What is Fitness: A "Basic" Account
We're very proud to have one of our own members contribute to spreading our message directly. Beth, as you'll read, has been a member at Results Driven for a little over a year now. She's one of our most dedicated members.
At RD, we encourage people to look at "weight loss" from a different angle. We want people to understand that a weight loss goal, can be achieved through strength training. Being an "ideal" weight is important, but for most of us, getting there and maintaining it can be frustrating.The leaner you comes as a by product of focusing on the process of learning new skills.
This is not an easy mindset to adopt, but the members who have dove in have felt the relief it can bring. Thank you, Beth, for putting in to words your experience.
What is fitness?
I always thought that the path to fitness included a combination of proper nutrition and exercise. Turns out my definition of "proper" was very wrong, until about a year ago.
From doctors, to standard gyms, to silly infomercials, I was groomed to believe that the "right way" was to sweat your ass for 45 minutes to an hour on some cardio machine and to eat less food. But that never got me where I wanted to be. And it was frustrating as hell! Why wasn't it doing what it was supposed to do? Oh, I know why - because it was wrong! It wasn't sustainable because it was terribly boring and I wasn't fueling my body with the right foods (or enough of them). So it just perpetuated my years of yo-yo-ing and simply never being happy with myself.
Then, about a year ago, I was lucky enough to find my answers. The right answers. After all of the years I spent avoiding them, it turns out that the right answer is - weights. Weight training. Lifting heavy things. Pushing heavy things. Pressing heavy things. Swinging heavy things. I'd been told my whole life that if I want to be “xyz” weight I needed to basically avoid weights. They would not make me "thin". But making strength training the key component of my exercise regimen has had amazing effects.
Aside from the fat loss, the muscle gain and the looser pants, I can also do more practical things outside of the gym. I can also try new things! Simply running on the treadmill for 45 minutes did not help me to carry 10 bags of groceries from the car and up the stairs to my kitchen. Taking spin class three times a week did not give me the confidence and strength to attempt and succeed in climbing a 40 foot rock wall (ahem, indoor rock climbing, let’s not get crazy people).
There are so many other things that we do in the gym that have helped me. And none of them are traditionally what I considered the “right” way to exercise. From crawling (which I initially despised and now just have a love/hate relationship with) to stretching to foam rolling to dead ball slamming (which I genuinely, actually love) – all of these things I never would have considered a form of exercise.
The next piece of the puzzle was nutrition, and the way I thought about my body and its composition. First of all, screw BMI. BMI is an asshole. And the scale is not always your friend. We are a combination of things. We are not just a number on a scale or on a chart. I can tell you that once I dialed in my nutrition, once I started eating the proper amount of protein, carbs and fats for me, my weight hasn't fluctuated much, but the way my clothes fit has! They aren't kidding when they (and this "they" is the "they" you should actually be listening to) say that abs are made in the kitchen! Now I've got a ways to go before I see an actual "ab" but they're there! And the benefits of eating right don't just show in your clothes. It's how I feel. I feel good. Really good. My body is happy when I'm feeding it clean food. Not starving it.
So, with the combination of all of these things, I have found success, where with so many other “traditional” methods had failed me. It’s not about what fitness “should” be. It’s about how you approach it. It’s about what you want out of it. It’s about committing to a new way of thinking. Committing to putting together your puzzle. You will not be sorry. And you will also end up being a badass, which is a pretty damned good side effect.
Read how RD helped Beth complete the Spartan Sprint in June.
Follow Beth's journey on her blog.