When I started the great undertaking of becoming (slightly) healthier and looking after my body, I had no idea how much the journey would affect my life. 5 dress sizes, one divorce, two cycle challenges, a move to London and a complete change in career later, I am beginning to see the impact a fit and healthy lifestyle can have on you. In the grand scheme I can’t find a single negative way it has effected my life overall.
I am now dedicating my life to help other people find health and happiness.
Soon after starting my studies into health, fitness and food, I discovered that most courses and professionals failed to teach or preach, for me, what was most important and I believe the main reason I have achieved so much so far.
Otherwise known as “getting your head in the game”.
So to get your head in the game, you firstly need to decide what game you are playing. Too often I hear people say, “I just want to be thin”, “I just want to be fit”, “I just want to lose some weight”. While these are great starting points, they will no longer sustain your required motivation than a milk chocolate teapot will hold boiling water.
Taking the time to put pen to paper and properly analyse what you really want can save you time, effort and frustration. Just like you wouldn’t step out of the door, without knowing where you are going and expect to get there in record time. Direction is key. Knowing your end goal, helps set your route. This will go hand in hand with discovering your reason “WHY” and creating the right “MINDSET”. Here is an condensed conversation I had a couple of weeks ago with a lady in her mid 40s.
What started as:
I just want to loose some weight
I’m not very fit
I tire easily and have low energy
Too often we associate way too much with “weight” as a measure of health. This woman wasn’t obese, the amount of weight or excess weight wasn’t detrimental to her health. What her goal actually turned out to be was she required more energy to live the life she wanted. She wanted to be able to enjoy the time with kids and friends more. She wanted to find her household chores easier, so she could fit more into her day and therefore her life. By getting to the point of what she actually wanted allowed her to reach it much more easily and therefore she found it is easier to stay motivated. By getting to what she actually wanted allowed her to focus her efforts and more importantly, limited or eliminated information overload. As I said before you need to know what “game” to get your head in. Easy – I hear you say I want to be in the healthy/weight loss/fitness game! Have you tried entering any of those into Google?? Information Overload!! What you need to do is narrow your search. Having a narrow search helps you to know more quicker and more importantly more useful information. If you spend (waste) your time reading unhelpful information and implementing it, only to find you still haven’t reached your goal (which you still haven’t really worked out). Realistically what are your chances of sticking with it and keeping your head in the game.
Get excited, buoyant, jubilant about researching your goal. When motivation dips hit Google for a top up of exciting information and wonderful new ideas for each your specific goal. In fact, don’t wait for motivation to dip, regularly top it up. Feed it and it in turn will feed you.
Now you have a specific goal it is much easier to discover the why. For the lady above, her obvious why was her family and friends. You may find it easier to keep focused if you can say “I’m doing it for my son.” Some people find it much easier to help others than themselves. You may in turn find it easier to embrace positive selfishness. “I want to enjoy my free time more.” The reason WHY you started was you initial kick up the backside. So don’t forget it and it will keep kicking you to reach your goal.
I now sit between an 8 and 6 in UK dress sizes. I train approximately 5 times a week for 2 – 3 hours. (I would rather be training 6 times). Yet I still have to remind myself that I am now slim and a gym girl. I don’t say this to brag and I have worked very hard at it but my point is this, having the right mindset is key but tricky to harness.
Imagine if you will that your partner told you, every day, that you had bad hair. It wouldn’t take you long to start believing it was true. It’s pretty sad when you think about it, but realistically human nature is more likely to point out negatives, try to correct or fix people. It’s unlikely we are going to get everyone to dish out compliments quite so openly and freely. So it’s time to do it for yourself. It’s time to compliment you, be proud (but not boastful) about what you have achieve no matter how small. If you want to be a runner, from day one start telling yourself you are a runner, embrace runner speak, action, lifestyle. Don’t know how? Find someone who has done it before and copy them. Yes it’s that easy. Associate with people who are the same as you want to be. Follow them on social media, read their books, their articles. Ask them questions, if it’s someone you know ask them for a coffee or Skype (if far away from you). Trust me the compliment of asking is usually enough for them to find time for you. Keep interactions positive. Don’t moan to everyone about your sore legs, blistered feet – that’s the wrong mindset. Instead try being proud of your battle scars. Even when you are not “feeling” it, fake it ‘til you make it.
“…my running is going great!”
“…hit a new personal best yesterday.”
“…got some new trainers at the weekend.”
Now I am slightly realistic here, the average person doesn’t always see the positives in everything, but I for one do not getting up in the morning and think…
“WWOOHHOO TODAY IM GOING TO BE AVERAGE!”
Changing the way you think won’t happen over night. But one. thing is for sure, if you don’t try it will never happen.
We have 30,000 to 60,000 thoughts a day. Imagine the difference in your life if these were predominantly positive. Imagine the power that could give you.
So that’s my introduction to getting your head in the (healthy) game. I hope it is of some use to you.