Each week I get together with the DF team for a (always challenging!) workout. It’s a great way for us to spend time together, discuss training protocols and test out new exercises while working on our own fitness goals.
The sessions give us a chance to train, eat together and talk nutrition. We get to pick each other’s brains and share ideas on what’s working for ourselves and the clients we’re coaching.
I’ve come to love spending time with the team. And they form a large part of my social network.
What I hadn’t realised was that by hanging out in this way we’ve been taking advantage of one of the most powerful tools available to impact out health and fitness.
Several years ago Dr Nicholas Christakis, a pioneer in the field of health and social networks gave a fascinating Ted Talk on the hidden influence our social networks have on us.
He shared how the size of our body, and even how happy we are is strongly influenced by the people we spend the most time with.
I’m sure you’ve experienced this for yourself. You know, like when you spend time with that particular person and you come away feeling drained. Like you’re holding the weight of the world on your shoulders.
So there’s a strong relationship between the attitudes and actions of the people around you and your own.
One thing we know is that being part of an ‘exercise orientated community’ can play a key role in developing exercise habits that you’ll stick with.
So, if the people you spend the most time with are critical in your own development and progress towards your goals, and impact your attitude toward everything from the food you eat, the exercise you do and the hobbies you partake in – if you’re looking to improve any area of your life (such as transforming your body) it’s probably a good idea to consider who you’re hanging out with (your social network) and evaluate how they’re contributing (or detracting) from you reaching your goals.
Tough to hear that right?
I’ll never forget the video my dad made me watch featuring one of his trips back home to Nigeria (yep, we’re talking VHS).
Once I’d got past his notoriously bad camera handling skills the shot panned round and focused on a field of goats, hanging out kicking back and chewing grass.
Pretty normal behaviour, right? But one of the goats looked, well, more like a dog than a goat. As the camera zoomed in I could see the dog clearly, laid down with the goats just hanging out, kicking back, chewing grass.
Now, I’m not sure the moral of the story was. But the takeaway I got was if you’re my dad and you’re going to shoot video make sure you’ve got a decent tripod to hand.
If sickness, obesity and unhappiness are all ‘contagious’ then so are health, leanness and happiness.
And simply by spending more of our time with healthy, lean, happy people the chances of improving how you look and feel increase dramatically.
(If you train with us at DF you’ve probably noticed a huge part of the DF programme includes the social support (your coaches) and community (your fellow gym buddies) to help support you on your fitness journey).
So in summary, you don’t even have to eat vegetables and exercise regularly. Just make sure you hang out regularly with someone who does! 😉
Think it’s time to start surrounding yourself with more people that’ll support you towards the health, fitness and body you want to achieve? Apply for a chat with us today and find out more about how we can help you get back to having the body you want.