When it comes to real change getting started is of course the real hurdle to hop. The bulk of the fitness world talks motivation rather than honesty. It is as though, if we are to be truthful with ourselves it could kill our chances and that we should just stick to fanning the flames of hope.
In our experience as personal trainers here at our Ottawa studio the situation deserves a closer look. In fact, sometimes potential clients we meet are actually ‘over motivated’. What we mean by this is they want something but aren’t totally honest with themselves about the commitment end of things. This doesn’t mean they weren’t in some sense committed only that it wasn’t part of their decision process.This is a shame when you consider how many others hold themselves back from ever taking this first step because they feel they lack the amount of motivation needed.
We suggest two key personal inner exercises when considering getting serious about ones fitness.
1. If your regular answer to why you aren’t exercising regularly is “I don’t have time” you need honesty and self-acceptance not motivation. If it was a priority you would schedule it just like anything else you do every week. Accept that you haven’t and find out why it isn’t on your basic list of priorities. This leads you to the real issues like confrontation and perhaps some sort of fear. Then you can make things right rather than sticking with denial, avoidance or worse getting drawn into superficial marketing hype to mask your lack of confidence.
2. Stop minimizing the issue and just take it for what it is in the now, no more – no less. Minimizing not only feeds procrastination it does something much worse. Minimizing your physical state can lead to unreasonable expectations which leads to disappointment. We as personal trainers see this cycle all the time. “I am not that out of shape”, “I can get in shape in a few months”, “I didn’t get in that good shape in a few months”, “I can’t sustain this”, “fitness isn’t for me”. Accept that it isn’t about getting in shape it is about staying in shape so you realize that it will take an honest rather than superficial commitment.
The real reason why the average individual isn’t exercising regularly year in year out isn’t laziness it is that motivation and willpower naturally ride high and low at times. Commitment and honesty are values which stay firm if they are real. Fitness isn’t a date it is a marriage between you and your body. If you treat this marriage poorly then the connection weakens and becomes sick.
If you want to be strong and fit forget about making up stuff to make yourself feel better and just start treating yourself better.
Be well, be strong,
Andrew and Tierney