Boundaries

Hello, Warrior –

I trust things are going well as you prepare for your weekend! Here’s a thought to occupy your mind whilst you shop for dip and chips for the BarBQ – do you know your fitness boundaries? Do you – say, in your average conversation over hot dogs – associate fitness with boundaries?

Look. It’s not hard to get and stay fit. It’s not about hard work and deprivation. It’s about boundaries.

Let me explain. When you were a child your parents set boundaries around you. They were the authority on what was or wasn’t acceptable behavior. You had to complete your chores before dinner. You had to finish your homework before going out to play. You had to eat all your vegetables before dessert. If you failed to comply with these boundaries then you knew that there would be consequences.

(As an aside, I now think that making a kid eat their veggies in order to get desert is a mistake. We are simply rewarding bad food behavior with more bad food behavior.) (But you still gotta do the homework.)

As an adult you are now your own authority on what is or isn’t acceptable behavior. You are in the position to set boundaries around yourself. These boundaries serve as a framework of order around you – a rock of support in an otherwise chaotic world. (Sounds large, yeah?)

With self-imposed boundaries you can assure your success in anything, but especially with fitness and weight loss.

Your fitness boundaries have to be self-imposed—no one is going to do it for you. Don’t look at this as a bad thing! Self-imposed boundaries are self-empowering! Could it be that you’ve been living life without fitness boundaries? You eat whatever you want, whenever you want it, that kind of thing? Stuff like:

  • You use any excuse to avoid exercise.
  • You indulge whenever it feels good.

Your Fitness Boundaries

Well, then. It’s time to introduce boundaries back into your life. These boundaries are the key to unleashing your ideal fit and healthy body.

Fitness Boundary #1: What you eat

If you were to be perfectly honest with me, you could list off the foods that are unhealthy and fattening, right? So why are you still eating them? You know that refined, fried, processed and sugary foods are not good for you except as treat meats or treats, not as daily fare.

Place boundaries around what you will allow yourself to eat. Acceptable food items include whole foods, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean meats. You know already know this, but now think of these in terms of boundaries and see what it does for your fitness.

Fitness Boundary #2: How you exercise

I know that you’re not an Olympic athlete, but that doesn’t mean that you can simply pass on exercise. By now you are well aware of the host of benefits that exercise provides. With regular exercise you’ll look great, feel amazing and have more energy than ever.

Most importantly, you will not just feel better, you will feel better about yourself. This is huge!

Place boundaries around how often you must exercise. Choose exercise that is challenging and fun – don’t be afraid to try new activities that improve your strength and endurance. If nothing else, learn to do Cross-body Mountain Climbers!

Fitness Boundary #3: When you indulge

Let’s face it, we live in a world where indulging has become the norm, rather than the exception. When you live life without fitness boundaries, everyday is an opportunity to indulge. These indulgences all add up quickly, causing your clothes to become tight and your energy levels to drop – and you begin to hate your body, if not yourself, for indulging. Guilt can make you feel gutless.

Place boundaries around when you can indulge. You’ll find that by limiting your indulgences you’ll end up enjoying them even more.

Take Action – Now!

Sit down and take a long, hard look at your lifestyle. Are you eating as healthy as you could be? Are you exercising 3-5 times each week? Are you indulging too often?

Answer the following questions:

  1. What 3 food items can I eliminate from my daily diet? (These should be nutritionally void items like high-calories beverages, fast food, packaged snacks, high-fat food, candy or desserts.)
  2. When can I schedule exercise into my week? (Pick 3-5 days, and select a specific time frame. Example: I’m going to exercise on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays from 5am-6am.)
  3. When will I allow myself to indulge? (Don’t go overboard here, especially if you need to lose weight. Enjoy whatever treats are within your boundaries and do so guilt-free knowing that you’ve maintained healthy food boundaries the rest of the time.

Remember what we said above: Self-imposed boundaries are self-empowering!

Fitness boundaries put your fitness results on autopilot. If you know what constitutes an acceptable meal, then choosing what to eat just got a whole lot easier. If you’re committed to exercising 3 times a week, soon it becomes second nature.

Need help setting up your fitness boundaries? I am here to help – call or email me now!

About Tom Schweickert

Tom Schweickert, EA, CPC, CPT brings a unique combination as a Life Coach, Personal Trainer and Money Coach to help folks negotiate these interesting times.
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