9,855 Day Shred (and Counting…)
Have you seen the posts in social media?
You know what I’m talking about … the posts urging you to partake in a 30-day program for this, or an 80-day routine for that?
My question has been … and will always be … what happens on day 31? or day 81? Strength and Conditioning Coach, Dan John was the inspiration for this inquiry. Do a Google search for his fine blogs and you’ll see what I mean.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I firmly believe such challenges can be a great way to jump-start a happier and healthier lifestyle. I’ve seen it happen time and time again with friends, family, and clients. They stick with it and keep long-term results.
On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve seen folks achieve incredible results in weight loss, strength gains, and overall improvements in wellness. Then they throw it in the garbage on day 31.
I think it has to do with a powerful word: lifestyle. In my opinion, that’s the key to success.
Let’s look at a couple of scenarios to shed some light.
Someone may have a short-term goal … “I want to look good for ___________.” It could be beach season. It could be an office party. It could be a wedding.
So … they cut back on wine, chocolate, ice cream, and cake. And they ramp up their veggies, eat better lunches, stop snacking, and have a “sensible” dinner before going to sleep.
In addition, they sign up for high intensity interval training, join a running club, sign up for yoga, and buy some fitness DVDs for good measure.
And off they go!
And they hate it. Every. Second. Of. It.
They’re choking down their salads. They’re cursing their instructors. But they keep going, because they know the hard work is paying off, and soon … not only will they achieve their weight loss goal, but they can get back to “normal” on day 31.
Sometimes short-term goals lead to short-lived results.
Now, let’s look at the second scenario.
This person realizes if they don’t change their lifestyle, they’re not going to be able to play with their grandchildren, get up and down off the ground, or walk up a set of stairs.
They want to improve their life.
And off they go!
They cut back on processed foods, sugar, and alcohol. They begin walking, practicing yoga, and learning how to strength train.
And … it’s not super fun … but they stick with it because they know the payoff will be huge.
Yes, at times, they get off track but they just get back on track. There’s no deadline … they’ve got longer than 30 days to make a difference. Yes, at times, there are other obstacles because “life” happens … but they do their best in any circumstance and get back to business when the situation returns to normal.
They’re not perfect (no one is) but they are consistent.
Guess what? The weight comes off and stays off. Energy levels are higher than ever and stay that way. Mobility is back and so is endurance.
It’s day 743 of their “shred” … and believe it or not … they’re looking forward to day 9,855.
Yes, 30, 60, and 90 challenges can be a great way to fire up your health and wellness. And there are many reputable programs out there that work.
However, IMHO, if you want long lasting positive change, you’ve got to tackle it from a perspective of lifestyle change … not a quick fix.
I’ve been on my “shred” for nearly 30 years (approximately 9,885 days) and still going. Believe me, I’m not perfect. It takes work and, yes, my train comes off the track from time to time. And it’s normal. The key is to overcome those inevitable set backs and keep moving forward.
And that’s good news because you can do it, too.
I believe the first step is to want it. Because if you want something -truly want something- no one and nothing will stop you from having it.
I believe the second step is to think long term. My friend, Tom Furman, has a hashtag … #trainforlife … which, in my mind, means to show up and do the work every day.
So can you because now you’ve got a plan.
If you want it … if you want your health back, if you want your strength back, if you want your endurance back, make a commitment today and begin taking the steps you need to move forward.
And give yourself time to achieve your goals.
You’ve got this!