Don't Give Up!!!

Don't Give Up!!!

Let’s all be honest for a minute working out is well, it’s hard work. It hurts, it’s tiring, and it takes a lot of time out of your day. Unfortunately, no matter how many people claim they have it, to this day there is still no magic pill that takes away the hard work required to get in shape. If (insert product name here) has any effect at all it’s usually only temporary. People avoid exercise like the plague. It’s the one thing that people will pay for and constantly try to cheat themselves out of. Also, it’s so easy to get discouraged and give up. The important thing is to remember why are you doing this, why did you start this journey, and then no matter what, don’t give up! As the old saying goes, if you’re tired of starting over stop giving up! Fitness is a lifestyle and needs to be treated that way. In this article, I hope to give some pointers for those of you who are looking to make a change so that you can avoid some common mistakes and to make your journey a successful one!

Set a Goal

What do you want to accomplish? That’s the first question you should ask yourself and it’s also the first question any trainer should ask. If you’re working with a trainer and they haven’t asked you what your goal is then you need to find another trainer. (See What to look for in a trainer in our previous blog). Try to be as specific as possible. If it’s a fairly long term goal, make sure you set short term goals as well. For example, maybe you want to lose 30lbs before next summer. Set an intermediate goal of losing 5lbs per month. Sticking to these intermediate goals is just as important as your main goal. It’s easy to miss your first goal and just write it off as “oh I’ll make it up later” and then it becomes crunch time and you realize you are so far off you’re never going to reach it so you inevitable give up. Don’t give up!

Set Rules

When you make your goal you need to also set rules. Look at your schedule, see what is realistic, and make a plan that’s doable for you. If you’re plan is not realistic and you’re not able to stick to it the first few weeks, chances are you’re just going to give up on it completely. For example, your rule maybe I’m going to work out/go to the gym 3 days a week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. You should stick to this religiously if at all possible! After you set this you need to start making your schedule around the gym instead of vice versa. I know things happen and sometimes it may be impossible but those should be rarities not the norm. If you’re sick or can’t make it go in another day. If you can’t make it another day, then maybe run on the weekend instead. By making yourself do this it psychologically reinforces that you have to meet your rules. It’s hard but don’t give up!

Don’t forget Nutrition!

What’s more important nutrition or exercise? My answer is both! Without one the other just isn’t as effective. I’m not going to get into the details of nutrition (we’ll save that for a future blog) but I’ll give you a few key tips of advice. First, a good nutrition plan should not starve you. Second, keep track of what you eat every day. Third, don’t assume that because something says natural, healthy, fat free, gluten free, organic, etc. (I could go on and on) that it’s healthy for you. Finally, eating one healthy thing a day is not going make you healthy. Eating healthy is hard but don’t give up!

Know that it takes more discipline than motivation

Motivation can be awesome. It may be the push you need to get you started, it may give you the goal you want to achieve, but it’s also very fickle. One day you have it and the next it may be gone. It likes to hide and sometimes it’s very hard to find. This is why discipline is way more important than motivation. Yes, motivation may be the driving factor behind your decision but only discipline will get you to your goal. Some days you just won’t have motivation. You’re going to have to drag your butt in there and just go through the motions but that’s okay! You’re in there! Go in, go through the motions, go home, and go at it hard the next day. Since I like those cheesy motivational quotes one in particular comes to mind when talking about discipline and not giving up. “A river cuts through rock, not because of its power, but because of its persistence.” Jim Watkins. It doesn’t happen overnight and it’s going to take time so don’t give up! Create a habit It takes approximately 30 days for us to create a habit however once it’s created we are much more likely to stick to the habit than not. For most, once they get through the initial phase and create the habit of working out they actually feel bad if they don’t work out. With discipline you can create this habit and all of a sudden it seems to become much easier to make it to the gym and stick with fitness for a sustained period of time. As an added bonus after you get through the first few weeks you may even find that you actually enjoy working out. Lifehack.org has a really good article on forming habits as well as tips for keeping those habits. Click the following link to learn about tips when creating a new habit. http://www.lifehack.org/articles/featured/18-tricks-to-make-new-habits-stick.html. Creating this habit is going to be hard but don’t give up! Bad Results and initial weight gain I felt the need to put a section in this article for those looking for weight loss because this is a key stage that many get discouraged with and quit. I can’t count the number of people I hear state something to the tune of I worked out and I gained weight so I stopped. Don’t let a week or two of bad results and/or initial weight gain stop you. If it’s a more sustained period, then maybe you should look at changing something up but never give up! With our weight loss program, we tell people not to pay too close attention to the scale the first few weeks of working out. Why? Because typically this may be the first time they’ve worked out in years. Also, especially with women, they may have not been eating nowhere near enough calories per day. Starving yourself does not make you skinny. The body needs time to adjust and when you start to work out after being sedentary for a long period of time your body goes into shock and explodes creating muscle and storing calories so that it can make it through these new demanding workouts. Simply put you are gaining muscle faster than you are losing fat. Never fear though because it won’t last long (us power lifters can only dream that it was this easy). After around two weeks you should see the weight stop going up and then the fat will start to shred. How much weight gain you ask? It really depends on the person but I would say on average around 5lbs can be expected. The most extreme case I can recall was someone who put on 10lbs in two weeks and then turned around and lost 30lbs in 10 weeks. There was no change in nutrition or the programming during the 12 weeks it was just the body reacting. Just remember that not all people experience this and some have greater gains than others so if you have a partner that loses weight and you gain it don’t get discouraged. Don’t give up! In Conclusion Everything has its challenges and there are several things you need to do to be successful however all of them have one common principal. Yes, it’s going to hurt! Yes, you’re going to be sore! And yes, there are probably better things you could be doing but no matter what don’t give up!!!



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