When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Going
When you started your journey to a healthier new you, you were ready to take on the world. At that moment you were ready to workout five times per week, plan and prepare nutritious meals and make the ...
Then life happened: your children’s after school activities made you cancel a few workouts, your job became more hectic, you stopped focusing on getting five balanced meals and you caught a cold virus that made it hard for you to find the motivation to exercise daily.
Eventually, negative thoughts started to frequent your mind during your workouts. Why do I struggle to change when everyone around me does it so easily? Why is it so hard for me to stick with my workouts and so simple for everyone else? Why can’t I get the results like others I see?
Every year these same thoughts keep millions of Americans from reaching their weight loss and athletic goals. The reason is because we give up; we start listening to our own negative thoughts. We convince ourselves when obstacles arise that we have failed. We hold these negative thoughts as “proof” we don’t have what it takes to succeed. And with each failure, we see ourselves getting further away from our goals. The truth is the success thrives on failure. In order to achieve getting the body and healthier lifestyle we want, we have to accept setbacks and obstacles as part of the game of changing old habits into new.
Once we start believing that change means overcoming setbacks to our workout and nutrition plan, then we can start preparing for any obstacle thrown our way. No longer will we feel we can’t succeed. Instead, we will know it is all part of the process and find a way to move past it to reach our goals. Failure is the “proof” that we are part of a changing process – a life altering change in our health. “Proof” that we are on the right path to reaching our ultimate goal. The choice is ours: either we whine, give up and run scared when obstacles arise, or we take charge and find a way around the setback and continue on our way. Like the saying goes, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” Meaning, you have the choice to give up, or you can acknowledge what you have already achieved, how far you’ve come and what the future still holds. And by doing this, no longer is there reason to give up but further reason to persist.
And, when the going gets tough, we all have to remember six important tips to help us succeed and surpass our obstacles.
1. Don’t give up: The minute you give up is the minute you have let your failure control you. Instead, take control and remember why you want to change. Then find a way to get there. Consult your trainer on ways you can overcome barriers.
2. Accept the ups and downs: No journey is perfect so you can’t expect changing old habits into new healthier habits to be without a few bumps. It took years to establish those habits, allow time for your new habits to become easy and natural.
3. Give yourself permission to fail: Sometimes it’s hard not to be perfect. But even the greatest athletes aren’t on their “A” game every practice or event. Learn from what you did wrong and keep going.
4. Work on Positive Thinking: Negative thoughts only lead to a lower self-image. And a lower self-image will make you give up on yourself when you have the power to change.
5. Continue to Just Do It: In order to change, you can’t just stop; you have to do something – and keep doing it – in order to achieve anything.
6. Keep in mind you aren’t alone: All those thoughts about everyone else having it so simple aren’t true. Even personal trainers have obstacles that get in their way and make it hard to stay motivated. The person you think has achieved success so easily may understand more about what you are going through then you think.
There is no secret formula for success, no easy pathway or short cut. Success is, and always will be, one thing – Hard Work – but it’s work worth conquering.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Pete Piranio, BS, CSCS, Owner of Fitness Together and Piranio Fitness Systems, Inc is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, from the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
For more information, check out www.fitnesstogether.net.
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