“If it’s important you’ll find a way. If it’s not, you’ll find an excuse.” ~ Ryan Blair
What keeps you from working out? If you are like me, you have plenty of good reasons why you don’t work out. It’s winter now and I don’t like the cold. So I am not walking or running. Fresh fruits and vegetables cost more. I needed to finish the last episode of Sherlock so I stayed up an extra 45 minutes. People are extremely good at rationalizing the reasons why they continue to use bad habits.
In reality, the reason people live unhealthy lifestyles is because they choose to live that way. Here is an example of someone who could have given up, but didn’t. Last week driving to work in sub-30 degree weather I saw a man in a jogging suit running in the dawn sunlight. At first the person did not register as a jogger because the running style was unorthodox. I realised this man had some sort of condition that impacted either his bones or muscles which caused his arms and legs to move in a jerky motion. He wasn’t moving very fast. He wasn’t moving very smooth.
Yet he was out there. He was running. He was taking care of the body God gave him. He had no excuses. He did not give up and say health was out of his reach. He persevered and struggled and beat down the excuses.
The power of will this man possessed is available to everyone. I might not be an olympic runner, but I can run. If he can do it with his condition I can do it to, and so can you.
“What does it take to make you angry?” This was said to Oliver Queen in the show Arrow (season 2, episode 2) by the copycat vigilante Roy. They were in the police station after Roy tried to stop a robbery of medical supplies. The hospital in the Glades (the bad side of town) was in danger of closing. Roy needed to take action. His anger propelled him to fight against the thugs stealing the supplies.
Most of us don’t have the problems of a comic book crime fighter, but we do have enemies stealing our health and happiness. Yet instead of anger towards the enemies we make excuses and rationalize their existence.
What are the elements in your life you should be angry about but you just live with? Is it late night snacking? Is is your sleeping habits what prevent you from being active? What about those extra 5, 10, or 15 pounds that keep you from looking and feeling your best? What does it take to make you angry? Answer that question and you will be on your way to actually making life changes to defeat those enemies.
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”~ Winston Churchill
Nothing makes me feel more inadequate than failure. A prime example of this is the work I am doing to drywall my basement. What could be simpler than measure, cut, screw, repeat? Plenty. For one thing, there is a giant difference between 1/2 and 1/8. Once you cut you either got it right or you gotta do it again. I have magled 3 boards in a row trying to get the electrical outlets lined up. I can only deal with so much failure. I only work an hour or two at a time in the basement until my ability to be punished by defeat is exhausted and I throw in the towel.
Continue reading “Failure”
“When you catch a glimpse of your potential, that is where passion is born.” ~ Zig Ziglar
Continue reading “Love Yourself”
I was happy with myself until yesterday. Something happened yesterday that radically changed my perception of reality. I became thoroughly dissatisfied with myself. The message of dissatisfaction was delivered while shopping for new dress shirts. To make the matters worse, my wife delivered the message.
We were shopping the clearance section of Kohl’s. I love getting $60 shirts for $10. So I wait for the shirts to go on sale at the end of the season and swoop in and buy up 3-4 shirts for the price of one shirt. Well, I was struggling to find 2XLT shirts for the price I wanted. Picked up a 3XLT shirt and my wife said “That looks too big.” But I decided to try it on. She then added, “If you don’t make changes this will be your new size.” And then the hammer dropped. The 3XLT shirt fit. I am now wearing 3XLT shirts.
3 Short years ago I lost 50lbs and dropped to a plain XLT. I felt fabulous. I was energetic and confident. But over time I let my healthy habits slip. So I rationalized my health and behavior. I was not happy with my health, but I was not thoroughly dissatisfied with myself. I was OK and content.
Contentment resists change. Contentment is the enemy of change. While I thought I was OK nothing would change. When I crossed the line into 3XL I crossed an imaginary barrier that meant to me I have a problem. I have never been this large. All along the way I have ignored the signs that should have led to massive dissatisfaction. Everyone has their own list – this is mine:
- My doctor told me to lose 50lbs
- My wife told me she is worried about me
- I struggle to go up 2 flights of stairs without puffing
- I am considered pre-diabetic
- My older brother had a diabetic episode (his first) where he blacked out and spent a few days in the hospital
- I could not button the top button on my dress shirts
- I had to buy new pants
- The “fat pants” I bought 4 years ago fit again
- The new pants I bought when I lost weight are now in my bottom dresser drawer waiting for me to lose weight
- I am tired all the time
- When I went to an amusement park they had to have two people strap me into a roller coaster and push down on the lap bar (hard) to get it to click. (This was actually a sign I felt very bad about it, but did nothing).
- I wear a shit when swimming
- I snore more and my wife complains about it more
- My knees hurt
- My back hurts
- I feel less confident
- I am often the biggest person in the room
Why am I saying all this? People change for pain or pleasure. For the last three years I lived in mediocrity. Since change in lifestyle is difficult to start and not pleasurable I accepted the pain and made excuses. My list above is a reminder that I really am dissatisfied and the pain I am causing myself by not changing is very real.
I am embracing my pain. I am embracing my dissatisfaction. I am getting real with myself. I am unhappy. I am in pain. I am dissatisfied with my life and I am am doing something about it.
Dissatisfaction propels people into action. My first action will dedicate myself to get more sleep. I often get 6 or even 4 hours of sleep a night. This makes me unable to do anything else. No workouts, no healthy eating, nothing. Without sleep I am worthless and powerless to act. I will keep you updated on my quest for more sleep. I imagine if I can get my sleep under control I will be able to make more gains quicker. Small steps lead to success.
What are you dissatisfied with and what action will you take?