Process is the Point
I’ve been a personal trainer for close to six years now, and worked in group fitness for a couple of years before that. I am still learning continuously and that is one of things I really enjoy about my work. Although the science of exercise and nutrition keeps evolving, and people have different needs and expressions within the world of fitness, one thing I would say might be universally true across the board is how adherence to a program relates to the sense of satisfaction derived from the process. So yeah, the joy really is in the journey. Okay so maybe it isn’t always joyful. As we’ve discussed, sometimes you feel hunger when dieting, or exhausted while exercising. Sometimes you feel unmotivated or uncomfortable or maybe you feel like you’re sliding backwards a bit. In the big picture, however, if you can still feel some satisfaction in the process, it is much more likely that you will stick to your plan and see it through. And the secret of that secret is this: there is a point where the process itself, becomes the plan.
Hang in here with me- let me break it down. You come to me because you want to lose 10 pounds and you feel like you have no upper body strength and you feel winded every time you walk up one flight of stairs. Wisely, you decide to hire a person trainer;) It is in both of our best interests to work towards the goals, together, you have set out for yourself. Unless your goals are unreasonable, unattainable, or otherwise unrealistic (i.e. I want to all of this in 4 weeks or less or, I am also moving and starting a new job and having a baby etc.) I will do everything I can to help you work towards these particular goals. It’s fun! It’s exciting! Exercise and decent nutrition work wonders! But I have another secret agenda. That you come to love the process of exercise and nourishing yourself (mostly) well. That you come to love the way ‘getting there’ makes you feel. Not so that you will keep on working with me for years (although some people do;) but because I know for sure that is where it is all at.
I’m not the first one to have said this. But in time you will discover it’s not really about the number on the scale. As you work towards that weight loss goal, or that strength training goal - you will feel pride in yourself for the movement you are making. As you put your 10 full push ups together over time, you will feel a sense of satisfaction in being able to do something you couldn’t do before, or haven’t been able to do in a long time.
It’s a simple game we are playing here. We move like this, we lift like this, we eat in such a way, because it feels good to do it. And yeah, because it is good for you. But I would urge you, whether or not you are working with a trainer, to find a path forward that is somewhat fun, or enjoyable or at least satisfying. And invest some time into exploring what that means to you. Let go of any rigid outcomes for a minute if you can, and try to relax into the process knowing that healthy exercise and nutrition is an ongoing lifestyle thing, more so than a fixed destination. Is this blog just ‘so have fun!’? Yeah, it is. But also ‘expand your definition of fun a little bit.’ Donuts are fun. But so are dips. Netflix is fun. But so are chest flys. Pizza with friends is fun. So is hiking. Working towards a body you feel good about is fun but it takes a little time to get the hang of it. So…is the purpose of this blog ‘Just have fun and be patient.’ Yes, something like that. I look forward to talking with you more again soon.