I wrote this a while ago but wanted to re-post it. I really needed to re-read it myself yesterday and I realized again how important is it to have clear goals and reasons for wanting to reach those goals.
You Need A Reason
Last week in the gym I had a moment. In between chest and shoulders I looked out the window and wondered what exactly I was doing. Not what exercise was next, but really, as a man, as a person, what am I doing in the gym right now. I pushed the thought aside and focused on the rest of my workout, but for the rest of the day the thought clawed at the edges of my mind. I finally sat down to think about it with a little more perspicuity and realized the vital importance, for those new to BFL and those with a few challenges to their credit, of having good, solid reasons.
First I want to clarify what I mean by a reason because there are two types of reasons and it is important to understand them both.
The first type of reason is a faux reason. It tries to look like reason but it is more like a general sweeping statement of something you desire. For example: “I want to lose 30 pounds”. Wanting to lose 30 pounds is great, but unless you know exactly why you want to lose 30 pounds you will struggle everyday and most likely become one of the 95% of people that start but don’t finish a 12 week challenge.
The second type of reason is a real reason. Something you believe in, something that ignites passion when you think about it. Real reasons for wanting to lose 30 pounds might look like this: I want to play in the park with my children and not be out of breath, I want to live to see my grandchildren; I want to be accepted; I want to attract a life mate; I want to stop being ashamed of myself; I want a better love life; I want to take charge of my destiny; I want to escape this fat body and start living my life to the fullest! I want to be a fitness model or a personal trainer. There are thousands of reasons each one unique and personal to the individual wanting to make a change. Reasons are personal. There are no right or wrong reasons they are your reasons and yours alone.
Without having reasons we believe in and are passionate about we become overwhelmed with the details, like getting up at 5am to go to the gym or maintaining stringent, planned BFL eating, and forget the bigger picture. When we get bogged down in the details we lose track of what we are trying to accomplish and, bereft of navigation, drift aimless and lost and accomplish nothing. Knowing your reasons, writing them down and reading them every day will get you through those tough times. And believe me those tough days will come. If you hang on to your reasons you will weather the storm and emerge from the blackness a stronger more focused person.
Why does this man get up and go to the gym? Why do I eat clean and continue to do HIIT three times a week? I want to be the best man I can be; for myself, for my wife, for all those who are close to me. I want to live a long and healthy life still swinging a golf club, traveling and flirting with the ladies when I am an old man. I want to look good and sexy. I want to fee good and sexy. I want more energy. I want more creativity. I want ot be better connected to myself. I want to be more focused. I want ot live as though life were trying to ecape me and not me trying to escape life. The aim of life is to live and that is what I intend to do - live this life to the fullest.
I love it. Thanks Orrin.
Jessica Mighty Max ~ 2013 Body-for-LIFE Champion ~ Champion is a VERB!
Reading this brought me to tears....because it made me remember the reason why I'm in my 5th week of my first challenge and why I want to keep going. When I look in the mirror I don't want to see the tired, sad, desperate daughter who cared for her cancer stricken mother during the last months of her life. My reflection reminds me of those moments. Alot of time was spent in her bedroom...her bedroom with floor to ceiling closet door mirrors and not only do I have visual memories of her during that time.....but also of me because I saw myself in the mirrors. For her I was brave and I was strong......but my reflection and the truth in my eyes showed me the complete opposite. The end of my 12 week challenge coincidentally will fall in the same week as the one year anniversary of her passing. So hopefully I'll be able to look in the mirror and look good and actually FEEL good too.
WOW orrin wow that hit home. I was starting to fall into that "details" category. I wrote my goals for my C3 for which i am on week 7 now but rarely reviewed them . Thank you for that post I needed to read that. I know my reason, and our reason will give us purpose.. I am very happy with the changes that i have achieved but I know I can do better I have not created the body I deserve and will not stop until that happens. Another 3 very strong words to hold close are "I am responsible" for better or worse. If you can own and believe those 3 words you take control of your results.. much aloha
Diane33: Thank you for sharing. I am sorry for your loss. I really can't think of a better reason. Hold on to your reason and it will carry you through and make your success all the greater!
island dude: I am in week 7 of what I am calling C3 as well. I couldn't agree with you more. I hold to the same saying "I am responsible for my own success". Thanks for sharing
Together we are stronger!
Great post Orin, Very thought provoking, introspective and encouraging all at once. Thanks!!!
Thanks Orrin, love your post, it really is important to have compelling reasons to workout/eat clean, otherwise it is just window-dressing. One of my reasons is to be able to run again & do stuff (hiking, surfing etc..) with my boys, definitely couldn't do it if it was just to look good in a swimsuit!
Awesome post. It made me think and pull out and read my reasons once again.
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