Tag Archive: inspiration

Tough Love: A Lesson in Accountability

When people learn that I’m a personal trainer, they often start telling me about how they’re unhappy with their appearance or their level of fitness or their general overall health, and how they really need to start taking better care of themselves and working out. As a trainer, I get so excited to hear that they’re taking an interest in caring their for their bodies and I want to jump right in to “how can I help you achieve your goals?!” But I also know that before I (or anyone else) can help them, they need to be committed to helping themselves. They need to take responsibility for their current physical shape, and understand that, ultimately, only they have the power to change their lives and reach their goals.

Accountability

Photo by Google images

Be brutally honest with yourself: what choices are you making today that are keeping  you from reaching your fitness goals? You know what they are. They may be hard to admit to, but admit them to yourself. What are you doing wrong?

  • Are you skipping workouts?
  • Have you been doing the same workouts for years with no variety?
  • Are you eating fake (a.k.a processed) foods?
  • Are you drinking too many of your calories?
  • Are you not sleeping enough?
  • Are you not drinking enough water?
  • Are you snacking late at night?
  • Are you eating too much fat and/or sugar?

This can be a painful realization; to acknowledge how the choices we make on a regular basis are sabotaging our fitness goals. It’s so much easier to blame someone else, our circumstances, our lack of time, our lack of energy. We feel helpless to do anything about it and wait for someone to fix it for us, to make the circumstances ideal, to make the timing perfect.

The truth is only you can make it better for yourself. Only you can achieve your goals by consistently making choices that align with what you want. Your trainer can’t do that for you, your spouse, your boss, your kids – no one else can put in the work for you. No one else can eat the right foods for you, or exercise your body for you, or define your state of mind and self worth for you. This is a harsh reality: you are 100% responsible for 100% of the choices you make.

But at the core of that responsibility is empowerment. You are the only one making your choices. So make them good ones. You know what you need to do reach your goals. The trick is holding yourself accountable to do those things consistently, and being honest with yourself when you don’t do them.It’s ok to not be perfect; it’s ok to allow yourself to indulge once in a while or go easy on yourself when you need to. But be honest with yourself that it’s a choice you’re making, and if you want different results, you need to make different choices.

This is something that everyone struggles with, myself included. But instead of drowning under the weight of that responsibility, let it empower you. You know what you need to do, you know what choices you should be making, and you have the power to make good choices for yourself! Everything you want is within reach. Only you can put in the time and effort it takes to achieve your goals, and in your heart of hearts, you know if you really are doing everything you can to get there. Your trainer and your support system can help guide you and encourage you along the way, but ultimately, it’s all you. So what are you waiting for? Get after it!

Be Grateful for the Journey

Finally recovered from my mid-summer cold and have been pumped to be back in the gym! My first few days back, I experienced what most people who take some time off from working out discover when they try to get back into their normal routines – progress can be lost surprisingly quickly! When you’re mentally prepared to kick ass during your workout after being confined to your bed for a week, it can be so discouraging to reach failure with fewer reps and less weight than you’re used to, or have to stop halfway through a cardio routine that you normally breeze through. You think about how long it took you to get to that level of fitness before your workout hiatus, and worry that it will take just as long (or maybe even longer!) to get to that point again. That can be enough to make some people give up, take another week off, turn to comfort food or some other vice to soothe their disappointment and anxiety. Luckily, those who stick it out and focus on their exercise and nutrition come to find that you can actually gain it back pretty fast if you’re consistent, you push yourself, and you don’t give up!

Exercise is both a physical and mental activity. Quite often, your brain gives up long before your body does. When your body is recovering and rebuilding its strength, don’t let your brain psych you out. You may not be at the level you want to be yet, but every minute you spend working toward your goal is a minute well spent. Don’t let yourself be discouraged by what lies ahead or behind – instead pay attention to the moment you’re in. Focus on the task, the set, the road, the day in front of you, and do your very best in that moment. (more…)

The Power of a Workout Buddy

There are a few key factors that contribute to the success of any lifestyle change. One of them is MOTIVATION. In order to commit to and stick to a long term goal, you have to be properly motivated. That’s what will keep you going when the going gets tough. Another one is EDUCATION. You can have all the best intentions in the world, but if you don’t know what steps to take to make your goals a reality, you won’t get very far. Hopefully this blog can be a resource for you to continue expanding your knowledge of how to go about achieving your health & fitness goals. A third key factor, and the one that this post is going to focus on, is SUPPORT. Nothing great is ever achieved alone. Even though no one but you can do the work it takes to change your life, having a support system to cheer you on and hold you accountable can be a huge advantage. In my experience, when you’re trying to live a healthy & active lifestyle, the most authentic & powerful support comes from your workout buddy.

Photo credit: bulubox.com

Photo credit: bulubox.com

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