The 80/20 Rule

by Stephen Beseda

During my 15 years of helping transform people’s lives as a strength coach, there have been so many new diets, weight loss trends and fads over the years. Truthfully, none have withstood the test of time, except one. There is one rule that has been proven true, time and time again, with amazing accuracy and it is the one we preach at my gym. This rule has also been proven with over 500 in-depth research teams that did long case studies using thousands of people and the results are always the same. The real difficulty in this is that it’s not a quick-fix solution and it takes a bit of time and dedication. This dedication is what helps with making lifestyle changes that help with getting you to your final goal and staying there.

As you evolve and change with this solution, you will notice your lifestyle falls into place as your habits change and you continue to want to stay committed to yourself and your goals. The best way to achieve weight loss and keep it off is the age-old solution of changing your lifestyle.


What does that mean, you may ask? 


The 80/20 rule states that 80% of the changes in weight loss and whether it stays off is the direct result of proper nutrition. The other 20% is through exercising and pushing yourself so your body continues to establish muscle and burns calories. 


Nutrition is so important. 


To make this as easy to understand as possible for how the body works, your body needs a properly balanced plan of macronutrients. Namely, these are carbs, fats and proteins that allow you to perform at optimal levels and continue to burn the calories you eat every day. There are bad fats and good fats just as there are bad carbs and good carbs. 


If you have a balanced nutrition lifestyle that reflects this with your exercise regiment, you will have a much easier time achieving these goals and not going through extreme ups and downs with your weight.


When you’re doing these trend or fad diets, they are not meant for the human body to sustain for long periods of time. For instance, when you cut something out of your diet, like carbs, the second you eat carbs again your body will store those as fat and will hold onto those calories for dear life.

This is why a healthy and balanced diet with a set amount of calories that you eat at the right time every day will help you lose weight and maintain that weight loss. 


Your exercise program will help you to get the muscle you need to have your metabolism burn at a higher rate, hence burning more calories. You should be focused on losing 1-2 pounds per week – that’s it. This will lead to a weight loss of about 4-8 pounds per month and 48-96 pounds per year. You should be losing weight at a rate that is based on how much weight you need to lose. 


Also, remember that there is a time where your body will plateau with your weight. At that point, your focus should be on just losing body fat.

Women should be at 20% or less for optimal fitness levels and men should be 15% or less for the same optimal levels. These percentages will put you in a really healthy category that can be maintained without killing yourself every second of the day.


Are you currently looking for help in reaching your fitness goals? We love helping people kickstart the process and navigate through the beginnings of their personal training and nutrition regiment. Head to our contact page and send us a note! We’re happy to reach out to you shortly thereafter to answer your questions and get you scheduled for your first free session.