Summer is the time, when more often than not, everybody starts looking at their reflection in the mirror- even those, which don’t pay much attention to their appearance throughout the year. This is the month, when the saying: “It is better to be ashamed for one week at the beach, than sweat all year round in the gym.”, loses its power and validity and everybody starts looking for the quickest, most effective method to get in better shape for the beach and have a better looking bikini body.
What are the methods and means, which most people use in this case?
Usually, everything comes up to working out to exhaustion and taking supplements in abundance. We behave as if for one week we literally sleep in the gym, we will manage to make up for the lack of physical activity throughout the rest of the year. We behave as if supplements are magical pulls, which “soak” our thoughts and desires; pills which encode the appearance we’d like to have and once we take them, they immediately remodel our bodies according to the perfect body shape, we have in our mind.
This enchanted circle is the plot, which most people observe in their own life, year after year. We rarely learn from our mistakes and usually, each summer is just a fading copy of the summer before it- we are still the same; we have the same outlook on life, our health is slowly sliding down and getting worse and parallel with it, our body is growing bigger and we are getting out of shape.
Mistake 1: Trying to Make Up for The Lack of Physical Activity Throughout The Year, with Exhausting Workouts
I will be harsh and I will say it: Just because you are gonna “kill” yourself with working out for 1-2 weeks, will neither make you look like a fitness model, nor help you get in a better shape. Even the contrary. When you get to the beach, you will feel tired, your body will suffer from the deprivations and because, as we know, in life, everything comes up to balance, your body will search for it- and this will be masked as the irresistible urge to go on a see-food diet- eat everything you see and limit your physical activity.
Truth is that the damages, caused in the long term; those that are a result of a constant accumulation, cannot be fixed with a short term methods. What you did to your body throughout the year, cannot be fixed with 1-2 weeks effort.
If you really want to have results and if you’d like next summer, to be different, make the decision NOW. Make the decision that your life doesn’t run out with one week at the seaside; that you are not a doll, which is supposed to walk on the beach, while others are admiring the way you look. Make the decision that you are a human being, who deserves to feel great, all year round; that you value your own self and your health and that you won’t let yourself live, led by the inertia for 11 months and then wonder how to turn the negative course of the situation.
Make the decision that you deserve to climb up the staircase of life, with every passing day, instead of sloping down.
How about, instead of exhausting yourself with workouts, chose to make the first, but most important steps towards change- the one, which you’ve been needing for a long time. Make the first steps towards the change of the way you accept your own self, your body, your health, your life. Realize that the meaning of life is not about looking good in front of the others, but feeling good about our own self.
Because, does it really matter what other people will think of you on the beach, when you are not satisfied with the way you feel and when you do not accept your own self?
It doesn’t matter how other people see us. What matters is how WE look on our own self. When in every single moment we choose what is best for us, when we have a clear vision of our priorities and what is it which makes us feel good, each one of our choices, will be dictated by this mindset.
Realize that it is NOT better to be ashamed for one week at the beach, instead of making efforts all year round. There is nothing more satisfying, than feeling better about your own self and the choices you make.
We do not need to look like fitness models; to resemble a moving model from an anatomy book. What we are supposed to do is take care of our own self- to fuel our body with quality food and give it the movement it was created for.
Mistake 2: Buy supplements, as if we are buying veggies
Sometimes I get astonished by the fact, that the first thing most people think about, when they decide to get in shape is what supplements they should buy.
I ADORE this question!
When are we gonna stop being slaves to the myths and when are we gonna stop being misled by the commercial and actually start using our critical thinking and make decisions independently?
Do you really believe that supplements will do what you don’t have the will, the desire or the consciousness to do?
Do you really believe that something which comes in a box, in the form of powder or pills, could substitute real food? Or do you really believe that this is the proper way to act?
I never comment, but I always indignant with people who preach healthy lifestyle, yet they upload pictures of 5-10 boxes of supplements. They rush to show off with the new delivery and they think that the fact that when they travel they need two suitcases- one for their clothes and one for their supplements, is something to be proud of. Really?
Actually not! Yes, supplements might help you in the short term, but is this a reflection of “healthy”?
Everybody passes through the period, when appearance comes before health. I’ve also been there- the time when I was ok with torturing my body, just so I could make it look the way I wanted it to be. The body is hardy and it endures such a behavior- in the short ter. The question is what are we gonna do, when your body gives up; when it quits fighting with our ridiculous behavior and when we receive a signal, for its refusal to be an associate in its own suicide, masked as a disease.
Supplements are not the decision. Why?
Our body is not as simple as we think it is. Just because it needs protein, doesn’t mean that if we drink protein shakes in abundance it will be happy. Just because L-carnitine is something our body produces, doesn’t mean that giving it larger quantities will be of bigger help.
I had a short period of my life, when I used to buy amino acids and I thought my body needed them. I was misled by the advices: “You waste a lot of energy, you can’t go without supplements. You won’t recover well.”
Fortunately, I realized some things on time:
1.It is better to give my money for real food, instead of giving them for supplements.
2.Amino acids might be needed for our body, but they should come from food- this way, they come with a combination of other macro and micro-nutrients, which aid their absorption and their use in the body. This is true for every nutrient. After all, our body doesn’t work with what we eat, but with what we absorb!
3.I do not need supplements to recover. The body has the perfect mechanisms to recover and it is constantly sending us signals when and what it needs. Why would I take supplements, to recover me, when I could just give my body a break from working out; when I could just sleep a little more and instead of working out, I could just peacefully spend some more time in nature?
Why should I artificially force my body to keep on functioning to the max, when it obviously doesn’t want to and when it needs rest?
4.I do not need to be dependent on pills. Powders and all kind of things, which fool my mind and make me believe that without them, I cannot achieve my goals.
How often do you see people who are dependent on supplements? People, who get panicked when they forget to take their supplements and they rush to blame their lack, for their bad performance. I see it on a daily basis. Isn’t it ridiculous? Why do we once again attach our abilities and potential to something external and why do we allow to feel helpless, when we don’t have the opportunity to take the “magical supplements”?
My advice is to stop buying supplements in your desperate try to look better on the beach. It is better to save this money and invest them in more experiences. You better save this money and invest them in better, higher quality food.
Let this summer be different and set the beginning of your new, more conscious self.
Let yourself to realize that when you make an effort all year round, when you take care of yourself, you won’t go to extremes, like desperately trying to get in shape. Realize that it is far more satisfying to make a better choice, on daily basis and feel great all year round; to be proud with who you are; to have energy; to stay away from becoming a slave of superficial goals and the desperate try of your ego to attract attention and receive praises.
Let today, step by step, be the beginning of your path- up, on the staircase of life. Start with a healthier breakfast; take the time for a short but intensive workout. Remember that more doesn’t always mean better.
Success comes not when we add to what we have and who we are, but when we subtract- the useless; what is interfering with our progress and what is holding us back.
Go at the seaside and feel great- not because everybody will turn head after you, but because even when you are walking by yourself on the beach, at 6a.m.; even when there is nobody around you, you are feeling content with the person you are and the choices you make- in every single moment!
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