It’s not the first time I am being consistent in the gym for a body change but I just registered at the gym to help me lose some belly fat and tone my muscles. Each time I work out, I am reminded about how much similarities working out your body is to working out your mind.

When you work out, whether it’s cardio, strength or stamina building, weight gain a lot of pain is involved. As a matter of fact, the first few days are usually very painful. It’s in that period you want to quit. See, change is not easy. Change sucks!  It’s in this phase you need a lot more inspiration. You need to fix your eyes on the goal the most at this point.

It is very critical that you plan for any change. Today, I was at the gym when I met a friend who I hadn’t seen in 10 years. After our casual commentaries, he asked ‘what are you working today?’. It was then it occurred to me that I wasn’t as deliberate as I should have been. So, I drew out a plan– Mondays, work on arms, Tuesdays, abdominals.
Then I recorded the sets and reps I completed, making an extra note of what I wanted to accomplish by the end of the month. If I am not this deliberate, I wouldn’t be able to monitor and push myself hard enough for faster and more inspiring changes. I am learning to apply this to other areas of my life too.

One thing I have noticed since losing my pot belly is that no one has given me any ‘oh my god you lost your pot belly complements’. Not even those who made fun of me. While a complement could go a long way into inspiring you to continue, I see this phase as the plateau. It just means you need to do more work. So, let’s assume you wanted to learn a new language. When you start, you would probably get a lot of teases from friends and families when you try exercising lessons you’ve learned. It gets to a point when you are much better but your new ‘tongue’ is not acknowledged. Just go on! It gets to a point where it’s no longer a tease and no one ignores you any more. It’s at this point you become the expert.

According to Leo Babauta, pick ONE habit, make it absolutely tiny, and focus on that habit for a period of 21 days to a month.

  • Want to start exercising?  Awesome.  For that first week, aim for just five minutes per day.  Just five minutes!
  • Want to start cooking your own meals?  Don’t try to cook ALL of your own meals yet.  Just aim for one meal per day or one meal per week. Whatever works for you and your schedule
  • Want to quit drinking soda?  Instead of going from a twelve pack of mountain dew per day, replace just one of the cans with water.  That’s it.
  • Want to get out of debt? Start by saving an extra twenty bucks each week, or finding a way to earn an extra twenty bucks.
  • Want to learn a new language?  Practice your new language for fifteen minutes per day.  That’s it!