Creating Results through Habits

For a really long time, I’ve had an arduous on-again/off-again relationship with my health and fitness goals.
The past four years have been the hardest though and I’m not ready to break up with my goals.
I want to lose weight. I want to be strong. I want to be healthy.

My friends show me a lot more grace than I do and remind me that in the last four years, I’ve gone through lots of changes:
Divorce
Single Motherhood
The ups and downs of dating
Working multiple jobs
Going back to school
Injuries
The general stress of being an adult

Thank God for good friends.

But this year, I really wanted to crack down on it.
I’ve reached a new max of 190 pounds coming into 2020.

Prior to this year, I was very results driven.
And if I didn’t see any changes or progress, I gave up.
It was just too depressing to see the hard work that I put in years ago has wasted and it’s even harder now to get back to where I’ve been.

I’ll be honest though, I had very unreasonable expectations and wanted fast results, knowing full well that regaining your health is a journey, not a sprint.

My approach to reaching my goals this year is different.
And this is mostly due to a 75 day program that I did.
(I talk about it here: https://xlexbitz.com/2020/07/08/what-i-learned-from-75-hard-challenge/ )

Something that the creator of this program, Andy Frisella, said stuck to me.
This program isn’t a weight loss program. It’s a mental toughness program.
It’s forcing yourself to do the things you need to do without any excuses.

He said, “You don’t do this for the physical changes. The physical changes occur because you did what I told you to do in this program. And the things you are supposed to do is what matters. It’s a mental toughness challenge.” (paraphrased)

You might think, “Well, yeah, obviously, if you do the work, you get results.”

But it was truly a mind shift for me.
Let me explain.

Yes, the work needs to be done in order for you to see results.
But when I was chasing results, I gave up when I didn’t see results, no matter how much effort I put into my workouts and eating as healthy as possible.

The mind shift here for me was, “chase the action.”
I was chasing the wrong thing.
As long as I do what I need to do, at one point or another, the changes will reflect my actions.
And the change can go either way.

If I keep skipping workouts and eating unhealthy, in 1 week, 2 weeks, a month, a year, my body will, inevitably, reflect my actions, or lack there of.

But, if I stick with it one day at a time, my body will reflect my efforts. And it may not be how I want it to look by a certain time but what matters is doing the work.
The more I workout, run, eat healthy, stay active, the stronger and faster I will be.
It doesn’t make sense to get worse when you are practicing something diligently.
Progress may not be linear and setbacks may occur, but the overall direction is going to go in a positive direction.

The habits matter more.
Even if you didn’t do as well as you’d hoped, keep going. Don’t give up.

My workout tracker shows that I did Turbo Fire 61% of the time in the month. I wish it was a better rate but at the same time, I understand why I got what I did. Towards the end of the month, I got bored with the program and it was hard for me to push through the boredom (no discipline there, I know haha)
My walks were at 74%. I was more motivated about my walks because I want to prepare myself for 5ks next year. I also thought that walking more will help with hikes, particularly going up Mt. Bierstadt (I talk about it here: https://xlexbitz.com/2020/08/05/its-not-over/ )
I wanted to make sure I could at least walk after all the weight that I’ve gained and losing the finesse in my fitness level.

This wasn’t something I had planned on calculating but I was curious how many days out of the month I did what I sought out to do.

But seeing these numbers, I have a new goal of at least staying consistent 80% of the time this month with the goals and plans that I have set for August.

I want to challenge you guys to narrow down your goals to habits.
What consistent daily actions are going to help you reach your goals?
I’d say to narrow it down to 1-3 daily actions and track your habits.

You can use a journal to track your progress or download a habit tracker (I use Taskaday).

On top of this, I want you to visualize yourself as the person you are going to become.
I plan on making a separate blog for this topic to go deeper into this idea, but whatever your goal is, visualize yourself with the identity your habits are going to create.

For example, with my habits, I visualize myself as an athlete. Maybe not someone professional but someone that is active and not prohibited by health concerns.
I am healthy, fit, strong, and athletic.
I see myself at my goal weight, going to the gym habitually, running 5ks for fun, hiking more often, and just feeling lighter (I feel like an elephant hobbling over my knees right now).

My daily habits are going to help me become this person. And when I become this person, I’m not going to be results driven and keep having an aim for a certain “look” or number on the scale (or stop once I’ve reached my goals) but I’m going to stay consistent to remain this person because it feels good to be this person.
I have become this person and my habits are a natural part of me.

I’m no longer aiming for results but I’m aiming for discipline.
I encourage you guys to make that mental shift so that we can all be winners.

In this way, slowly but surely, you’ll be creating your dream life and soon be living in it.



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