When someone rings me up to put themselves forward as a potential client, the first thing I do is spend a bit of time to find out the real reason they want to lose weight. I’m not talking about “My clothes are getting a bit tight”, or “I’m going to Antigua in 6 weeks and want to look good in a bikini”… I’m talking about what’s really the driving force behind wanting to ditch the flab.
If the reason you’re ringing me is because your jeans are starting to give you a muffin top, then chances are, you’re not ready. You see, losing fat is a big effort. It takes massive action, and in my experience, people don’t make massive overhauls to their lifestlye because their clothes don’t fit.
They buy bigger clothes.
The people who are successful are people who have a much bigger motivation.
Let me tell you a quick story…
I’ve heard probably every reason imaginable for wanting to lose weight, tone up, and generally send your confidence through the roof… but there was one particular phone call that’s always stuck in my mind. Not just for the reason, but more the way it was delivered…
It started off as a pretty typical call. A lady had some weight to lose, and wanted to put herself at the best possible advantage by getting Personal Training in her home town of Worthing.
When I asked her why she wanted to lose some weight, I got the usual reactionary response. “I have about 15lbs to lose, and I want to feel a bit better about myself”
Well we all do, right? But that’s not really a reason for turning your whole lifestyle on its head. So I probed some more.
“A lot of people have a stone to lose, it’s no big deal, it doesn’t really bother them. What’s made you decide to lose it now?”
And again, I got the same type of automatic, reactionary response we all tend to give. It’s like when your girlfriend asks if her bum looks big in that dress. You say, “Nooooo!”. You don’t think about, you don’t look her up and down to consider your response, you just immediately react…
So it went on for a bit like this for a couple of minutes, and then she completely knocked me off my feet with what she said…
“My cheating ******* ex-boyfriend is going to be at a BBQ next month with his ***** mistress, and there’s no way that she’s going to look better than me!”
And there you had it. The real reason she wanted to get in shape.
We’d gone from 5 minutes of calm, generic responses to a sudden outburst with more ferocity than an irritated ninja sloth…
You might think that that’s no different to wanting to lose weight for a holiday or similar, but there’s a very important difference… Emotion.
Ultimately we’re driven by emotion. How we feel. Not arbitrary timelines or superficial goals.
So my advice is, before you embark on a new programme, write down how your current shape makes you feel. What do you really think when you look in the mirror. What really goes through your mind when you towel down after having a bath, or look at that infamous bathing suit photo from your holiday snaps?
Do it now. Grab a pen and make a list of 5 things that you think about when you see yourself naked. Then if you’re ready to make the first step to overhauling your lifestyle, it’ll be much less “first step” and much more “running jump!”
So, what’s on your list? Leave a comment below.