10 Lessons to learn from the fit and healthy
I have devoted my life to improving the human body, how it looks and how it functions. And those human bodies I work with, are yours and mine. To do this, you have to have quite an understanding of how the best functioning/looking bodies in the world got there. And that is what I'm going to share with you today - how we, the fit and healthy think. And how we, the fit and healthy got here. You may want to take note, afterall - we have achieved what you're trying to get.
- Change takes time. The fit and healthy understand that changes are not overnight, muscle gain, strength gains, physique changes, mindset changes are all part of the journey and that this journey does not start and end in a 12 week transformation challenge. Olympic athletes understand that they need to train for YEARS to achieve the lofty heights of their medal winning peers. Bodybuilders understand they need 12 months of training to present a better physique on stage than they did the year before. Yogis understand they need years of practice to achieve various asanas and they understand it can take years to lengthen a very short and tight muscle. Recovered Eating Disorder folks understand it takes years to recover a healthy mindset around food and the body. So why should this be any different for you, why should you get quick results and why should you think you're a failure when you don't.
- Effort = outcome. The fit and healthy understand exactly what effort is required to get a particular outcome. When we tell you that power walking isn't going to get you "toned", we're not telling you that just to be mean, we're telling you, because you asked us to help you with your goal - and most of us do know what we're talking about when we say "up the intensity" ... or "lift some heavy weights". We also know what outcome you're going to get if you eat muffins every day because you don't want to "feel deprived". If you don't put the right effort in, then you will not get your outcome. Simple. Walk your dog for fun, not for exercise.
- It's not 80% diet, 20% exercise. Actually I don't even think half the fit and healthy understand this. To have that lean toned body, that functions well - it is actually 25% mindset + 25% lifestyle + 25% training + 25% nutrition. If your mindset isn't in the game, you will struggle. If your lifestyle doesn't allow for proper recovery or allow you to even make healthy food or exercise, then you will struggle. If your training isn't geared towards your goals AND considers your physiological load, you will struggle. If your nutrition doesn't support your exercise and your body, you will struggle. All bodybuilders know that rest and recovery is where muscle growth is made. The 80% diet / 20% exercise mentality just supports fad dieting and powerwalking. If you want to end up sick, soft and miserable do it that way.
- You will not get big and bulky lifting weights. You need to realise that we actually lift weights so we kinda know what we're talking about. You know those big bulky bodybuilders - that is NOT what you are going to look like. You don't even know what they do to get to that size. Some of them DO take performance enhancing drugs, yes. Most of them have been training like that for decades, some of them have that type of DNA that helps them grow big. Good grief, some of them have been muscular since they were kids. You need to pick up some decent sized weights and start lifting - because 1kg of muscle takes up way less space than 1kg of fat. AND muscle is metabolically active tissue, which means - it eats your carbs and fats! You need to lift weights (or your own body weight) to "tone".
- When you have hit your goal, don't change anything. The fit and healthy understand that they achieved their goal just by living their lives and once the goal is achieved that they continue to live their lives. Their lives are to eat good nourishing food, their lives are also to exercise appropriately - they also have sex, get boozed, play with the kids, buy houses, go to work etc. They don't eat a particular way and then completely change it because they're "done". It's just life. This brings us back to point #3 - 25% mindset is required to enable you to live your life in healthy ways...permanently.
- We have bad days/weeks. The fit and healthy have slow results sometimes, we overeat sometimes, we have to decrease our weights sometimes and sometimes we can't run as fast or lift as heavy as what we did last week. Who gives a shit, that's what life is about. If you slept bad, yeah, you're probably going to have a less than optimal workout the next day. The truely fit and healthy get over it and get on with their life (sex, kids, DIY...whatever you want)
- We actually like healthy food. Yep, the fit and healthy like eating well. You may see it as depriving or whatever you like, but again lets come back to point #3, your mindset. You will also like eating healthy food, but not if you keep giving it negative names like "diet", "rabbit food" or "boring". If it is any of those things to you, then you need a better coach to help teach you how to enjoy healthy food. When you enjoy it, you don't need to seek out treats so often.
- We know what a treat is. The fit and healthy know what treats are, and guess what folks - we do actually eat them and we eat them guilt free. I ate potato chips for dinner last night. The world didn't end. We can eat treats because we understand points #1 through #7 and we live them.
- We know that the scale is the most pathetic way to monitor your results. We see ourselves in our own photos, weighing heavier but looking smaller. We know that we are what we see, not what we weigh. We use skinfold measurements and photographs as our "weigh ins", we don't do it weekly, and we sure as hell don't do it daily.
- And finally, its just something we do as part of life. Its not a project, not a thing that needs to be started and finished, not a destination. It's just what we do, and we do it because we like taking care of ourselves. We don't like starting and stopping, we don't like going on a new diet after Christmas. We hate that shit, we like just making it part of life. We're not obsessed or weird. We're not abnormal. We just do it, just like you brush your teeth every day, we just live well everyday because we know that's what it takes to set yourself free from the diet and deprivation treadmill.