Ridz Rant: What would you really give???

With the Olympic games underway I got to thinking about the above question. The athletes at those games have to wait 4 years for their chosen event to come around, and we have not seen all the lead up and prep work that has gone into getting them onto the world stage.

Only this month the CrossFit Games were run and won as well. Over coming months there will be bodybuilding comps on and throughout the year we have various sports like rugby league, union, soccer, Aussie rules and cricket that all have a culmination at the end of their seasons. But for Olympians, CrossFitters and Bodybuilders thier season is run away from the spotlight. For months and even years these athletes toil away with not a thought but for their end goal. Sports that are played week in week out can help to give someone a minor victory at all points along the way to their grand finale. However the other athletes I mentioned find those little victories that bit harder to come by.

I have heard people remark that they would give enything to be as good as some of our sports super stars, or to have the body of Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie. But would you give anything? Everything? If you would wouldn’t you jump up straight away and do something different to what you are now?

Now I’m not saying that you have to throw in the towel. What I am getting at is that if you really want to perform like your idols, if you want to look like a movie star there are sacrifices to make. Going out for dinner and/or drinks every weekend from Thursday night to Saturday won’t get you to your goals. Having a quick pie from the bakery because you forgot lunch won’t have you running like Bolt. But just making some sacrifices and dedicating your time to a realistic goal and program and you don’t have to give everything. All you have to do is start out small. 20 mins a day. And then when that gets a bit easy, move it up a bit, do about 30 mins a day or increase the intensity of the 20 mins. How do I knw this? Because I have done it. YES ME, I haven’t just read a book and googled some new and obscure diet, I have DONE this.

About 10 years ago I was about 30 kgs heavier than I am now. Through a lot of trial and error I gradually saw changes in myself. Life is not a 12 week sprint to “Strip off the fat the fastest way you can!” Life is a lot longer than that and the goal should be to really enjoy every minute of it we have. Now my life today looks completely different to how it was 10 years ago. I eat completely different, I exercise , (yep I did nothing at all back then), I work more hours and I spend a whole lot more time with my family. Now I did not make all of these changes at once, if I did I would have given up in the first week!

Now when I look back I realise what I gave up, and what I realise is that I didn’t give anything up that I shouldn’t have.

I gave up foods that left me feeling bloated and lethargic, the short term benefit of the taste was always outwighed by the “food hangover” afterwards. I gave up going out every weekend, I gave up plonking on the lounge as soon as I got home from work, I gave up working in jobs I no longer really enjoyed as much as I used to, I gave up most take away food, I changed my nutrition completely. The way I eat now bears little to no resemblance of what I used to do. I park the furthest from the door at the supermarket to get in some incidental exercise. I exercise most days with scheduled rest days between to aid recovery, I eat lots of whole foods consisting of lots of fruits vegetables, lean meats and beneficial fats.

But really all that pales in comparison to so many other things that I have changed or given up.

I have given up buying shirts and pants that are now 2 to 3 sizes bigger than what I need, I have given up tired lethargic mornings that occured even after 10 hours sleep. I have given up feeling uncomfortable and out of breath when walking up stairs, I have given up feeling uncomfortable in my own skin and wanting to hide away in the corner, I have given up a flagging libido, I have given up not wanting to do things that would require physical exertion with friends and family, I have given up working for a living and now live for my work. I have given up just existing. I am now living. Aand all because I started to change a few small things.

The key is not to starve yourself, or follow the newest unproven fad diet. It is to make small incremental changes. It really is the butterfly effect that kicks in when you start to make a series of small changes that in turn get you to the point where one day you look back and think “Why did I wait so long to give all of that up?”

So are you ready to give it all you’ve got???

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