Today, I’m going to share 15 things that 15 years of fitness has taught me about what really matters when it comes to physical training, among other things. I think that this will be a nice change from the endless argumentation and bickering over mostly insignificant or otherwise inconsequential issues that is so rampant in the realm of health, fitness, and weight loss.
Now, some of these points may appear overly simplistic, but don’t overlook the immense value of the hidden truths they contain. If we could only internalize, practice, and embody these ideas to the point of forming a new identity, we would amaze ourselves at what we can achieve.
So, without further adieu, here are 15 things that really matter when it comes to your health, fitness, and quality of life.
What doesn’t matter: how many pushups, pull-ups, or sit-ups (etc.) you can do.
What DOES matter: that you push yourself every time you train to do and be better.
What doesn’t matter: whether you can qualify for the Boston marathon, or run a marathon at all.
What DOES matter: that you get out there and run because you want to and because you can. Period.
What doesn’t matter: whether or not you can do a handstand, planche, human flag, or some other high-skill exercise.
What DOES matter: that you get out of your comfort zone and believe in your ability to accomplish great things.
What doesn’t matter: whether you eat a Paleo, vegetarian, low-carb, or other diet.
What DOES matter: that you recognize the blessing and value of good, nourishing food that can fuel your health, fitness, and recreational pursuits – not to mention make you a healthier, happier person.
What doesn’t matter: whether you’re a high-carb, low-carb, no-carbs, or balanced dieter.
What DOES matter: that you find a way to take care of your health and achieve your goals that works for you, but also not take this stuff too seriously and miss out on some of life’s other joys.
What doesn’t matter: whether you’re a weightlifter, CrossFitter, P90X junkie, or kettlebell athlete (etc.).
What DOES matter: that you find something you love to do that can help you reach your goals and enjoy a higher quality of life – something you would do just because.
What doesn’t matter: whether you do yoga, Pilates, tai-chi, or some other form of gentle, restorative exercise.
What DOES matter: that you honor your body and do whatever you can to take care of it.
What doesn’t matter: whether you train with HIIT, circuits, supersets, or flows, (etc.).
What DOES matter: that you work hard regardless of your preferred modalities.
What doesn’t matter: how many times a week you train.
What DOES matter: that you do train regularly, and that whatever frequency you choose works for your schedule and lifestyle while also allowing you to make consistent progress.
What doesn’t matter: how many websites, blogs, books, or magazines you read about health and fitness.
What DOES matter: that you find the essential knowledge you need to achieve your goals and then apply it.
What doesn’t matter: how much money you spend on your gym membership, workout clothes, or exercise equipment.
What DOES matter: that you use what you’ve got and don’t let anything stop you from pursuing your goals.
What doesn’t matter: whether you want bigger muscles, leaner muscles, less fat, more fat, etc.
What DOES matter: that you accept your body for what it is and don’t let false images degrade your own self-image.
What doesn’t matter: whether you do 3×10, 5×5, 4×8, 2×20, or 1×100, etc.
What DOES matter: that you do whatever is necessary to challenge your body to adapt and stick with it long enough to make it happen.
What doesn’t matter: whether you train at home, at the park, at the gym, or studio, etc.
What DOES matter: that you make training so much a part of your lifestyle that your health isn’t dependent on any one location.
What doesn’t matter: how much you can squat/deadlift/bench/etc.
What DOES matter: that you challenge yourself a little more each and every day.
And, of course, the things that truly matter have very little to do with physical training at all; things like family, friends, faith, love, service, and many others. These are the ultimate reasons why we train. So, let’s keep things in perspective now, shall we?
The truth is that you are NOT your fitness program, or your strength level, or your workout clothes, or your gym membership. And your worth isn’t measured in pounds, sets, or reps. So, don’t forget that and keep being awesome!
If you found this article helpful, please share it with your friends and tweeps:
Health-First Fitness Coach
P.S. Not to mention you’re stronger than you think. Just sayin’.
P.P.P.S. Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zenobia_joy/, http://www.flickr.com/photos/lyntally/, http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregorwinter/