I’m reposting this blog in honor of Biggest Loser, after they featured my motivational mantra about Big Girl Panties (below) on their social sites today. :)
“Most of us would rather sit on the couch. But most of us don’t want to look like all we do is sit on the couch.”
Why do we have the need to “FEEL” like working out? To be motivated to train hard or even just show up. Do you think professional athletes always want to roll out of bed at the crack of dawn to train, practice and beat their bodies up day after day? People don’t always want to workout, but people always want the results. Winners choose to workout, even when they don’t feel like it. It’s time to train like a winner.
You Either Want It or Not
If you really want to be thin, get more fit, perform better, run faster, go longer, win your next fight…you have to train – whether you like it or not. Even the most brutal workouts don’t last forever. Think of the facts: the work you do in that short period of time gives you benefits that last hours of feeling amazing, feeling confident, and feeling like a winner.
“Winners choose to workout, even when they don’t feel like it.”
Don’t You Even Think About It
Don’t ponder whether you should workout or not. The answer will always be “Yes, you should”. Pondering it, weighing your options, or renegotiating your schedule and commitments just wastes precious time. Just suck it up, pull up your big girl panties and just do it!
“Are you American?”
“What is your business here? “
“Where are you headed?”
We may think of Border Patrol as a bother, but we know it’s necessary to keep our country safe, as well as our surrounding countries. Not only does it keep the bad people out, it helps keep the good stuff in, protecting our assets and making certain people don’t take valuables out of our country illegally.
In many ways, I believe WE need better personal border patrol when it comes to our fitness journey. We need specific boundaries and rules in place that help protect our assets while we “travel”, as well as road blocks in place to prevent us from harm on our way to our destination.
Unfortunately, while we live in the land of the free in a nation that pretty much allows you the right to do just about anything, we get comfortable without rules, without borders. Borders are helpful and necessary – especially when you are trying to live healthy.
Think of how much better off we’d be if we were to ask these questions every time we encountered a new friend or yummy temptation.
Are you who you really say you are? How many foods out there are not really what they say they are? Low-fat foods often still are packed with fat and no-sugar added foods can still be loaded with natural sugar or other high-calorie ingredients. This is why we should read labels as closely as a Border Patrol Officer studies your driver’s license and passport.
“Are you Healthy?”
Just like you are either American or you are not, something is either healthy or it is not. It’s more black and white than you think. Vegetables are healthy, but as soon as you deep fry them they instantly turn unhealthy. Even salads can appear healthy, but after you add 1,000 calories of fattening cheese, nuts, dried fruit and dressings, you officially made something healthy unhealthy.
“What is your business here?”
Food has business to conduct too – and it can either be good for you, or it can be bad for you. When you eat something healthy, it continues working for you long after it hits your tongue. The same goes with unhealthy food. It continues wreaking havoc on the body after it’s eaten and forgotten. Besides the weight we may gain from eating too much food, most of the damage caused by letting unhealthy food in goes undetected for years. Like a fugitive on the run, you must catch it before it causes more harm and stop it in it’s tracks. The only way to do that, is to put up better borders and keep the bad stuff out of your precious territory.
Where are you headed?
Every decision you make determines where you’re headed. If you want to be in control of your destination, YOU have to make those decisions. If you let anything in, then food and people will make those decisions for you, and THEY are in control of your destination.
If you want to succeed, you need to realize every decision and every friendship can either help you reach your goal, or prevent you from reaching your goal. If you ask these questions to yourself, you will likely reveal what friends and foods shouldn’t cross your border.
We are nothing more than big babies – and we do NOT like things taken away from us. Whether it’s food, money, simple luxuries and even people, we tend to hold on with a death grip. And, the moment we think one of them is going to be taken away, we hold on even tighter, and even begin to cry before it’s gone.
However, replace one of your favorite things a new favorite thing, hobby or friend, and you won’t even realize that something you once valued is replaced and not even missed.
Learn from the Master
Most parents know all the tricks when it comes to taking something away from a child. When a child is caught holding something that could be harmful, a parent knows how to take that object away with minimal resistance. They either have to quickly snag it and entertain them to take their mind off of what they just took away, or they have to replace that object with something equally exciting.
The same happens with food. Every mother knows you don’t go anywhere without a pacifier. As a baby, the pacifier is a true baby pacifier. As a toddler, it’s normally a toy, blanket or baby doll. As a child, it could be a video game, barbie doll or action figure.
Nothing has changed. We are just bigger babies, with bigger toys and stronger wills – and we’ll throw a tantrum in a minute, as soon as we think we’re about to be stripped of something we really like.
Habits are nothing more than things we do that we like. We like to sleep in, we like to eat junk, we like our sweet comforts – even if they are bad for us. The problem is, we forget the age-old trick of the need to replace something bad for something good. We need a pacifier.
We can’t expect to be completely satisfied if we are constantly taking stuff away without replacing it with something just as good. I see this a lot with dieting. Someone will stop eating junk-food cold-turkey and not eat anything at all, or expect something lame like celery sticks to pacify them. Come on people! No wonder you fail! You need a better pacifier.
Going without, or eating something as boring as a celery stick, is no replacement for french fries. However, find a snack you actually enjoy that maybe more calories than celery, but fewer calories than french fries, and you have yourself a happy dieter.
The trick is to replace a bad habit with a really, really good habit you enjoy. This will require some trial and error, and like anything, it will take an adjustment period. Think about it. Half the vegetables we eat right now, we probably would have never tried (or kept trying) as a kid if mommy didn’t make us. Not only do we mature, our tastes change.
We have to try new foods and new exercises until we find the ones we like. If we don’t, then our diet or exercise will be temporary. But, when we find stuff that works, then our new healthy lifestyle will be forever – and we won’t even miss our old ways.
Stop That – Start This!
Stop That: Drinking fully leaded coffee
Start This: Drinking half regular and half de-caf coffee, or regular tea (which has 1/2 the caffeine as coffee)
Stop That: Meeting a friend for coffee
Start This: Meet a friend for a walk or run
Stop That: Drinking wine at night
Start This: Sip on flavored decaffeinated hot tea with natural relaxers in it like Chamomile
Stop That: Eating processed cereal
Start This: Eat high-fiber whole grain cereal or hot cereal (oatmeal) with fresh fruit
Stop That: Snacking on Doritos and flavored chips
Start This: Pop, or air pop, homemade popcorn with light oil and flavored Nacho Cheese popcorn salt
Stop That: Meeting friends out for dinner
Start This: Meet friends during the day at the beach, lake, or park for fun and R&R in the sun
Stop That: Eating ice cream after dinner
Start This: Eat a Publix low-sugar fudgesicle, low-cal ice cream treat or protein shake
Stop That: Using food as stress-reliever (which leaves you feeling even crappier)
Start This: Use exercise as a stress-reliever (which leaves you feeling better)
Stop That: Sleeping in on Saturdays
Start This: Run or walk during the time you normally sleep. You won’t miss the sleep or the time – and you’ll have more energy.
Stop That: Eating high carb side dishes at night
Start This: Eat more dark green veggies. You can eat more and lose more!
Stop That: Relying on salt to boost taste
Start This: Use more seasonings, lime juice, hot sauce and fresh herbs
Stop That: Drinking sodas
Start This: Drink more water, fresh brewed iced tea and/or seltzer waters
These are just a few ways to turn you bad habits into good ones. There are so many more!
What bad habit have you replaced with a good healthy habit?
If you treat fitness like a one-night stand you will fail. However, if you treat it like a life-long commitment, you and fitness will live happily ever after.
In many ways, fitness is like dating. Success requires “playing the field” so to speak, and many many dates. You can’t just make one attempt and give up, but people give up on fitness every single day.
Think about it. We date many people until we find that special someone. And, we’re not surprised when we find out our ex walked the aisle with someone else. We know good and well that relationships are complicated and that, just because someone was’t right for you, doesn’t mean they aren’t perfect for someone else. So, we just keep searching for our perfect mate – and we search and search until we find what we are looking for. If only we had that kind of dedication when it came to fitness!
Diet and fitness is also complicated, and a lot is required to find our perfect match. If you treat fitness like a one-night stand you will fail. However, if you treat it like a life-long commitment, you will live happily ever after.
1. It requires research. Most people don’t just dive into just any relationship without knowing something about that person. There is a certain level of research most people do to find out if a date is someone they might like and trust. Research is also suggested with fitness. Whether you ask mutual friends, or look at product reviews, it’s good to do a little research before you try anything new.
2. It requires fun. One of the first things my mom would ask me after a date was “did you have fun”? Fitness also should be fun. A long-term fitness relationship must be centered on things you enjoy. Whether that means enjoying the results, or the actual activity itself, your relationship with fitness can’t be miserable or it won’t last.
3. It requires time. Once I found a guy worth investing in, I knew it would take some time to get to know each other – and the same goes with fitness. Just like some guys surprised me, some workouts and healthy foods have surprised me too. It’s super important to give fitness a good solid chance and invest quality time in your fitness plan.
4. It requires money. Every guy knows dating cost money. When Steve was young, he knew exactly how many hours he’d have to work to afford to take a girl out on a date. Each date was valuable to him – and you should know how valuable you are, and know you too are worth the investment. Don’t be stingy with spending money on your health. Instead, be stingy with throwing money away on things that can prevent good health. Although fitness doesn’t have to be expensive, it’s worth investing in.
5. It requires honesty. We’ve probably all had dates we weren’t completely honest with. How unfair is that?! If you are going to give something a solid try, you need to be honest to yourself and everyone involved. Lying to your trainer doesn’t help anything, and lying to yourself just pushes your goal further away.
6. It requires change. Even the best relationships require change. You can’t expect to get married and go on living life like you’re single, no more than you can expect to live your new healthy life like you were when you were fat and out of shape. Going back to your old ways is not an option. If you want to succeed you have to be willing to make some permanent changes.
7. It requires perseverance. You have a choice to give up on anything you do. You can give up on your loved one, your job, your finances, and most definitely your health. Like a marriage, some things are worth fighting for. Great things rarely come easy. The sooner you realize that, the sooner you’ll be on the path to victory.
I can tell you that marriage requires a lot more work than any diet and exercise program. Sometimes it’s just so tempting to give up, but I’m SO glad I never allowed myself to give up on Steve – or myself. We are far from perfect, but all that hard work does pays off and I promise all your hard work trying to live healthy will pay off too. Plus, it’s not like you can divorce yourself. You are stuck with your body until “death do you part”. :) - B -
Your body does only what you tell it to do.
It doesn’t care if you don’t feel like working out. Your muscles will still work, and fat will still be burned.
You don’t have to always like it or look good doing it.
Your body will still make serious changes despite your attitude or appearance. You can even hate every minute of it every single time you workout, and your body will get hotter and hotter every day.
You can succeed even when you fail.
Even if you don’t get those few extra reps or those last few steps, you will still make positive changes. Even if you didn’t reach a new personal best and your time was the same as your last race, your body can still change, still improve, and still fight fat and aging.
Your body reacts to action, not thoughts.
Even if you have a fowl mood and drag your lazy, stressed out, ticked off butt to the gym, your body can still have a good workout. And if you can’t celebrate your workouts, celebrate your body for responding to your actions and not your mind.
Action trumps motivation any day of the week.
Many of you may think it’s easier to workout if you are motivated, but in the end, your body really doesn’t care what you think – it only matters what you do.
JUST. SHOW. UP.
Today’s blog will be short and sweet because I’m about to hit the road and get some killer footage of Head Coach for Team Jaco (Blackzilians, home of Rashad Evans) Coach Van Arsdale train some of his world class athletes.
Anyone who watches UFC, has probably seen coach Van Arsdale in action or on the side lines coaching Rashad Evans. He was on the Ultimate Fighter Season 10 coaching with Team Rashad and has a pretty killer professional record himself as a UFC veteran, Gold Medalist in freestyle wrestling, and inductee in the Iowa’s Hall of Fame of Wrestling.
He’s faced UFC icons like Randy Couture, Tito Ortiz and Wanderlei Silva, just to mention a few. He may look tough, but don’t let that full you – he’s one of the nicest guys I’ve met in the industry and you should see how proud of he is of his family and kids. The guy is just plain good people.
So what am I doing smack in the middle of a bunch of UFC fighters? I’m going to get some inside training tips, as well as shoot a couple of workouts that YOU will be able to tryout yourself! Stay tuned for the exciting details!!
Welp, I better boogie! I’ve gotta get on the road!! I’ll be posting pics on facebook & tweeting for sure! But do me a favor, be sure to like his brand new fan page. The guy has been so busy training world class athletes, he hasn’t had time to get social – but he’s making time now! He’s on twitter , but just joined facebook, so give him some love and Like Coach Van Arsdale’s page for me! Thanks!!! This is going to be a fun day!
Like my page to get more cool news and updates!
Watch Mike in Action, with Rashad Evans, right now on LiveExercise.com
I don’t know why we even waste our time looking for the easy way. I mean, when has anything easy really paid off? Honestly, for me? Never.
Think of it like childbirth. The birthing process, from what I understand, is not fun. However, it is very rewarding. When we are training, it’s like carrying a baby. We are growing a new physique, creating a new you. Like pregnancy, it also takes time and patience – and it can be a very long, uncomfortable journey.
There’s another similarity, and that’s how we feel the closer we get to the “due date”. I don’t think I’ve ever heard a pregnant mom, in her 8th month of pregnancy, say she hoped she went full term. Moms are normally very ready to get that baby out of there.
Hang in there!
In the same way, as you get closer to your goal weight, it’s easy to get impatient. Besides, you’ve been working toward this for months now – it’s time! No matter how read you are, no matter how tired you are, or no matter how discouraged you are, it’s super important you see it through.
It may be hard, it may be scary, you may fear failing, and you may wonder if you have what it takes – but whatever you do, don’t abort your goals. Take it all the way! Why? Because great things rarely ever easy, but they are ALWAYS worth it!
Subscribe for more fitness encouragement & motivation!
Bonnie: A Misty Moment Photography
Woman in Labor: Crazy Pregnancy
Baby in Belly: Free Picture Prompts
Have you ever just experienced something you almost didn’t go through with and thought “I’m so glad I did that”. This happens to me all the time. It’s not always about fitness either. It happens in all areas of our life. My laziness tempts me to stay at home, instead of doing something as silly as going bowling – and then I think “Wow! That was fun! I’m SO glad I did that”.
This not only happens when you are contemplating doing something, but it also happens when you are in the middle of something – like a diet or fitness program. We reach a physical and/or mental plateau. We begin to doubt if we are on the right path, or if it will be worth it – and we’re tempted to quit. Ironically, these times are often the valley right before an amazing mountain top experience.
Too Much Time at the Rest Area
Picture a guy on a journey, who gets tired, and decides to rest for a while. Does he rest forever? He could if he wanted to, if he’s satisfied with where he is. However, if he wants to get where he was headed, he’s going to eventually have to pick up where he left off and start moving again.
In this picture of Steve, only he knows what he’s doing. He could be putting the weight down, or he could also be picking it up. This is where many of us are in life. We are at a place where we can call it quits or we can claim a new start – the decision is all yours.