Stay On Track With Your Fitness Goals
70% of you will have stopped training already or fallen of the bandwagon with nutrition.
It’s easy for us to believe and justify our own excuses: you haven’t got time, you work long hours, and you don’t have the time to cook healthy meals. The problem is nobody can get you back on track but yourself. It’s time to stop making excuses and waiting for somebody to play a violin for sympathy, and time to get back to business, otherwise . . .
In 11 months time your going to either be a) in the same place you are now or b) much worse off. This brief article will help you Stay On Track With Your Fitness Goals in 2015. I will be sharing insights and tips to help you get back on track if you have fallen of the bandwagon. You deserve better. . .
Why Working Out Less Can Achieve Greater Results
Huh? What? Why? I admire people when they go to the gym 5-7x per week, but if you are pretty new to training or have not trained in a while your setting yourself up for failure. Ask yourself this, with your new routine you are doing, could you sustain it in 6 months time? if the answer is no, then pull back.
I often see people jump from extremes, going from 0 exercise and poor eating, to suddenly training 4x per week and extreme dieting. It’s just not sustainable, you are doing yourself an injustice and setting yourself up to fail. If you want to do a PHD you don’t go from High School straight to doing a PHD. You go from: Highschool, to College, to Degree, to Masters, etc, etc. There are steps in place for a reason, so you can develop knowledge, and experience over a period of time before embarking on the next milestone, when you are ready to take the next step.
If your used to training 1x per week, then training 2x per week is a positive step, which you are more likely to sustain. Of course once that becomes sustainable you can add in another session and so forth. Take things at your own pace, but don’t go from 1st gear to 5th, work through the gears one at a time, and build up.
Aim BIG Start Small : Setting Lead Goals
Don’t focus on the end goal, but on the steps you can take right now. Would you try and climb Mount Everest next week? you most probably wouldn’t. In order to climb the highest mountain on Earth (8,848m) would require many years of training. But if you broke down the preparation, you would see that it consists of thousands of small daily steps.
When you focus solely on the end result you are setting yourself up for epic failure. It can be overwhelming because you see the length of the journey and have no idea how, or if you are going to make it.
Imagine you set yourself a goal to lose 20 kg, this is called a Lag Goal, which means you are focusing on the end result. Basically you either make it or you don’t. If you don’t make it you have failed. It’s great to have Lag goals, because they provide direction (a target to aim for) but the Lag goal does nothing to help you achieve the end result.
A Lead Goal however is predictable and influenceable. Lead goals take you closer to your desired goal i.e. what 3 things can i do this next week that will take me closer to losing 20kg? They could be:
- Workout 2x per week
- Take my dog for a walk 5x per week
- Take a multivitamin everyday
Depending on your starting point, will depend on what tasks you could set yourself. If you haven’t trained for years or are relatively inexperienced you would set yourself smaller targets. The mnemonic acronym SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-related) is a great tool to use when setting lead goals.
If you focus on the end result, you are focusing on reaching the top of the mountain, but remember it is the journey that takes you to the top. What 3 small, achievable steps are you going to take this week?
Tune Into Serious Pain
How many times in your life has something being taken away from you (even if you didn’t want it in the 1st place), only to make you want it more? It could be a relationship rejection, a death, fatal illness, etc, etc. As humans we are motivated by pleasure and pain. Pleasure is when we set out to achieve something that will evoke happiness and pleasant feelings. When we are motivated by pain we are motivated by the thought of losing something, or being deprived.
The truth is many of us are motivated to act by the thought of pain.
If a doctor told you, you had 1 year left to live, what would you do differently? answer, probably alot. Those of you who have watched the hit TV series Breaking Bad, will know the types of behaviour a life threatening discovery can evoke. All of a sudden your perspective has changed. In reality we are all in this position, no one knows how much longer they have left to live or the future pain we may experience through the actions we are making today: cancers, illness, disease, missed opportunities, ageing, impotency, the list is endless.
When focusing on your fitness and health goals tune into what will happen if you don’t change. Focus on the impact that would have on your life and try to experience how that would make you feel.
- if i don’t lose weight my doctor says i will get diabetes, i could die young and miss out on an extra 10 years of life, my children will be devastated and my wife will be a widow. How does that make me feel?
- I have PCOS and may never be able to have children, all my life i have wanted a family. The doctor says by improving my diet, losing weight and exercising more i could increase my chances of falling pregnant by 25%.
- I never take my kids to the park, because my fitness is shocking, i feel like i am having a heart attack even after a 30s run around. My children are only young once, If i fail to get fit, i am missing out on some of the fondest memories i will ever cultivate.
It’s amazing to see so many people wait until the last minute or before it’s to late to make change. It took a heart attack and a stroke for my gran mother to finally stop smoking. Tune into pain, because the decisions you are making right now are likely negatively effecting your future. Pain is a good motivator, for it evokes strong emotions and can drive positive change.
Don’t Overcomplicate . . .
One bad meal does not make you overweight and one good meal does not make you healthy. It may be stating the obvious, but your body is the way it is right now because of the decisions you have consistently made over a long period of time. If you eat and drink cr*p 70% of the time, and barely exercise, then expecting to be lean and healthy would be a delusion.
It’s time to Simplify. If you do the following 3 things:
- Exercise regularly
- Eat Well (balanced diet)
- Rest (sleep well, relax)
You will get results. Don’t overcomplicate things, it’s not rocket science. As a starting place if you can incorporate the above consistently (80% of the time) it’s near enough IMPOSSIBLE not to get results. If you have honestly tried the above to no avail, then hire a personal trainer.
I can understand how making change can be quite daunting. If you feel like you need support and extra assistance please feel free to check out my Personal Training (based in Sheffield) and Custom Meal Plans (covering the entire UK). If you have any questions please drop me an e-mail, i would love to help.