Over the past 8 years of coaching, I have come to the realization there have been two types of people who train/workout. There have been people that achieve their goals and go beyond them, and there have been people that don’t achieve much at all and live in a constant state of stress and frustration. This realization has led me to investigate one thing: What separates the people who DO achieve, from the people who DON’T?
Mostly everyone I work with either wants to lose weight, burn fat, build muscle, or have some sort of combination of all three. Nothing should surprise you there. However, as previously stated, some excel with flying colors, while there are others who struggle tremendously and even go backwards! Helping people do things they think is impossible is what the coaches at our gym and I are most passionate about, so we can’t help but take it personal when people don’t achieve what they want. This has led me to my investigation as to how and why this happens.
Figure it Out!
It sounds like a simple question, but have you thought about what you REALLY want to achieve? If you don’t know exactly what you want, how will you know if what you are doing is getting you closer to where you want to be? It’s like taking a road trip without a destination. You’ll definitely end up somewhere, but it might not being where you REALLY want to be.
Figuring out what you really want is more than just saying, “I want to lose 10 pounds, decrease my body fat by 4% and look great in my jeans.” Don’t get me wrong, being that specific is a hell of a start. But I think most people need to take a step back to figure out if these goals are what they REALLY want.
Allow me to explain. Many people have an image in their head of the ideal person they want to look like. Something interesting to think about, however, is looking that way going to make them happy? When thinking about your goals, you need to have a realistic understanding of what it is going to take to achieve them. I am not saying that achieving these things are impossible. They are all very possible. What I am saying is that, when setting your goals, you have to consider all of the things you enjoy in life. If you don’t figure this out first, you will be committing the GREATEST TRAGEDY! More on this in a little bit.
Unless you are part of the 1% of the genetically gifted population, it takes extreme discipline and sacrifice to look like the people on the covers of Women’s and Men’s Health Magazine. What you need to figure out is this: Is it really worth it for me to give up all of these things I love just to look a certain way? If the answer is yes, go for it! But if the answer is no, you need to take another look at all of the things you love about life, and have a realistic understanding about what that life is going to look like. If you want to look like person “X” you need to have the discipline and habits of person “X.” The trouble is, people want to look like person “X” while having the lifestyle of person “Y.” This leads people down a path of constant frustration and stress, and often causes people to quit.
I can speak from personal experience that giving up other things I love in order to look a certain way just isn’t worth it for me. I am not part of the genetically gifted population, so I have done extremely disciplined eating and fitness regimens to look a certain way. When I got down to 7% body fat, I looked in the mirror and said, “Ok, now what?” It just didn’t matter that much to me. It wasn’t fulfilling.
“Success without fulfillment is the greatest tragedy.”
I enjoy spending time with family and close friends, and I also enjoy having a beer or drink with them every once in a while. To me, having those experiences with friends isn’t something I don’t want to give up. Therefore, I understand I am not going to look like a fitness model, and I’m okay with that. I have a consistent workout and eating routine, and feel no pressure or stress to look a certain way. To me, being fit, strong, and healthy, while enjoying so many other things life has to offer is far more important than looking like a fitness model. I feel great and don’t feel like I “can’t” do certain things I really enjoy. I feel fulfilled.
I wanted to share this with you so you can liberate yourself from stress and frustration. I also wanted to share this with you so you have an understanding of the commitment it takes to achieve certain things. Remember, you cant look like person “Y” while on person “X’s” regimen. It doesn’t add up.
Its time now for you to sit down and really think about all of the things you enjoy in life, and have a realistic expectation of what that looks like. What is it going to take to make you feel fulfilled? Think about all areas of your life, not just the way you look. What do you love to do? Who do you love to be around? At what level of fitness do you feel GREAT? If you put on a pair of jeans and it makes you feel sad and depressed because they don’t fit, it might be time to make some changes when it comes to your fitness and nutrition. If you are at your peak in fitness, but don’t feel fulfilled, you might need to broaden your horizons outside of the gym a little bit.
I hope that by reading this blog, it makes you think a little bit differently about what it means to be successful. We have had people lose 10, 20, 30 and up to 100 pounds and keep it off. We’ve also had people not lose any weight, but get a ton stronger, and be able to enjoy other things like skiing mountains and dominating Tough Mudder obstacles. I believe these people are equally successful, because they are all happy and, most importantly, they are fulfilled.
Take some time to think about what is going to make your life a happy and fulfilled one! It will be the most liberating thing you ever do!
I’d love to hear what you all think, so drop a comment underneath, or feel free to send me an e-mail.
Yours in Health and Strength,
CSCS, Direcor of Training
Beyond Measure Fitness Training