Ok, so like most of you, I set some goals for myself at the first of the year. I have been wanting to drop an inch from my waist and bring up my upper body muscle a little bit. I laid out the steps I was going to use to get there and planned out how I would progress.
Literally about 2 weeks into the new year, something occurred to me. I didn’t really want to change up anything. I actually really liked how I did things. I liked how I ate, I was comfortable with how much exercise I was doing and the whole eating-and-exercise plan I was on seemed effortless. Above all, I was not DISsatified enough with my current physique to make myself want to stir up the pot all that much.
Could I be leaner? Of course. More muscular? Yes. But at what cost? What mental effort would it take me to make some big changes? Would the effort be worth it? Would it take significant time away from my business, my friends/family and my personal time? My preoccupation with my workouts would certainly increase, and I would be stressing more to make sure I had all my food prepped, cooked and tupperwared up…just to lose an inch or two? To be completely honest, I didn’t know if it was worth it. (If you have been following JillFit for long, you know that I actually dislike prepping and cooking food. In fact, I probably eat every 3rd meal out at a restaurant or get take-out.) So, what would it cost me in sweat equity and mental effort to drastically change what a) is easy for me and b) keeps me at the same body composition? A lot. And I realized a few weeks into the new year that I was not ready nor willing to do it. Okayyyy…Plan B?
So what did I do?
I kept things much the same, yet slowly implemented a couple new changes. And here’s what I have done since January 1:
- Moved to 1 cup of coffee per day (instead of 2 or even 3)–this was a goal of mine, and I have attained it
- Moved to 4 days per week of regular weight training–consistency with this was a goal of mine, and I have attained it.
- Increased my leisure walking–this has helped me lower my stress hormones (a goal of mine). Many days Jade and I will get in 2 60-minute walks now.
And that’s it. A couple small changes, over the last 4 months. The changes were EASY to make because I met my efforts with understanding and patience. Implementing a ONE single practice at a time has helped me to make the changes permanent. I shun massive changes and complete overhauls now. It doesn’t work for me (and I would argue that it doesn’t work long-term for many others either).
I literally hardly ever stress about food anymore. I hardly think about it. Does that mean I eat everything I want? Of course not. I use moderation 24/7 (90% clean 100% of the time), using 2-3 preemptive cheats throughout the week and a single cheat on Sunday night. If I don’t grocery shop for the week, it’s ok–I allow myself to wing it for the week, trusting that I am always able to make a fat loss choice wherever I end up.
And the thing that makes me the happiest is that my mental energy is more in my business and in my personal fulfillment pursuits now; less on food and workouts. If you have been reading the blog, you know that I struggled with food for many years. So this has been a practice, and I am still not perfect by any means. But I do feel more in control than ever before, and it feels good. I am not at my leanest, I am not at my most muscular, but I am ok. It’s all good! :)
Aaaaaand I pretty much look the same as I did in January :) These photos, below, look almost identical. No big changes. But I am not sweating it. If I ever have the urge to throw myself back into the physique game with hard-core ambition again, I will. But until then, I will be ok with how I am, I will work to stay fit, healthy and fairly lean, and I will have fun!
I think a lot of my LACK of desire to drastically change up my routine and get super-shredded has to do with my mental game. At JillFit, we talk a lot about body-acceptance and how to be grateful for what you have, and how that doesn’t mean you just give up. In fact, it means you still strive for more, but you do it in a way that you get to stay happy: it’s ok to eat a cookie and still like yourself after. But it’s also ok to kick ass in the gym, and still want more. It’s all good.
That’s the beauty of CHOOSING your attitude: YOU LITERALLY GET TO DECIDE HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT YOURSELF RIGHT NOW. There is no “right” or “wrong,” only the choice of positive self-perception or negative self-perception. When I choose positive, I am not only happier, but I also MORE MOTIVATED to keep working hard. Negative self-talk just discourages. It’s all a choice that you get to make FOR yourself, ABOUT yourself. Isn’t that refreshing?? :)
So. How are you progressing on your fat loss journey? Are you settled? Or are you still trying to find that elusive “effortlessness”? Talk to me! OX jill