Just as a little preface though; There are more than just one type of results. The obvious ones are weight loss, muscle gain, improved performance and so forth. Really though in many cases these goals are just a means to an end. The real goal is that people want to want to be happier. They want to have confidence and feel proud of themselves. They want to be able to say “check it out, I actually did it!”
So as well as or in combination with weight loss or medical reasons, people turn to health, fitness and exercise as an aspect of self development or self improvement. Quite rightly too, for reasons I’ve already covered dozens of times in earlier entries. But ironically what happens is… people get started, then they get hooked, but then… all of a sudden it isn’t enough anymore, the results aren’t good enough, or whatever. What started off as something to feel good about has become the thing you beat yourself up about more than anything else.
I see a lot of this. I try to remind people that this is supposed to be ENJOYABLE first and foremost, but as to actual physical results in terms of weight loss, body composition or athletic performance; read on.
To produce a specific result requires a specific course of action.
Simply exercising for enjoyment alone is fine, but when you expect particular outcome in terms of a goal weight, body composition or physique, you need to be doing what is actually required to achieve that outcome.
Now, when someone is frustrated because they are not making progress towards their goal, telling them “you’re not doing what is actually required” is likely to cause offence. Quite often people will interpret this as meaning “you’re not trying hard enough” or “you haven’t earned it yet”. This could be the case but quite often the opposite is true.
When we don’t see the results that we want, usually we either give up all together, or get even more determined. When we get more determined, we start trying to do twice as much, even more often.
If we were restricting fuel (calories), we start restricting even further. If we were at 90% consistency in sticking to our program, we become 110% consistent! If things are difficult and unpleasant now, we’ll do even more and find a way to make it even more difficult and unpleasant! Then we’ll really deserve those results that we’re looking for, right?
Well, does it work?
Of course not.
Consistently doing more of what we already know does not work cannot possibly bring us any closer to our goal.
You must do what is actually required. This means the type of training, choice of exercises and appropriate nutrition.
Even inconsistently following the correct course of action will take you closer to your destination than diligently following the wrong one. This is not to say that one form of exercise is “better” than another; only that some forms are more appropriate to achieving a particular body type than others. The approach that has brought you this far, may not be suitable to take you any further.
At this point you must remind yourself, the entire purpose of all of this is to be happy and enjoy yourself. While there is nothing more enjoyable than seeing results, if you’re so obsessed with them that you no longer enjoy the process there is a problem. First let’s get back to simply enjoying training and being active, and from there you can reassess your training program. There’s nothing wrong with saying “this is what I enjoy, so this is what I’m going to do” and being satisfied at that, but if you do want to get closer to your dream body, you might have to do something new and different.
Bottom Line: Healthy and happy is the ultimate goal.