Our coaching question of the week comes from a member of the Metabolic Mastery Club Facebook group, who we will call Linda for the purposes of this post! Are you feeling like Linda, somewhat confused by how to determine if your “SHMEC is in check” through the process of tuning in and listening to your body?

“I’m confused about this whole SHMEC thing! How do I know if I’m listening to my body in the right way? What specific questions should I begin to ask myself for each category? Maybe this question sounds ridiculous to you, but I’m not sure I trust my body to guide me through this process! I’ve never really thought about each of these aspects of SHMEC separately, let alone thought about how these areas of SHMEC can all impact one another.”

Linda, we are here to help with educating you on how to become a better metabolic detective! Although tuning into your body and learning to determine what is “healthy” for YOU may take time, we hope you’ll feel more confident with this process after reading through this post. Here is how we coach our clients through how to determine if their SHMEC is in check.

Our Metabolic Optimization Coaching program is ideal for the individual who, like Linda, has never been very good at listening to his or her body. We are happy to provide some help, through a more condensed process, of tuning into your body’s signals. Our response should help to guide you through the process of setting SHMEC-related goals as you work to create lasting lifestyle changes.

The best place to start with SHMEC is to go through a simple process to help you better assess your SHMEC by scoring each category separately.

Sleep: Using a scale from 1-10, think about how well you sleep each night. Scoring a “10” would mean your sleep was perfect nearly every night. Scoring a “1” would mean you never fall asleep, and even if you do, it’s poor-quality sleep.

Here are some questions to think about when scoring your sleep: 

• Do I stay asleep through the night, and is it easy for me to fall asleep? 

• Do I wake up feeling energized, alert, and well-rested? 

Hunger: Using a scale from 1-10, think about how hungry you are (on average) hour-to-hour and over the course of the day. For hunger, scoring a “10” is very high, meaning you spend most every waking moment with a growling stomach, or you never feel satisfied after eating. Scoring a “1” would mean you are never hungry, and could possibly even go for days without eating. 

Here are some questions to think about when scoring your hunger: 

• Do I regularly go 4-6 or more hours without getting hungry? 

• Is my hunger predictable and stable hour-to-hour, day-to-day? 

Mood: Using a scale from 1-10, think about your mood day-to-day or week-to-week. Scoring a “10” in mood would mean you spend most of your day in a good mood, feel energized, and generally love life. Scoring a “1” on the mood scale would mean you’re always feeling down and out. Your default state is anxious, stressed, and overwhelmed with life. 

Here are some questions to think about when scoring your mood: 

• Are you fairly laid back and/or relaxed without worry or anxiety? 

• Is my mood predictable and stable hour-to-hour, day-to-day? 

Energy: Using a scale from 1-10, think about your energy levels hour-to-hour and then day-to-day.  Scoring a “10” in energy would mean you always have the energy to do what you want to do, and when you do get exhausted, you quickly bounce back. Scoring a “1” on the energy scale would mean you never have energy. You spend all of your waking days feeling depleted, distracted, and empty. 

Here are some questions to think about when scoring your energy: 

• When I get exhausted, do I quickly rebound? 

• Do I have drastic shifts in my energy? 

Cravings: Using a scale from 1-10, think about your cravings (on average) hour-to-hour, then day-to-day. Remember, cravings typically come from the head. Scoring a  “10” in cravings would mean you consistently feel like you have zero willpower, and constantly crave salt, fat, sugar, or alcohol. Scoring a “1” on the cravings scale would mean you never have a craving. You can take or leave the cheesecake, the glass of wine, or the salty snacks. 

Here are some questions to think about when scoring your cravings: 

• Do I go all day without experiencing cravings? 

• Do I handle my stress with certain foods?

Once you’ve completed the scoring process, take a look at the areas of SHMEC that appear to be mostly “out of check” – meaning they are low or high according to the scoring system and what is considered to be ideal or best. If you practice scoring your SHMEC weekly, you’ll definitely become a better metabolic detective. Checking in with yourself daily is also an option, particularly in the areas of hunger, energy, and cravings (HEC for short).

We also have tons of blogs on the topic of becoming a better metabolic detective, or how to create your own process, rather than needing to follow a protocol as you work on your goals. If you want to look, feel, or perform at your own personal best, you need to have your SHMEC in check first!

Be patient throughout the process as it can take some time to tweak and adjust things according to your SHMEC scores, but the investment is so worth it! Hope this helps you, Linda, and all of the other readers out there!

Photo by Volodymyr Hryshchenko on Unsplash