The Surprising Truth About Why You Won’t Accomplish Your Fitness Goals

the-surprising-truth-about-why-you-wont-accomplish-your-fitness-goals

Maybe it’s the diet?

Maybe it’s the workout?

Perhaps, but most likely not. It’s easier to blame a particular problem for our fitness woes than to assess ourselves and take responsibility for our shortcomings.

In today’s overly saturated world of information, we have countless weight loss drugs and tv shows such as the biggest loser that promote dangerous healthy behaviors that are unsustainable for the long run.

If you ask the average person why they didn’t accomplish their particular fitness goal or what’s holding them back—they usually point to a specific tactic that’s setting them back.

If only it was that easy.

The things that hold us back not only in fitness but also with our careers and relationships are the intangibles. It’s the small things that are blatantly in front of us but they seem so obvious that we overlook them.

Whether you’re on a weight loss journey, looking to build muscle or any other type of fitness goal—make sure to address these 4 surprising but often overlooked areas that can stop you from accomplishing your fitness goals.

1. You don’t understand your needs

Entrepreneurs and small business owners wouldn’t randomly jump out of bed one morning and immediately pursue a business idea out of blind faith. The boardroom of directors doesn’t decide on budgets and actions for the next quarter through random guessing.

In each of these scenarios, there is a level of research and understanding of the market to a certain extent. While they can’t prepare for every single little thing, they can front load their work for the big issues and assess what their particular needs will be.

The same philosophy applies to your fitness. In this case, you’re the market and before you can worry about external tactics or anything else, you have to place a premium on yourself.

For some of you individuals who overextend themselves in work and in their personal lives, this means to become a little selfish for the time being.

Why be selfish?

Because you need total clarity about yourself. Before thinking about adding anything externally, you need to answer the basic questions that suit you on a daily basis.

For example, how many calories do you need to eat? To figure this out, you must look at your age, gender, the level of activity, and factor in general lifestyle factors into the situation.

After you have some of the data on yourself, now you have to figure out how to execute on the plan at hand. It’s useless to have a bunch of information and well-intentions if you don’t take action on them.

This is one example of many. You should get clear on your sleep, working out, and any other big priority in your life.

2. Record your progress

Peter Drucker is famous for saying “what gets measured gets improved.”

If you don’t know what’s working and what isn’t, how can you be your most efficient version of yourself?

In the business world, they’ll analyze marketing campaigns, manufacturing costs and many other metrics.

What does this look like in health and fitness?

For examples, healthy eating and using the power of journaling your food for increased awareness.

Why journaling your food?

Because you need to know what you’re eating, how it’s making you feel, what’s triggering you into eating not-so-good foods.

Did you happen to experience a mid-afternoon crash today at work or did you feel more lethargic than normal today? How’s your sleep going? With the journal, you’re able to get information and then measure it to see if small changes are needed.

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Don’t underestimate the power of journaling

3. You don’t have boundaries

When you haven’t truly thought about your value adding activities and your life-draining habits, you’re going to be inefficient.

Many times, people don’t fall short just because of their diet or workout plan, it’s because of their lack of boundaries.

When you have no boundaries established, the world feels as if it’s caving down and you never have enough time to do anything. You feel constantly busy with no end in sight.

A common place where this occurs is with friends and family asking you to do things for them. After a period of always being there, there’ll be this expectation that you’re always available and when you try to change your behavior with them, this can cause some friction.

Activities such as always numerous weekly happy hours are among the many potential scenarios the each of us will face.

However, when you make a list of essential and nonessential activities in your life—you’re gaining headspace.

This frees your mind and allows you to make better decisions. This most importantly, allows you to start saying “no” to things that don’t serve your vision towards a healthier you.

4. No schedule

Business owners, entrepreneurs, athletes, and many successful individuals in fitness adhere to a daily schedule.

Not because they can’t keep up with their day, but because they understand that discipline equals freedom. They established times for meetings, phone calls, strategy sessions, workouts, and other appointments. Having the discipline to schedule allows you to become more efficient and effective at everything you’re doing in life.

Blocking out times in fitness is pivotal especially if you’re a busy professional who has demanding workdays. As we all know, nutrition is critical and without planning this out, many busy professionals fall short with their fitness goals because of this.

If you have a schedule, you could plan to meal prep on Sunday and let that last you until Wednesday. Then you could have another mini-meal prep on Wednesday to finish the week out.

The more you can automate your healthy habits, the greater the chances of succeeding with your fitness goals.

If you’re looking to transform your health and body while building long-term sustainable habits, then the 30-Day Health Makeover is exactly what you’re looking for. Enrollment for classes close Saturday, January 14 at 11:59 pm.

 

The 5 Fresh and Simple Ingredients all Successful Weight Loss Transformations Have

“The minute you get away from fundamentals – whether it’s proper technique, work ethic or mental preparation – the bottom can fall out of your game, your schoolwork, your job, whatever you’re doing.”– Michael Jordan

5 fresh and simple ingredients all successful weight loss transformations have

I have a confession to make.

I absolutely love Thai food (especially the curry dishes).

With selections of massamun, green, red, panang, huang ray, and sassy (pineapple) curry—you can’t go wrong with any of those selections.

You may be thinking did this blog just turn into a Cooking Network blog post? Not yet. The food and cooking information will be arriving in the not-so-distant future.

I had Thai food over the weekend and ordered a bowl of green curry. As I indulged into bite after bite, and eventually drunk the rest of the soup, I had an epiphany—this dish was perfectly crafted.

My green curry not only tasted exceptional, but the precision and attention to detail that went into making this dish is something that isn’t to be taken for granted.

Green curry (Gaeng Kiaw Wan) is one of the milder Thai cuisines. In fact, Gaeng Kiaw Wan in a literal translation means sweet green curry (I’d like to see who knows this at trivia night).

After you add a protein of choice, the main basic ingredients are coconut milk, green curry paste, palm sugar, and fish sauce. However, depending on where you are, expect to also have some Thai eggplants, sweet basil leaf, kaffir lime leaves, green bell peppers, mushrooms, bamboo shoots, carrots, zucchini, green beans, broccoli, and baby corn (are you hungry yet?).

successful weight loss transformations
My green curry dish made with lots of love!

 

Ok, what does my green curry dish have to do with successful weight loss transformations?

Everything.

Just as the cooks who carefully prepared my dish and added each item in the right amount, embracing upon your fitness journey requires careful preparation and inclusion of the right items for the perfect result.

Add too much of the wrong ingredients to any curry dish, then the flavor and the dish turns into something completely different. Include too many tactics to beginning your weight loss journey and you’ll suffer from information overload (and risk not even getting started due to paralysis from analysis).

Most people’s weight loss journeys aren’t successful because they haven’t included the essential ingredients.

Is it because they’re using the wrong diet? Not necessarily.

Or is it because they’re using the wrong workout plan? Not exactly.

Maybe it’s because they aren’t working hard enough? Nope (effort is hardly the problem).

They don’t want it bad enough? No way (what is this—a high school football pep talk?)

Losing weight is conceptually simple, but the execution is where the complication arises.

Just as cooking a delicious dish of green curry requires the proper ingredients and spices for a world class experience, successful weight loss transformations requires the same dedication. These ingredients are often overlooked because they aren’t sexy or trendy, but yet they’re damn effective and essential.

In fact, before I begin to consult with a person on a 1-on-1 level, one of the first exercises we do is address each of these five ingredients I’m about to discuss below.

If you want to accomplish your weight loss goals without compromising your sanity and preferred lifestyle, implement these five ingredients.

1.Have a meaningful incentive

The first step on your weight loss journey isn’t going to buy a gym membership, cleaning out your fridge, or researching workout plans.

The first step is to sit down and think about “why you want to lose weight?”.

I get it.

Writing why you want something seems silly and time wasting (after all, you need to get to the gym and sweat some calories off and clean your diet up).

However, this shotgun mentality may work at the beginning, but what happens when your motivation flames out and your adrenaline returns to its baseline. The novelty of something new has worn off and you don’t feel like going to the gym—what’s going to keep you going?

Without a powerful why there isn’t any substance or meaningful stakes brought to the table to guarantee you stick around at the first sight of resistance or discomfort.

A meaningful incentive isn’t buying a new pair of jeans, fitting into a neon green bikini for your vacation, building some size 16 biceps to impress at the beach, nor any other superficial surface metric.

A meaningful incentive connects on a deeper level and places a priority on the long-term (not just the weeks leading up to your summer vacation).

Aesthetics are important, but adding in other factors of your life such as losing weight to get off your medications, having the energy to play with your kids one day, setting an example for family and friends, or to improve your confidence to go after what you really want out of life.

2.Develop a winning game plan while preparing like a champion

Politics, sports, relationships, business, and wars all have one main commonality—to succeed requires strategic planning & preparation.

Presidential races aren’t won by the candidates just showing up. They prepare extensively and strategize to the minute of details. The super bowl isn’t won by the team just showing up on Sunday. They prepared two weeks in advance.

Wars aren’t won by randomly showing up and fighting.  They prepare and take stock of the surrounding terrain while analyzing their enemy.

Businesses don’t make profits each quarter by just showing up blindly each day. They forecast and conduct meetings to properly plan and execute. Successful relationships are certain to go stale after some years, but that’s why the successful ones continue to evolve with each other and never stop dating each other.

Stating a desire and want without a plan for making it a reality is nothing but an empty wish (it’s just floating up in the clouds).

Successful game planning and preparing like a champion requires you to front load your work as much as you can.

Why is a plan so crucial?

Because if you blindly begin your exercise routine, once resistance shows up or you have unexpected obstacles appear, you’re going to falter.

By game planning, you’re creating the structure that specifically works for you (most importantly). If your fitness plans don’t seamlessly mesh with your lifestyle, you’re not going to stick with the plan for the long haul.

When you’re thinking about how to construct a game plan, start with these three topics.

  1. Eating – How you eat needs to be considered based on your specific schedule, preferences, and comfortability while still complimenting your specific physique goals.
  1. Exercise – What type of workouts will you do? How many days will you lift each week? What exercises are you doing during each session?
  1. Implementation – What time are you working out and on what days? What about eating times? Have you established a sleep routine? Are you prepared for events, work, and other miscellaneous obstacles that will head your way?
planning successful weight loss transformations
Not matter the area of focus—you gotta have a strategy.

 

Front loading your work isn’t sexy, but neither is budgeting your finances—yet you’ll do it if it’s important enough.

One of the best ways to start front loading your work is to identify three of your potential biggest obstacles that pose the biggest barriers to succeeding with your fitness goals. Once you identify them, determine a solution for each of those obstacles.

3.Seek accountability and support

I told myself I was going to write a book and months later, I had one page written and a half-assed outline.

I told some people I wanted to write a book and they would tell me this is awesome. I felt good having a dream of writing a book, despite the reality that nothing was being accomplished.

Answering to ourselves hardly ever works in the end because we can justify our excuses and lack of action. Our brains are tricky and will find angles to make ourselves feel okay with not following through on our initial commitments and desires.

When it comes to accountability and support, we need two distinct types of it: professional/expert accountability and unapologetically positive support.

  1. Professional/expert support and accountability – This is having an expert in your corner or at least someone who will keep you accountable while providing guidance. Your best friend doesn’t count due to the relationship. They’re unlikely to push you outside your comfort zone and call you out for actions you fail to follow through with. 

Whether it’s a coach or expert opinion on a forum—you need to involve someone with expertise who isn’t afraid to offer advice that you may not want to hear.

  1. Unapologetically positive support – Whether it’s a friend, girlfriend, boyfriend, social media, or private group—this type of support essentially serves as your cheerleader. They keep your spirits high and keep you going when you feel like quitting.

They’re not going to give you logical expert opinion or call you out for something. They’re going to be biased in their support of you, no matter what’s going on.

4.Set a big, but realistic deadline

After you’ve established your meaningful incentive, a plan that fits your preferred lifestyle while establishing both types of accountability—now it’s time to put some skin in the game.

Without a deadline, there isn’t a sense of urgency to keep you focused and attentive.

While deadlines are important, you need to be realistic and properly assess everything going on in your life. If you have a hectic schedule and can’t workout as frequently along with getting inconsistent sleep—you can still expect some results, just not at the same rate as someone who consistently trains four days a week and routinely sleeps eight hours.

If you really want to up the ante, try a couple of these games out to make it fun and challenging with other friends when setting deadlines.

  • Make a goal on Stickk and donate to an organization that you hate if you fail to keep your word
  • Make a public declaration
  • Implement negative consequences or positive rewards (this is dependent upon your personality)

After determining your realistic goal, now it’s time to reverse engineer your goal down into manageable steps.

To generate momentum and build your confidence for long-term success, you must establish periodic markers of success.

Twenty pounds may be your goal, but reaching that goal is months down the road and without any positive signs of success beforehand, you’re not going to last.

Psychologically, twenty pounds sounds like a lot to someone new or rusty with their fitness. A better approach is to break those twenty pounds down into sizable chunks. With some clients, I’ll take it two pounds at a time.

Seems wacky and pointless, but just as in baseball, a couple singles and doubles here and there still drives in runs instead of just swinging for home runs while striking out more frequently.

Think little wins as opposed to large gigantic wins. You don’t go from broke to millionaire in two weeks. You don’t go from a mediocre NBA player to an all-star in four weeks.

5.Don’t forget to have fun

At the end of the day, we’re only talking about fitness. Not quantum physics, the theory of relativity, or some high-stakes boardroom meeting—this is supposed to be stress-relieving.

Here’s a secret that I want everyone to know—I don’t enjoy working out sometimes. Driving to the gym is one of the hardest tasks in my daily ritual.

There are a plethora of other comforting options. I could write even more (probably code for looking at Youtube videos), watch TV, eat some comfort foods (not a good idea), sleep in, play video games, or have a ‘Netflixathon‘.

However, I enjoy the effects of working out. I enjoy how it makes me feel; the stress it releases from my body; the way it helps my body look and perform.

These factors lead me to make better decisions; thus helps my business and relationships. That is why I’m hooked on the gym, not because I enjoy being out of breath jump roping or pushing myself to exhaustion during a set of squats.

I don’t enjoy passing up ice cream, wine, and cookies the majority of the time. While I eat and drink these items occasionally, for the most part, I pass on them because my why is more meaningful than the immediate/short-term pleasure those items provide.

ice cream- successful weight loss transformations
Ice cream is great, but it’s not worth your long term goals.

 

On the contrary, I enjoy how healthy foods make me feel, think, and perform.

Not matter the exercise routine you’re doing or the type of nutritional philosophy you’re following—you must enjoy some aspect of the journey (even if it’s simply finishing your workout or eating healthy through the week so you can look forward to your guilt-free weekend indulging meal)

Not finding any enjoyment and relying on sheer willpower is a dangerous game that you’ll always lose. Willpower is a limited resource that is zapped as you go about your daily routine and make decisions on numerous things. 

Put your lab coat on, become a scientist and keep experimenting with the type of workouts and nutritional strategies until you find something that perfectly gels with your preferred lifestyle while fully complementing your physique goals.

The Weight Loss Mindset: 9 Powerful Truths to Simplify Your Weight Loss Journey

“Whether you think you can or think you can’t—you are right.”—Henry Ford

The Weight Loss Mindset

We live in an image-laden society where sex sells. We live in a society where our looks grant us special privileges in certain aspects of life and open doors that are often off-limits for most.

We’re hyper-aware of our aesthetics and over-analyze the smallest of our perceived flaws. We at times, obsessively measure ourselves against the next human being beside us.

From billboards to magazines to Instagram models with little clothing flexing while quoting Ralph Waldo Emerson (weird) or Rumi (not motivating)—sex and fitness are spamming us everywhere.

Everyone wants to lose weight. Everyone wants to improve their physique for a myriad of reasons: more sex, more confidence, better quality of life, and the list goes on and on.

Think I’m over exaggerating about our obsession with weight loss?

Think again.

While our society is becoming more and more obsessed with sex and status—we’re collectively becoming unhealthier. Despite the plethora of information within our grasps, obesity is at an all-time high and most people aren’t even living a basic healthy lifestyle.

Most Americans are highly conscious of their weight and I’m willing to bet that most of the world is becoming increasingly aware of their weight.

Despite this awareness, our society is failing at weight loss. In a recent poll, 51 percent of Americans stated a desire to lose weight, yet only 26 percent say they’re making a serious effort to lose those pounds.

Interesting.

At face value, it’s easy to just say that the remaining 25 percent are just lazy and need to get their ass in the gym and start eating less and moving more.

However, we’re better than that nonsensical gibberish that most narrow-minded experts and gurus preach from their pulpits.

I’m willing to bet that the entire 51 percent makes an effort initially. But the failing 25 percent goes off course following the wrong advice and loses motivation by starting their weight loss journey with the wrong weight loss mindset.

Maybe the 25 percent failed because all of their hopes were placed on supplements, diet pills, magical fitness fairy dust, and other quick fixes that eventually fizzles out. After all, this isn’t too feasible of a belief to explore since the supplement industry is currently producing revenue at 32 billion and by 2021 is projected to be 60 billion.

These are all huge potential deterrents, but one of the biggest points for men and women’s weight loss shortcomings is their expectations. Most people quit due to their initial expectations not being met and the unrealistic timeliness they place on their transformations.

Weight loss doesn’t have to be a process where suffering is mandatory. If you’re tired of stressing over losing weight, remember these nine truths to develop an unstoppable weight loss mindset.

1.There will be some initial self-doubt (and that’s okay)

Every time we branch outside of our comfort zones, there’s going to be a fear of the unknown.

Yet, within this muddle of uncertainty, you must persist and move forward. Persistence in the wake of doubt and questioning of your abilities is common at the beginning. This uncertainty is common due to past fitness setbacks, lack of skill, or a lack of self-confidence.

There isn’t anything wrong with you just because you’re a little uneasy or anxious about the goals ahead—you’re human and it’s natural to feel this general uneasiness.

Wanting to lose fat or tackling any fitness goal is daunting. Stating an intent to lose 20 lbs or making the habit of exercising a consistent routine activity isn’t easy from the surface level.

2.Commitment is essential

State your intent and jump into the water with both feet. No dipping your toe in to test the waters. You’re either in or you’re out.

There isn’t a halfway. The elevator only goes up or goes down (there isn’t a sideways).

Commitment is doing the work regardless of how you feel.

Stating what you want isn’t enough. Talking and doing are two different things and needs to be separated.

A commitment entails doing the work regardless of how long it’ll take to accomplish your specific fitness objective. A commitment requires unwavering support to the craft and daily 1% improvement in life and fitness.

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No matter how many hours needed or days—you need to be committed for the long haul.

 

3.There are no shortcuts

Nothing and I mean nothing valuable and worthwhile in the long-term can be accomplished or gained through shortcuts and taking the easy option.

Going for the girl or guy who provides no resistances and has no morals instead of the girl or guy who plays hard to get and has standards leads to agony.

Short-term solutions provide instant gratification and places band-aids over deep wounds, but doesn’t solve long-term problems nor develop long-term healthy habits.

Opting for that cleanse or cheaply formulated diet may accomplish weight loss in the short-term, but in the long term provides an illusionary effect. Yes, you have weight loss for now, but long term, that weight is going to come back with a vengeance along with a worsening metabolism for a side order.

4.Perfectionism is a fairy tale

Perfectionism is often procrastination in disguise. A perfectionist mindset prevents you from having the chance of accomplishing your fitness goal.

Why?

Seeking perfection only allows you to delay taking action due to you telling yourself that you need more planning and knowledge before starting your fitness journey.

More knowledge, more tactics, and any other informational avenue isn’t your solution to accomplishing your weight loss goals. To get closer to your weight loss goals and living a rich and fulfilling lifestyle requires you to take action (like right now!).

No more waiting and planning, just do and assess, then go from there.

5.Have realistic expectations of yourself and your current situation

Let go of the comparison game and living vicariously through others fitness. Is it really motivating to watch numerous Instagram post of some insanely fit person posing with their magical weight reducing tea?

Are you motivated after watching numerous videos of someone posing in a perfectly lit room and sharing a quote telling you to believe in yourself and it’ll happen?

I’m betting if you do some soul searching, then odds are it’ll be more of a deterrent than an added benefit to your fitness journey.

The problem lies when you compare yourself to people who don’t share your specific circumstances and don’t have the specific obstacles that you have.

Make goals that suit your particular lifestyle and situation, not anyone else’s.

If you can only commit to three gym sessions a week, so be it, that’s plenty. Don’t force yourself into a fitness plan and set goals based on what others tell you and expect.

Accomplishing your goal in 16 weeks is great. 20 weeks is just as good. The main point is to accomplish this in a sustainable manner that has your long-term health in mind, not just superficial metrics.

6.Progress isn’t linear

The first three weeks, your weight is doing the electric slide off your body with ease. You’re flying high and feeling good, then around week four, your weight hasn’t decreased.

This is the typical cycle of someone starting a weight loss regimen. The first few weeks depending on your starting weight and conditioning levels, weight will fly off your body due to water weight, glycogen storage, and the initial shock of your system.

Progress will naturally slow and that’s normal. It’s not natural for someone to lose four—five lbs each week throughout their journey.

It’s also normal to go weeks without weight coming off and then the week after, you lose a couple of pounds. Weight loss doesn’t operate on a linear straight line, think of weight loss as operating more on a roller coaster.

7.Expect some turbulence (and embrace it)

If you didn’t experience any resistances toward version 2.0 of yourself, then what fun would that be?

While in the heat of the moment, your obstacles and setbacks won’t be fun. However, after reflecting on it, you’ll come to understand that those moments of seeming drudgery are what develops your character.

Those moments are what develops your badassery and make you remarkable.

Most people think success is one straight line of good times up the mountain, but it’s actually an ugly wiggly line that requires you to hold on for dear life at times and just survive.

weight-loss mindset

Sometimes you’re going to run into thunderstorms and there isn’t anything you can do about those moments. But remember, just as thunderstorms don’t last forever, those dark cloudy moments will pass through and give way to more sunny and prosperous moments.

It’s only a failure if you decide to quit and wave your little white flag.

8.You’ll need to call for help at some point

Bill Withers famously stated that we all need somebody to lean on, and boy is he correct on that.


For the majority of the past year, I had to lean on quite a few people and if it wasn’t for them—this article wouldn’t be written nor would this blog still be around.

Life is tough and frustrating at times. Sometimes we don’t have all the answers, capabilities, capacity, or strength to handle everything that is thrown our way.

None of us is superman (and even he needs help). It takes vulnerability, but true courage is raising your hand or making that call for help and support.

Never feel ashamed to ask for help or reach out for support. It’s tough to juggle fitness with all the other movable pieces going on within our lives.

9.You’re ultimately in control of your end destination

At the end of the day, your actions will propel you to success and the goals you desire or lead you to a land of disappointment and endless dieting (don’t do this, stop that here).

You are the captain of this here ship and that is your life. You control which direction it sails and determine what you let on board (people, environments, and other lifestyle factors).

Many can teach you and tell you about the path to where you desire, but only you can choose to take that path and do the right actions.


Lastly, here’s a free download of the weight loss mindset to remind yourself in case you start being too hard on yourself.

the weight loss mindset