Well, I’m fatter than I want to be. I have been for some time.
Saturday I’m running a 5K. It might kill me.
I hate running. I have never run a competitive race. But I finally decided that I hate being fat worse than I hate running.
I also knew that if I didn’t make a concrete deadline, injecting motivation into my workouts, I would quit as soon as it got tough. The terrible idea of running 5,000 meters was enough to get my sorry butt out on the road. I downloaded the free Couch to 5K app on my iPhone, and off I went.
The first day of running brought a violent snowstorm. I thought, “Really?” If I hadn’t committed to a terrifying goal, I would have packed it in right then and there. But the deadline looming just weeks ahead forced me to put one fat foot in front of the other. Off I went for my first run.
You know what’s funny though? I’ve been out of shape for along time, hating every minute of it, but I haven’t done anything about it until recently. I hate being chubby, out of breath and tired. I love feeling fit and having energy to spare at the end of a day.
So why did it take me years of feeling like crud before I did something about it?
I have a bunch of excuses:
- I have 4 kids.
- My job keeps me busy.
- I’m trying to write a book.
- I love eating cheeseburgers. It’s like a hobby. (and yes, this is my favorite website)
Well, maybe that last one is just a matter of self control. But isn’t it always?
Here’s what I realized: I am the only one responsible for my own health. I have to determine that it’s important enough to improve.
But wanting to change isn’t enough.
I’ve always had the desire to be healthy. I’ve dreamed about it. But I haven’t followed through on that desire.
Do you know why?
I never set a deadline.
Deadlines are wonderful things. They force our brains to work backwards. They start at the end goal and reach back to where we currently are. From there, we can divide up our big goal into tiny, single-step increments. As we execute on each step, we eventually begin gaining ground.
Once we get under way, moving in the direction of our goals, hope begins to build. Even though we’ve only taken a step or two, we know we’re making progress.
Bottom Line: Goals are Dreams with Deadlines.
Without a deadline, a goal is just a fantasy.
I’ve been running 6 weeks now. I’ve also been doing push-ups since New Year’s Day. I haven’t lost a single pound yet. But my body is changing. My energy level is changing. I’m not sitting still.
I’m working toward a goal. After I achieve this one I’ll pick another.
What do you dream about accomplishing?
What has bothered you for a long time?
Have you done anything about it?
Maybe it’s time to make that dream a goal.