Saturday, April 22, 2006

Sailing to Beachbodyland

Reading the Beachbody message boards, I am so impressed by people who handle any set back along the way to success with grace and determination instead of anger and blame.

No challenge along the way should ever be a surprise or even a set back to a fixed goal. The challenge just "is".

Losing weight with one of our programs (or running a company, getting a college degree, or keeping a house clean, etc etc) is a process of dealing with changing variables. There's no constant toward success except persistence applied to the best tools available. Your weightloss program is the tool, like a boat, that goes nowhere unless there is someone steering the ship.

You are the captain of the sailboat, and you are planning to sail your boat to "Beachbodyland" a destination where your clothes fit better, you have more energy, and you will gladly pose for family pictures because you like the way you look. As you sail across the sea toward Beachbodyland, the fact is, you are ALWAYS veering slightly off course. Every moment you are literally, constantly adjusting and steering your boat to make it to your intended destination. A resistance workout breaks down muscle, so that muscle will then rebuild, adapt and be stronger. When you eat, your body slows the usage of stored fat for energy, but its consequential confidence that there is food available let's it speed up your metabolism overall. The net effect is more energy usage throughout the day. Again, constant steerage, away from the goal, toward the goal.

If you're with me, I'll take this metaphor further: In addition to the very specific physical navigating of exercise and food intake that you are managing, Captain, there are multiple "life factors" and variables that constantly nudge and bump the boat off course sometimes in frustrating ways... the unpredictable "current" of work and family demands, the "tides" of holidays and seasons, the "surf" of emotion, gusts of wind such as emergencies, surprises, and accidents, plus the pitch of each sail which can be compared to your intensity of workouts, the choice of which workout to do which day, your recovery time, etc etc. Each one of those factors , they just "are". The wind is being the wind. The surf is being the surf. They are not against you getting to Beachbodyland. They just exist on their own, coinciding with your path on their way to their own. You can put your energy into reacting to the factors and be angry and miserable, or you can accept them, and maximize and enjoy the trip.

There will always be external factors that have an effect on your voyage. It's up to you to decide how you will react to those factors. Whether you put your energy into enjoying it, focusing on maximizing each variable, or you put your energy into anger, resentment, and self-judgment depends on how you Captain the ship. You can steer emotionally with each shift, in a constant zig-zag of over reaction, or you can go with it, making graceful corrections to stay on course without the fight. You make the choice. You set the tone of the trip. The more pleasant you make it on yourself, the more likely you are to keep forging ahead.

What I am saying here is, when you pin that Power 90 or Turbo Jam calendar up, don't EXPECT it to be a perfect process - expect it to have twists and turns. (Frankly, the only way it can be smooth or simple is if your are not moving at all - no wind, or tied to the dock.) As the skipper, expect the variables to come and effect the trip, and lightly steer to stay on course, and work on managing your reaction to them. When it seems like there is no time to workout, maybe you need to let it go that day. If you're exhausted, perhaps you should lighten up your workout intensity for a day or two, or perhaps you need to go for it with more intensity to break through the rut. Likewise, when the wind is blowing strong and everything is contributing to reaching the destination, seize it and maximize your progress. Increase your intensity without burning yourself out. Eat clean. Take advantage of the momentum while it's all falling into place.

And then, when there's a challenge, deal with it, without giving up.

Feel your body respond to each maneuver. Feel your moods improve when you focus your mind to let go of anger and stay on course. You're sailing. This is your life. Enjoy it by accepting challenges and staying on course.

I'll give you a sailor's salute when our boats are within view, and I'll look forward to seeing you in Beachbodyland.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great metaphor, Carl! As captain of my Tub-boat, the journey to Beachbodyland has been met with wind and surf and at time hurricane force storms! But Beachbodyland is now in the horizon and I'm hoping to reach its shores soon!

I'm on week 3 of P90X and I'm eating cleaner than ever! 90%/10% is my goal over the next 90 days! I'm hoping to attend TH camp this year (probably Chicago over NY now due to funds and a wedding that same weekend!)

Salute!

Lori

AZTLGRL said...

Holy crap can I relate to that post! GET OUT OF MY MIND CARL!

psalm9567 said...

You certainly have a way with words, Carl! As I'm a visual learner, your words painted a great "picture" in my mind of the ship that I have been sailing for almost a year now.

Thanks for the reminder about sleeping and giving myself the gift of "flexibility" in my schedule. KOKO had that same thing to say about food! Don't be afraid to eat that clean food. Eat and enjoy! Because you know what, the journey here on earth is short and we must enjoy it.

Here's to sweet sailing,
Sarah

ronnlynn said...

There have been many obstacles in my path the last two years, and it's reminders of this kind that keep me grounded. EVERYTHING in life changes..fitness is no exception. Some days we "Sail"..some days we "Sink", But we are ALWAYS the CAPTAIN of our own Destiny. How we deal with all the Ocean sends our way... shapes who we are. Thanks, Carl!!!

TuxBaby said...

Excellent post, Carl!

Very true... and I find that as stormy my sea gets, I tend to grab onto my workouts as the ONE thing I can still control. And that helps me keep on going.

~TuxBaby

Northern Orchid said...

Wow Carl, you always know the right thing to say! Thank you so much for the encouragement. I LOVED this post.

Have a great day!

Kasia

leannwoo said...

Perfect post Carl! Thanks for the reminder that this is ALL part of the journey.

Captain, My Captain...

yeah, I'm a dork.

psalm9567 said...

Leannwoo:

O Captain, my Captain!!

Dork out, girl!!!

Sarah!

traci morrow said...

Nice analogy, Carl!
If I am the "skipper" of the boat, does that make you "little buddy"? nyuk nyuk

love,
Traci :)

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