Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Being Better Than We Were Yesterday

Damond Nollan cooking healthy meals

“Consistency is what transforms average into excellence.” ~ Unknown

For years, I've idolized professional bodybuilders because of how they've transformed their vessels into these finely crafted statues of art. It's amazing to me!

More recently, I found myself once again consuming large quantities of online videos that talk about how to build muscle and cut fat from our bodies. With so much information, it can feel a bit overwhelming. Who should we listen to? What's really possible? What are my goals?

Like many of you, I've wrestled with my weight. To be more specific, I'm talking about my fat storage. For some reason, my fat likes to hang out most notably around my midsection. As a result, I find that my pants no longer button easily and my shirts never flow straight down my body. Instead, they seem to find this obnoxious detour around my "love handles."

Looking back through my journals, being in shape is probably one of the most common themes that I've had growing up. I just want to be the best that I can possibly be at this age and every age that I am blessed to experience.

The secret, as I have been told, is that there is no secret to achieving the body of our dreams. Many of us already know what to do. We eat right and increase our physical activity. Do this enough times and we will see the fruit of our labor.

Unfortunately, it's not a one and done proposition. Years ago, when I lost a considerable amount of fat, I quickly realized that if we don't continue doing what got us to our goals, we will eventually lose it and return back into the person that we were before.

In the bodybuilding world, we've seen examples of this with Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ronnie Coleman, Kevin Levrone, and Flex Wheeler, where they went from superhero to mere mortal. Be it through an accident or retirement, when the bodybuilders stop lifting, they lose the muscle.

On one hand, that realization has a way of taking the wind out of our sails. Who would want to put that much time and energy into something that will only disappear the minute you stop doing it? On the other side, I would very much like to be lean around the waist and nicely proportioned with a noteworthy amount of muscle mass everywhere else.

I know that I can achieve it. I've done it before and I can do it again. However, there is one thing I would like to do different and that is keeping my results long term. I'm tired of the up and down weight fluctuations. Let it be a consistent and steady grind toward the body that I envision.

“Excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better.” ~ Pat Riley

As many of us return to the gym, it is important to note that instead of chasing a picture perfect moment, how about we create a lasting lifestyle that follows and defines us. Instead of killing ourselves for 90 days, how about we seek consistency in our overall improvement. From our bodies to our minds, each day should be focused on making life better than it was yesterday. Instead of comparing ourselves to others, how about we compare ourselves to the one that stares at us in the mirror. We are our biggest competition. Let's not run a sprint for short-term gains, but decide to run a marathon that pays handsomely for the duration of our stay.

While we have primarily been talking about our health and overall fitness, consider applying this very lesson to all areas of our life. Let's find a rhythm that we can realistically maintain and then let's push ourselves ever so slightly in an effort to grow and improve.

Imagine who, where, and what we could be if we had simply started and never quit. Let's not look back at this time next year and see that we are in exactly the same place. Lets' keep track of our weights, fat percentages, money in the bank, degrees on our walls, and experiences that we've created as measurements for our constant and intentional effort to be better.

Remember this: You are a CHAMPION. So, let's make today a marvelous, and incrementally better, day.

Next Steps

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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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