Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Are you waiting till the planets are in alignment?

Hello, there, long-time no blog!

Well, I tend to write my blogs about things that I am interested in and concerned about and, usually, have experience of, with a view to helping people get fitter, healthier and happier.

This blog is no exception. This blog is a call-to-arms! A challenge to all those people who are waiting. Waiting for a Monday, waiting till after that party, after Christmas, after the treats are out of the house... Waiting to start that "diet", start going to the gym, start getting fit and healthy and changing your life. 

Here's a question for you? How long have you been waiting?  I'm 40 this year - umm, there's a time for reflection, if ever there was one! How long have I been waiting to get my diet under control, make exercise a habit, just sort that last thing out and everything will be perfect. Did I tell you I'm going to be 40 this year - that's about 20 years then!

Now, don't get me wrong. I don't mean I haven't ever started that diet or exercise regime  - I am a personal trainer after all! But there is always a temporary feel about it and a, oh, well, here comes Monday, I'll start again. or next Monday, or I'll wait till the planets are aligned, then I'll ditch the junk, eat 7 portions of vegetables every day, hit the gym 3 times per week, give up alcohol, sugar, caffeine, lose 12lbs and feel better. Oops, didn't work, never mind, here comes Monday again!!

Is this just me? Or are you on this perpetual cycle? If only the circumstances were different, it would all happen and things would be fine! Well, let me tell you a secret - I'm not doing this anymore. I am NOT on this cycle, I am not waiting. I am doing.

BUT, big BUT - I am not trying to change everything all at once.  I am doing what I can. This month I am increasing my exercise. I like exercise (I am a personal trainer!) so this seemed the easiest place to start.  I look at my diary and I fill in what I can do that week. Sometimes, it runs to plan, sometimes it doesn't. Like today, for example, today says CYCLE but it's raining. So today, I am doing admin and I will CYCLE tomorrow. Monday said gym 6.30am - Monday morning, I was knackered so I stayed in bed but I ran later on that day and I will gym on Thursday. I do what I can and I don't beat myself up when it doesn't run to plan. Also, and very importantly, I do what I LIKE doing and I don't overdo it - slowly working up the time, distance, reps etc.

Because I am not focused on changing everything at once - exercise, diet, sleep, stress, alcohol, it is working. Stop waiting for all outside factors to be perfect and then go hell-for-leather to change everything so you have the perfect body/lifestyle/fitness by a certain date. If this is you (and it was me for a very long time) I bet you did this last year at about the same time, and in January and what about just before the summer holidays? Did it work? No, so try a different approach.

Was it Einstein who said "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

Make small changes. Change one or two things each week. Make those changes stick then move down the list.  Write a list - in fact, write three lists (or more). Title lists - exercise, weight (if you want to lose weight), nutrition, health, etc. and under each heading write changes that you would like to make. For example, exercise - run x2 week, go to a pilates class, nutrition - reduce caffeine, eat more veg, drink more water, health - spend 30 minutes relaxing, get to bed by 10.30pm. Whatever is important to you to make changes for your health put on the lists. Make each change realistic and as specific as you can. Then instigate two or three of these changes per week.

Big things will happen from small changes.  Don't make it difficult for yourself, just work on the two or three realistic changes per week. Do the exercise you like doing. Don't beat yourself up when things don't go to plan - you don't have to start again from the beginning, just keep doing. Keep a journal and look back and how far you've come each week and what you have achieved. Evaluate and evolve your lists and keep doing.

Stop waiting, start doing.

Get healthy, fit and happy, my friends.

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