Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Workout Wednesday: Just Do It!!

I often get asked for advice about starting a workout plan or tips on how to accomplish one's goals when it comes to getting healthier. My advice is not novel nor is it mind blowing, in fact, I didn't even originally come up with it: Just do it. Sure, you probably need to know what you'll be doing, but I think a lot of us get caught up in analysis paralysis when it comes to working out. We worry so much about the nuances and the sets and the time and the reps and the heart rate etc. that we end up doing nothing. All that is important is that you set a goal and you take steps forward each and every day to achieve that goal. If your goal is to get healthier and you've decided the only way to get healthier is to add exercise to your routine in addition to your treatment schedule, stop thinking about it and just do it! And I'm not talking to you as someone who doesn't struggle with this myself.

When it comes to me and working out I would say that one of my biggest obstacles is analysis paralysis. I often find myself coming up with a variety of reasons of why working out today just won't work out. My stomach hurts. I'm hungry and I have to choose between eating and working out. I have a headache. I'm having trouble breathing today. Do I really have time? Is there something else that I should be doing instead? Does it really matter if I just miss one day? I've already missed one day what's the big deal if I miss two?

What I really want you guys understand is that this is a conversation that goes on in my head almost daily. See, I'm not one of those guys that has a burning desire to go to the gym and more so, I try to find every reason not to do cardio. Let's be clear, I hate running and I'm not particularly fond of getting out of breath. There is something I am good at however, and that is sticking to my word. I try very hard to say what I'm going to do and then do what I said I would do. I was convinced a couple of years ago that the only way I was going to get back to who I wanted to be, was to recommit to treatments and exercise. I made a promise to myself that I will wake up each and every day going forward and try to be the best version of myself. To be the best version of myself I need to be the healthiest I can be. No one can dispute that - without our health, the rest of our life suffers. I know full well that when I am healthier I am more active and when I'm more active, I am happier. And not only did I make a promise to myself but I made a promise to Mandi - that if she was going to be my wife I would do anything and everything to make sure I was in this for the long haul. I made that promise and I intend to keep it.

Now, is it easy? Nope. Not at all. The biggest challenge I face each and every day is actually willing myself to get my butt to the gym. Each and every day I go through a variety of questions and throw out a variety of roadblocks to try to cause myself to stumble. My mind knows that my body would rather sit on the couch and hang out with my wife. So my mind is a really good at convincing my actions that my body knows best. In fact, just today, the last thing in the world I wanted to do was go to the gym. But, as I said, I'm a man of my word and this morning I woke up and promised myself that I would do spin class. That's one thing I've discovered that really helps when it comes to sticking with a workout plan - don't worry about working out for all of next week, just worry about working out today!

Here's what you'll find: once you actually get to the gym you enjoy each and every second of it. You may even enjoy being out of breath! Like I said, the last thing on my mind today was actually getting myself to the gym and doing spin class, but just like each and every time before this, I left the gym with a smile on my face. I even told myself that I was going to “take it easy” at spin class today, but once I got started I really pushed myself. And I'm not kidding, that happens every single time I drag my butt to the gym. It's all about giving yourself an opportunity to succeed. Like MJ said, "We miss 100 percent of the shots we don't take". Stop holding onto the ball afraid you're going to miss the shot. Who cares?!?! Shoot the ball! Chances are, it will go in.

Thinking about working out today? Just do it!