Are you being too hard on yourself or not hard enough?
It can sometimes be difficult to see when we are cutting ourselves a break, or punishing ourselves for not working hard enough. As someone who has struggled, and still struggles with being a perfectionist, I can totally relate to this common dilemma.
Now that my goals are not as clear cut and strict with diet and exercise as they once were, it’s hard to determine whether I’m pushing myself hard enough. When you’re so used to your meals being measured and weighed out, anything else can seem as if it lacks detail and hard work. Because if you’re not tracking or knowing the exact number of macronutrients going into your body, you must be failing. I’m learning that this isn’t the case.
On the other side of this, is when I’m being too lenient with my goals. The purpose and the reason for me to set macro numbers for myself, is to have something to aim for. Something to keep me on task when I’m feeling like I have no goal. It’s easy when you’re not stepping on stage in 6-8weeks to allow yourself more treats than you should. You don’t have that timeline in the back of your head reminding you that time is running out and that it’s now or never. So, you snack over your numbers because why not? I deserve this. You start to cut your work outs short or not go at all, because I worked so hard yesterday. You justify it to yourself in anyway that you possibly can because it’s so much easier to make excuses for yourself, than it is to remember why you shouldn’t over indulge or give your goals a rest.
The answer to this is do you feel like you’re doing enough? When you skip the gym, say no to another fitness program, and decide against your long-term goals. Does that make you happy? My guess is probably not. Now on the other hand, are you doing everything you possibly can and using the tools that are being offered to you to reach your goals? Are you using that gym membership, taking that free advice from a fitness professional and making the most of what is currently available to you? We can always do better for ourselves and we can always be doing much worse. It’s your job to determine what it is you want and what steps you are willing to take to get it.
When my goal was to lean out for CBBF Nationals in 2016, I would be up at 3:30am to commit to fasted cardio so that I could be at the gym by 5:00am to train my clients. I would then train them back to back for 6-8 hours, head home for a quick meal and back to the gym again to train myself. By 8:30pm I would be struggling to stay awake but I would be satisfied with myself. Because I knew that I did everything that I could to meet my goals during that day. When someone told me that I was working too hard and that I needed a break, I would take that as a compliment. Because working hard on your goals, sometimes means sacrificing evenings and weekends to catch up on sleep or get your work outs in. It can also mean having one glass of wine instead of two or ordering a steak and salad instead of a burger and fries. It’s waking up before your husband and the baby so that you can take care of yourself and work toward your own goals and ambitions. Don’t forget that with all the demands that come with your day, you can always find time to dedicate to yourself. It may be a less than desirable time of day, but you have it and its yours if you want it. You just have to look hard enough and maybe sometimes ask for help or direction.
My goals now are a lot different but it still means sacrificing in other areas of my life to achieve what I want. I’ve recently sacrificed a familiar home, friends, family, a past and a full-time job where I loved the clients that I had. When I moved, I decided that anything that fit into my jeep was all that would make the trip. Out of the materialistic things that were in my home, all that came with me was my bed and memorabilia. The things that I made room for, were the things that were important to take with me on the route to my new goals and the next chapter in my life. Anything else, I can make due with out for a while. I even cleared my entire closet of 90% of the clothes that I owned because 1. There just wasn’t room and 2. They reminded me of my old life. If I have anywhere to go that requires dressing half decent, I struggle to find anything to wear but at least I have SOMETHING to wear.
Now I’m slowly working towards building a new home and taking the steps necessary to achieve my current goals. All while being as easy on myself as possible, while keeping myself on task and reminding myself that nothing good comes easy. Especially success.