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What are your priorities when it comes to your health and fitness?
I ask this important question because of the comments I often hear by people pertaining to their health and fitness.
“Girl, I’ve got to lose this stomach.”
“Bro, I want to get all cut up.”
“Man, I want to get faster and stronger.”
“Dude, I want to get big.”
“Brother, I just want to feel healthier.”
If I had a dollar for every time I hear these lines, then I would be hanging out with Bill Gates and Warren Buffet.
These statements are admirable, but just saying it is not going to make it a reality.
Words without action is pure fake hustle. In order for any of the above things to happen, you must make your health and fitness a priority.
Why Your Health Should Be Priority #1
If you want to live a life in which you are strong and healthy you have to put a priority on your health.
Your priority cannot be on the newest model SUV that is way out of your price range.
Nor can your main priority be on overpriced jeans or shoes.
And in no world should your top priority be scrolling on social media all day watching other people live their supposed lives.
Your health and fitness has to be a priority for the sake of your life. Once your health fades your quality of life will deteriorate like an aging running back in the NFL.
You do not get the right to complain about how you are still fat/skinny, weak, sick, and out of shape when your priorities are elsewhere and not on your health and fitness.
Who Are You?
People are cut from all different types of cloth.
There are some people who need help getting started with training. They do not thrive on their own and need a push to get the train moving.
Some of these folks are also coming to the starting line with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and serious self-esteem issues.
My recommendation to them would be to invest in their health and hire a true fitness professional to get them started in the right direction.
But instead of investing in themselves many of these people will spend the money on a newly financed Lexus truck that they cannot afford.
For them the attempt to impress people by driving a luxury vehicle around in the hood outweighs the fact that they get gassed walking up the steps.
Now instead of paying that personal trainer to guide them to where they need to be, they are dropping $700-$800 a month for an automobile. That does not include insurance.
Guess what? Buying an older car (ideally outright) that they can actually afford will still get them from point A to B and have a much, much lower payment.
Let’s say their old workout sneakers, which give them uncomfortable pain in their feet need to be replaced badly.
But instead they spend that money on some flashy new heels. Looking good in the club every week outweighs the fact that they are essentially walking around on coals when they workout.
Because their feet hurt so bad, this scenario gives them another excuse to skip workouts.
Let’s say they needed to stock their refrigerator with some healthier foods so that they have better options to choose from at home.
But instead of buying healthier foods for home, they also spent the money wining and dining the ladies every week.
Paying the piper to eat out at overpriced restaurants with women outweighs the fact that their blood sugar is rising up every day like the sun.
Their refrigerator is still filled with garbage and the sad part is that they did not even get a second date with any of those women!
How To Make Your Health And Fitness A Priority
I am not trying to be the infamous Buzz Killington but the truth is the truth.
Everyone has leisure activities that they want to spend time or money on. These are called wants.
The problem is that when you sacrifice your needs for your wants all the time, you become horrifically unbalanced.
If cars, women, social media, jewels, excessive selfies, the need for attention, and other material things are running your life then you are on the road to oblivion.
There are 6 natural elixirs you have that offer you protection against high blood pressure, high cholesterol, stress, non-glowing skin, a bad looking body and depression.
None of these elixirs requires a prescription. The steps you need to take to make your health and fitness a priority are:
1) Commit To Consistently Lifting Weights
Consistently lifting weights will allow you to get significantly stronger, build dense muscle, and develop an incredible physique. For the best results you will want to lift between 3-5 days per week.
The absolute minimum would be 2 days per week. If you are new to the iron game, you can get healthier and stronger in 2 days of proper lifting per week.
But just know that different training frequencies will elicit different results. You cannot build a phenomenal physique with just 2 days of lifting per week.
You absolutely can and will build a spectacular physique with 3-5 days of proper lifting per week.
Sidenote: Body-weight exercises such as burpees, push-ups, pull-ups, and dips all fall under this category as well.
2) Add Sprinting To Your Workouts
Sprinting will allow you to get leaner and build glutes of steel.
Sprinting also requires less of a time commitment and delivers superior results than the traditional “cardio” that involves lame treadmills and stairmasters.
By adding just 2 sprinting workouts per week, you will get leaner and more athletic than you would wasting away in the “cardio” section of a commercial gym.
Always remember before you sprint to get properly warmed up unless you want to play “pop goes the hammy.”
3) Commit To Consistently Eating The Correct Foods
Your input determines your output.
Putting bad fuel in your system is counterproductive to building muscle and losing fat.
You have to fuel your body with nutritious foods to develop a lean and muscular physique. You can also make the journey smoother by getting into the habit of tracking your macros/calories so that you know exactly what is going into your body.
Nobody has to track their foods forever. But knowing how much you eat daily will allow you to make adjustments so that you can make building muscle or losing fat relatively easier.
Loading your body with excess sugar, fat, and calories will have your body looking and feeling softer than premium toilet tissue.
Chronically under-eating, (especially protein) which is not discussed as much as it should be, never allows your body to retain or build muscle.
To my skinny brethren, do you always want to be weak and look like the spindly Scarecrow? I lived that life and I made the necessary changes over time to ensure I never live it again.
4) Do Not Skimp On Sleep
Consistently getting good sleep will allow your body to operate at the highest level.
When you are trying to train off of 3-5 hours of sleep per night, you will not be able to maximize your gains in strength, muscle, and athletic performance.
The athlete who sleeps well will perform better than the athlete who parties the night away.
I have had younger athletes at The Center who did not heed this advice.
Their lousy performances on the days where they skimped on their sleep vs. their great performances on the days when they are well-rested makes them instant believers in the power of sleep.
Experience is a far superior teacher than I.
5) Minimize Your Stress
Stress is going to come at you but it is in how you respond that will determine the effect it has on you.
If Johnny Jerk wants to take your parking spot there is no need to lose your mind.
Just find another spot and go on with your day. There is no need to hop out of the car and get into a cussing match with Johnny Jerk.
All that negative energy will get you nowhere. Carrying too much stress has a bad impact on your performance in athletics and in the gym.
Holding on to old baggage holds you back.
6) Take The Right Supplements But Do Not Expect Miracles
Many people look to supplements to be the savior for all their problems.
What most people fail to realize is that a supplement is just that: a supplement.
Supplements can give you a small to moderate boost in your health, physique, or performance but only if everything else is on point.
If your training, diet, sleep, and stress are all atrocious then it really doesn’t matter what supplement you take: they will not have a big impact on your health and fitness.
I typically take these supplements consistently:
I have just started to implement these supplements into my routine with more consistency:
I can feel all of the above supplements working for me as intended because the other factors are on point.
Bonus) Stop With The Fake Hustle Excuses
The promise of a better body is intoxicating to many people. The financial numbers don’t lie.
Fitness is a billion dollar industry because it sells the most powerful thing in the world: hope.
Hope can get anybody to the front lines. But it is a true commitment to the goal and the discipline to do it, even when you do not feel like it that will allow you to reach the mountaintop.
The main reason why many people never get the results they want is due to a lack of discipline combined with the lamest excuses ever created.
In my experience over time here are some examples of what many people have the unmitigated gall to say every time it is time to workout:
- “Girl, it’s too cold!”
- “Bro, it’s too hot!”
- “Sister, I don’t feel like it!”
- “Brother, I’m tired!”
- “Well my friend (who is out of shape and secretly jealous) told me I don’t have to work out!”
- “Man, it’s too hard!”
- “Girl, I’ll do it later this week!”
- “Bro, the game is coming on I’ll workout tomorrow (which never happens)!”
I could go on and on about the reasons people use to skip workouts. These folks will make any excuse in the book to avoid physical activity.
I wouldn’t have a problem with this if the majority of these people did not chronically complain about how unhappy they are with how they look and feel.
These folks have the power to make the lifestyle changes to improve their health and fitness but they don’t.
The worst part about it is that these same people then have the temerity to complain about being too fat/skinny, weak, sick, and generally unhealthy.
If you are not willing to drop the excuses and get the job done then you have lost the right to complain. I for one don’t want to hear it.
The bottom line is that you must make your overall health and fitness a top priority in your life.
Yes there will be times when your family, career, business, or your relationship takes the top spot. Even I had to scale back my own training during the time when we were building The Center.
However, you should never allow your health and fitness to fall all the way to the bottom of the ocean.
If you are on the outside looking in right now, this transition to prioritize your health will be tough. But you can absolutely make it a reality if you show discipline and are committed to the process.
A man who always sacrifices what he needs to do, will not be able to enjoy the things he wants to do.
Meanwhile the man who prioritizes his health and fitness, will always be able to enjoy the things he wants to do.
I’ll holla at you next time.
The People’s Trainer
(This article was written in 2014 but has been updated.)
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