1. Decisions and Goal Setting Wastes Time

By | February 12, 2004

fat-loss-goalsDon’t fail to make the decision up front. Are you kidding me? Of course you’ve made the decision. You know you want to get rid of that extra tire, exchange the six-pack of beer for the type of six-pack you can show, rather than share, at the beach.

It was a simple choice, wasn’t it? You’re sick and tired of being overweight, so it’s time to go. Right? Wrong again. Wrong!

The biggest mistake many people make is starting a fat loss program without truly making a decision. Sure, we know you want to get rid of the extra weight, but have you stopped to truly think about why? It may seem trivial, but having a deep, meaningful reason is critical to success.

It is one thing to throw the scale into the corner and bust down the gym door with a barbaric yell and start smashing iron around. Eventually, you will lose that initial high, and reality will come crashing down in its entire splendor.

You spent years filling those sacks of adipose tissue with extra fat calories, so why would you expect them to empty their precious load overnight? You’ll prepare a healthy meal and suddenly it will look too bland, or even revolting, and the only thought on your mind will be something taboo — something unhealthy.

Or you will hear the alarm blaring and decide you are just too tired. You might be staring at the treadmill and suddenly get the uneasy notion that it is mocking you, and decide you don’t feel like struggling with the sweat and pain today.

It is during these moments of weakness that the decision comes into play. If you just jumped into the endeavor chances are, it will be just as easy to jump out.

Sure, you are overweight, but man, that meal makes you happy, so you’re just gonna sit down and have it anyway, right?

Oh, yeah, you wanted to drop weight, but these workouts are tough, and don’t you just want to rest? Sure, you can rest. There is always tomorrow to train.

You know what? It has been a rough week. Let’s just start over again next week.

You lull and coddle yourself into a pipe dream that isn’t real, but hey, you let it seem real — you let it pull you in. You haven’t truly committed to anything, so it gives you a nice, comfortable back door — push the eject button and stay awhile.

Let’s get real. You’ve spent many years living a certain way. You do not know what it feels like to be lean, strong, and healthy. Sure, you can try to imagine it or read articles about it, but how does it really feel?

Don’t you owe it to yourself to make a choice — an informed decision? Can’t you handle living a few months differently than you have before, even if you hate every moment of it, if it means emerging from the other side with a new physique, a new you? It might be a battle, but then you will know what it feels like to come out victorious. If it isn’t what you had it chalked up to be, feel free to lapse and fall back into old habits. But you will never really know for certain if you don’t give it a try.

Make a goal. But don’t just make it. Make it real. Make it tangible. It should not be “I will lose weight.”

Instead, “I will lose 40 pounds,” is better.

“I will lose 40 pounds by July of next year” is probably best.

Did you know that the only difference between a dream and a goal is a deadline? You need a specific deadline. You want something realistic?

This is the real thing. A Real Transformation. These are not touched up pictures with a professional model.

If you are overweight, you can transform yourself. You just have to be willing to do it. And unlike the infomercials’ promise, it is not instant and it is not easy.

Consider this:

Men can typically lose between 0.5 – 1.5 percent of their body weight per week in fat if they are aggressively performing cardio, resistance training, and eating in a healthy way. Women are more in the 0.5 – 1 percent range.

If you are male and sitting at 300 pounds, then look to lose between 6 – 18 percent of your weight (18 – 54 pounds) in 12 weeks.

Wow, a big range, I know, but let’s get real — you know where you are starting and how well you will stick to it. Slow and steady? 18 pounds is comfortable. You think you’re ready to go all out, and hit it like no tomorrow? Then set those sights high and take the 54 pounds.

It is not enough just to want to lose the weight. You need compelling reasons. If you don’t have them, your mind will play tricks with you every step of the way. It is very easy to talk yourself into “I will be happy if I just eat this piece of food so I am going to do it” — if you don’t have a solid reason not to.

Just want to drop the weight? Who cares? Take an eternity! Doing it for health? Then realize this isn’t something to stop and start at will — it is a full-time commitment. If you are doing it for your children, then know that you need to set a consistent example around the clock, not just when it is convenient.

See also: How to Set Goals

Set those goals, know your reasons, and explain how you will achieve the goals. Write your goals down. Put them on paper. Share the word with everyone you are comfortable with. Print multiple copies and carry them with you. Read them every day. Most importantly, make a solid decision. Don’t lie to yourself and sell yourself short — this is a major undertaking. And once you form your decision, be willing to see it through to the end.

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