I’ve got a quick question for you.
If you were playing blackjack and you get 2 face cards, (king, queen or jack) which puts you on 20, would you take a hit and try get an ace?
Unless you really like to live on the edge (I won’t judge), I bet you probably said no. The chances of you drawing an ace are approximately 8% in this scenario in fact.
What’s the point of that example? Well, did you know that the average success rates of most weight loss plans (with success being losing the desired weight and keeping it off), is between 2-20%!
The average of those statistics is technically 11%, only slightly higher than nailing that ace in the game of blackjack!
I hope that example has opened your eyes to the fact that if you are serious about losing weight and keeping it off, the odds are simply against you.
It’s the sad truth, most people will fail.
Which brings me to the topic of this entire post, which is the 1 thing you can do to not end up like the 90% or so that fail.
It is simply to PLAN.
Planning your success so it is no accident when you succeed.
Checkout the video below to see how you can make your own fat loss success plan
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As the classic saying goes; Fail to prepare, prepare to fail.
The average person rides off a surge of emotion when they attempt to lose weight. They see a bad photo of themselves, can’t fit into their jeans anymore or see a friend lose some weight.
Next minute they have four weeks worth of Optifast meal replacement shakes in the pantry and a yearly gym membership that will make the local commercial gym some nice passive income after the first month.
They don’t plan, they don’t think long term, they don’t think about their unique lifestyle, they don’t think about their challenges, all they really do, is set themselves up to fail.
Maybe like my blackjack example before, these people like to live on the edge.
At least they have good company!
You however, can be smarter than this. You can swing the odds in your favour and be one of the few who wins.
How do you do this then? It’s simple, just ask questions!
An Old proveb says ‘he who asks questions cannot avoid the answers’
But, you must ask the right questions, and then you’ll get the right answers.
Let’s take a walk through the questions YOU need to ask yourself, to allow you to make a plan that ensures you get to the finish line.
QUESTION 1 – What have you tried in the past that has and hasn’t worked?
‘History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme’ – Mark Twain.
We must learn from the past, it’s probably the best teacher.
You tried eating only salads for meals and it drove you crazy? Well not again.
You tried the 5:2 diet and nearly pushed your spouse down the stairs you were so grumpy on your fast days? Probably not ideal.
Rushed into an extreme exercise regime that left you unable to sit down without groaning for the next 10 days? No way Jose!
These previous efforts, although extremely frustrating, serve as important lessons for you moving forwards. Learn from them and don’t make the same mistakes again.
Then consider what has worked.
Maybe you got into an awesome habit of walking for 30 minutes everyday for health and stress relief. Perhaps you can add that back in.
You found making lunches all in one hit on a Sunday made the week a breeze. That sounds like a good place to get back to.
There are more answers inside of you than you think. Have a good brainstorm to unravel what the past has to teach you.
QUESTION 2 – What challenges do YOU have every day?
The goal of this question isn’t to seek to limit your challenges, but to challenge your limits.
It’s to identify the upcoming roadblocks, and be prepared to get around them.
The answer to this question will be very individual, but there are generally common themes.
The usual suspects are:
• Temptations of not so ideal foods either around the house or gotten by family members.
• Irregular work schedules or family commitments that make committing to a routine difficult.
• Lack of organisation in eating habits.
• Emotional issues with food – e.g. using it for comfort, stress relief
Each individual’s way to conquer these challenges will again be slightly different. Some may need more outside help where as some may need to compromise other less important aspects of their life.
Some may be as simple as don’t keep crap food in the pantry! Which solves part of the first challenge above.
Write down those questions, brainstorm what seems to be the best answer, then apply. If it doesn’t conquer the challenge, look at the problem again from a different angle and repeat the process.
Persistence and patience are your best weapons here.
QUESTION 3 – What does and doesn’t suit YOUR lifestyle
The first two questions help ensure your plan works, this question makes sure it can last.
A great example of this would be the youngish girl who decided her fat loss efforts would be to avoid carbs after 3pm. However, her friends love going out and socializing in the evening.
Which inevitably leads her to want to chew off her own hand as she tries to a) pick the low carb meals when out, and b) have to eat it and watch in pain as her friends smash into what she really wanted.
Leo knows what it feels like.
If you answer this question and make your plan fit your lifestyle, as opposed to what most people do which is the other way around, your chances of long term success just sky rocketed.
QUESTION 4 – How are you going to get through the tough times?
This is a very different question than the first three, but so often overlooked.
Things will get tough, you will encounter some resistance from your old self. This always happens with change.
The important thing is to have a plan to be ready for this when it happens. To quote the great Tony Robbins; Losers react, winners anticipate.
Again, independent inquiry is needed in the search for this. However, the two best strategies I know are accountability and rituals.
Accountability is having someone, some community or some method of keeping you where you need to be. They will help remind you why you started, what it means to you, and let you know when you are being overly negative or self-sabotaging.
Rituals are a daily practice that keeps you in peak state. Meaning they make sure you know exactly why you are doing what you are doing, what it means to you, and they bring out the best version of yourself.
I gave an example of this in a past post here, where I discussed the use of a list placed around the house as a reminder to yourself, and ultimately a ritual. Experiment with anything that gets you in an optimal zone each day to smash out your challenges.
Both these tools will help you push through the inevitable tough times, so be prepared for them.
These questions form the basis of what you need to ask yourself so that you can devise a plan to be one of the few who gets results and keeps them.
Have the right plan, and you’ll get that ace you were after.
Committed to your long-term fitness success,
David – The Body Shapers
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