When it comes to health, fitness and fat loss, not all results are the same.
For some clients, dropping 14lb of fat is the result that they want. For others, it’s to get their first chin up and for some clients the main goal is to fit into an old pair of jeans that fitted when they used to eat better and train regularly.
Some want to deadlift 100kg and others want to run a 5k race pain free- something they haven’t been able to do in years. And no matter the goal, as long as it’s relevant and meaningful to the person then nobody can tell you it’s not the right goal.
For 95% of our clients, keeping themselves generally fit, healthy, strong and in ‘good shape’ is the primary goal. They simply want to enjoy life, not suffer from terrible energy slumps, have the flexibility, conditioning and energy to play with their kids, manage their stress levels and be productive at work, etc. In short, they want to be healthy and fit enough to enjoy a decent quality of life.
In a world that is struggling with ever-growing obesity and health epidemics, this is a great goal to have. It’s super sustainable, doesn’t take a massive time commitment, allows you to still enjoy all the good things in life and helps you avoid so much of the health related issues that plagues millions of people.
We can achieve these goals by eating a healthy diet (mostly unprocessed, nutrient rich foods, reduced intake of processed junk foods, etc) and having a consistent exercise routine- definitely within the control of everyone no matter how busy they are.
We are seeing a few clients who are looking for more advanced results such as very lean physique where body fat levels are reduced to sub 10% for men and the low-mid teens for ladies. Others are looking to achieve more advanced strength goals such as 20+ chin ups and triple bodyweight deadlifts.
Now before you start saying ‘What’s the point in that’, it’s just as important that you ask ‘what’s the point in doing anything?’ The point is whatever the person decides it to be and you need to understand and accept that this is their goal and not yours (or maybe it is!)
So when it comes to achieving higher level goals such as these or others, heres a simple truth that they, and you, need to accept if you are serious about achieving them.
Doing what it takes to be generally fit and healthy simply won’t cut it when it comes to higher level goals
I often get people coming into me saying they want to get a 6 pack but they don’t want to commit to more than 2 or 3 days a week and don’t really want to change their food as it’s pretty good. And the problem is that pretty good will get you pretty healthy, but it may not get you to exceptionally lean and fuel the workouts required to get you exceptioannlly strong or exceptionally athletic.
Higher level goals also mean that you often have to push the body to places that aren’t required to be fit and healthy in your everyday life. You don’t get to be athletically elite, super lean, etc. by doing ordinary, generally challenging workouts. It simply takes more to achieve those loftier goals.
Training for these goals often requires you to arrange your whole lifestyle around achieving them for a certain amount of time. Recovery becomes a priority because of the demands you are putting on your body and mind.
Personal sacrifice becomes part of the deal. you can’t stay up late just because you want to, because your body will rebel. You cant go partying with the girls or lads every weekend if it means you’ll be consuming excess calories that will affect your body fat goals or performance in the gym.
You may have to get up at 5.30am if it’s the only time you can fit in a planned sessions that day. You may have to spend 2 hours prepping food for the next 3 days.
Higher level goals often require a substantial financial commitment. Maybe it’s to buy better quality food, invest in a coach, travel for a competition, getting extra massages, buying the right equipment, etc.
It can often cause conflict in peoples minds when it seems that they are having to make all tis sacrifice but their friends are eating and drinking whatever they like. Unfortunately, their goals seem to be different to your so you need to get over it and focus on your own journey- that can be a hard thing to do.
Before you start out to chase a more demanding goal, you need to understand the journey ahead. It’s the easiest thing to choose a very demanding goals when you aren’t currently doing it, but it’s a different story halfway through your journey when you need to dig deep for a bit of inner grit and sacrificing things that others don’t have.
It becomes a lot harder when you have to actually weigh your food, drag yourself out of bed at 5am, spend your money on supplements or massage instead of a weekend away or new shoes.
What we are seeing more in the industry with people who have let their health and fitness levels slip is the assumption that getting back on track mrwenas that you havre to chase a high level goal such as entering a powerlifting competition or do a 12 week transformation program- literally going from zero to 100mph.
In my experience, this is a bad approach as most people rebound right back to where they started- the place they said they didn’t want to be in anymore.
Make getting to a place of decent health, fitness, strength, body composition, etc. your first goal, and then, if you wish, choose a higher goal to chase. But you must build the foundation first.
Higher level goals, like those I mentioned above, can be some of the most rewarding things you’ll ever do when you look back at them. Over coming challenges, learning new skills and literally having to become a different person with different values and mindset can literally shape the rest of your life, and has done for many people.
But to state it again, higher level goals require a much higher level commitment and this point should never be understated. You absolutely do not need to do anything crazy to enjoy great health and wellbeing, BUT……. a little crazy is often required for higher level goals.
And in my opinion, doing things that require a little crazy should be experienced by everyone at some stage win their life- just be prepared for it!!!
Have a great week and pop any question into the comments section below.