Over the past thirteen years of training in the fitness industry, I found that the “what’s” are easy – the “what to do’s “and “what to eats.” The difficult part for most people is the “how.” And I don’t necessarily mean how to exercise or eat right; I mean how to Think right. “Fitness is about how you think, not how you look or what you do.” How we exercise, how healthy we are, even how we feel is only a reflection of what we think about.
As many of us have heard before, “as a man thinketh, so is he.” So let’s all hear it again for the very first time. In order for us to be successful with our health or any other endeavor in our lives, we must work on our thinking. The mind is supposed to command the body, not the other way around. Too often we let our lower desires steer us off in a direction that we don’t want to go in.
It’s just like following directions to a destination in an area that is unfamiliar. We’ll get directions from someone who knows not only that area, but the area we are currently in. If we are smart, we’ll follow the directions to a “T” and get there as planned. But what would happen if we got bogged down in traffic, got frustrated, and decided to turn off the suggested path to avoid traffic. It’s likely that we will get turned around, only to have to get directions back to the path so we may continue on our journey.
This is what happens to most people. They get this great plan (exercise regimen, meal plans, equipment – the whole nine) and get started. Then comes this traffic jam called life and they veer off the path, only to have to get directions back to moving toward their goal. They do this for months, years, even decades for some, expecting that this time it’s going to work. They never realize that it’s their pattern of thinking that leads to wrong turns.
So now what do I do? Let’s start with small steps. Forget the days of setting unrealistic goals, then following Nike’s advice – “Just do it!” It sells gym shoes, but it doesn’t do much for getting you healthier and fit. Today, “Just Do Something!” Decide to go for a walk, ride a bike, go roller skating; anything to get your body moving. To start out, try 2 maybe 3 times per week. But consistency is key. It’s better to do a little consistently, than a lot every now and then. We want to establish the habit of exercise.
In terms of nutrition, pick one new habit to work on. Drink more water; eat more fruits and veggies, eat less fat; any thing that is a positive eating change. As you work on this action plan for the next 30 days, you’ll notice that you feel stronger and confident. Then you may, step by step, add more to your exercise and eating regimen and move that much closer to your optimal health.