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Stop making excuses, take my word for it

February 17, 2012

I’ve been feeling pretty good after my work out tonight, and I just wanted to share a quick word or two with anyone who might have an attitude similar to the one I used to have.

I, as well as a few friends I’ve known who shall remain nameless, have been extremely averse to what I thought of as unnecessary physical activity. It wasn’t enjoyable, and why would you willingly do something you don’t enjoy in your free time?

My perspective only really began to change because of disc golf. I began playing over a year ago, and as much as I loved playing, I didn’t enjoy certain courses if they had any kind of real elevation. Not because of how it affected my throw, but because I had to walk up and down those hills. Ball golf was my sport of choice for a long time for two reasons: One, you ride around in a cart, so walking is kept to a minimum, and Two, I don’t believe you should get winded during any activity where you also drink beer.

I’ve had a few lulls in my progress, but overall I feel like I’ve been steadily moving forward. Now, I really don’t think you could pay me to go back to my old way of thinking. My former opinions about exercise and the food I choose to put in my body seem asinine to me now. It’s taken me over a year to get to my current perspective (which is still shifting), but I’m happier than I was before.

The message I really want to convey is this: No matter where your current attitude toward exercise sits on the “awesome-to-fuck that” scale, give it an honest 30 days of real effort. It’s going to suck. BIG TIME. You’re going to have to literally talk yourself into doing it some days. Yes, I’m saying you will have to say out loud, “You need to go running today” (or lift weights or whatever you choose to do). But if you’ll just keep punishing yourself every day, by the end of that month your attitude will be different.

By the end of those 30 days, you will have done things that you didn’t believe were possible. Your body will begin to thank you for working it so hard as well, but the mental shift you will experience is far more important. There are some things that you will never really understand until you actually experience them, and this is a strong example of such a situation.

So if you’re a person who gotten on a health kick before, only to give up after a week or two, because it sucked, or if you’re a person who actively convinces yourself that you don’t want to be in shape because you think that exercise is too hard, I know where you’re coming from because I’ve been there. Permanently eject the phrase “I can’t” from your vocabulary, and stop being a pussy. Go as slow as you have to, but just get moving … and just keep going. If your excuse is that running is too hard on your knees, then get on an elliptical machine or a stationary bicycle. If at the end that month your attitude hasn’t shifted at all, then you’ve got bigger issues to deal with, but give it another month and see what happens.

Most of the time we tend to quit or call things “too hard” whenever any real effort is required on our part. Stop being that shitty version of the person who you could be. Push yourself as hard as you can for 30 days. What have you got to lose?

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