Become Process-Driven in an Event-Driven World
Read the title a few times and let it sink in. It's what separates the winners from the losers. It's what will finally take you off the hamster wheel and have you seeing results FAST. Now don't correlate fast with easy. There is NOTHING easy on your path to improving your fitness and health. In order to change your body, you must change your mind. The pain you feel from not being in the best shape of your life must out weigh the pain of the process, no matter how much it might suck.
This world is too caught up on an end result (the EVENT), and blind to the PROCESS. Everyone wants to be in the best shape of their life, but nobody wants to put in the work if it demands them to take life by the horns each day by working out and eating healthy. "Nope, ThAt'S tOo MuCh To AsK fOr." So what your actions are basically shouting from the mountain tops is your desk job is too stressful to hit the gym after work, and that tub of ice cream before bed is worth the instant gratification followed by long lasting regrets?... Give me a break.
If you're looking to break bad habits and break out of your current slump, you've come to the right place because I'm holding nothing back. So let's fly into what should be everyone's starting point of their fitness and health journey, identifying your trigger. Meaning, what are the reasons you're just now deciding to lead a healthier lifestyle? Maybe it's the pouch of fat you're carrying around your midsection. A rude comment from a family member or friend that's been ringing in your ear for the last few months. You hate looking in the mirror at yourself and are ready for a change. Whatever your trigger might be, use it for fuel for your internal flame to improve yourself!
Now think big picture, set a big goal of what you want to achieve in a year, and I mean BIG. You want to set big goals, because even if you miss short, it beats the hell out of any smaller goals you might have set instead. Then take that BIG goal of yours, and start breaking it into steps. For me as a coach, I like to turn these steps into monthly increments because it's a perfect happy medium for measuring results of any fitness and health goal, whether it be weight loss or muscle growth. Which leads us to the intelligent planning to achieve your fitness and health goals.
What are your fitness and health goals without a plan? Nothing. Just a feel happy idea that can't go anywhere without a PLAN. BUILT. FOR. YOU. That means don't hop on the internet and find the one way works for all bullshit plan. There's a reason its free, let's leave it there. Unless you're an expert in fitness and health yourself, I highly recommend hiring an experienced coach who has experimented with different training routines and understands how the body processes and NEEDS the appropriate amount of protein, carbohydrates, and fats. If you hire a coach who believes in fad diets, fire them on the spot. Diet is another word for temporary, and the last time I checked, your fitness and health goals should never be considered as temporary and always planned for a lifetime.
After hiring a coach and receiving your plan (or building your own), you must set yourself up for success. The war between eating healthy or residing to junk food doesn't start in your kitchen, but starts at the grocery store. If you even have the choice to eat poorly in your kitchen, you're already fighting a losing battle. Throw out any junk food you have in your fridge/freezer or pantry, and go to the grocery store to stock up on the foods recommended on your plan. A good coach will provide you with food groups that are both healthy and satisfy your sweet tooth.
Now that everything is aligned and you're set up for success, remaining relentlessly consistent and patient is the key. It didn't take you a week to become extremely out of shape, so why would you expect to be in the best shape of your life after a week? This is the PROCESS. Like mentioned above, remaining consistent for a month should always be the first target! Let those month 1 results add to your internal flame to keep being consistent, to keep being patient, and to continue trusting the PROCESS. Before you know it, you've built better habits. You no longer even look at all the processed, high sugar foods you once craved. You'll start going to the gym even on days you feel exhausted because it's now built into your daily routine.
When you start to understand that your fitness and health is something us humans can actually control, you'll quit making excuses to why you're out of shape, and any temptation that goes against your fitness and health becomes irrelevant. The only one to blame for your current health is yourself, luckily for you, the only person to get you out of your current circumstances is YOU.
There's NEVER a bad time to start. What kills me the most is seeing people in the prime of their lives (18-30) actively choosing to not care and setting themselves up for health issues later on. Your fitness and health should be looked upon with longevity as priority number 1. With obesity in the United States soaring over 40%, we need to now, more than ever, guide the youth and current generations in a healthier direction.
The real benefits of following the PROCESS to having a healthy physique goes far beyond just "looking good". We're talking about having a healthier self-esteem, increased confidence, healthier hormone balances, therapeutic (reducing stress and depression), help improve brain function and increase memory, better sleep, promote a better sex life, etc. Do I need to continue? These are all benefits you could experience from following the PROCESS of regular exercise and healthy eating habits. Oh, did I mention looking good AF?
If you read this far, and still have an excuse to why you aren't willing to go through the process, you're most likely suffering from a fixed mindset. To help those stuck in a fixed mindset, I'm going to cover a bit of the Kaizen Principle. The Kaizen Principle is to endeavor to create tiny incremental improvements in your daily life with an aim for mastery over performance, while forsaking external comparisons, unless such comparisons inspire.
3 key operands are:
Tiny incremental improvements
Mastery over performance
Tiny incremental improvements daily, meaning what have you done today to improve whatever needs improving? You are your only competition , and the PROCESS will drive that change.
Mastery over performance: be the best at something YOU can be. Effort is between you and you, nobody else. Mastery doesn't care about how you are judged by others. It is completely YOU-oriented and not centered on performance or competitive rankings.
External comparison, unless used for inspiration, needs to be extinguished from your daily routine. If you're aiming to improve your fitness and finish your first month of training, it's probably not a good idea to compare your bikini body to some Instagram fitness model with a few million followers. A quote from one of my current reads (Unscripted: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Entrepreneurship by MJ DeMarco), "Comparison is the path to perpetual misery."
Last but not least, don't let a little success get to your head. Never allow the thoughts of "I'm successful" or "I've made it" get in the way of exerting more effort, because both suggest fixed permanence where you can sleep in, show up last, and leave first. So If you're receiving compliments and raves from people about your success, thank them, then ask how you can get better! Never praise talent or ability, either for yourself or anyone else. Instead praise the PROCESS. Meaning praise improvements, habits, growth, and efforts. Praise how far you've come, and one day, you'll praise your results.
To me, the function and duty of a quality human being is the sincere and honest development of one's potential. ~ Bruce Lee, Martial Artist