It’s all about controlling your mind. I came up with S.W.I.M. (Self-Control, Will Power, Inspiration, Motivation), because it reminds these four things are what it takes to not only transform but to help you achieve all of your goals. They all come from inside you and if you listen to them you will be able to control your own mind. If you want something bad enough and you know what you have to do, you will do it or you really didn’t want it.
When I started my transformation, I was tested every day. It could be walking through the Super Market and passing by the bakery. In the past I would check to see if they had any cookie samples that they had set out. I’d grab a handful of cookies and eat them as I walked around the store. It really didn’t matter whether they tasted good or like crap, I was already planning on circling back, for seconds, thirds or fourths. I love free stuff, even crappy cookies. It’s funny how I can walk by these samples and look at them and even if they look good, know that I won’t be munching on them while I walk around the store.
Another big test is going out to a bar with friends and sticking with water as your drink of choice for the night. I use to drink once every week or two and if I went out-of-town, it was almost every night. I decided that I wouldn’t totally cut drinking out but I didn’t want to be spontaneous. I didn’t want to drink every time I had the opportunity too. By spontaneous, I mean that I will plan it out several weeks in advance. If friends ask me to out with them this coming weekend, I will probably go. I’m not going to become anti-social. But I am not going to drink. Usually, people try to get me to do a shot or drink a beer. It almost becomes a game. When I head home, I actually feel like I accomplished something. There are a lot of advantages for me when I do this: I save money. I have no hang over. Most of all I am strong enough to control my mind and continue with my healthy lifestyle.
Eating out can be difficult because I don’t usually know what will be put into my food and there will be bread and appetizers brought to the table that I would have scarfed down in the past but now I bypass most that. I do try to find things that will work within my nutrition guidelines. If I can’t find them I usually try to order something that I can make a lot of changes too. I also think about what a restaurant might do to my food. Such as adding steak butter to my steak and ask them not to add it. Check out my video on ordering breakfast in a restaurant.
At the beginning of my transformation I started running in Obstacle Course Races. These races have tested me physically and mentally. They provide me with a new way to compete against others as well as myself. They force me to push myself. Climbing ropes, going across monkey bars and running 9 miles are only some of the challenges that I face on these races. They are also things that I would have never thought that I would do at the age of 46 especially since I haven’t done anything like it for over 20 years.
I don’t really feel like I am missing anything. And I do take a cheat meal once in a while and I will drink a beer once in a while. But more than anything I feel stronger by walking into the fire and not getting burned.
Have you thought about training for a triathlon. I started out doing sprints and then Olympic distance, half iron mans and finally did ironman Florida in 07′ it is an unbelievable feeling when you cross that finish line after having swam 2.4 miles, cycling 112 miles and running a marathon.
That’s awesome. It’s a great accomplishment. It’s funny I don’t really like to run, but I started doing OCRs when I first started my transformation. I never had an interest in doing one that was more than maybe 5 miles until I did my third one. I got hooked quick and have a blast doing them. So far I’ve probably done about 20 including a Tough Mudder and a Spartan Beast. I haven’t done many this year, but am planning on doing a few more before the end of the year.
I didn’t like to run either. It is my weakest event of the 3. Once the tri bug hit me though, I actually started to look forward to running and just thinking of the big picture of the race I was training for and before I knew it, my run was over.
Pretty much the same for me. In the OCRs I like the obstacles. Running is part of the challenge so I’m fine with it.