Can you believe that we’re ten years into the new year already, crazy? Did you like millions of other people vow to live a healthier lifestyle and find yourself slipping down that slippery slope of failure already? Trust me you are not alone. Three weeks ago I opened up my online training services to everyone for FREE, and I had 28 people sign up to receive workouts and meal plans. Only 2 of 28 people have completed all of their workouts, and only three people have registered for their meal plans. Believe it or not, these numbers are better than I expected. Why? Because I know people, and people do people things. For instance, they assume that the workouts are optional, or they don’t have to eat properly to reach their goals. I’m sorry, but fitness is something you work for, not a product you buy. I want to kick off this year by going over the main reasons people fail in their fitness journey.
I have clients that love to workout. I do mean LOVE. They will skip out of work early to get to their workouts, but a lot of those clients do not love eating for their goals the same way. “I like my post-workout ice cream, it’s like a reward for my work,” said an older client of mine. I get it. You work hard, you want to play hard, but unfortunately, you can not outwork lousy eating habits. If you are consuming massive amounts of sugar (you’d be surprised at what has sugar in it) and sitting down at a desk 8 hours a day, you’re never going to obtain your goal physique. Take that attitude that you bring to the gym, and carry it with you into the kitchen.
Most of my clients have stationary jobs that require them to sit down at a desk for most of the day. Humans are meant to move. When they’re sitting down, they are not burning calories and maintaining excellent posture. Another pitfall of most jobs is time commitments. Most people will work on average 45-50 hours a week. That’s 9-10 hours a day. If you’re sleeping 7-9 hours a night (like you should be) that only leaves you with a few hours of “you” time. The time that most people should be spending moving and staying active. Unfortunately, most of them are mentally exhausted and do not have the energy to drag themselves to the gym after work (or the will power to go before work). I urge most of my clients to get up and walk .5 miles to a mile every 2 hours at the office; this will keep you fresh, but help you ease into a more active lifestyle. If possible, take a yoga class or workout over lunch as well, This is a great way to energize yourself in the middle of the day and burn extra calories between your main exercises.
Yes, I have seen my client’s partner destroy their progress. When one half of the couple decides to improve themselves physically or spiritually, the other half needs to support them. I have seen the opposite too many times. I’ve seen partners who will shun their other half for bettering themselves and try to manipulate them to stay the same. Their actions are not OK. It’s a form of abuse. I encourage couples to get in shape together for this very reason. I never give personal advice or tell clients what they should do in their relationship, but I do encourage them to ask themselves where they want to be 2-4 years from now, and if they can imagine engaging with the same people they do now.
Honestly, what it all comes down to is prioritization. My most successful clients have decided to make fitness a priority and that is why they succeed. Workouts were scheduled daily and treated as appointments. You wouldn’t skip an appointment with your doctor or child’s principal, would you? The successful ones did not fail in their journey because they took the time to meal prep every weekend and made sure they had their protein-packed food ready to go for the whole week. Those same people took a stand at their place of employment and decided to put their health first and made it known to their superiors. If their superiors were not encouraging their decisions, they decided to move on and got employment elsewhere. Relationships were tested with my successful clients as well, but they made it clear to their partner that they were changing and they either needed their full support, or they were going to have to make some hard choices about their future.
At the end of the day it comes down to the question, how bad do you want it? Do you want it so bad that you decide to stop buying junk food, drinking every weekend, schedule your workouts daily, prep your food every weekend, and cut out negative people in your life? If you’re not willing to do these basic things, I’d suggest talking to a therapist to figure out what is stopping you from putting yourself forward, so that you can move on physically.