I’m too old
My stomach will never look like that
I bet she never had kids
I don’t have that kind of time
I have a full time job, plus 2 kids to raise
I don’t know what to do.
She was probably always fit
She’s probably a lot younger than me
She just has good genetics
I don’t have the discipline
I wouldn’t know what to eat
My body could never get that lean
I’ve never done anything like that before
I wouldn’t even know where to start…
These are all common excuses and comments I hear when people see a bikini or figure competitor. People almost talk themselves out of even wanting that kind of body – just because they don’t think it’s even achievable for them. However, Ursula Kepferer, knew what she wanted and she made the decision she was GOING to compete, no questions asked. No excuses.
Ursula, a 42 year old working mom, came to my husband Steve late last year and told him she wanted to do a competition in the spring. She had never done anything like that before, but she knew she needed to lose weight – and she knew a competition would force her to follow through. 30 pounds heavier than she is today, Ursula did everything Steve asked. Many times I would see her training with Steve in the gym, and I’d see the look on her face that said “I hate him right now”. No matter how tough the workout was, she never stopped and she never gave up. It wasn’t easy, but she always left proud (and little more fit) each day.
“Although most people realize what fitness can do for someone’s physique, I don’t think most people truly realize what training can do for their OWN body.”
She had a lot of fears and a lot of doubts I’m sure. Could she really do this? Would she be able to lose that much weight in 90 days. What would her skin look like? Could she get lean enough? What was hiding under that fat? Much of it was sort of a mystery.
When someone commits to being on stage in the smallest bikini they’ve ever worn, even thin people get nervous. You notice every little bit of cheese you still have no matter how fit you are getting. And when you are just starting out, you wonder if your butt will ever look OK in that teeny bikini bottom that you have to wear AND turn your back to the judges so they can examine it. THAT’s a frightening thought all by itself.
Although most people realize what fitness can do for someone’s physiques, I don’t think most people truly realize what training can do for their OWN body. I believe many people actually think their body is just built a certain way and they are stuck with it. That is SO untrue. Although you may be prone to easily build muscle or not, have a smaller waist or bigger hips, etc you CAN greatly improve your body no matter how it looks now. Fitness works for everyone.
On April 6th, Ursula found out just what her body was capable of. She hit the stage, admittedly shaken and nervous, but also excited. She did it. She crossed the finish line! All those cardios – were worth it. All the dieting – was worth it. Trusting her coach – was worth it. Following through – was worth it.
Ursula finished 1st in her class. But she says she’s wearing her real trophy, and that is so true. Your best reward is your new and improved body! Congrats Ursula!!
Yesterday, I posted this statement on facebook and twitter. It got such a good response, I decided to make it one of my mantra pics – and then I got to thinking about all the excuses we make.
We come up with many lame reasons why we can’t workout but, in the end, we are making the choices we want. We want to be lazy, we want to watch TV, we prefer to be on the computer, we like to eat unhealthy food, and we want our freedom to do what we want. We choose to do many different things each day – and rarely is anyone making us do any of them.
Sure, we “have” to work – but even that is a choice. We only work to have a certain lifestyle. We don’t NEED a lot of the things we want in life, but we CHOOSE to work to attain them. Exercise will become a priority when you realize your health is more important than the best movie, the tastiest food, the greatest job, the newest car, and the latest facebook status.
TUFF TALK: Things to Think About
Many people don’t realize how exercise affects their life until they grow older, or when it’s too late. Your health affects your relationships, confidence, performance, mind, energy, and even your purpose in life. No matter what you are called to do in life, you can’t possibly do it to your best of your ability if you are unhealthy and/or overweight.
These are very harsh words, but in most cases, they are the honest truth. Although I wish our body didn’t affect us the way it did, and that we could be ok when we are heavy, but we normally can’t. And even people who once struggled with their weight, but were seemingly ok, confess they were not as OK with it as they seemed. They just settled for less than best, and that’s no way to live.
What is your goal in life? To be the best parent, to move up the corporate ladder, to serve at your church, to have a great marriage, to leave a lasting legacy? Well, let’s think about that for a moment.
- You can’t be the best mom or dad you can be if you aren’t the best you.
- How can you take care of others, when you can’t take care of yourself?
- How can you convince your children to not smoke and damage their body, when you damage yours with food?
- How good of a friend can you be if you are unhappy, unhealthy and no fun to be with?
- How do you expect your spouse to feel if you don’t even want to see your own body naked.
- You can’t treat your body how you want all your life, and expect it to treat you good back.
- It’s hard to go far in your career when energetic, healthy, fit, sharp people are competing against you.
- Inactive adults rarely grow up to be active seniors.
- How can you travel, and explore the world, if you lose your breath going up a flight of stairs.
- Material things are worthless if you aren’t healthy enough to enjoy them, and share them.
- How can you say your thankful for your life, but treat one of God’s greatest gifts to you (your body) poorly?
Your Body is a Gift.
If your car got out of shape, you’d fix it. Mostly because you’ve invested in it and you don’t want it to fall apart on you. But even more importantly, you want to use it. You didn’t buy that car for it to sit your drive way, and you want to USE your body too. You want it to be there for you when you need it most. You need it to be reliable and strong. All of those things take maintenance and work. YOU take maintenance and work – and you only get one shot so make it count. Unlike a car, you can’t trade it in on a newer model. You are stuck with you. Like it or not.
Don’t say “I will. Tomorrow”, because tomorrow may very well be too late.
How has improving your health affected you in ways you did not expect?
“Do you skip your bath because it takes time away from your family over the holidays? Of course not! There are some priorities that should always stay in place no matter what – and fitness is one of them.”
We like to make excuses around this time of year. “I’m too busy”. “I don’t know how to count Thanksgiving meal calories.” “The gym is closed.” “I’m tired.” “We’ll be out of town.” “I need to spend time with family.” “I can’t control myself around all that food”. “I deserve a break”… The list goes on.
Let me tell you, it is ridiculous that we even think any of those excuses will get you out of a workout free and clear. For every excuse someone has, someone out there is working out despite having the same excuses. In addition, there are reasons why even a good excuse is a bad reason to skip your workout.
8 Holiday Excuses Busters:
1. “I’m too busy” – You have time to watch TV, get on facebook, read my blog, sleep late, stay up late, etc. “Too busy” often means, not having as much free time to live life how you prefer. Busy means you need to schedule your day better. It means you can’t just play it by ear and hope you have enough time left over to do extra stuff. When you are busy, it means you need to do what matters most first and get it out of the way. When you don’t HAVE time, you have to MAKE time.
2. “I don’t know how to count Thanksgiving meal calories.” – You should at least try. Use your noggin. Guess the ingredients of the meal. Using the LoseIt app, look up similar dishes served at restaurants, etc., but don’t just not even try. Make it fun. See if people can guess and look it up, like a trivia game. You’ll learn a lot along the way, make better choices and entertain your family with interesting facts.
3. “The gym is closed.” Most gyms are closed on Thanksgiving Day – Big Whoop! You don’t need a gym to sweat. Try one of our Designer Whey workouts online. Any of the training plans from Design Your Body (weight loss and body sculpting program), Basic Training (beginner program), Savage Training (advanced workout), or any of the single workout regimens, are perfect for working out at home or in a hotel. And, of course there is always the road! Take a walk, go for a run. Just commit to 15-30 minutes. You’ll feel a MILLION times better if you do SOMEthing rather than nothing. Here’s a quick 5 minute workout from DesignerWhey you can do anywhere. Repeat 3-5 times.
4. “I’m SO tired.” – Even MORE of a reason to workout. Exercise is exhilarating. It revs the metabolism and boosts energy. And, if you have been light on sleep, it helps you sleep better. So scratch that excuse off your list.
5. “We’ll be out of town.” – People train on the road all the time. The first step is planning. Pack your gym clothes, Reeboks & yurbuds. With apps like RunKeeper, you no longer need to have to map out a course ahead of time. You can step out of your grandma’s driveway and start running, and the RunKeeper will tell you how far you have gone so you know exactly how long to run. Also, most hotels have gyms, and if they don’t, you can use one of the above programs to guide you through a workout in your hotel room. No weights? Improvise! 1 gallon of water is 8.33lbs. Use a set of jugs for dumbbells to do some of the exercises shown below in this video. Bodyweight exercises are awesome and equally effective – especially when done fast with little rest.
6. “I need to spend time with family” – I totally get it. Family should ALWAYS be first. But I think this picture is a pretty typical description of what most “quality family time” looks like. We go to grandma’s and everyone gathers in the kitchen to eat or the living room to sit in front of the TV. You could set the active pace. You could make an impact on your family be setting an example. Play catch outside, go for a walk, play Wii with the kids. Even if you have to leave and go for a run, I think they’ll forgive you for taking care of your health. Do you skip your bath because it takes time away from your family? No! Of course not! There are some priorities that should always stay in place no matter what. Standard grooming habits, your physical health, and your spiritual health need to remain constant. If you do them first and get them out of the way, you will find you have AMPLE time with your family and you’ll have more energy and a better attitude too!
7. I can’t control myself” – Really? You CAN’T control yourself, or you WON’T? Saying you can’t control yourself before you even face the Thanksgiving table is telling yourself in advance that you will fail. That is ridiculous. It’s this simple. You either WANT to get fit and be thin, or you WANT to taste food more. You need to gain control of your body and not let your tongue boss you around. Saying no is empowering. You absolutely can control yourself around food. One, don’t go to the dinner table hungry. Eat something before you surround yourself with tempting food. Two, don’t even negotiate it. Don’t waste time contemplating whether you should have something or not. Keep your rules black and white, no grey. If it’s going to interfere with your goal, skip it. If you aren’t willing to burn it off, skip it. You have more control than you think.
8. “I deserve a break” – If you are happy with where your weight is, that is fine. Take a break and enjoy the family – especially if you are consistent in your workouts and rarely take a day off. BUT, if you are unhappy with your weight, if you are sporadic with your workouts, or find it hard to stick with a program, then you don’t need a break. A break can actually mess you up in a bad way. Not only do you consume a LOT more calories during this time of year, you won’t be burning as many calories by taking a break – a double whammy! AND, getting out of a routine can set you up for a downward spiral of laziness and lack of motivation. When you workout, you become more protective over what you eat, so you’re likely to make better decisions even if you still cheat. Also, working out mentally keeps you “in the game”. Don’t lose momentum by giving in to taking a day off just because a friend can afford to. You have to do what YOU need to do to stick with your program and keep moving toward your goal. Even if it’s strictly for damage control, don’t let a pity-party convince you to be lazy.
If you skip your workout, will it kill ya? NO! But will it affect you? YES. Sometimes just mentally. In reality, the extra calories with the lack of calories burned can set you back a whole week. Ironically, just 30 minutes is enough to make a big difference. If you can’t do your normal routine during the holidays, do SOMEthing. Keep your eye on the prize! You’ll feel great and be THANKFUL you did!
EXCUSE (k-skyz) Relieve, rationalize, explain, pardon, condone, exempt, rationalise, apologize, justify…
Training for a body building show can be pretty intense. The training, additional cardios, extreme dieting, and keeping up with all the supplements (listed below) can all be pretty overwhelming even when things are going smoothly. Then add an injury to the mix and you’ve got new beast to battle.
Steve Pfiester is not the only one to suffer a devastating injury prior to fitness event. Most athletes face some kind of injury at some point in their career. For Steve, it’s was a torn MCL and medial meniscus just 10 days prior to his bodybuilding show in Daytona. When something like this happens, it can throw you into depression fast if you let it. Key word: “Let“.
You can let an injury take control of you, or you can take control of it. The choice is yours. For Steve, he decided to go forward and do the contest despite his knee. As part of the preparation, I had to mix his music for his night performance and I wanted it to reflect his circumstance. In search for a motivational sound bite, I had a feeling Eric Thomas “The Hip Hop Preacher“, known for encouraging athletes, would have something cool that would fit Steve’s situation- and I found one of the most profound statements I’d heard in a long time.
“It’s not about making excuses, it’s about making adjustments”.
In addition to all Steve’s normal training and dieting, now he had to go to Dr. Stepanek’s office to get cold laser therapy twice a day, which he felt was really helping. In addition to therapy, he had to ice his knee as many times a day as possible – all between clients, training, eating, teaching boot camps and running a gym.
He also had to adjust his workout routine around exercises that didn’t hurt. Hamstring curls and squats were impossible, but leg extensions and straight leg dead lifts were okay. He had to keep up his cardio, so he traded running outside for melting fat on the elliptical in the gym. And, he had to do it all on less sleep because his knee pain kept him up at night.
His knee required him to adjust the way he walked and performed even simple tasks, like getting in and out of bed or putting his pants on. He even had adjust his clothing around wearing a brace, and he added compression socks to his daily wardrobe. Adjustment was his middle name.
Making adjustments can be a pain (sometimes literally), but necessary when you want something bad enough. However, most of us use the tiniest excuse to stop us dead in our tracks. Instead of listing all the things you CAN do, we use that one thing to convince of the things we CAN’T do.
It wasn’t that Steve wanted to win a bodybuilding show that bad. He didn’t need another trophy or the notoriety. He needed to follow through with what he had planned. He needed to reach his goal, which was to do his very best – not necessarily to BE the very best.
Steve showed up, knee brace and all, and won both his weight classes. But, even if he didn’t win, he knew in his heart he did his very best with his circumstance – and that’s what fitness is all about. It’s not about perfection, it’s about dedication.
What excuse are you allowing to paralyze you right now? For every excuse you are using, someone else is overcoming. Just because you have a good excuse doesn’t mean you have to use it. Finish what you started.
“I’m too busy’ is one very lame excuse. You may can CHOOSE to be too busy for working out, too busy for your friends, too busy to invest in quite time, too busy to improve your marriage, too busy to visit someone in the hospital – but the truth of the matter is this: You’re not too busy for stuff that matters to you.
We aren’t too busy to watch TV. We’re not too busy to read this blog or check our Twitter or Facebook. We’re not too busy to go shopping. We even make time to take naps or sleep in later than your neighbor friend out running at 5AM. Or many you like to play online games and tend to your virtual farm or play Mafia wars. I mean REALLY! I don’t care how busy you are, how many kids you have, how many extra-curricular activities they have, how many hours you work – I can find you someone who’s even busier than you who still MAKES time to workout. Sorry, but you have to throw that excuse in the trash. It’s old and doesn’t work anymore.
NO MORE EXCUSES!
EVERYONE is busy! Quit allowing yourself to believe you don’t have options. Don’t wait until you have time left in the day – you will NEVER have time left in the day. You will only HAVE time if you MAKE time. Commit today to making some changes. You won’t believe how much time you still have left after you get your workout in. You also will be surprised to find you have more energy and you will likely accomplish tasks more efficiently. People disciplined in the gym are often more disciplined in every other part of their life. Practice discipline and reap a great reward!
Be a success story! Be one of the ones who’s very busy but still makes time to workout. BE the inspiration others need to see.
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