Struggling to Start Exercising? Here’s How to Take Action With Your Fitness

“Action is the antidote to despair”- Joan Baez

struggling to start working out? here's how to take action with your fitness

Edward Harris states that “to awaken each morning is to be born again. To fall asleep each night is to die to the day.

Why do we delay doing the good we would like to do? Why do we put off speaking words of kindness, giving encouragement, writing a letter, taking care of ourselves? Why do we delay making decisions, in living our lives?

Procrastination is a dreadful and terrible malady. We may ‘do it now’ but then we wait for the ‘right time.’ There is no need to wait to live your life”

Why do we skip workouts and resort to eating out of convenience (often times in the form of fast food)? Why do we sabotage ourselves and settle for comfort in the pits of mediocrity?

Answer: Lack of action.

There’s a disconnect between wanting and actually doing.

To build a healthier physique, you need to workout, eat less processed foods and sleep more.

Simple. Everyone should easily be able to do this.


Well…not exactly. If it was simple and crystal clear, the majority of people would be walking around with a lean physique, diabetes wouldn’t be rising, and we wouldn’t be living in an era where obesity is steadily climbing each year.

Gregg Krech, author of The Art of Taking Action: Lessons from Japanese Psychology states, “taking action is doing what needs to be done, when it needs to be done, in response to the needs of the situation.”

Action seems simple on the surface, but once you unravel the layers, taking action involves many webs of entanglement.

The two elephants in the room stopping you from taking action

If we know what to do and why we should do it, then obviously there’s a disconnect on the execution end. Something inside of us isn’t being triggered; thus preventing us from taking action toward our fitness goals.

When it comes to lack of taking action, there isn’t a laundry list of reasons as to why you won’t start. It boils down to two reasons.

1. You know what needs to be done, and you’re not doing it– The knowledge is there, but the proper drive and motivation isn’t anywhere to be found.

People in this category, worry about minuscule fitness information and tactics such as meal timing, specific grams of protein per meal, optimal meal frequency, and optimal training protocols just to name a few.

Researching their ideas, making plans, and reading more books and blogs is a great way for these people to procrastinate from taking action (paralysis from analysis).

2. You really just don’t know what to do– It’s not lack of discipline, stubbornness, or fear—it’s lack of knowledge. This problem is easily corrected by getting a coach, mentor, reading a book or two, and just practicing.

However, the majority of people fit into category 1.

What action isn’t and it’s associated risks

When you know there’s something you need to do and you have the necessary resources to start—the biggest risk you can do is nothing at all.

Merely deciding isn’t doing (inactions)

You making a decision to workout is only a mere decision until you’ve taken an action (i.e. actually doing a workout).

Your everyday world hasn’t changed because of your decision. It may feel like progress to decide that you want to lose weight, but until you take action—nothing has changed.

Wanting something isn’t enough

I’d love to be an exceptional salsa dancer. I’d love to travel around the world. I’d love to go to the Montreux Jazz Festival.

Most people would love to lose weight. Most people would love to have more money. Most people would love to have a new job.

What’s the point here?

Creating ripples in the world aren’t caused by our desires and wants. They manifest from doing.

ripples- how to take action with your fitness
Ripples won’t happen on their own

As Gregg Krech states, “There is no merit in just thinking about doing something. The result is exactly the same as not thinking about it. It is only doing the thing that counts. I shall acquire the habit of doing what I have in mind to do.”

Start doing, less talking.

The burden we’ll endure to avoid discomfort

Many people will tolerate the personal consequences and repercussions that result from procrastination.

Participating in the game of procrastination brings about an inconvenience due to the internal discomfort of not accomplishing the goal. We want the goal, but we don’t want the struggles or necessary sacrifices required for reaching our new goal.

Instead of enduring and sitting with this discomfort, we’ll avoid and distract ourselves with short-term band-aid solutions.

The age of busyness

One of the most popular strategies for never getting anything done and pretending to want a goal is to claim “you’re too busy”.

A popular strategy by many is to do something completely opposite of the task at hand and when the work isn’t finished, blame it on “busyness” (a hidden disease).

Want to work on that unfinished book—now it’s time to check for an “important email” or go pay a bill. Want to go to the gym—suddenly the house is dirty, you have chores, and work projects are suddenly due.

The age of busyness lets people disguise their excuses in “busyness” instead of calling it for what it really is—procrastination.

Three philosophies on how to take action with your fitness

1.Morita Therapy

With psychological principles heavily influenced by Zen Buddhism, Japanese psychiatrist Dr. Shoma Morita started this method of therapy as a way to deal with “ anxiety-based disorders and neurosis” called “Shinkeishitsu”.

At its core, Morita proposed that human motivation is influenced by two simple, but opposing practices: (1) the desire to live fully (self-actualize), and (2) the desire to maintain security and comfort.

The main goal of Morita Therapy is “Arugamama” (acceptance of life as it is). Morita’s premise is to “Accept your thoughts and feelings. Rather than fight what goes on in your mind, simply accept.”

However, as we all know, this is easier said than done, especially in our informational overload world, instant gratification seeking, and entitlement culture.

Krech states that “when we are caught in our idealized views about how we should be, we cannot accept things as they are.”

We have difficulty accepting our current fitness levels because we avoid discomfort and seek shortcuts by 3 common methods.

I. Avoidance– Trying to escape our feelings and thoughts; running from the uncomfortable; avoiding the unfamiliar.

Our workouts become challenging and push us past our level of comforts—we’ll use lack of time and obligations to avoid the discomfort.

We’ll choose the convenience of fast food and pretend health foods in the frozen foods section instead of cooking and preparing our meals.

II. Resignation– We accept the status quo as is. We give up too easily. We lose our soul and spirits.

Discomfort sucks, but what sucks more than that is doing activities and not seeing the expected results or any indication of progress.  A couple shortcomings with fitness, a couple meals off our plan—we start to sulk and languish in our feelings.

III. Complaining– We’re not lifting at our ideal times. We’re not eating every few hours like we planned.

Complaining is one of the most popular ways for why we don’t take action. Something will never be ideal. There is no optimal time to start. The best time is right now.

2. Kaizen Principle

“Small actions take very little time or money, and they’re agreeable even to those of us who haven’t laid up bulk supplies of willpower. Small actions trick the brain into thinking: Hey, this change is so tiny that it’s no big deal. No need to get worked up. No risk of failure or unhappiness here.

By outfoxing the fear response, small actions allow the brain to build up new, permanent habits—at a pace that may be surprisingly brisk”- Robert Maurer (author of One Small Step Can Change Your Life: The Kaizen Way)

In Japan, the word Kaizen simply means to “change for the better”.

Whether in fitness, creativity, business, or any personal development arena—the kaizen method provides an easy-to-implement tool for improvement.

The goal of Kaizen is to make a continuous improvement but in a slow, consistent, and incremental manner. Think 1% daily improvement. The way to apply Kaizen to your fitness is to start small and make one small change; build on that habit; then form another small and measurable habit.

These small changes become significant results over time.

If you’re developing a healthy eating habit from scratch—start by focusing on eating one complete balanced meal per day. Trying to change all your meals at once is tough, just focus on winning breakfast at the beginning.

breakfast- how to take action with your fitness
One meal at a time, no rush

Once breakfast is easy, build upon that and aim for two balanced meals per day. While working out, maybe you’re into circuits, the 1% rule would have you cutting your completion time of the circuit in small increments (a few seconds each time).

3. Naikan (”introspection”/ “inside-looking”)

Out of the three discussed, this Japanese philosophy has been most beneficial to my life.

Naikan, developed in the 1940’s by Ishin Yoshimoto, requires you to look at yourself, your relationships, your work, and most importantly your actions from a new perspective. Self-reflection helps us to appreciate what we have, where we are, and our capacity to carry out general functions.

Naikan is constructed upon 3 simple questions:

(1) What have I received?

(2)What have I given?

(3) What troubles and difficulties have I caused?

Ok, this seems cool, but why is this relevant to fitness?

Applying a Naikan practice requires you to look through a new set of lens, which often results in the discovery of long-held beliefs that were inaccurate and irrational (aka creating invisible scripts).

These new sets of lenses will help you see situations for what they really are and remove your fitness excuses. Nothing to hid behind. No ego, only truth. Your excuses for not eating healthy, not making time for working out has nowhere to hide, and no one to blame, but yourself.

What’s the real reason why you’re not working out, creating art from the heart, and eating healthy?

Once you discover the truth, it’s time to move to the next stage.

The biggest mental shift for taking action and always winning

Most people give up before reaping their rewards for their hard earned efforts.


Besides impatience, most people are motivated by extrinsic values, external validations, and the specific outcomes of their situations.

If people don’t see results, they quit and begin to place blame.

However, a simple shift in your mindset will prevent this from happening.

What is it?

Instead of focusing on rewards and outcomes, reward yourself for taking the necessary actions and behaviors. Reward yourself for following a system and sticking to your specific commitment.

You have a goal to lose 20 pounds. The worst thing you can do is think about those 20 pounds each day.

Instead, base your rewards and achievements around a system of losing 20 pounds through adhering to daily movement, eating healthy meals each day, and getting quality and consistent sleep each night.

This approach of focusing on systems creates less pressure than basing everything (including your self-worth) from a goal of losing 20 pounds. Those 20 pounds aren’t sliding off in a week, therefore if you base your worth on those 20 pounds, you’re going to be disappointed for awhile.

Think systems and process—not goals.

Small actions to start exercising immediately

1. Get started as soon as possible– It doesn’t matter what you do nor how you do it—all that matters is that you do something…anything.

Your main objective is to generate momentum and develop confidence. Confidence only manifests from doing.

Make the barrier to entry as simple and stress-free as possible. Starting with an exercising commitment for as little as 10-15 minutes is perfect when you’re coming from a place where exercise is non-existent.

2. Forget your feelings and move in the slightest direction forward– One of the core principles of Morita Therapy is that we have much more control over our body (i.e. actions) than our minds (i.e. thoughts & feelings).

Do and think action and to hell with what the voices tell you.

Example: Don’t feel like walking, lifting weights, or cooking a healthy meal. It’s too cold, too much traffic, yadda, yadda, yadda—nine out of ten times, these are excuses and your minds way of trying to keep you comfortable. Once you start (an essential step), there will be a natural swing in your emotional pendulum  that will tell you “it isn’t so bad”.

3. Do the work regardless of your current conditions– It’s easy for us to complain about our situations and blame people for why we aren’t achieving our goals.

By complaining, we contribute to our own suffering and make our lives more difficult. Our conditions and situations will always be less than ideal. We can’t always control our scenarios, events presented our way, but we can control our responses to those scenarios and events.

4. Find some excitement and reframe into a positive mindset– Think about when you were a kid and your birthday was approaching, odds are you were excited and overflowing with positive thoughts.

When you approach fitness from this same angle—more abundant situations will magically follow suit (you gotta believe).

Visualize what succeeding with your fitness goals feels and looks like and connect it to how it’s going to benefit aspects of your life. Don’t just want to lose fat for the sake of it. Think about how losing fat will level up the rest of your life.

5. Seek rhythm like James Brown– What separates those that are consistent to those that sporadically show up is an ability to develop a ritual and find a consistent flow to their days.

james brown- how to take action with your fitness
The ‘godfather of soul’-Photo Credit: Stephanie Arbaugh via Compfight cc

***Feel free to pause and take a three-minute dance break or a ten-minute break if you really need to unwind.

6. Approach with a deadline mindset– Duke Ellington famously said: “I don’t need time, I need a deadline.”

A deadline mindset brings a sense of urgency and forces you to determine what’s essential and what’s filler in your days.

Shift yourself from a“what do I feel like doing” mindset into a “what needs to be done rather I like it or not” mindset.

7. One thing at a time– When you eat, train, or go out to dinner with friends or a date—focus on doing that one task (and only that task).

Throw multi-tasking to the wayside.

8. Accept that fear never disappears– Fear is one of the biggest obstacles to taking action. You get this intense bubbly feeling along with your body tightening. You start forecasting about the road ahead being filled with failure, embarrassment, rejection, and pain.

Nevertheless, move forward with action and co-exist with this fear. Fear never vanishes nor does it need to. You learn to accept that fear sometimes is irrational.

9. No more spectating, leave the audience– You watch movies; you watch sports; you watch sitcoms; you read books; you listen to music; you scroll through countless fitness transformations on Instagram (albeit most of them are an illusion); you read others Facebook status (most of them are complete rubbish).

Are you making time to create things for yourself? Are you taking the time to create a healthier life for yourself instead of just witnessing others? Are you adding something to the universe? Are you just consuming and taking in instead of being a maker and doer?

It’s easier to sit in the audience. It’s safe and secure.

But, to build a world-class body, live a world-class lifestyle, and create ripples within your life—you must become a participant.

That 1st step is damn hard, but who says it can’t be a baby step (all that matters is that you get started)?

10. What’s your purpose– Ask ‘what is the purpose of this activity’ and “why am I doing this”.

11. Reflect on your life– Sounds really deep, but it’s essential. Is whatever activity you’re doing an essential and vital task to your fitness goals? Are these choices in alignment with your vision and values?

If you enjoyed this article, enjoy dancing, or know someone who is struggling with their fitness, would you be a good human and please send this article their way (many thanks)?

Sink or Swim: How to Exploit Your Fitness Mindset For Success

Sink or Swim- How to Exploit Your Fitness Mindset For Success
Photo Credit: Saad Faruque via Compfight cc

Not everyone has the ability to draw. Not everyone has the ability to play an instrument. Not everyone has the ability to write.

Some of us aren’t meant to be creative. Some of us aren’t meant to be great communicators. Some of us aren’t meant to excel at fitness.

Throughout my childhood and even into adulthood, I had this propensity to believe I was either a natural for the activity or it just wasn’t meant for me.

Many of us have been told we’re not good at something and should go pursue something that comes easier to us.

Many people have quit on fitness by blaming their shortcomings on factors such as genetics, environments, athletic abilities, and other excuses.

In Dr. Carol Dwecks’ book ‘Mindset: The New Psychology of Success’, she breaks down our mindsets into one of growth and one that is fixed. One mindset leads to an anything is possible attitude while the other places an invisible ceiling on ourselves.

Growth vs. Fixed Mindset

Our mind is power. Our beliefs can be our worst enemy or our greatest asset. Our beliefs shape our behaviors (for better or worse).

Growth mindset– This mindset sees the world in abundance and believes there is enough of the pie for everyone to have. You see your fitness being in your hands and not someone else’s. You see yourself as the captain of your life trajectory. You realize that you and only you can stop yourself from being remarkable.

This person believes that intelligence can be developed and expanded upon.

This person embraces a challenge and doesn’t give up during tough moments. Mastery of their craft is developed through effort and consistency. They’re inspired by others work and successes, not jealous and bitter.

Fixed mindset– You either have it or you don’t. The outlook of the world is scarce. Success is due to being naturally gifted. This person avoids failure and setbacks like the plague to avoid looking weak and incapable.

There’s a glass ceiling on how smart you can become. This person blames genetics for their fitness shortcomings. It’s never their fault, but always someone else’s.

This person fails to take responsibility for their own actions and life. This mindset traps themselves within a box where they are forever stuck in neutral.

How do you see yourself when looking in the mirror

The people who are consistently told they’re naturals at their craft, or geniuses within their work are also the same type of people to fold up when the resistance hits.

“The view you adopt for yourself profoundly affects the way you lead your life” states Dr. Dweck. This view of yourself determines if you’ll become the person who owns their goals or if you’ll just become the person who always wishes and stays inside a comfort zone.

Dr. Dweck states “the passion for stretching yourself and sticking to it, even (or especially) when it’s not going well, is the hallmark of the growth mindset. This is the mindset that allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times of their lives.”

Dr. Dweck states, “just because some people can do something with little or no training, it doesn’t mean that others can’t do it (and sometimes do it even better) with training.”

Many famous inventors, painters, and professional athletes weren’t born with amazing abilities, but instead put the work in each and everyday to develop their abilities.

Thomas Edison had plenty of assistants (around 30) to assist him on the invention of the light bulb. These assistants weren’t just undergrads or people looking for a simple paycheck, but instead were well trained scientist. Edison was far from a genius, but was an seeker of knowledge and this dedication to his craft became the sum of his inventions.

Many people claim to suck at fitness and blame their shortcomings with various excuses.

Many experts claimed Jackson Pollock lacked talent and potential and judging by his early work—no one would argue with that. However, by showing up daily and putting in the work, he became one of the greatest American painters of the twentieth century.

Your goals, whether fitness, artistic, or whatever else is the result of your dedication to the craft. As Twyla Tharp states in ‘The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life’, “creativity isn’t a magical act of inspiration, but instead it’s the result of hard work and dedication.”

Muhammad Ali wasn’t a natural at boxing. According to boxing analyst he lacked the prototypical metrics that defined a great boxer. However, Ali possessed mental strength that was incomparable to anyone else.

Michael Jordan wasn’t a naturally gifted basketball player. But, he possessed one of the greatest work ethics in the history of sports. He was cut from his high school varsity team, didn’t go to the college of his choice, and he wasn’t even the 1st pick in the NBA draft.

Jordan was a basketball player at one point who had glaring weaknesses in his game. However, displaying the growth mindset, Jordan attacked his weaknesses (his defense, ball handling, and shooting) and turned those into some of his greatest strengths. Even at the peak of his game, Jordan consistently outworked everyone because he was always steadily trying to improve (no wonder everyone wanted to be like Mike).

fitness mindset
The greatest to ever play the game- Photo Credit: efraimb via Compfight cc

Wilma Rudolph, 3 time gold medal winner for sprints and relay in the 1960 Rome Olympics, wasn’t always the fastest woman alive. Born prematurely, consistently sick, and the twentieth of twenty-two children—her outlook wasn’t remarkable. At age 4, she contracted double pneumonia, scarlet fever, and polio—thus ending up with a paralyzed left leg. Of course, doctors gave her no chance of a normal life, but at age twelve she left the leg brace behind and started to walk normally.

From the examples above, natural talent and instant creativity isn’t a pre-requisite to becoming a master of ones craft.

Are you quick to label yourself and other people into a category? Do you use the excuse that this person is a artist, writer, marketer, or genetically gifted specimen to let yourself off the hook for not trying things or as a built up excuse for when things don’t pan out as expected?

If so, it’s imperative you release these fixed mindset traits and adopt a mindset of growth and abundance to succeed with your fitness mindset.

How to adopt a growth mindset

Our mindsets are just beliefs which will lead us on a path to happiness or misery. As Dr. Dweck states, a “mindset change isn’t about picking up a few pointers here and there. It’s abut seeing things in a new way”.

At one point, I had a fixed mindset. I constantly needed to prove myself and if I failed…it meant I wasn’t smart enough, creative enough, or good looking enough. As for fitness, it meant I wasn’t lean enough, strong enough, or fast enough.

Just being aware of these mindsets will allow you to take the first step toward changing them. Once you have awareness, you can think and react in more positive ways.

A growth mindset doesn’t need a tank full of confidence to get started. “Sometimes you plunge into something because you’re not good at it You don’t think you’re already great at something to want to do it and to enjoy it” states Dr. Dweck.

All of us are born with a curious mind that continually seeks knowledge, but a fixed mindset unravels your mind from this state of curiosity and wonder.

Think about something you enjoyed, but then the difficulty rose and you wanted to quit or someone stated you weren’t good enough. For me, it was art and creativity, but the opinions I received as a child and expectations of the status quo took that away for 2 decades. For you, this could be fitness and chasing after your true passions.

However, never quit because the weight isn’t flying off quickly. Fitness is a skill that takes time to master.

Next time you catch the blues and want to quit your fitness goals, quit your book, quit your business, or quit pursuing your dreams—don’t forget the growth mindset.

Don’t forget about the many successes that came before you that implemented this and stayed persistent to become masters of their craft. It won’t happen tomorrow, or even next week, or maybe even in a year, but it’ll eventually happen if you approach the situation with the correct mindset.

Think abut the immense knowledge and experiences you’re accumulating along the process, the challenges you’re tearing down, and the obstacles that are trying to stop you. Let these become a positive burden.

Treat your journey like a folk tale, and tell yourself that you’ll have a great story to share with others years later who will travel down a similar path.

Pay no Attention to The Sideline Critics (A Polite Note From Those of us Trying to Level up Our Lives)

pay no attention to the sideline critics-sideline criticsOn any given Youtube video, Facebook post, Instagram share, or conversation with peers at work—you’ll hear someone share their criticism over a specific matter.

Criticism, in the correct context, serves as a great tool to help us grow as individuals and reach our desired goals. This type of criticism is deemed constructive, which is always a valuable metric.

However, the majority of criticism that we encounter is the polar opposite of constructive criticism. Today’s criticism is basically messages of hate, insecurity, and jealously.

The Sideline Critics DNA

There are two types of critics. One type criticizes and takes action toward the issue (succeed or fail, this person at least tried). The other type criticizes and sits on the sideline—offering no value besides creating extra noise. This type of critic is lazy and runs their mouth just for the sake of talking.

The sideline critic is the type of person who comments on Youtube with hateful comments such as “his music sucks, he should quit”, or “she’s fat, but I guess her singing is ok”.

The sideline critic appears in the fitness space with comments such as “why is he working out like that”, or “why does she eat this way, when there’s a better way to eat”.

The sideline critic has balls of steel behind the pc screen and talks behind people’s back.

Why you should pay the sideline critics no attention

It’s easy for the sideline critic to criticize someone who is trying to make a change in this world because they only give lip service about making a difference. It’s easy for them to call people’s clothes ugly when they only wear what society tells them is cool.

It’s easy to criticize someone for following their dreams when they are only making excuses for why they aren’t following theirs. It’s easy to criticize someones fitness decisions when they’re doing nothing besides going to work, then heading home to watch the latest TV shows.

It’s easy to criticize someones creativity when they don’t attempt to do anything creative.

It’s easy to make fun of someone’s diet or efforts toward living a healthier lifestyle when they don’t attempt to try themselves (deep down, they want to try, but are afraid of being vulnerable and risking failure).

It’s easy to be a critic about people’s relationships when the strongest ones they have is with a television and a gaming system. It’s easy to criticize someone else’s music when they’re not creating any themselves. It’s easy for them to turn into the next Roger Ebert when they’re not making movies.

everyone thinks they're a critic- sideline critics
Everyone wants to be a critic- Photo Credit: MikePfunn via Compfight cc

It’s easy for the sideline critic to call someone crazy and delusional when they stay safe and warm inside their bubbly comfort zone. It’s easy for them to label someone a subpar guitar player when the only guitar playing they attempted was from a gaming system.

It’s easy to laugh at someone at the gym, when they only pretend to workout and half ass everything. It’s easy for them to laugh at their co-workers for falling for the latest snake oil fitness product when they don’t attempt to give fitness a chance (at least those people were trying).

It’s easy to say this guy gives awful advice when they’re a complete mute about the topic on hand.

It’s easy to criticize from above when you aren’t getting your hands dirty and actually trying to make a change.

In their eyes, their books, workouts, advice, music ,and ideas are perfect.


Because they’re still in their head. Their ideas are vacationing in fantasy land (the only place where perfectionism exist).

A challenge for you to rise above the critics

There’s a lot of criticism being dished out, but what the hell are they doing to help the situation?

Will you let their noise stop you? Or will you continue to roll your sleeves up, get some dirt under your nails, and keep moving forward with your goals.

 Think about the courage it takes to walk into the gym and feel lost, yet continue to workout. Think about the courage it takes to venture into uncharted territories with your work, yet continue towards building your dream career. Think about the courage it takes to chase after a goal, when everyone is in the other corner shouting for you to quit.

Don’t let the sideline critics stop you from making your dent in the universe and building the body you want.

Here’s a message you can tell the sideline critics

Dear sideline critics & all others who like to criticize but take no action,

While we may at times make the wrong decisions or the unpopular choice, we’re nevertheless still sticking our necks out there, taking chances, striving to become the healthiest versions of ourselves, and trying to make our dent in the universe.

So, if you don’t mind, we are asking politely ‘that you stop your complaining’.

Keep your hateful comments to yourself if you don’t have a better idea—we don’t need your insecure manifestations. Keep your opinions to yourself if you’re not willing to attempt anything.

If you’re not going to say anything of value, or contribute positively, or share a solution, or criticize in a objective manner—then ‘stop your complaining’.

Start a revolution. Start working out. Start making healthier food decisions. Start writing that book. Start playing the guitar. Start writing. Start painting. Start going after the things you want, instead of only settling & making excuses.

Once you start to do this, you’ll understand that it takes hard work, courage, vulnerability, and lots of gusto to put yourself out there for the whole world to see and judge you.

Until you start to do this—please keep your mouth shut. Some of us have work to do.


A person trying to level up their fitness and make their unique dent in the universe.

P.S. If you’re currently being affected by the sideline critics, I challenge you to immediately make a declaration of “no more”. No more of letting critics hold you back from your fitness goals or any other goals in life. Your goals deserve your full attention—not the sideline critics.