Be Positive, Be Patient, Be Persistent

So you want to start life change but don’t know where to start…

Someone asked how they could get started losing weight and working toward positive life change. After some discussion and my advice they seemed pretty disappointed. Isn’t that going to take a long time? Is there a way to speed up the process? Is there any other way that’s “easier”?

No. Plain and simple. If you do anything worth doing, it is going to take time. If you set the type of goals you should be setting, it should take you a long time and A LOT of persistent and consistent action to get there. If your goals are big enough, you will want to wake up early and stay up late so you can accomplish them. If you’re not losing sleep over your goals, they aren’t high enough…

My advice for getting started. Just know right now, it isn’t going to be easy. It isn’t going to be fast. There are ZERO shortcuts, but in the end, it is worth every step forward. No pills, no magic, no products, just pure hard work, determination and persistent daily action toward a predetermined destination.

  1. You have to have a positive mental attitude. Tell yourself- I can do this. I will do this and start taking action. A positive attitude won’t take the action for you, but it will make it easier to take the action. When you hit a rough spot, if you have trained yourself to be positive, you will overcome adversity faster and be able to get back on track.
  2. You have to know going in this isn’t going to be easy. You have to be patient. You have to let time and action take its course. You are going to have to take a lot of action without seeing a result, knowing the results will come as long as you follow your plan. When I’m working with people on their fitness and health goals, the biggest obstacle we see when they start is the lack of instant gratification. The scale doesn’t go down, they get bored because they aren’t seeing the instant results or they don’t go from couch to marathon runner overnight. Know from the beginning this is going to take time. It will ease your frustrations as you get started.
  3. Persistence is the true key to success. Failure is a part of life. You will miss a day eating or walking or running. Don’t beat yourself up. My original goal was don’t miss two days in a row. Then it became to go 3 days in a row. Then it morphed into don’t miss two days in a week on to don’t miss any days in a week. I “won” a lot of weeks just by holding myself accountable and “missing” one day a week. If I had one bad day in a week, I felt like a superhero! When I missed more than one day in a week, I would regroup and promise myself I would make next week better. And to this day, I still carry this philosophy with me. If I can have 6 good days out of 7, I’m feel I’m doing awesome. My best months are when I look at my calendar and realize I only had 2 “bad” days. This gives me motivation to continue forward to my goals.

I know this sounds boring. I know it sounds like it is going to take forever. And really, it took me over a year to start running and almost 2 to go from my couch to running my first half marathon. But I have followed this guide from day one and if all goes to plan, this plan will have taken me from 400 pounds to 100 mile finisher in 4 years. As I look at it daily, it seems like an eternity. As I look back in reflection, it seems like an “overnight success”. Don’t let the time it is going to take derail you. Focus on the day ahead and keep taking action. If you miss, pick yourself up and try again. The only way to fail is to quit. The only way to succeed is to keep moving forward One Step at a Time and refuse to give up on yourself. Set high goals, take consistent action and persist over time, one day you will wake up and you will have become the person you wanted to be.

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