I had a client named Larry. He was about 5’6” and over 300lbs. One day we were talking and he said, “You know what I hate? I hate it when someone looks at you and asks, ‘How did you let yourself get so big?’
It is not like one day you sit down and decide to put on all this weight. It happens very slowly over time. You hardly seem to notice it. Then one day you see yourself (usually in a photograph) and say, ‘How did that happen?'”
Sound familiar? Knowing how you got there is not usually a mystery. How to get where you want to be can be. Weight gain is insidious. It really does creep up on you. The same way cigarettes don’t kill you after the first pack. If it did, few people would have a smoking problem. It happens slowly over time. Then one day you can’t do what you used to do and eventually a trip to the doctor reveals more serious issues.
The key for weight loss is realizing how you got there, slowly over time. If we could put a warning label on soft drinks that said, “Warning: You will explode 30 minutes after consuming this product,” no one would drink them.
What really happened? You did something and nothing really happened. Then you did it again and nothing really happened. Eventually the behavior became a habit. Worse it became a habit that you may really enjoy. It is not until later, years later, that the real consequences hit you.
If you are truly committed to improving your health, you have to understand that how you got there is exactly how you will get to your next destination. You will get there slowly over time. Sure there are people who make radical transformations and the fitness industry loves to prop them up to tout their products. If that process was really so effective, no one would have an issue. We would just do it. Unfortunately, there is more to it.
The primary more is your habits. Until you change your current habits you will not sustain your progress for any length of time. The smart play is to identify your habits. What are you habits around food? What are your habits around specific activities?
Which habits are you willing to alter today? Start there. One changed habit is a successful first step. Then begin looking for other changes. You must start where you are and then build from there. Radical habit change is rarely sustained over the long haul.