Focus on Today

today

 

“Nothing is worth more than this day.  You cannot relive yesterday.  Tomorrow is still beyond your reach.”  — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Congratulations to Lindsey Allen and Joe Adams who have both lost more than 3% of their bodyweight in just 6 weeks!  You guys are doing a phenomenal job taking everything one day at a time.  We’re halfway through the Napoletan Fitness weight loss challenge.  Keep it up!

Getting (Back) Into A Routine

If it were half as easy to get into a routine as it is to fall out of them we would all be right on track more often than not.  Unfortunately, that’s not the case.  Listed below are a few tips to help you get back into a routine.  Let’s face it, whether it be exercise, work, or day-to-day life, being in a comfortable and productive routine makes us feel a whole lot better about what we are trying to accomplish.  Give it your best effort and get back on track!

Develop a plan.  Sit down and figure out what it is that needs to be accomplished.  Write your ideas down and look at them frequently to be sure that you’re doing your best to achieve them.

Work on one thing at a time.  Even though there may be a long list of goals that you wish to achieve just focus on one at a time.  This can help you avoid getting off track.  The only way to achieve everything is to get each goal knocked out individually.

Start small.  Instead of overwhelming yourself with your largest objectives, start small and work toward daily, weekly, and monthly goals.  Once you feel as if your daily goals are consistently being reached, move on to weekly goals.  Once you’ve got your weekly goals under control move on to monthly goals, etc.  This is how you build a routine.

Reward yourself.  As you begin to take back control not everything is going to go smoothly.  Avoid beating yourself up over the days and weeks that everything did not go as planned.  Getting discouraged will only delay your efforts.  Instead, celebrate and reward yourself when things are going right; this will encourage you to stay on track.  Just be careful not to reward yourself with things that are counterproductive to the goals you have in mind. (i.e. If your goal is to lose 30 pounds do not reward yourself with ice cream when you lose the first 5.)

Meditate on it.  Some people are comfortable with this and others are not.  Whether through meditation, prayer, or other means, we should always be conscious of the things we are trying to achieve.  This doesn’t mean dwell on the things we haven’t yet accomplished, but remind ourselves that our tasks are achievable and that we are in control of our own destiny.

 

Your Best Effort is Kryptonite to Defeat

“Being forced to work, and forced to do your best, will breed in you temperance and self-control, diligence and strength of will, cheerfulness and content, and a hundred virtues which the idle will never know.”  – Charles Kingsley

There is no doubt that knowing and believing that you’re doing the very best that you can will bring you peace of mind and security.  Give your all to each one of your ventures and what is meant to be will be.

Positive and Present

“Your thoughts are the architects of your destiny.” – David O. McKay

Discover the power of confidence, positive thinking, and staying in the present moment.  Take notice of the amount of thoughts that pass through your mind today that deal with either the past or the future.  Stop giving those things so much attention and focus on the here and now.  Where you are right now has the ability of being the best place you’ve ever been!  Don’t ignore the present and wait for it to become the past.  Take on a positive attitude and give this very moment your full attention.

Be confident in the decisions you make and the things that you do.  Positive thoughts will create positive outcomes.  Concentrate on the potential of this moment.  Keep this mindset with you throughout the day.  When you’re at work focus on work, but when you get home focus on your family or whatever it is that you enjoy doing with your evenings.  When you’re in the gym focus on making the most out of your time there.  Avoid the distractions of the past and the future and give everything to the present.  Stay positive and the confidence will come.

Experience Life!

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.  …Explore. Dream. Discover.”  – Mark Twain

Recognize each day for what it is – a chance to try something new.  Whether it’s a new radio station, a new route to work, or a new exercise, dare to try something different today and every day from here on out.  Don’t take life’s options for granted.  When it’s all said and done you’ll be more satisfied to try something different and fail than to not try it at all.  Experience life.  This might be the only one you get!

Healthy Mind, Healthy Body

Have you ever considered meditating?  Having a healthy mind is just as important as having a healthy body.  If you struggle to obtain peace of mind, have trouble focusing, or battle with things like rage, stress, and anxiety, meditation may be the solution.  Some studies even suggest that meditation can reduce chronic pain, increase breathing efficiency and lung capacity, and develop recognition of compulsive behaviors.  Chances are you could benefit from meditation.  It certainly won’t hurt you, so why not give it a shot?

Of course, most people are quick to say that they don’t have time to meditate.  Other people believe it’s too complicated.  If you don’t feel like you have the time, or just plain don’t know where to start, check out Victor Davich’s 8 Minute Meditation Method.  It’s not too tough to wake up eight minutes earlier each morning or go to bed eight minutes later each night considering the benefits that meditation may provide.  If you think that meditation is too complicated, it may be due to your inability to concentrate for extended periods of time.  ***BONUS***  You have to start somewhere, and the more you meditate the easier focusing becomes.  You just have to promise yourself to stick with it.

The bottom line is that there are so many things that would seem easier to us if we had consistent mind control.  Going to the gym, cleaning the house, and dealing with our children on a sugar high would not seem half as bad if we were able to experience a feeling of peace within our minds each day.  To know that peace of mind exists is a comforting feeling.  To have control over our own peace of mind is euphoric.  Find out for yourself, but don’t try it until you’re ready to commit.  It’s easy to give up, so get it in your head that you’re going to stick with it no matter what it takes.  Commit to at least a month of daily meditation and experience the difference a healthy mind brings to your seemingly hectic life.

Tips on Improving Your Sleep

It’s important that we make the most out of our sleep each night.  This can help us wake up feeling refreshed and ready to go.  According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School there are several things we can do that may help us sleep better.  If you struggle getting sound sleep try a few of these tactics out and see if you can tell a difference.

TURN YOUR BEDROOM INTO A SLEEP-INDUCING ENVIRONMENT:
Keep your room as quiet, dark, and cool as possible.  Consider using ear plugs to block out sound if necessary and heavy curtains to obstruct any outside light.  Remove distractions such as TVs and computers and focus on getting quality sleep and relaxation while you’re in your bedroom.

ESTABLISH A SOOTHING PRE-SLEEP ROUTINE:
Try yoga, meditation, a hot bath, or reading before you lay down.  Anything that gets you relaxed enough to fall asleep will help you to fall asleep faster and maintain a sound sleep.  It’s best to go to bed when you’re truly tired and ready.  A soothing pre-sleep routine can help you avoid those menacing thoughts that seem to start as soon as our heads hit the pillow.

AVOID CAFFEINE, TOBACCO, AND ALCOHOL BEFORE BED:
Allow four to six hours between your last caffeine, tobacco, or alcohol consumption and a sound night’s sleep.  Even alcohol becomes a stimulant after a few hours.  Drinking too much alcohol too close to bedtime can increase your awakenings and decrease your quality of sleep.

NAP EARLY IN THE DAY OR NOT AT ALL:
Late naps can decrease your sleep drive.  If you insist on napping make it early and for a short period of time.  Nap before five and for an hour or less.

KEEP A CONSISTENT SLEEP SCHEDULE:
This isn’t possible for everyone, but do the best you can to stay on a consistent sleep schedule.  This includes weekends as well.  Keeping your internal clock on a familiar schedule will encourage sounder sleep.

The Importance of Attitude

“Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”  – Thomas Jefferson

Moving into spring and summer remember to stay positive.  Use the results you’ve seen thus far as a motivator to stay on track.  If you’re unhappy with your results then you can use that as a motivator too.  Use the next six weeks to make some positive changes and turn your attitude around.  Staying positive truly is the key to success both inside and outside of the gym.  Keep it up and good luck!!