Fitness hard truths: Unveiling the reality of the fitness journey

Coach Jason Fitness Correspondent

Embarking on a fitness journey is often filled with enthusiasm and motivation. We envision a future where we are fitter, healthier, and more confident versions of ourselves. However, amidst the excitement, it is essential to acknowledge the hard truths that come with this commitment. Let’s look at some of the harsh realities of the fitness journey, in the hopes of encouraging resilience, perseverance, and a realistic approach to fitness.

 Consistency is Key

One of the fundamental truths of fitness is that consistency is paramount. We may have lofty goals, but they can only be achieved through sustained dedication and effort. Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts or quick fixes, neither is there a substitute for the work. It is the consistent actions we take in terms of exercise and nutrition that accumulate over time to produce meaningful results. Understanding and embracing this truth prevents us from falling into the trap of seeking instant gratification and motivates us to stay committed to the long-term process of fitness.

It doesn’t get easier, you get stronger:

Often we tend to lean towards the belief that it is easier for some people to exercise than it is for others, this may be true to an extent due to various reasons like medical-related issues, but generally, this mindset is a bigger hindrance to exercising than anything else. There’s a need to remember that mindset matters most in this commitment because 20kg weights will still weigh 20kg in five years, but whether or not you find lifting 20kg to be a near-death experience or a walk in the park is a product of your mindset towards lifting that weight over those years. Accepting this truth helps us to stay motivated by reminding us of how the work won’t change or go away until we just do it. 

Plateaus are inevitable

Another challenging truth of the fitness journey is the inevitability of plateaus. Initially, progress may come quickly and easily, but eventually, we reach a stage where further gains become more difficult to attain. This plateau can be mentally and physically challenging, leading to frustration and even self-doubt. Acknowledging this truth helps us reframe plateaus as opportunities for growth, rather than setbacks. By adjusting our approach, seeking guidance, and staying persistent, we can navigate these plateaus and continue progressing toward our goals.

Failure is a stepping stone:

In the pursuit of fitness, failure is an inevitable part of the journey. Whether it’s missing a workout, struggling to lift a weight, or succumbing to a craving, we are bound to stumble along the way. However, it is crucial to understand that failure is not permanent. 

It is merely a stepping stone towards success. Each setback presents an opportunity to learn, grow, and course-correct. Accepting this truth allows us to embrace failure as a natural part of the process, learn from it, and ultimately become stronger, both physically and mentally.

It takes time:

Another hard truth that many individuals fail to recognise is that significant fitness transformations do not happen overnight. 

Patience and perseverance are essential virtues to cultivate throughout the journey. It may take weeks, months, or even years to achieve our desired fitness goals. Embracing this truth not only prevents us from becoming disheartened by slow progress but also encourages us to focus on the process rather than fixating solely on the result. By setting realistic expectations and understanding that sustainable change takes time, we give ourselves the grace and determination needed to succeed.

 Exercise is a mandate not a luxury

Despite how unmotivated one may be or how much an individual may be hell-bent on believing that “exercise just isn’t for them,” a lack of exercise will have a significant negative impact on the quality of anyone’s life and the sooner the choice to start is made, the better. It is important to start exercising now and get into the habit early rather than doing so because the doctor said to do it. It will be much harder to get into the habit then. Coming to terms with this truth helps us to stay motivated by reminding us of the goals we aim to achieve as well as the reasons why we started. 

Comparison is the thief of joy

In this era of social media, it is easy to fall into the trap of comparing ourselves to others. However, the truth is that comparison is detrimental to our fitness journey. Each individual’s circumstances, genetics, and starting points are unique, making it unrealistic and unfair to compare ourselves to others. What matters most is our progress, growth, and journey. Succumbing to the comparison trap not only hinders our motivation but can also result in negative self-perception and self-esteem. Embracing this truth allows us to focus on our journey, celebrate small wins, and appreciate the progress we make at our own pace.

In conclusion, the fitness journey is not meant to be easy or devoid of challenges. Embracing the hard truths enables us to adopt a realistic approach, while still maintaining motivation and optimism. 

By understanding and accepting these truths, we can navigate the journey with resilience, perseverance, and dedication to our personal growth. True fitness success lies not only in physical transformations but in mental growth which is due to the journey itself and the lessons we learn along the way.

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