When it comes to your health, you’ve got to start somewhere
When I moved from my childhood home to the city and moved schools in 1985, it was a difficult transition. Not only leaving all I had known for 15 years, my friends, childhood home and open space but academically too.
Let’s just say I wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed.
Due to the poorer academic standards at my previous school, I started way below Year 9 grade level, and I struggled with all my classes except P.E. So much so that I was assigned to English as a second language class.
It wasn’t through my lack of effort because I tried my best, it was lack of knowledge and a poor education. Year 9 was tough sledding and I barely passed.
True be told, I struggled at English throughout high school and failed it in my final year.
Now I’m paid to write about fitness, and I’ve got hundreds and hundreds of articles published on the world-wide web. I didn’t think taking an extra English class would’ve led me to being a freelance fitness writer.
But hey, you’ve got to start somewhere.
The Point Is…….
This is not to toot my horn, well maybe a little bit. The point is you’ve got to start your journey, no matter if you’ve never done it, you are coming back after a break or you are just no good at it. Whatever ‘it’ is.
You might know the end of the destination, but the path ahead is foggy, and you have no idea how to get started. The trick is to take the first step when you have no idea where your foot will land or what direction it will take you in.
Here’s another example.
Here Is My Starting Story
Around 30 years ago, I was hanging out with a good friend of mine and we were both messing around and trash talking to each other. But on this day, he had an unusual request that ended up getting me started on the road to health and wellness.
“Lift up your shirt.” He spoke.
“Why” I asked.
The look he gave me suggested I do it or else, so I did.
“Mate, you really need to hit the gym.”
The very next day I joined a gym because a little shame and humiliation goes a long way. And my first time in a gym was a confusing experience because the only exercise I knew was biceps curls.
So, What Did I Do?
I adopted a monkey see monkey do attitude and I muddled my way through my first few months in the gym. I would sneak looks at other people lifting weights because they all looked like they had a better idea than me.
Monkey see monkey do was a good place to start but not a good way to end because bad form is rife in commercial gyms. So, I learnt to lift weights the good old-fashioned way in the pre-YouTube era, reading. doing and blind luck.
I knew I wanted to be buff, put on muscle, walk around in tank tops and grunt when doing bicep curls with more than 15 pounds. I knew the destination but couldn’t see the path, but took the first step anyway.
Back then I had no idea my journey would lead to be a personal trainer and freelance fitness writer but here I am.
What’s This Have To Do with You?
Well, nothing up until this point because it’s been about me. I’m trying to highlight the fact ‘you have to start somewhere’ even if you know your destination or you don’t.
Let me put this in a health and fitness context.
You may be looking to change your fitness ways because
· You don’t like you look in the mirror
· Can’t keep up with your kids or partner
· You are in pain and fed up
· Have no energy and feel lethargic
· Your overall health is poor, bordering on life threatening
Besides scheduling an appointment with a medical professional (which I am not) , think about some small things you can do to start somewhere. Things like
· Trying to walk between 8000-12000 steps per day.
· Carrying around a water bottle with you.
· Eat more vegetables at mealtime.
· Go to bed at the same time each night.
· Turn your phone off after 8pm.
· Practice deep breathing for 5 minutes everyday.
When you are looking to change and need to start somewhere, start small. Some people often think change is hard or starting is the most difficult thing ever. That’s because these people think huge change is required.
But (in my opinion) there is a better way. A way that leads to lasting change that doesn’t involve throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Plus, it makes change so much easier.
You do this by starting small, starting somewhere, taking the first step and by having a little faith. And who knows? You may end up being a tracksuit pants wearing and coffee guzzling personal trainer.
Starting is the hardest part but when it comes to your health and fitness it is important to start and keeping going. Your quality of life depends on it.