Exercising and eating well is a crucial part of all our lives, but this universal need can be problematic. Since everyone needs to walk these paths, there are a million different roads you can take. Some might be well suited to your lifestyle and needs, while other might quickly result in dead ends. More important than prescribing to the restrictions of others, no matter how successful they've been, is understanding your own uniqueness.
There is no perfect plan that another person can make for you in diet and exercise because no other person is you. It's only by turning your gaze inward, by looking at how you mentally and physically respond to the challenges of diet and exercise that you can see the best results, and that's what we want to talk about today.
Failure can be a Good Thing
This might seem a negative way to start, but as almost everyone who has lost weight and got in shape will tell you: failure is a practical guarantee. In terms of diet, around 80% of people who lose a significant amount of body fat won’t maintain that loss for 12 months. There are many possible reasons for this, including metabolism shifts, microbiome changes, and alterations to the makeup of fat tissue.
As anyone who has ever made a hardcore New Year's resolution to run more can also tell you, the same problem applies to exercise. It's easy, to begin with the best intentions, but the realities of life and our physical responses mean that progress is rarely linear. In fact, around 50 percent of runners alone get hurt each year, and this applies to pros and amateurs.
The positivity of failure comes from the fact that each setback allows you an opportunity to learn more about not just your body, but your mental responses. What were you feeling before your calf muscle had problems? What triggered your overwhelming need for junk food? Failure presents us with an avenue through which we can exercise a new level of self-awareness. Learn what your body and mind have problems with, understand the individual factors you have no control over, and you can create a plan to address them.
Overestimation and extension for newcomers are expected, and it's only natural. Wanting to fully commit as a pro does is a sign of eagerness, but messing up unrealistic expectations can quickly damper your enthusiasm. Alongside accepting failure, you also need to be able to reward yourself for a job well done. After a while, it's possible to trick your mind into better behaviours because it wants the reward, and this can be a powerful tool for continued success.
How you reward yourself will again depend on you, and what you like. If you're getting into a diet, for example, it's fair to have a cheat day each week. While you don’t want to spend a day binging, having something to look forward to gives you a bright light to keep you going. For some of us, this means Belgian chocolate, for others, it could mean your favourite Burger King meal or some cans of Coke.
Rewarding yourself after exercise can be trickier, but it's still possible with the right approach. One approach we've seen gain popularity is through rewarding yourself with better gym gear, where finding the best deal can in itself be a challenging target. You can extend this idea of finding the best deal beyond exercise and into other hobbies too, like if you enjoy online casino games. No deposit casino offerings can give you a target to aim for if you're a fan of finding bonuses and saving cash. The nature of the industry being so competitive means that sites are willing to provide generous bonuses to get new players involved, so there are a lot of potential opportunities to take advantage of and these can easily be found on comparison sites that provide reviews of the various options. Whether rewarding yourself with savings on new shoes or any other hobby or passion, targeting that which you are most interested in can be a great way forward.
Just as relevant could be putting off the TV shows you want to binge, like if you somehow missed Rings of Power and House of Dragons. Deny gratification until you’ve earned it, and you’ll find yourself all the more keen to exercise, jumping in when you’d otherwise be putting it off.
The keys tying all these suggestions together are those of experimentation and practice. Changes to our lifestyles through diet and exercise are long-term commitments, which in many cases will last us for the rest of our lives. It doesn’t matter if you fail for months or years, or if it takes you a huge amount of time to narrow down what works. Keep moving forward, even if you stumble, and you’ll eventually find yourself in a better place.