September 2020 Newsletter

How to Stick to a Fitness Routine

Getting yourself started is probably the most challenging aspect for people, but once you can mentally get yourself there by just starting, that’s half the battle. Staying active and taking care of your body can be a genuinely fun and enjoyable part of your daily life. Here’s some tips to help establish a routine and start accomplishing your personal goals:

1. It’s not all-or-nothing

We all start somewhere, every person is a beginner at some point. Through trial and error you will find your rhythm and what you like when it comes to workouts. It shouldn’t be the most challenging, intense workouts right off the bat- start off with what you’re comfortable with and what you know you can commit to, and never feel bad about being a beginner, you will learn and pick things up with time.

2. Watch your mental talk

Your mind plays an enormous part in what you can achieve in your fitness journey, so be conscious of what you’re saying to yourself. “I’m not athletic” or “I can’t do this”- be kind to yourself, know that you are just as capable as anyone else in achieving your fitness goals, regardless of your age or weight. It’s absolutely possible and the skill will naturally come as you move forward.

3. Switch things up

Exercise doesn’t have to be something you “have” to do, it can be something you actually look forward to and find peace out of. Choose exercises that are fun for you, switch up your routine, whether that’s through fitness content you find online or through a personal trainer, make it your own and be proud of yourself for taking care of your body.

4. Stay motivated during your workout

Update your workout playlist, or have a podcast or show you can catch up on during your workout. There’s also many inspiring people in this community from the people in your gym to fitness influencers online, people who have amazing stories, tips and advice- use this to help propel you forward, and find the joy in the journey, not the destination.

The Mental Game     

So little is talked about the mental side of things. The mindset.  A negative mindset is body dysmorphia.  Never being good enough. Not being happy with how you look, but no matter what you do.  It’s just never enough.  Knowing this subject well, as it is something I’ve struggled with in my entire life.  Feeling not good enough and having to ‘prove’ everyone wrong.  But it’s just a mental perception and is not based on reality.   And it brings up an interesting subject beyond the gym, fat or muscle – the mind(set).

In a society that is more and more driven by appearances and superficialities, we have lost the pursuit of real substance, experience and character. We follow the latest fashions and must have the fancy new car.  And…of course have a perfect body too.  Now, I am not advocating obesity; and having a physical, and personal goal is very important.  To be fit, healthy and strong – this is a great thing.  But what we want to look at is how having (or NOT having) this makes us feel.  What is going on inside our minds along the way?  How do we feel about, and perceive ourselves day-to-day in life?

The real issue is when the pursuit of some future gain is at the expense of our present happiness and good mood.  We think about the ideal, perfect way we want, and the mind thinks, ‘it must be ours or I won’t be happy’.  It is marketing at its best – really, really good marketing. But it is never enough.  Truth gets lost somewhere in the hype and excitement of it all.  No one talks about the downside, the negatives, the struggle behind the scenes. These heavy expectations we put on ourselves makes for anxiety and tension.  Are these expectations realistic?

We all have a certain blueprint in our minds of how life ‘should’ be. And when our reality does not match those expectations, we are unhappy. The key is we must adjust the blueprint in our heads as needed, and choose to be happy as things are.  I am not saying give up on your goals but rather, be gentle on yourself along the way.  Be in it for the long term.  Think about the long game. Long-term physical and mental health.

Think about when you reach your goal (and you eventually will with enough perseverance) then what?  Where will you go from there? How will you feel?  As someone who has attained a great physique, I can tell you, it is not going to change your life as much as your mind makes it out to be.  Any reason to impress is quickly thrown out the window – and you are left with just you.  So, do it for yourself, for your own satisfaction, and that is all.  Then you can enjoy the journey.  Enjoy every step and struggle along the way to that goal.

You will always be starting over, and you will always be behind someone else. Readjusting your plans and strategies is key.  Plans almost never work out exactly as planned anyways. Accept how things are right now – those things that you cannot control, and be happy right now.  What are all the positive things in your life? And what are all the problems you DON’T have? Then get to work. The secret is to be happy first, and then success in your goals will naturally follow.

Exercise is like medicine.  You need only the correct dosage. No more, no less.  With the right prescription, you can be fit, healthy AND look great. The whole time having a calm, persistent mind that is always seeking ways to express itself in a positive and productive way.  And to get that right prescription, you have got to be a seeker; you must persist.  If that means hiring a Personal trainer, then do it! If it means sticking to a strict diet, then you have got to do that too.

But and here is the BIG BUT…I did not say perfect.  You will never be perfect (a bit of belly fat, an injury, a scar, a bad day, etc.), so take perfection off the table – it is an illusion.  But with that mindset, it gets exciting – because life is a journey of discovery now.  Always getting better, always learning more; always finding ways to improve and grow the whole time…always ready to take on the next challenge. Choose happiness, it’s the only thing you can control.                                     

PLANT BASED VEGAN 'FAKE' SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS

      INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 can diced Italian canned tomatoes
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 1 pack Light-Life “Smart Menu” Plant based meatballs
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 large green pepper
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 5 large mushrooms
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs Italian spices
  • 1/2 pack of Kohlrabi “Linguine”
  • 2 Tbs Parmesan cheese

      DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat up the olive oil in a large frying pan.  Add chopped veggies and garlic until lightly browned.
  2. Add tomatoes and tomato paste and bring to a simmer.  Add the veggie meatballs to soften and heat-up
  3. Add the spices to taste.  This sauce can be put on your choice of carbohydrate.