Change Your Focus, Change Your Body
A couple weeks ago I had a consultation with an awesome lady.
Keep reading if you’re a dude because it applies to you too!
She’d lost a bit of weight on her own, but reached that plateau that is so mind-boggling frustrating.
She’d worked her butt off, saw some results, got frustrated, worked “harder,” saw a little change, got angry and pushed through, then hit a plateau.
When she took a breath I asked what her goals were and she rambled off about 5 or 6 things she wanted to accomplish before a vacation.
She wanted to lose 25 pounds.
She wanted to drop a couple sizes to fit into a new dress and bathing suit.
She wanted to tone her shoulders and butt.
She wanted to increase her energy.
She also wanted to get strong enough to be able to do all her push-ups from her toes.
All of those were awesome goals, but it was just too much.
She was trying to accomplish too much in a short period of time and it was leading to a confusing set of workout and diet parameters.
She wanted to lose weight, so she was eating very few calories, but she wanted to get stronger, which requires quality calories – don’t get me wrong, you can accomplish both…but only if you do it the right way.
After our consultation we sat down and came up with a new plan.
The plan only had her focusing on 2 things, rather than 5.
Be sure to read to the end if you’d like to see my “Focus” for the next 8 weeks.
We were able to get to the root of the true desires, which was to look better on her vacation. She wasn’t really concerned with weight loss; she just wanted to look better.
That may seem an odd statement because the common thought is that weight loss and looking better are the same thing, but they’re really not.
Losing weight is really easy. Eat a lot less than you’re eating now and you’ll lose weight.
If, however you care about how your body looks and how you feel, then that’s a completely different animal.
Looking better can involve weight loss, but it’s a specific kind of weight – fat.
She wanted to lose fat, but wanted her butt and shoulders/arms to look awesome.
Do you see how those are two different things? Losing weight versus wanting to look and feel better?
Anyway, back to her new Focus.
Her new Focus for the next 8 weeks was two things and two things only – getting nicer shoulders/arms and butt and dropping two sizes.
She was able to understand that she couldn’t simply “eat less” to accomplish the sizes lost and still have nice looking arms and a firm, toned butt.
The workout was different and the nutrition guidelines were different.
We were able to Simplify her plan of action.
We were able to de-clutter her brain and whittle things down to just two Big Goals and really hone in on that Focus.
That’s what I want you to do.
If anything I said sounded like you, I want you to sit down and write out ALL your goals. Write down everything you want to accomplish with your body.
For some this may take 10 seconds and others it may take 10 minutes, but don’t stop writing until you’re done.
When you’re done writing I want you to grade everything.
Give everything a grade of 1, 2 or 3. The most important is a 1 and least important, at least for now, is a 3.
Maybe you’re like my client and you want to lose weight, but you’re really concerned with something else.
Or maybe you really do need to focus on weight loss alone and getting a healthy nutrition plan engrained in your brain (that kinda rhymes!).
Or maybe you are concerned that your energy levels are really low and that you have a high percentage of stomach fat versus other areas of your body.
Whatever it is, grade it.
Then once you have the grading done, pick two similar things that are graded as “1.”
Those are your new goals.
That’s your new Focus.
For the next 8 weeks you are only to focus on those two things.
It allows you to de-clutter your thoughts and really get down to the nitty-gritty.
Let’s go back to my client’s plan to help illustrate her Action Plan.
Because she wanted to drop two sizes while also having stronger and more defined arms and butt, the workout and nutrition had to be different than simply “losing weight.”
We needed to put a bigger emphasis on protein and fat intake, while designing a workout program that, while intense enough to cause a big calorie burn, still put enough extra “oomph” onto her arms and butt.
If the goal was to simply lose weight I would’ve had her doing a lot of high tempo workouts for the whole body – no specialization, while also focusing more on overall calorie restriction.
This would have been someone who needed to “get something done” and drop fat.
Do you see the differences?
One needed to lose weight all over, the other was “okay” with her weight, but wanted to fine-tune her figure to make it look better for a vacation.
One has big nutrition and activity problems (none), the other is already active, already has a pretty good handle on eating, but needed everything tweaked to fit her Focus.
So in closing, I want you to write down all your goals, grade them, and then pick 2 similar goals to focus on and make that your Big Focus for the next 8 weeks.
Pick a workout program that fits that Focus and figure out how you need to tweak your nutrition for that Focus.
This is your assignment for today.
Easy enough, right?
Crap. I forgot I was going to tell you my Focus for the next 8 weeks.
2) Shrink the waist
I have no delusions about being a giant of a man, nor am I out to be a cover model; however I am not happy with the way my shoulder area fills out my shirts and I’ve become a little too lax with my eating and it’s showing in my stomach. It’s driving me absolutely crazy.
So my workout program for the next 8 weeks reflects the shoulders/triceps (they can go hand in hand) and the only thing that’s changing for the waist is to really bring my nutrition back up to par. It’s the perfect example of how little “slip-ups” on a regular basis can screw things up over a couple months…now it’s going in reverse.
People tend to put too much emphasis on the overall workout program when they want to lose stomach fat and it’s usually not the case. Yes, focusing on the stomach muscles is okay, but resorting to hours and hours of cardio along with “isolation” movements for the abs isn’t going to get you to your goal. Increase the intensity, without making the workout much longer, and focus on that nutrition and you’ll be much, much happier.
P.S. – Please let me know what your new Focus is going to be. I want to help you reach those goals and sometimes the simple act of letting someone, me, know what it is can do the trick in keeping you on track. Reply to this email and let me know!