This month marks the 4-year anniversary of a turning point in my life. Four years ago, I decided once and for all to lose those extra pounds and get into shape. You see, I was facing my 40th birthday and I remembered that on my 30th birthday, I had promised myself, “When I turn 40, I want to be in really good shape.” I figured ‘no problemo’ I have a whole decade to pull it off, but somehow I found myself 60 days before my 40th birthday making a frantic call to a professional for some help.
Not that I had been a total slacker that whole decade. In fact, I honestly tried really hard all through my 30s to get into shape. I tried all the fad diets. I joined gyms and even bought a Bowflex (I mean it worked for the Bowflex guy, right?). I exercised regularly. I always tried to choose the lean meat and the low-fat/non-fat versions of my grocery store favorites, etc.
Still, as hard as I tried, I just seemed to continue slipping backward, rather than moving forward. At one point, I was 230 pounds, my hair was starting to thin and go grey, I had high blood pressure and I was sick at least a couple times a year. I was headed down a path that was not looking good.
So, when my 40th birthday rolled around, it was obvious to me that none of my efforts were producing the results I wanted. It was time to try something different. I called a fitness studio that was just about to open and explained my situation. I went down there thinking my personal trainer would just run me around a bit and ‘bada bing bada boom’ in a couple months, I would look like the Bowflex guy. Well, I did make incredible progress by my birthday, but I quickly learned, it takes a lot more than that to look like the Bowflex guy!
As it turned out, this ‘birthday’ gift I gave myself became a turning point for me. It was only just the start, but today, four years later, I am stronger, leaner, more fit, more healthy, and…I am wearing smaller jeans than I did in high school. Better yet, I have not been sick or even seen the doctor for an illness in the last 4 years. To top it off, the graying and thinning of my hair has slowed to a snail’s pace. People who knew me back then will tell you I look like a different person. But, to me, what amazes me the most is that I feel like a different person. I have never felt so good and it just keeps getting better.
So, what’s the secret? What clicked? Looking back, I just did not have the right information on how to get into shape. I have learned so much in the last 4 years about health, fitness and nutrition that it is crazy. And, now that I’ve learned what really works, I am passionate about helping other people that I know are in the same spot I was four years ago. I know how frustrating it is to work out and work out and sacrifice your favorite foods – all with minimal results. You feel like you try so hard and still you get no where.
You can have the body you have always wanted by following this simple formula:
Proper Nutrition + Proper Exercise + Consistency + Time = The body you have always wanted
Proper Nutrition: This one is key and it is something I was missing all along and didn’t realize. You can have the best trainer in the world and you can workout all the time, until the end of time, but without the right nutrition, you will never be in the shape you want. When it came to food, I tried to do the right thing to the best of my knowledge, but I didn’t have the knowledge I needed to support my goals.
Proper Exercise: If you want to have something nice and toned to look at once you get lean, you need some muscle tone. Exercise along with proper nutrition will speed up the process – and here’s a secret – it doesn’t have to be a lot of exercise. I work out 4 times per week for 45 minutes each and that is it. The type of exercise all depends on your goal. You should be getting measurable results from your exercise program. If you’re not, it’s time to stop and take a look at what you’re doing.
I hope that the first two items nutrition and exercise are obvious. These next two are equally as important.
Consistency: Fitness is like a savings account. If you save only one month out of the year (say January) and then you don’t save anything for the rest of the year, come December you may be a little disappointed. But if you saved every month consistently, you’ll have something to be excited about come December.
Time: Now, what if you saved consistently the next year and the year after that? It all builds on top and you get in better and better shape. I can tell you for the past 4 years I have rarely missed a workout, I am always working on improving my nutrition and I am in better shape than I was the year before.
What I have learned from my own experience is that there is no magic bullet or quick fix when it comes to health and fitness. There is no pill, potion or magic machine that will give you the healthy body you desire. The only way to do it is through proper nutrition, exercise, consistency and time. If you leave any one of those things out of the equation, you will not reach your goal.
Looking back, the sad thing is that I waited 10 years to take real action. The only thing I regret is that I did not start sooner (taking advantage of the time factor).
It just takes a little knowledge and coaching to get you started, then your body takes over naturally. The key is to just get started and don’t wait for tomorrow because tomorrow may be too late.
The best gift you can give yourself is to stop beating yourself up about how you can’t reach your goal, and instead, spend a little time learning why it’s not working and how easily it can be adjusted to get you where you want to be.
I invite you to call or email me and let me share all the things I have learned so you can have a head start and get where you want to be faster.