In a world of fast paced living, quick fixes and instant responses, it can be really difficult to stick at something long enough to reap the benefits or achieve that goal.
Sometimes there just is no quick way to do something, sometimes you are just going to have to put the effort in and stick with it - especially when it comes to our health and fitness.
Without our health, we really don't have anything
I heard Steven Bartlett use a brilliant analogy about our health - imagine all your assets are objects on a table; wealth, career, family, hobbies etc. If you take one of those off the table, the others will not necessarily be too badly impacted. However, if you remove the table? all of the objects will collapse onto the floor. What is the table? You guessed it - your health!
With introductions of things like a weight loss injection and other "quick fixes" it really worries me that people will opt for these things as opposed to the harder and slower option. Let me make myself very clear here though, there is no judgement on those individuals who do choose to take these routes! I get it, it really is tough to navigate our way around the complexities of health, there is so much advice flung around - each claiming to be the best. The multi billion pound giant that is our food industry makes it increasingly more difficult for us to find clear, honest, proper food. So anything to make life easier is going to be appealing.
However, going back to basics, eating nutritious whole foods, avoiding ultra processed foods and moving more are the best ways to improve health and wellbeing - both physically and mentally.
5 steps to success...
Step 1: Start! It doesn't matter where you are or where you are going, just start. Take that first step. Make it simple, make it accessible, don't overthink it and just start.
Step 2: Know your "Why". This is so important. When motivation waivers (which it will) and temptations creep in, you need to have such a clear reason to keep going that the temptations are overshadowed by your "Why".
Step 3: Find enjoyment from the journey. Yes the end goal is important but sometimes it can be daunting and off-putting, so it is vital that the journey is enjoyable too. Set mini goals, celebrate the little wins, have an accountability buddy that will help you stay on track and make it fun.
Step 4: Stay in your lane. My good friend Suzi Shaw told me this and it is something I remind myself of all the time. It's easy to compare yourself to others especially with social media, but you are unique and on your own journey so it is irrelevant where other people are on their journey's.
Step 5: Stay consistent not perfect. Perfection is something that none of us will ever achieve so we need to stop beating ourselves up when we don't achieve it! Studies show that when we don't meet our expectations we are less happy, so striving for something that is impossible is just setting us up for unhappiness. Instead, just keep taking little steps. If you mess up one day, it doesn't mean you've failed by any means, just stay consistent over-all and get back on it again the next day.
Bonus Step: Dont miss twice. This is something James Clears says and it is a game changer. Going back to step 5 and the idea of perfection - it's not saying never mess up or miss a workout/healthy meal etc, it's just saying don't do it over and over again. If you miss once, make sure this doesn't bleed into the next day and cause you to miss that day too.