First Cut / Last Resort

With summer time starting and the days getting longer, I get to watch the gym slow down as people find alternatives to their normal routine.  The thought that alternative activities are the same as working out, may be a flawed concept.

When I think back over the years and how often I try to convince people that they don’t have to give up their workout schedule just because the weather is nice or because there is a cookout or party.  Even though the fact that it’s going to be light out longer and they likely wouldn’t miss out on any of the food or fun, their fitness routine is usually still the first thing that gets cut.

Over the years, I’ve watched many people cut fitness out for the summer and end up never returning or it taking years to get back at it.  It’s super hard to get started after you’ve been off for a while and you’ve lost some of the ground that you have gained.  (Remember we start to decline in seven days) The good news is that if you come back, your body remembers and will find its way back to where you were, though it may take some work. 

I do wonder why fitness is the first thing cut all the time.  When you think about it, if the weather is bad, we can’t come in, if the weather is good, we can’t come in.  If it’s a holiday or the ultimate end of the year holiday season where people anticipate gaining 5-10lbs (really) or if there is an event, all of these are reasons not to workout. It’s interesting to me how the thing that runs everything else is the first thing dropped. Conversely, exercise is the last resort if every fad diet and pill fails, and we are left with the reality of where we really are and what it’s really going to take to fix it, then we workout.  Then if it takes more than two weeks, we’re mad, and whatever we’re doing “sucks.”  Getting out of shape or becoming overweight doesn’t just happen overnight; it takes time and is the result of your habits. So remember that doing the same thing that got you where you are, and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity. The difficult thing about changing your lifestyle is just that, having to change the default habits and learn new ones. We normally dislike the catalyst of the change, and in this case, it’s getting in shape.

 By the same token, making wholesale drastic change will certainly cause us to fail also. I always think that finding someone who has already done what you’re trying to do can give you great insight into what needs to be done and how to be successful.  But if you just try to implement the laundry list of advice, your probability of failing is high. That’s why having a guide to help you to make incremental change, by telling you what changes to make and when to make them, is so important.  Incremental changes are usually more sustainable and our success is mostly built around how sustainable our plan is overall.  The easier it is to continue doing what we’re doing, the better chance for success. That’s what lifestyle change is about—it’s about doing it forever. Find a guide who can help you create a sustainable plan, and get started on your FOREVER!