I think some of my clients are way too hard on themselves when judging their success (or lack of success) in their fitness or performance programs. It’s almost as if they try to go “undefeated” and win every day, thinking that it is the only possible way to be successful.
However, is this mindset really reasonable or even possible?
I would emphatically say “NOT REALLY!”
Let’s be honest – life is full of situations that will force you to divert your attention and actions away from your workouts and/or your meal plan.
The car breaks down, the kids get sick, your boss throws a late deadline at you…you get the idea.
In those types of situations, your workout and meal plan for the day are likely to become a second priority and that’s really OK.
YOU DON’T SUCK!
If you can simply accept that sometimes you are going to lose a day here or there, it then becomes easier to avoid the pitfalls of trying to be “undefeated” all the time.
The pitfalls of trying to be “undefeated” – more stress, frustration, and anxiety…the exact stuff that slows you down even more! See the irony in that?
As a matter of fact, if you have fallen into that type of trap before (I have), you probably have a higher “win” percentage than you think.
Here is what I mean by this using some simple math.
Say you have 365 days to achieve a fitness goal.
Right out of the gates – let’s be honest and throw out Saturdays because they are full of fun, distracting stuff to to do despite your best intentions.
If you “won” every other day in that year, you would have won 313 days for an astounding “win” percentage of 85%.
Who wouldn’t want those odds in Vegas?
Let’s take out another day each week to account for any vacations and you just wanting to take a planned “off” day.
You’re still winning at a respectable 71% of the time with 261 victories. If you were in the major leagues and hit at that clip, you would be making a ton of money!
To wrap up this analogy, let’s take out another day to account for the kids getting sick, or your car breaking down, or having to finish up that work project. Because you know that crap WILL happen! And it WILL be annoying!
In this scenario, you’ve had 209 wins and won 57% of time. While that isn’t as quite as good (obviously), that is still a lot of progress made over the course of year.
My point with all of this – if you are one to beat yourself up over a bad day, try to give yourself a break. Not only are you probably winning more than your realize, but you will get some added benefit by losing the associated stress as well.
Focus on your wins.
Minimize the inevitable losses.
Shoot for increasing your “win” percentage whenever possible.
Make steady progress towards your goals.
See yourself as a success regardless.