When I started my journey into being as fit as I possibly could and becoming the best version of myself the biggest set backs I had came from skipping workouts and going out to eat and drink with my friends and family. For many years emotionally eating Chipotle burritos and having a Corona every night was a habit. Growing up, my parents made ice cream for desert after dinner a staple in the family. Any time we had a problem in the family, my mothers first go to was to take me out to eat so we could get over it. My childhood and early adult years were founded on fun, coping and social behavior around food and drink.
If it weren’t for being a short and skinny kid until college I probably would have gotten overweight faster and broken these bad patterns of behavior faster and easier.
I didn’t overcome these issues over night. The truth be told, my love for BBQ ribs and ice cream are still things I put into check because I need to live my words and I want a better life for myself. It turned into so much more than my original desire to be a fitness model and a bodybuilder. Now, I live for energy, vitality, lengthening my life to fulfill my legacy on earth and to be the example I preach to my people. This has been 40 years in the making.
Like most, mastery after a certain point starts looking like magic to others. That’s not even close to the case. The struggle in the beginning for me was just as real and probably more so due to food and alcohol dependence. What I’m saying is, if I can do it and thousands of others I’ve coached can do it… YOU CAN DO IT TOO!
I’ll tell you what I did and how it’s morphed into what I coach others to do.
My endeavor started with taking on a 90 day challenge in the form of a program and contest. I’d seen all of these before and after pictures with flabby physiques transforming into these sexy, sleek and toned physiques in such a short period of time. I took it upon myself to simply do what these other successful people were doing in order to get what i deeply desired and committed to that for 90 days no matter what.
At this point I was a personal trainer who knew very little about nutrition and less about personal development. It all started by writing out three 90 day goals I wanted to reach no matter what:
1. Permanently stop drinking alcohol, except having one night out with my friends on my last spring break, because I needed too (I had just gotten into an alcohol related accident driving and thank God I only did harm to my car and not a human).
2. To not miss a single workout nor meal unless I had previously scheduled it and planned out the contingency.
3. To journal everyday my thoughts, feelings and attitude I have and what I wanted to have, my meals and my workouts. I would keep it all online to be 100% transparent and accountable.
My next step was telling my friends I was going to do it and I even managed to recruit my workout partner along the way. The least of my worries were the workouts, but that we would hold one another to the food and no alcohol.
Last, I created a structure with a coach who had done this program before themselves and knew the nutrition plan. He recommended that I grabbed a calendar in a day planner and scheduled everything from meal prep, meal times, workout times, contingency workout times and color code the days I did and didn’t follow routine. High light the calendar day green for following the whole schedule, yellow for skipping one of the items and red if I screwed up that day more than once.
This was my senior year of college, I had a full time job already as a web developer and a side business doing web development and design for small businesses. Although my course load was only 2 classes my life load was bananas. If I didn’t have structure and I didn’t have a connection to my underlying motivation I knew I wasn’t going to follow through.
The non-negotiables I set suddenly became habits within the first 3-4 weeks. Cardio intervals, 3 times per week, were done fasted in the am the moment I rose for 15-20 minutes. Workouts were done 3 times per week immediately after work, but before class and wouldn’t last longer than 40 minutes. Food prep for the week was done on Sunday and frozen for the week. Every evening I pre-packed my bag for the next day with my shakes (breakfast) and meals. My journal would be kept 15 minutes just before bed.
My results were staggering. I dropped around 8% body fat, which represented 57% of the total body fat on my body. I saw my abs for the first time since my junior year in high school and had more energy and mental clarity than I had ever had. Literally I couldn’t remember the last time I felt so great. The side effect I didn’t expect was this amazing confidence that grew from me as I got more in shape.
I wound up submitting my transformation into an international contest with over 1 million other participants. My result? I was called back as one of the top finalist in my age category (later revealed to be in the top 5). They used my pictures in their advertisements for an entire year. This catapulted my online coaching training into the stratosphere and I started getting ridiculous results and compliance from my clients as well
The most important thing I learned was if I wanted to make something a habit in my life, or my clients, I would just focus on it for a period of time and make it a non-negotiable to achieving it. No matter what happened I would keep things simple and just focus on those things that leverage huge results. When you come from a place of intention to make something a habit it leverages huge results. Just make sure it’s something worth mastering, create a framework or a system for it, dedicate yourself to it’s practice every day no matter what and follow through.
One of the best systems we’ve implemented at the Synergize Transformation Center has been our Jump Start Program for both the Group Training (formerly bootcamp) and our Semi-Private Personal Training. Instead of the 90 day theory, we’ve taken a 28 Day Approach. In those 28 days we teach brand new clients to focus on their habits of health that leverage huge results over minimal time.
Admittedly 90 days can be daunting in this day and age. We’ve structured our program to be a shorter, but power packed solution to actually fix the information overload problem in one concise format. Also, anyone can commit to doing something for 28 days if it’s made simple. Besides, doing anything for 21 days consecutively develops a habit, we give you 7 more days to maximize the results.
For instance, in every Jump Start Program we have a journal that provides a goal setting form, an entire done for you nutrition plan, recipe book, a swap guide if you eat out, access to our studio’s exercise sessions which are all instructor led and an assigned coach to personalize the entire process to you. Our results have been staggering.
If you’d like to try this out for yourself because you’re tired of the diet yo-yo or the roller coaster number on the scale then I invite you to try out a jump start. We limit these spots to just 10 per month so if you are reading this jump on your chance to join us.