Changing our diet and exercise habits are two of the hardest things to do in life. Why? Well, there are many reasons.
It’s easy for me to sit here as a coach and say “you really just need to stop eating so much junk” or “if you would just be more consistent in your eating habits and move your butt more you’d reach your goals,” or “food is fuel, don’t worry how it taste.” However, in reality…. It’s hard as crap to do those things and hard as crap to change our habits and ways of thinking. Fact is, our habits fit very neatly into our current lives and well, nutrition and exercise may throw us out of our comfort zone, or just may not fit in our current lifestyle.
I get it.
Trust me, I really get it.
For my entire life I have battled an addictive personality and numerous addictions. (Alcohol, narcotics, prescription drugs, smoking… you name it I’ve done it, enjoyed it, and tried to be the best at it.)
With that being said, I’ve grown a lot, learned a lot. If you know me, chances are you can’t imagine that I was ever that person. Now my life revolves around health and wellness and helping others. The opposite of all those things that I listed above. So, what happened, what helped me change my habits to healthy ones?
The first thing is I determined my WHY. (NOTE: I didn’t realize this at the time) I truly wanted to change in the past but, honestly, I had no motivation to do so. Like I said, I enjoyed being that person that partied like a rock star, literally. Then, my wife and I got pregnant with our first child and that was my why. Why did I want to change? Because, if I wanted to be around to see my kids grow up, I had to not only quit the drugs and partying, but also I needed to lose about a 130lbs. (Yep, I weighed 325lbs and yes, I am only 5’8”) And I did, and for the most part I have kept it off for almost 17 years now.
The struggle is real!
Thus began the struggle that I STILL face daily. I’ll be real honest here, my self-image is terrible; still to this day! If you guys have ever read my blog post about my social media name, Trainingthefatkid, you know that to this day when I look in the mirror I am still the same person that I have ALWAYS been. The little fat kid that was made fun of most of my life because of my body.
It is HARD to overcome that. In fact, I haven’t entirely.
But, daily I try. Daily I choose to get up and work on me. Now, I’m not saying that I spend all day wallowing in my misery. In fact, it is not like that at all. But, I do struggle and I do think about how I can be better every day.
Let’s stop talking about me…
Change is hard. Very hard. I can throw out things like “you got this” “you can do it” but, maybe you don’t. Maybe you need your why? Or maybe, rather most likely, what you need is baby steps.
If you are going to attempt to quit smoking, give up soda, eat more protein and veggies, cut calories, exercise more, and call you mom daily, chances are you will fail. Why? Because, this will overwhelm you. Studies show that the more things you try to change at once the less likely you are to succeed.
So… baby steps. Perhaps, cut that soda to once a week, let that become a habit, then work on adding more veggies, when that becomes a habit, maybe add 10 minutes of exercise per day. Baby, steps.
Another thing, and this has been super hard for me, STOP beating yourself up if you slip up. You know what, it’s ok if you had a piece of cake at your sister’s wedding! It’s your sister’s wedding for Pete’s sake! Move on with your life.
Now, I am not saying that because you had cake you can get away with eating cake every day. That would be a poor choice. What I am saying is, relax! Enjoy life! Make gradual changes toward healthy choices that will make you a better person. Work on your body, but also, work on you mind and soul! Nourish your spirit with positive people and positive thoughts.