How many times have you uttered the words, “I’ll start Monday”?
Chances are we've all said or thought this at least once in our lives. I’m willing to bet there are more than a few people out there that have used some event - a wedding, reunion, significant birthday, 5k race - as motivation to “get in shape,” only to find themselves back at square one shortly after the event has passed. If you can relate, I’ve got news for you: just like life, fitness doesn’t start on Monday and it doesn’t end after the wedding cake has been cut. It started the moment we were born, and it won’t end until the day we die. Every choice has a consequence.
The choices we make every day make us healthier or sicker. Our fitness (or lack there of) is the accumulation of every single one of the seemingly insignificant choices we make every day: hit the snooze button, or hit the pavement at 6AM; eat the side salad or the french fries; pull an all nighter or ask for an extension on your deadline; take the dog for a walk or let him out the back door. It all adds up.
Furthermore, we usually make decisions based on past decisions. That means bad decisions can easily become habitual. Going home to rest after work instead of going directly to the gym suddenly becomes the norm instead of the exception. Having that beer and pizza during the game last week makes it easier to do again this week.
People often seek out a personal trainer with a specific goal or event in mind thinking that six weeks will get them there and that once they achieve their goal the work is done. Unfortunately, it took a lot of poor choices to get out of shape and it takes a lot of smart choices to get in shape, perhaps even more eye opening is the fact that getting in shape never ends.
Personal trainers are a resource. Not only can we help get you to your goal, we can also give you knowledge so you can continue to make smart choices long after we’ve parted ways. However, we can’t do the work for you. You make millions of decisions every day that affect your overall health. We can’t be there all the time to make the right choices for you. And a few hours a week with us won’t undo the other hours of less than optimal conditions of life.
So, don’t fool yourself into thinking your fitness goals are a destination. They aren’t. They are just another step along the journey of your life. And the journey doesn’t start Monday either. It’s going on right now. Right now is your opportunity to make a better decision.
Need help learning how to make a better decision? Seek out a personal trainer and get the advice, motivation and support you need to make the most of your journey.
Joanna Meade (view bio) is a NSCA Certified Personal Trainer at the Downtown Athletic Club. She is a Level One CrossFit instructor and competitor. She can be reached at Merritt Athletic Clubs Downtown Club at 410-332-0906 or click here for a Free CrossFit Session.