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Committing to Change – a Beginner’s Guide to Getting Healthy

We’ve all got it: those few extra pounds we wish we didn’t. In a day and age where “body positivity” is being thrown around as a defense for obesity, it’s almost taboo to even touch on. But let’s face it – most of us are overweight, and all the trends are only pointing away from us as a culture finding a solution. When getting your favorite fast food DELIVERED TO YOUR DOOR is as simple as a few taps on your phone (because drive-thrus are neither quick nor convenient enough anymore), the never-ending pursuit of accommodation is what continually feeds the “NOW-NOW-NOW” immediacy we’ve come to require as a people. That sums up the whole issue in a nutshell, doesn’t it? If getting IN shape was as easy as getting OUT of shape, we’d all be walking around like marble statues. Countless hopeful gym newbies sign up with some New-Years-Resolution-Get-Fit deal at their local big box gym, but fall off by the time Valentine’s day candy goes on sale in mid-February. Why? Because fitness is a process, not a purchase. My own fitness experience follows along that story line too. With fitness videos that work you out in 90 minutes getting replaced by the NEW and IMPROVED version that does it in 60 minutes, then again replaced by the 20-minute version, what’s the message there? That all I need is 20 minutes of jumping around a few days a week to look like the guy on the cover of the fitness magazines? Count me in! Wrong.

The moral of the story here is you have to mentally prepare yourself, more so than physically, for ALL of the effort it takes actually to commit to change. It’s more than a diet; it’s more than jumping around for 20 minutes, it’s more than mindlessly throwing weights onto bars and moving them around for a little while. It’s taking the time to research and understand just what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. It’s a mental switch you flip that says, “OK, yes, I’m doing this, no matter what it takes. And I’m not stopping until I get where I want to be.” That’s the hardest part, folks. We get frustrated and discouraged because whatever “it” is, “it” doesn’t work for us. So, we give up. We continually make excuses and rationalize our way out of following through with these commitments and promises we make to ourselves, and until we’re MENTALLY prepared to follow through with them, we’ll just end up spinning our wheels. Don’t quit because the “gains” aren’t just rolling in. Don’t get discouraged because the scale doesn’t immediately say what you want it to say and the person in the mirror doesn’t immediately look how you want them to look. It’s ok to not go 100mph right from the start. It’s ok to not even EXPECT yourself to go 100mph right from the start. You’ve gotta crawl before you can walk, and walk before you can run. Commit to the change, however large or small; it’s all significant. Remember, the keyword is COMMITMENT. Not 50% effort, not 90%, but ALL in, FULLY committed. Start your healthy lifestyle by just committing to healthy choices, and I promise those decisions will take you exactly where you want to go.

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