … I don’t know about you, but I’ve got a pretty big appetite, and I could easily throw out a deficit. Not even in a day … I could say a couple of hours. Easily throw out what my deficit was for the week and put it back into a surplus and then wonder why I can’t lose weight.

Absolutely. This is a thing as well, when you do start learning how to read food labels … I guess this is another little thing that I’m sure you do with your clients as well, Tyson. When they learn how to read a food label and they’re learning how many calories and proteins, carbs, fats, and blah blah blah, are in certain foods, they start realising that, “Holy crap, no wonder I wasn’t losing weight.” You realise you can really wrack up the calories and you don’t even realise it.

The smallest amount of food can be so calorie dense, especially these days when you’re going out for a meal or you buy store-bought foods. Unless you learn how to read a label, you realise that, “Oh, wow. The serving size of this was two biscuits, and I was actually having six, and there’s 500 calories right there.” Do you know what I mean? Once you actually learn to read food labels, you kind of realise, “Oh, wow, no wonder I wasn’t losing weight,” or, “No wonder obesity is such a massive epidemic,” because it’s so easy to wrack up the calories. But at the same time, it gives you that liberating feeling of knowing that, “Okay. I can actually have a couple of those, and if I only have a couple of those, I’m good.”

There is another bit of a rabbit hole here, Tyson, where the only time I say to someone that you shouldn’t be having that is if they just cannot stop at one or two.

Yes, trigger foods.

If there’s a certain food group … Yeah. Big time. Trigger foods. If there’s something that you just can’t stop eating, then the safest bet is to go, “Yeah, maybe that’s something we need to go cold turkey on and just cut it out. Let’s just remove that temptation.” That’s the only time I say cut something out. But otherwise, when you learn that portion size, you kind of go,” Okay, I’ll have a little bit of that, a little bit of this, and I’m sweet.”

You realise that you don’t need to slam the whole thing, because your hormones have become more balanced. You’re eating more intuitively and you learn how you feel after certain foods. Again, the classic thing. Over time. Over time, you’re learning how your body responds to certain things. Literally, I’ve got multiple clients I’ve trained for a number of years, and because we have so many data points over a year of doing measurements and tracking food, we’ve literally honed in on … There’s never a magic food, don’t get me wrong, but we’ve literally honed in on the best foods for that individual that gives them the most amount of energy, keeps everything balanced, keeps everything in check, they’re happily maintaining a certain work, and they’re still having their favourite foods.

But we’ve only gone to that stage because we’ve failed before. We’ve been able to go, “Okay, that didn’t work. You felt like crap. You didn’t lose any centimetres this week. You felt bloated after having that.” It’s just been over time we’ve been able to nail down the certain things. It is over time.

Again, it comes back to everything we’ve spoken about already. We’re only able to do that now … And same with you and me, Tyson. You and I could do this now because we’ve done it so many time over a number of years now, where we have multiple forms of measurements. We have multiple forms of writing stuff down, trigger points, we know how we feel, because we’ve done it so many times and we’ve failed multiple times as well. We now understand that perfection doesn’t exist, and once our clients get to that stage … And again, over time. You’ll be able to do the exact same thing with your body as well.

Absolutely. To be honest, you never get to a point where you’re like, “Okay, I’ve figured it out,” because to be honest, I’m still learning. I’m still trying to figure out, “Okay, this food will still cause me to eat a little bit more,” or “This environment that I’m in, it causes me to eat more food,” so I’m still constantly learning about myself day-by-day. You make mistakes and you talk it out.

Today, I went 200 calories over what I’m usually supposed to do, and like you said earlier, tomorrow I’m just going to have 200 calories less. You can still balance out that equation by the end of the day.

Absolutely. That’s it. It’s about that clean slate mentality, and there’s a whole sort of mindset that you can go into, but it’s about letting go of what you can’t control. Let’s say you have a bad day. Let’s say things got out of hand and you made a few mistakes. You’ve gone over by a few hundred calories. So be it. You can’t control what’s already happened. You’ve got to learn to let that go. There’s no point dwelling on it. You can’t change it. The same, the whole mentality of, “Oh, do you know what? I had a bad meal. Screw it. I’m just going to eat crap for the rest of the day.”

This analogies been thrown out a few times now, but it’s the classic mentality of, if you’ve got one flat tyre, would you go and slash the other three just because one went flat? No, that’d be stupid, but your body, in a way, is no different. Why would you go and binge for the rest of the day, just because you made one mistake? Or you had one bad day, why would you ruin the rest of the week? It comes back to this all-or-nothing mentality. Stop labelling things as good. If you have a few “bad” foods, they might not be bad, but because you’ve labelled that as bad, you’re now going to go, “Oh, screw it. I’ve ruined it,” when the reality is you haven’t. You just need to move forward, clean slate mentality. Just keep on going through the daily habits and the daily routines that you’re learning.

As you said, if you go over by a few hundred calories, instead of starving yourself the next day, you might go, “Okay … ” Let’s use a real life number, okay? Let’s say you’ve gone over by 400 calories. If you really want to go down the whole number route, you might just go 100 calories less over the next four days.


That way you’re not starving yourself every day. It’s just a little bit less over a few days. It swings your roundabout, and you’re still in deficit.


Your body works like that. That’s the thing. I know we said it before, but when you see clients understand that and you see their face light up going, “Oh, I don’t have to feel guilty. I can do that,” it’s like, “Yes! Yes, you can. You can balance it out,” and it’s such an awesome feeling to see them go through that journey.

Exactly. That’s the thing, like you said, there’s a certain point where, if you go too far over, then trying to restrict yourself from that … If you’re 400, and you try and do a 400 extra on top of the next day, then that’s going to be tough, but if you’ve still got a couple of more days out, if you go 100 each day, then it’s much easier for you to get back on track. It might take a little bit longer, a couple of more days, but then you’re going to be consistent with it, as opposed to going, “Oh, I’ve got to eat 400 calories less tomorrow.” That could cause you, again, to make that mistake of going over or bingeing the next day after, because then you feel restricted.

Exactly, exactly. I’m going down into the nitty-gritty here, but when I sit down with clients who have had a few bad days here and there and they are learning, I love to provide the context and the bigger picture. I through that term out a lot with my clients. The bigger picture. You need more context.

The classic 80-20 rule. We want to be good 80% of the time, and we want to have a bit of junk food 20% of the time. If we actually spread that out across the whole year, and we went 365 days less 20% … I don’t know the exact figure off the top of my head, but it’s roughly around 75 days or something like that. We say, “Okay. If you’re looking across the whole year, you, technically speaking, have 75 days where you can be “bad”.” That allows for Christmas, that allows for New Years, that allows for birthdays, weddings, life events, and dinners.” They kind of go, “Wow.” Of course, we’re not promoting them to go and have 75 consecutive days, because that means you’ve got to back up by another 297 days after that, which obviously is stupid, right? But it just goes to show that, if you have a bad day, just forget about it. Remember the bigger picture; remember the context. You still have 73 days left in the can, you know what I mean?

Once they’ve got that context, they kind of realise that, “This week wasn’t bad then?” Well, no, it’s not. And because you’re tracking measurements, because you’re doing this over time … Again, as you said, Tyson. Because you get all these data points, you look back at that week and you go … And then, as coaches, we kind of go, “Remember a few weeks ago when you were freaking out and you felt like everything hit the fan, and you thought it was the end of the world? Well, looking back now, you’re down by five centimetres. That little spike in your measurements or your weight back then is now a mere blip on the radar. You moved forward, you got through it.”

That way, next time, when the next situation happens, we then go,” Remember about three weeks ago when this happened? You’re going to get through this. It’s just all part of the learning curve.” That’s the big thing. Not being afraid to make mistakes. Being okay with having a few bad days here and there and completely owning that.

Exactly. That’s the biggest thing, taking responsibility for what happened, because the worst thing you can do is blame other people. Yes, other people might be offering you things, or your wife or whatever is going to be happening, but at the end of the day, it is your responsibility for you to take. If you mess up, do not put the external blame on somebody else, because that will pass the buck, and that allows you to kind of have an excuse to make that mistake again.

Exactly, exactly. This isn’t my own term … I’m kind of stealing this, but it’s, “We want to make sure we’re playing above the line.” You might have heard this term being used before, where essentially, playing below the line is using blame and excuse and denial; you’re blaming somebody else or you’re making excuses or you’re denying the fact that you’ve made a mistake. Whereas playing above the line is taking responsibility, being accountable to your actions, and … Oh, God, there’s a third one. You might know this one. Being accountable, being responsible, and ownership. Taking ownership of your actions as well.

I like that. I actually haven’t heard that before.

I almost butchered that one. Yeah, it’s a good one. It’s a good one. I write it down for my clients on the whiteboard all the time, and I just remind them just subtly, “You’re playing below the line here. Remember? We don’t want to blame or make excuses. Take ownership, take responsibility, and be accountable to your actions.” And they’re like, “Oh, okay. They hate me for it, I think.

Yeah. No, because it’s hard. It honestly is hard for you to take responsibility, because that means you have to change, you have to change who you physically are. To become the person you want to be, you have to take responsibility for where you are now and think, “Okay. I’ve actually got to put something into actions. It’s actually my fault, and the reason I’m not getting results is my fault,” but at the same time, it’s empowering, because now you know, “I can get results and it will completely be from my fault.”

Exactly. It’s like anything. It’s perception. If you look at things in the correct way, you’re going to move forward and you’re going to feel liberated. Whereas if you do see it from that kind of … I know it’s a very optimistic mindset, like a glass half-full, glass half-empty, but if you choose to respond in the right way …

I got this from … I think it’s from Ben [inaudible 00:40:19]. He says, “Where focus goes, energy flows.” I think it’s a Tony Robinson. But if you’re focused on the negative side and you’re focused on all the things that are going wrong, well, guess where your energy’s going to go? It’s going to suck the life out of you. But if you do focus on the great things that are happening and the positive things and the positive changes that you’re making, you’re going to feel better, that’s where you’re going to go, and you’re going to make better choices moving forward as well.

Amen to that. That was great. Now, we’ve covered a lot, but I just want to make sure, because I know you did have a few things you wrote down before we actually started that you wanted to cover … I just want to see, if there anything else that you really want to hammer home?

Mate, I think we’ve pretty much covered it. If I had to summarise the three, I’d say, stop labelling foods as good or bad. That’d be the first strategy. The next one would be … This would probably be the biggest take-away. Understand it takes time to transform. You need to understand that it’s not going to just be a physical one but a mental one too.

And we kind of touched on this one, not in depth but enough that we spoke about it, is try and stay clear of a meal plan, just because having a meal plan … It’s very restrictive, and that meal plan will definitely lead to that all-or-nothing mentality, because if you’re not on the meal plan, you’re off one. If we can steer clear of that meal plan or always looking for the next meal plan, that’s going to really help you get out of that rut of going, “I need to jump on the next meal plan to lose weight.” Then it’s like, “I’m not on the meal plan. Now I can eat whatever I want.” It’s just about having that flexibility but within structure. You have structured your calorie intake, but you’re flexible in terms of what you put into those calories, if that makes sense.

But otherwise, that’s my top three tips. Stop labelling foods as good and bad, understand it takes time to transform, and try and stay clear of meal plans.

I love it. Now, there’s two things I want to cover before we go. The first thing is, you said … I understand it takes time, and I know we said that. It takes different time for different people, but I would say, a minimum, give yourself at least six months to a year. What would you say?

I seriously could not agree more. Absolutely agree. Success is a sliding scale. What makes me successful in my body right now will be maybe completely different for you at this point in time, Tyson. Six months to a year, absolutely minimum. That is awesome. If you did have to draw a line in the sand, I definitely agree. Six months to a year.

Amazing. I know a lot of people are probably going to feel disappointing with that, but we’re here to give you results and tell you what the truth is. We’re not here to sell you a bullshit six-week programme that, yeah, sure, it’ll get you results in the short-term, but if you can’t stick to it, if you can’t maintain the body you achieve for the next two to five years, then you have not found a sustainable programme, and you have kind of wasted your time in a way, because you’ll go back to the way you were.

On that note, as well, giving it context and the bigger picture, if you look back six months ago or even 12 months ago, how quick did that go?


Looking ahead, time seems to go, “Oh, it seems so far away.” Look, you might feel like that, but if you’re actually going to go, “What was I doing six months ago?,” and you go, “Man, that has gone so quick.” It does. When you are going through a transformation, it does go quick, it does start to snowball, and before you know it, you look back and go, “Wow, I’ve been transformed for six months.” Well, yeah, far out! Where did the six months go?


As much as most people will think, and I feel the same way … If someone said to me, “Oh, it’s going to take you a year to transform,” I’d be like, “Oh, man. Come on. Can’t it be quicker?” It might be for some people, but six months to a year means it allows a bit more room for error … You don’t have to be as strict. And it does go quick.

Absolutely. Once you achieve that in that year, you’ve developed those habits that are going to sustain you for the next 10, 20, 30 years. One year is a real small blip on the radar, if you look at it from that side of things.

100%. I absolutely agree.

The other thing you said is not to focus on meal plans, which I really like, but I don’t want people to get confused by one thing. You should have structured meals that you regularly eat. I would suggest you alternate between a few meals that you can find that keep you full, that keep you satiated, that are nutritious, and then you can just change here and there.

You might change your vegetable sauce, you might change your meat sauce, but have a base there. Don’t go continuously looking for new meal plans and new recipes and all these things, because if you’re always trying to change it up, one, it becomes a burden, number two, you have to rely on somebody else, but number three, it does take effort for you to constantly keep trying new foods.

Try and find things that you enjoy that you can eat constantly, and if you want to change up the taste, like I said, you’ve got herbs, spices, sauces … All those things can make a meal transform by not actually changing the food itself and just using those condiments as a helping hand.

I absolutely agree. Hit the nail on the head with that one. With a meal plan, it is a very big umbrella. It is a very broad sort of saying. Don’t jump on a meal plan, so to speak, but it’s more a case of don’t be afraid to mix things up. Don’t be afraid to … Or in other words, don’t feel like you have to just have these five foods, do you know what I mean?


Develop a plan that works for you. Absolutely agree with that. By default, I follow a meal plan, but it’s not a piece of paper that goes, “Okay. I can only have these five meals or these five foods.” It’s a plan I’ve literally developed over time that I know works for me. I’m full, I’m satisfied, my energy’s consistent. This isn’t a meal plan that I’d give to anybody else. This is something I’ve created myself over time by learning to overcome, I guess you could say, the yo-yo dieting and all-or-nothing mentality. That’s the core thing is, over time, you’re going to pretty much be creating your own meal plan that’s going to literally be perfect pretty much just for you, and just knowing that you can change it whenever you want.

Absolutely. Dude, I think we definitely delivered. I was very happy with this podcast today, especially … I talked about this to you before. I said I want to make sure we have some driving home points, and those three take-aways, if people started with them, I can guarantee you that they’re going to see some bloody awesome results in a year’s time.

Absolutely. It’s been an absolute pleasure. Thank you so much for having me.

But before you go, tell us again where we can find you. Are you popular on Instagram, or just your website? What’s the best place we can find out more about you?

Yes, great question. I’m across Instagram and Facebook. You’re probably going to find me more active on Facebook. It’s kind of my platform. If you want to add me personally, Aidan D’Arcy.

If you want to find me and what I do and my business, it’s called The Body Transformation Academy. If you Google that, you’ll find it straight away. We’re located in Belrose. The website is www.thebodytransformationacademy.com. Otherwise, yeah, if you just Google us, you’ll find us. I’m on Facebook, and you’ll find me on there.

That’s pretty much all the mediums that I’m on. I’m pretty sure I’ve covered it all there.

Awesome, dude. Again, thank you so much for coming on today and delivering the valuables. Guys, until next time, I’ll speak to you then.

Cool. Thanks, Tyson.

Awesome, dude. That was great. I really enjoyed that.


Find Aidan at:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aidan.darcy.7

Website: http://www.thebodytransformationacademy.com/ 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thebodytransformationacademy/

Tyson Brown

Author Tyson Brown

Coffee Lover, Online Coach, Superhero movie buff and Intermittent Fasting Expert. Tyson Will help you build a lean body like the almighty Thor and get rid of that stubborn belly fat for good!

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