I have wasted way too much time in my life trying to be like somebody else in regards to physical fitness. Movies I liked and magazine articles I read featured muscle-bound guys who were ripped to shreds. I read articles where folks said that if you did this workout, or if you ate that much food, you would achieve their coveted physique.
This never worked for me.
I would try someone’s prescribed muscle-building workout, but then I would fall off either because:
- I did not count the cost….OR
- I simply got bored.
I would stuff myself with food to gain weight – I am a hardgainer – and although I would gain some weight, I would repeatedly plateau. I also would get tired of trying to eat so much, as well as of spending so much money to do so.
It has been only within the past two or so years that I finally decided that I would do me. In other words, instead of trying to achieve someone else’s physique, I would work hard doing workouts that I liked, and see where I would end up. Instead of trying to eat so much food, I would focus on eating healthier and eating enough to be satiated, trusting that my body will respond.
Because of this, I live a much freer life. Why force myself to do hours of exercise that I may not even enjoy? Why stuff myself with large meals every 3 hours when my body is going to fight tooth and nail from gaining the weight anyway? I want to have fun working out. I want to enjoy my food. I want to LIVE!
I want you to live, too. If you do not get anything else from this article, read the following tips to help you to do you:
- Accept yourself. There is literally no one else in the world like you. Just like the folks you admire are one-of-a-kind, you are one-of-a-kind too. You are no different than they are.
- Do NOT compare yourself to others. Not smart. How are you going to compare yourself to someone else, and you lack the same experiences, the same physical and mental makeup, and so on? The bible talks about how this kind of comparison is not smart.
- Receive motivation – and that alone – from others. There is nothing wrong with being motivated to get in shape by someone who is in shape. When you want what they have though, you begin to cross into bad territory.
- Focus on exercise you actually like. The more you actually like the exercise, the more likely you will stick with it, and the better results you will see. Find what you like to do, and do that…a LOT.
- Eat healthy most of the time. As long as you follow some basic principles for eating well, such as avoiding soft drinks and a lot of the packaged stuff, and focusing on fresh food, you should do well. You might need to tweak that here and there, but there is no need to follow somebody’s crash diet.
- Wean yourself from needing fast results. This is a big problem for us in our culture…wanting everything fast. I like to say that anything that is truly worth something is going to take some time. So get comfortable with being consistent with your eating and exercise for a LONG time.
Oh, one more thing that I must say to elaborate on the accept yourself point is that, while you should be happy to be who you are, please do not settle for an unhealthy version of yourself. If you are truly overweight, you will only hurt yourself if you do not get to a healthy weight. I understand the acceptance movements and sympathize with them, because society is cruel, but to be your healthiest, you have to lose the extra pounds.
I hope this article helps someone.