Strong is the new Happy

For those of us who exercise, workout or train, it would be general consensus that we do so for a reason.

Now, I’m not going to get into details or semantics about working out and training in this post (there is a difference you know!) but, we exercisers all do what we do with a general end goal in mind. Oh, and if you don’t have a goal, you really should set one or more to keep you moving steadily onwards and upwards.

However, only recently was it pointed out to me by the business guru genius, happy-grumpy Paddi Lund, that what most people actually want is ‘happiness’!

Think about that… Simple, hey?

One end goal masked behind a facade of, ‘I want to lose weight’, ‘I want to get faster’, ‘I want to get stronger’, and oh so many other common goals is to feel satisfied and happy with the successful outcome of our efforts. These goals are of course intended to meet some kind of intrinsic need and want. Getting these results will, by our own assumption and or assertion, make us happy, happier or on a path to happiness.

Is you is, or is you ain’t very happy?

Goal setting is clearly about setting a clear and realistic path from A to B. Assuming you know where A is, planning the route to B is relatively simple. Coaches can help sweep up the path of debris to help you get there of course… hint hint.

But, what if you plan from B to A?  Now you have to know what B is, where it is and then you can see a bit more clearly how you may arrive at it. This is realistic goal setting at its simplest but often overlooked.

So many people want to get to somewhere not knowing if it is ‘their’ point B or in fact someone else’s point B, an expected point B or just something plucked out of Men’s Pumpin’ Weekly!

What I would like to suggest and play with in goal setting, planning and first of all, ‘understanding’, is this.

WHY? Then WHY, then WHY again. Yep, 3 whys!

Let’s keep this simple – You want to lose weight, why?

Perhaps to fit into clothes you used to wear, to look better at the beach or look better naked! Don’t laugh at that last one, i’m pretty sure most people who want to lose weight would agree with that last point.

So again, Why?

“Hmmm, I want to look better at the beach to feel more confident with myself.”

And once more, why?

“_________.” What do think the answer could be? Might it be that feeling more confident would help you feel more at ease, less stressed, more able to enjoy yourself without hiding flabby bits under layers of clothes, happier with yourself, happy in general.

A bit like the six degrees of separation, consider this the ‘3 Whys to happiness’. It wont take us there in an instant, but it might help identify what the key intrinsic motivating factors are to achieving the end goal, the ultimate goal, one goal.

These 3 whys could actually be drawn out into more, especially if the answer is based on someone else’s desires!

Clearly the next step to getting onto the happy train is working backwards through those discoveries. As with any objective, being strategic and specific will make life easier. You have to measure what it is you want to change and go about changing those numbers and understanding how that happens. In this case, to lose body fat it should be widely excepted and understood at this point that we must get more metabolic through the use of planned resistance training. We have to adjust our diet and look at our value systems attached to the foods that may be sabotaging our efforts. We should be aware of our downfalls and potential downfalls via stress and have a set plan for how to deal with them rather than resorting to do what we have always done.

First and foremost when making a plan to get to point B that we understand and accept is that we are actually ready to make the changes we’ve identified. It’s all great and dandy to have a plan, to understand where we are and where we want to go, the steps to get there, what we’re measuring, BUT, you have to want to change.

There are tons of books and resources online for goal setting and understanding how to plan. I just wanted to raise an issue I come up against frequently when questioning goals. START WITH WHY has lots of details on this kind of stuff.

Regarding making changes to diet or lifestyle, I like to focus on making ONE change at a time and a tangible change, mastering it and owning it before moving onto the next. Rather than focusing on not doing something to elicit the change, focus on the positive side of the change.

Rather than saying, “I’m going to be less lazy this week”, say, “I’m going to go for a walk in the morning”.

Instead of saying, “I’m not having any carbs today”, have a go at, “I’m going to save my carbs today until after I train”.

Regardless of what methods you adapt to help make change, try any, experiment with the sensible ones, just do something. To achieve the results what will make us feel happier we have to change, be STRONG with your decisions and commit.

Be STRONG in the Kitchen

Be STRONG in the gym

Be STRONG in your head

Over and out,




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