Saturday, January 17, 2015

Honesty is the FIRST Policy to a Healthy New You

My favorite show many years back was “House” and his first rule of human nature explains why my first target of diet and exercise is honesty. You see his first rule was “people lie” which was his way of explaining the interactions that people have with doctors. I learned a very long time ago when I thought I was going to earn a living as a Certified Personal Trainer, that you aren't much different than a doctor when it comes to people’s ability to be honest with you. If you are reading this and are offended by the concept that I may have just called you a liar, then the chances are pretty good that you may be even further away from reaching health goals than you think.

Taking the concept of “people lie” and placing it inward now, you have to accept that without complete honesty, especially with yourself, you may not exactly be doomed to failure, but the road ahead will be Hell if you plan to succeed. You really need to make the commitment to be totally honest with yourself, even if you are going to treat your diet like it is nobody else’s business. Right now we are working on the interpersonal relationship between you and yourself. Bear with me, I will stop insulting your personal integrity in a moment, but remember this statement above all else, “Complete honesty will be the way to getting your weight goals working.”

Now with all of that said, let me use myself as the example so that you don’t think I am as pure as the wind driven snow. Every time I have had an issue with my weight over the last decade it has seriously affected my health. It would cause back issues that would create knee issues and of course foster emotional issues. I had a million excuses, and a million things to blame, and all of my tenants that follow this one, I had in spades. I didn't have the ability to be honest about what I ate, how much I ate, what was good for me, what wasn’t. In general I would talk about healthy eating, and then put too many calories in myself. I would talk about how I worked off anything I ate, and I just didn’t.

To diet you have to burn more calories than you take in. If you can’t be honest about the amount of calories that you take in then you are spinning your wheels. Does this mean you can’t screw up and eat an entire pizza? Well technically it doesn't help for losing weight but being honest about eating the entire pizza and adding up those calories will show you how badly you missed the mark. Just shrugging it off does nothing but make the diet impossible. The same can be said for exercise. You don’t get mulligans on your workouts either. If you burn 500 calories doing 4.0 on a treadmill with a 15 degree incline, then taking a walk around the block isn’t “close enough.”

I am not cured of my own personal dishonesty either, and even though I can be a very good power of example, I still have to track everything I do. In that case it is less a case of honesty than it is a case of absentmindedness. Like a broken record I will tell people to use a diet tracker (like MyFitnessPal). Most of them lie to me and say they will get around to it. For the record, I am done at that point. We are at that breaking point with why the only serviceable degree that I have goes to waste. I never had the people skills to deal with all the lying you have to face as a personal trainer. Do yourself a favor and don’t accept it in yourself either. At least when a Personal Trainer or a Dietician quits on you, there may be something to learn from it. If you are willing to just accept your own crap forever, you might as well quit.