Your mind is a powerful tool and when it comes to maximizing your Heart Smart Minute fitness and nutrition potential, your mind is your best weapon. Fitness and healthy nutrition are not things that come naturally to the majority of the population, so why is it that some people conquer their fitness and nutrition goals while others seem doomed for a life of yo-yo diets? The key is this: before you exercises your muscles, take the time to exercise your mind.
I’ve had a client train with me on and off for several years. She travels for her work often, so when she’s in town we try to maximize our workouts together. For years she absolutely hated exercise and would watch the clock during our fitness sessions counting the seconds until she was free to go. She put in her fitness time but her desire was lacking, and she continued to suffer from a bad back and weak wrists. As soon as she left for her work trips, the weight would creep right back on and we were back to square one again.
This summer something changed. Her attitude went from being “I HATE exercise” to “Yes! I want to live and enjoy my life.” The simple change in mindset made results that would have taken months, happen in weeks. The sessions fly by and joy is taken from eating healthy nutrition. When you come from a mental place of excitement and possibility it’s incredible to see how quickly your body will transform. My client hasn’t lost a tremendous amount of weight, but that isn’t our goal. Our goal is to see her strength and stamina improve and to take the focus off the scale.
When you have a bad attitude towards fitness or making changes to your nutrition, don’t even bother trying to exercise, because you’ve already defeated yourself and you will only see frustration and no results. Figure out why you have a bad attitude and attach positive thoughts and emotions to it. Here are some Heart Smart Minute suggestions:
Stretch out your mind: We warm up our muscles before a fitness routine but never our mind. Find a quiet spot, close your eyes and say aloud to yourself how much you LOVE to exercise. You love how strong your body feels, you love the sweat on you face, you love how energized you feel. Even if you don’t believe a word–keep saying it over and over 30 times if you have to! You will start to believe every word!
Don’t Make it about Weight Loss: Basing your fitness success on the scale is the quickest way to get discouraged and quit. Base your success on being able to walk around your neighborhood, play with your grand kids and get out of bed in the morning without having every bone in your body ache. Those are true successes in fitness and ones that will last a lifetime.
Life is NOT about Food: We have this emotional connection with food that is so powerful. We use it to celebrate with, to mourn with, when we’re happy, sad or somewhere in between. To so many of us, the day revolves around food so make your nutrition plan your top priority. You can enjoy food but do so in moderation and plan activities with your loved ones that don’t involve eating!
Choose Life! Don’t just be Alive: When you get discouraged or want to give up on your fitness plan or nutrition goals tell yourself over and over again that you WANT to LIVE! There is a difference between living and being alive. Someone unable to move because they can’t get up off the sofa or leave their house is alive, but that is no life. Living a life of strength, power, excitement, and health is worth every hour in the gym. It’s worth driving past the fast food place and it’s worth your change in attitude. You are the only one powerful enough to choose life for yourself.
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