A couple of weeks ago I wrote an article about how fitness isn’t always fair and at the end of it I wrote “If you can change your mind and change your attitude, changing your body will surely follow.” This is something I definitely believe. On the other hand, I also believe for many the body comes before the mind. This is probably not something you typically hear. Let me explain what I mean by this.
I believe that for many people just getting started, even when they don’t want to, is what gets their mind on board. I also believe getting in shape and changing the body gives people confidence they never had before. You can see it during the process and you can definitely see it when they are becoming who they want to be. Quiet shy people who were filled with self-doubt are suddenly walking around with swag and taking things on with confidence. People who before would never want their picture taken are the first ones in line. People literally go from hiding and not wanting to be a part of conversations to being outspoken and outgoing. People who you never saw smile before are now beaming every time you see them.
Does this happen to everyone? No, not necessarily, but it happens to a lot. This is why I tell people who don’t want to get started on their journey to fitness, or are too afraid to start, to just do it. I tell them to trust me that if they just get started great things will happen, and once they get through the tough part they’ll see what’s waiting for them on the other side.
Sure, people are more likely to have success if their mind is fully committed to it and they go into it with a great attitude. The problem with that is what if they never end up having that attitude? Where does that leave them? You can’t wait to be ready. You may never be ready.
If I can just get people in the gym, even if they don’t want to, usually that transformation starts to take place. They see how good it feels to be active. They see how much more energy they have. They see their body starting to change and pretty soon their attitude starts to change as well. Sometimes, just getting started is what gives them the motivation they needed to change their life. This is something that never would have happened if they hadn’t forced themselves to start.
Motivation is a funny thing. Too many times people won’t do things they want or need to do because they don’t feel motivated to do so. It’s such a dangerous thing to wait around to be motivated. It’s pretty unlikely you’ll just be sitting on your couch one day and all of sudden decide now’s the time. You certainly don’t want to be motivated to change because of something bad that happens. Unfortunately that is often the real motivator for people. Getting motivated because your doctor diagnosed you with some obesity related disease is not the way you want to be motivated.
Of all the people who I’ve convinced to start going to the gym, even if they went kicking and screaming the whole way, not once has anyone regretting getting started. Each and every single time they are happy they did start working out and as a result they feel so much better about many things in their life. Whether they continue on with it forever may or may not happen. The way I look at it though is if they realize how good it makes them feel, it at least gives them a chance. It’s certainly better than sitting on the sidelines and never giving yourself an opportunity to be happy.
To wrap this up, what I’m trying to say is that certainly wanting it badly is going to be a big help to your success. You absolutely should try to get your mind right and head into things with a positive attitude. However, if you can’t get your mind there, give it a shot anyway. You may just find out you are capable of so much more than you ever thought possible. Don’t sell yourself short and start realizing your dreams now!
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