Patience Is A Virtue

“Man, this is hard.” – Everyone who has ever tried to change their body.
Our bodies fight with us. It’s that simple. Our bodies don’t care at all that we want to lose weight, or gain weight, or get stronger or faster. It’s a lot easier for our body to stay right where it is. It likes it there. For this reason we have to resort to tricking our body in order to get it to change.  
If we want to get stronger we have to lift really heavy weights to trick our bodies into thinking that we have to do that on a regular basis to survive. If we want to lose weight we have to use more energy than we take in, forcing our body to burn part of itself for fuel. 
Remember, our bodies don’t want to do this. That’s an important thing to realize. Our bodies have a survival mechanism in place that tells it that change takes effort and it’s better to save that effort for getting through those long winters when we don’t know when we’ll be able to kill a Woolly Mammoth for dinner.
Dinner before Safeway was invented
The point I’m trying to make is that whatever we want our bodies to do takes time and effort. Too often people are in it for the quick fix and think that they’ll be able to undo years of bad decisions in a month. It doesn’t work that way. 
Generally speaking, when losing weight you should be shooting for 2 pounds a week. That’s it. It doesn’t get you to the top of The Biggest Loser, but it does get you almost 20 pounds in two months. I’ll bet you know people who haven’t lost 20 pounds in years! 
I’ve experienced this myself as a competitive powerlifter. I recently went through a period where my own training felt  like it was in a bit of a rut. I was starting to feel as if I needed to switch around what I was doing. I was getting impatient.
Well I stuck with it, and over the last month I’ve hit two very big numbers, including one that has been a major goal of mine since I started lifting! My patience was rewarded and I learned something from it.
Too often, people are in it for the quick fix. In today’s society we want everything five minutes ago, but when it comes to changing our body it just doesn’t work that way. Things happen slowly for a reason and in the long run we actually want that to be the case.
For instance, if we lose too much weight at once most of that weight will be either water or muscle. The other thing is that if the body gets a shock like that (and losing a lot of weight quickly is a huge shock to our body) it will fight like heck to get back to where it was before. That’s why people have such a hard time keeping weight off after it’s lost.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that in the words of Marge Simpson, “Slow and steady wins the race”.

Have patience and be consistent and what you want will come to you and, more importantly, it has a better chance of sticking around.

Let me know what you think.

Mitch Rothbardt, CPT, PN Lean Eating Coach
510-754-7113
MitchRFitness.com
MitchRFitness@gmail.com
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