Since announcing to the world that I’ll be posting progress photos this Friday I’ve been on my best behaviour – eating clean, exercising hard, you know, all the stuff I’m always preaching about!
And one thing I’ve noticed is how much easier it’s getting
I’m not talking about the adaptations to exercise that mean lifting the same weight gets easier, etc. (That is happening, but I’m increasing the intensity of my workouts to keep challenging myself.)
What I mean is, I guess, it’s getting easier psychologically – although that’s a big word when all I’m really talking about is establishing good habits and routines.
Eight weeks ago, at the beginning of my 18% body fat challenge, if you’d have described my diet and exercise over the last week I’d have probably said, ‘yes, I know that’s exactly the sort of thing I need to be doing, it’s just finding the self-discipline to do it that’s the problem’.
I’d just got into a few bad habits whilst I’d been injured and snowed under with work, but the thought of making all the changes I needed to lose the fat I’d gained and get back to full fitness was scary. Would I be grumpy all the time while I made the necessary adjustments? Would it affect my relationship with my partner? Would it get in the way of my work…? If you’ve ever been in that position – and, let’s face, it most of us have been there several times – you’ll know how many potential difficulties suddenly spring to mind when you suggest cleaning up your lifestyle.
As you’ll know if you’ve been following this blog for a while, I didn’t dive straight in and dramatically alter my diet or start exercising like crazy right off the bat. I’ve been taking it bit by bit, gradually cutting out processed foods and sugary snacks and easing off on the evening tipple. Plus I’ve been introducing more and tougher workout sessions as my fitness has improved.
So now I’m at the stage where I’m exercising 5-6 days per week (sessions last around 30 mins to an hour) and eating mostly healthy most of the time, and it doesn’t feel like a big deal. I’ve got to the stage once more where it’s just what I do. Obviously, sometimes I fancy a cake with my cuppa and have to muster a little willpower, or I might have to give myself a bit of a pep talk to get to the gym in the morning, but it’s taking nowhere near the sort of effort it did a few weeks ago.
I know this is all to be expected, but I just wanted to show anyone who might be feeling a bit daunted by the idea of starting a healthier a lifestyle that there’s nothing to be afraid of! And also to encourage people to take things one step at a time, rather than overwhelm themselves by trying to make too many changes all at once.
It really doesn’t have to be difficult. Start by making small changes and, over time, they’ll add up to big differences. Go gradually and it’ll flow much easier. Sure, you may have further to go than me, but that’s OK, it just might take a bit longer that’s all. The point is you’ll get there. And the getting will get easier as you go.
…A bit of a stream of consciousness ramble there for you today, but if it chimes with you I’d love it if you’d click a share button and leave me a comment.
I’ll be back on Friday with my new photos (eek!).