I’ve been working with people on improving their health and fitness for six years now.

Compared to many fitness professionals this is a short amount of time, but compared to the industry average it’s nearly three times the length of a normal fitness professional’s career.

And during this time I’ve seen a lot, heard a lot, and learned a lot.

This has allowed me to begin identifying some patterns.

Patterns that can indicate someone’s success and that can indicate someone’s failure at trying to change the way they eat, move, and ultimately live.

I’d like to to share one of these with you today.

Have you ever had a conversation with a friend, family member, and/or colleague about improving their health?

Yeah me too!

My guess is it when something like this. . .

  • You: Hey how’s it going today?
  • Karen: Oh yeah so great! I just started this 21 day vegan challenge. I’ve been really wanting to lose some weight before summer gets here.
  • You: Oh that’s awesome! Good for you!

22 days later . . .

  • You: Hey how’d your vegan challenge go? Did you lose the weight you wanted to?
  • Karen: Oh no that vegan challenge was insane. Plus Mark’s birthday lunch was the next week after I started and they catered in tacos for it so the vegan challenge pretty much ended there.

Sound kind of familiar?

Yeah that isn’t surprising because this is one of the first patterns I picked up with when coaching people.

A lot of people’s strategy to lose weight or even gain muscle is to radically alter their lifestyle in fundamental ways.

Ways that force them to try to somehow fit their life around the new fangled exercise routine or diet they just started.

And while I admire the effort to change I’d much rather that same effort be applied to strategies that are actually effective.

Strategies that are actually effective are strategies that begin with the end in mind.

Meaning that whatever you do now to obtain your goals has to be something you can see your new yourself doing for the rest of your life.

It’s the old fitness adage of “it is not a diet, it is a lifestyle.”

And while that always sounds super douche and snobby to say it is in fact the truth.

Bros, cardio bunnies, and strong men have been right forever.

If you want to be something you have to actually be it.

You have to live it.

That is the funny thing about change.

Change happens because you started doing something different.

That is the piece everyone knows, but the piece everyone forgets is that the change continuing is dependent on you continuing to do that something different.

This is why whatever strategies or behaviors you implement to achieve your desired physique or performance goal has to be something you can live with in the end.

And because of this truth extreme, white-knuckle approaches almost always lose to more sensible and sustainable ones.

The take-away for you is that when you are beginning to take on a new goal and are identifying how exactly you are going to go about achieving that goal you really should be asking yourself — “Could I do this for the rest of my life?”

Happy moving and heavy lifting!

Practical, Purposeful, Effective Training