Have you ever stuck to a diet that was going so well… until that weekend away where it all went to pot?
Have you ever got into exercise and started feeling fitter… only to miss a workout, lose momentum and struggle to get motivated?
Have you ever lost a few pounds and started to see a difference… only to lose control for a day and end up back where you started?
The good news is you’re not alone. And these ups and downs are totally normal and part of the process of changing your body.
There is however one difference between those who stay down and those who pick themselves up and go on to make significant progress.
A couple of days ago I met with a potential client down at the DF studio. Let’s call her Sarah.
Sarah came in to see if I could help her get back in shape after having 2 kids and dedicating her life to her family. The kids are now getting older which has given Sarah more time to focus on herself.
Like many, Sarah was interested in changing her health. She was interested in looking better and feeling fitter. And she was very interested in losing fat and getting more toned.
But there was a problem.
Because her dedication to her goals was only at the ‘interested’ level she only managed to stick to things (exercise, good eating habits) when it was convenient. When it suited her. Basically when it was easy.
As a result she’d take a few steps forward then something would come up (like a weekend away, or a busy day at work) and she’d slip back into old habits that weren’t in line with her goals.
Until now Sarah had thought that just because she was interested in achieving certain goals that her interest was enough.
But she realised during our conversation that to see visible changes in her body required so much more than an interest. What Sarah lacked was commitment to herself and her goals.
At the time we met Sarah was about a 5 on the commitment scale – a key indicator to how likely someone is a to achieve their goals.
Every-time someone’s lower than an 8 on the commitment scale I know our programme won’t help. Because the goal just isn’t important enough to get the commitment, time and energy it requires to see serious results.
So in Sarah’s case I had to turn her away. I knew we couldn’t help.
I don’t know what happened to Sarah. I’d imagine she went and joined a £10/month gym with ‘no commitment and no contract’ under the illusion she was doing something to move towards her goals.
But unfortunately, no investment means no commitment. And no commitment means no results.
The moment you’re committed you accept no excuses. You find a way. You ask ‘how can I’ rather than telling yourself ‘I can’t because…’
You’ll still have that weekend away. You still have the busy days at work. But because you’re committed you find a way. You get creative about staying active, and stick to the foods any way of eating that best supports your goal.
When you’re committed you stop kidding yourself. You don’t let yourself believe that just because you’re on holiday you can eat and drink what you like. Sure you still let your guard down a little. But you remain mindful of working towards the goals that are important to you.
It all comes back to your goals and what you want to achieve. If you don’t have a focus – a meaningful goal – it’s really hard to commit to a plan of action (see better goal setting for better results article).
Unfortunately it usually takes a fear of something, like losing your health, your independence or booking a holiday and realising you’re going to have to reveal the body you’d rather keep hidden.
It’s usually not until you (or someone close) has a health scare that you take stock.
If you’re ready to step up. If you’re ready to stop being interested in improving the way you look and feel and ready to get serious then I’d encourage you to make the commitment now.
It starts by acknowledging that you’ve had enough. That you’re fed up with not having the health, fitness and vitality you want.
By admitting that you’re sick of not being happy with how you look. And you’re done with not being comfortable in your clothes.
That you’re not going to be the slowest in the walking or skiing group and never want to feel like you’re holding others back.
That you’re not willing to be last in your running group or lagging behind when you’re out on the bike.
And that as of today you’re 100% committed to doing what it takes to improve. You’re committed to taking the actions that will get you healthier, fitter and stronger.
It’s time to put your new commitment into practice.
I want to challenge you to set one or two times aside this week where you’re going to commit to doing something positive for you. Something that’s going to support progress towards the health and fitness goals you’d like to achieve in the next few months.
Whatever you chose, please, reserve some time for yourself. Put it in the diary and commit to taking that time no matter what.
I know it’s hard to stay focused. I know there are going to be obstacles that’ll try and stand in your way. And if you were only interested in achieving your fitness goals there are plenty of setbacks that could easily be the thing that prevent you from moving forward.
But if it’s important to you I know you’ll make the commitment. And obstacles will become things you only notice when you take your eyes off what you’re trying to achieve.