Friday, January 14, 2011

It's All About Support


When a client makes great strides and measureable accomplishments, I am the first person to say, “The credit is yours, you did all the hard work!  I just supervise.”

So if you want to feel better, perform better, be healthier, fit in your clothes better, firm up the flab, all these different goals I am helping people work toward every day, it’s going to be some work.  I, your personal trainer, am going to give you a heaping helping of healthy resources for you to choose from in your efforts to reach your goals.  Efforts!  There, I said it again.  (Change is only hard in the beginning, friends.  Healthy new habits become just as hard to break as unhealthy old ones.)

My support alone is not all you need.  You will face all kinds of challenges when we are not together.  You may or may not hear my voice in your head, or even care to remember what suggestions I have for overcoming different obstacles.  So where are your head and your heart in this?  Where are your family members and your friends and your coworkers in this?  Your support network…are they happy for you to spend time and energy (and yes, money) getting more healthy and more fit?

Maybe you are afraid that the people in your life, who you take great care of, will resent it if you take time to take great care of yourself.  You may be right.  But if they really care about you, you can set them straight with a simple discussion about how important it is to you to be healthier and stronger and more mentally clear.  It is, in turn, good for them when you feel better and are more productive.

Perhaps there are people in your life who habitually present you with unhealthy food choices when they know you are pursuing cleaner eating habits.  Maybe they just don’t understand how something different can be better for you.  Or you fear resentment may come your way, again, as turning down their food gifts is tantamount to turning down their love.  They may actually feel that way, too.

None of this stuff needs to go unsaid.  Open the door to communicating with the folks who are closest to you, and help them understand how great it would be for everyone to participate in supporting your health and wellness goals.  Does that mean you all have to exercise together?  Not necessarily, but that would be pretty terrific when it is possible.  Does that mean you all have to eat the same things?  Well, again that would be pretty special – especially if you are the one who is responsible for all the food prep in the house.  How much of a pain is it to make different meals for everybody, am I right?  Then, how much quality time are you spending with your loved ones if you spend all your time in the kitchen making everybody’s favorites?  I’m not suggesting that you never cater to your loved ones… it’s a fulfilling and fun thing to do.  But you deserve to receive some catering, too.

Straightforward conversations can eliminate so much of the guilt and conflict which can come from seemingly competing obligations.  Start with the topic of obligations and priorities.  Every individual, you and I and everyone else we know, needs to put his or her health on the top of the priority list in order for all the other obligations to get accomplished, and for all the good stuff in life to even be conceivable.  So many people say it… “When you’ve got your health, you’ve got everything.”  Hopefully you’ll get all the support you need to back that statement up with everyday healthy actions.

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