Knowing What To Do – The Straightest Road To Success

Straightest Road to Success

Last week I wrote an article about knowing what to do, and how much people waste time trying to get information on a very micro level. They’re searching for the straightest road to success.

They’re constantly in search for that one thing that’s going to make all the difference when in reality there’s a lot of things that factor into getting results.

As an online fitness coach and I’ve worked with hundreds of people on their health and fitness goals. I, like many others in my field, would like to say that I know what I’m doing and that I have the answer.

However, this comes with a grain of salt. I don’t always have THE answer first try, but I do have many ways to find the answer.

Let me explain:

Like my last article, when we are searching for micro level answers like “the best exercise” or “the best food” for some specific outcome, we have a very limited vision. We are only focused on one thing and we want one answer. We are trying to find the straight road to success. The linear path.

Sadly, there are plenty of people in my industry that are offering their program as THE answer and THE path.

This is probably because what they’re selling worked for them. They found an exercise, food, routine, habit, schedule, etc that works for them.

And in truth it does or did work!

…for them.

They found a path. One.

 

The question is whether or not that path will work for you.

 

So, when I say I know what I’m doing, and even if I say I have the answers, what I actually mean is that I have a really good idea of what I’m doing. It’s a very well educated guess that comes from years of experience and hundreds of clients testing different methods. Testing different paths.

I like to think of it like a nature guide, mechanic or computer repairman.

You hire a nature guide because they know where to go. They know the path and they’ve traveled it before. However, in nature unexpected things happen. There’s avalanches, floods, fires, rockslides and wild animals. The real value in the guide isn’t that they know the one path to get you where you want to go, it’s that they know many paths and can navigate the obstacles that come up.

The mechanics and computer repair men are similar in that they have a deep understanding of how their products work. If it’s not working, they are ready to navigate the obstacles. They have the skills to troubleshoot by looking at many different aspects and finding the area the needs to be addressed.

All of these people know how to do this because of years of experience, study and trial and error.

NONE of them know the perfect answer when they start.

They will probably be close, but what’s most important is from there they have many options and paths.

They will use education, trial and error, and experience to reach their goals.

They will navigate the obstacles and find the straightest road to success.

The great thing is you too have the ability to use trial and error to find your path. You can jump into the wild and figure it out. It will have many setback and struggles, but if you keep pushing you’ll find a way.

The key is that whether it’s on your own, or with support and guidance, there is always a way to reach your goal. However, it won’t be straight and it there’s no one or perfect answer. It will take trial and error.

 

Straightest Road to Success

 

My conclusion is very similar to last week:

 

Don’t waste time trying to find the perfect answer or one path, it doesn’t exist.

No one thing is going to work for everyone. And even if it does work for you, it usually won’t keep working forever.

There is no straight road to success, but an experienced coach will help you find the straightest.

~ Chad

You Know What To Do, You’re Just Not Doing It

“You know what to do, you’re just not doing it”

I’ve said this exact quote in many client consultations over the years and it’s a fundamental belief of my coaching model.

I have the assumption that everyone knows WHAT to do, it’s just that they AREN’T DOING IT.

I believe this and bring it up because it’s the most common question we get as coaches:

  • What do I do to work my: obliques, butt, inner thigh, love handles, jiggly bits
  • What do I eat to help me lose weight, gain weight, build muscle, not lose muscle, get toned
  • What’s the best exercise for…
  • What’s the best food for…
  • What’s he best protein, BCAA’s, creatine, Vitamin D, B, A, C, E, F, G, H, I, J, K (you get the point) to take
  • What, what, what…

On some level it may be true that you don’t actually know the answers to these questions. But unfortunately it’s not the lack knowledge itself that’s the problem.

The problem is that it’s that it’s at such a micro level of focus.

And honestly, most people don’t know the perfect, specific answer to these questions fully because it’s always going to take some level of trial and error. (I’ll expand in next week’s article)

However, the micro focus questions are not what I’m talking about here. I’m talking about the general sense, the higher level view, the bigger picture focus on knowing what to do.

In the big picture we all know what to do:

Exercise more an eat less junk!

Until you are DOING that foundation, the microscopic view of individual vitamins or exercises, as expressed in the example questions above, mean nothing.

First you need the habit and discipline to do what you need to be doing.

I was inspired to write this because I recently watched a Keynote speech from an internet mentor of mine: Gary Vaynerchuk

In that keynote he says:

“Information has never been less valuable than it is today”

If you want to see it yourself, watch about 45 seconds and then come back here. Please. (you can watch the rest later)

His point is that the internet has everything we ever need to know and is literally at our finger tips on our phones. In seconds Google or Siri can tell you anything you want to know.

I digress back to my point.

Not knowing what to do is not your problem, it’s that you’re not doing it.

Getting answers about what to do will take you less than 30 seconds with a google search on your phone.

Heck, I’ll make it even quicker for you with some links:

But the truth remains, whatever knowledge you gain, you’re still going to have to get out there and do it. You’re still going to have to take a step forward and move.

My suggestion: put down the phone and step away from the search. Just go do something.

Anything.

Literally.

Do any damn thing you want that moves you one step closer to your goal.

Once you do, Tweet or Snap me and let me know what you did.

However, the next part is the actually the hardest.

Now you need to keep doing it. Over and over again. You now have to continue the journey.

Key point:

You may not know everything, but you know something you can do to get started. Just start doing it!

And no you’re not going to be perfect at it. No one is.

Why I Stopped Being A Personal Trainer

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. Why I stopped 1-on-1 personal training.

I’ve been thinking about what I’m doing in Mexico with Fitmix25 and what I’m doing with AnthroPhysique. I’ve dedicated my life to these two systems because I deeply believe in their benefits for someone’s health and fitness.

I’ve been thinking about why my belief so strong and what truly is the benefit of these systems?

It comes down to something that happened to me 9 years ago in early 2007. Continue reading “Why I Stopped Being A Personal Trainer”

Your New Year Resolution Won’t Last! – Here’s why

Your New Year Resolution Won't Last, but that's ok!

It’s January. What that means for a TON of people is that their new year resolution has started.

It’s an exciting time with tons of visions, tons of motivation and tons of goals!

The next exciting time will be when you fail!

I say that failing is exciting because it really can be if you’ve set yourself up for success and planned for that failure. Most people fear the point of failure but guess what – it’s going to happen.

You are going to fail.

I guarantee it and it’s okay.

The point here is to help you realize it will happen and in fact it should! Instead of setting yourself up problems and struggle with failure by avoiding or denying that it will happen, don’t deny it, know it will and plan for it.

How many times have you started something and been perfect at it from the start? Ya, probably not many.

Also, how many times have you really grown or learned from something that was easy the whole time and didn’t push your limits? Ya, probably not many.

When I work with my clients, I always have a plan for when they fail.

It’s never been a matter of if they will fail, it’s when.

I’m constantly pushing them and challenging what they can handle. I’m actually trying to find that point where they’ll fail. From there, we re-work the plan, pick them back up and carry on our merry way.

Your New Year Resolution Won't Last!

So this year, if you’re working on a new year resolution, do yourself a favour and plan for your failure. As the old saying goes: “it’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up”.

If you truly want to make this a new YEAR resolution and not just a new JANUARY resolution, plan to pick yourself up. A lot.

Chad

Fitness apps – tracking your sleep

This past weekend I had one of the best sleeps I’ve had in a very long time!

I went to bed at 2am and woke up at 10:30 am. Nothing in between, just a solid 8.5 hour sleep with some vivid dreams. It was great and I felt rested.

While laying in bed for a little while longer I did what we all do and played on my phone for a bit. One item of playing was a notification from the S Health application on my phone. I’ve been using it a little bit for tracking water intake, caffeine intake and sometimes take my pulse. A pretty cool app.

About a week or so ago I saw that the app could track sleep so I figured I’d check that out too. You can put in a goal of when you want to go to sleep and when you want to wake up.

During the week my sleep is pretty regular so I put my bedtime as midnight and my wake time as 6:20. So, each day during the week I crushed it. I was getting badges and awards all over the place because I consistently went to bed at that time, give or take and hour, and got up at 6:20 every day.

This time however, was Saturday. I wasn’t working so there was no alarm set. I went to bed later and got up later.

As I said, it was one of the best sleeps I’ve had in a long time. When I entered my data however I got this:

Screenshot_2015-10-24-13-42-20

It was considered a “poor” sleep because I didn’t got to bed nor get up at the times listed in my goal.

Maybe there is a way to have a separate weekend goal but I’ve only been using this feature for a few days and didn’t really dig into all the options.

Either way, I still have the same issue of: how can the app really know how good my sleep is? All week I’ve been reaching awards by the apps standards yet still feeling tired. However, when I sleep well and finally feel good, my sleep gets rated poor.

This is my point for the whole article.

I really appreciate apps and technology and what they’ve been doing for our lives. Just the other week actually I had an incredible experience of Facebook notifying me and my friends our “safety status” because we were in the affected area of hurricane Patricia. However, I still have a hard time getting on board with most apps because of how limited they are.

For something like sleep, and any other health variable as far as I’m concerned, there are many factors that will affect the quality. Basing everything on when you go to sleep and when you get up really doesn’t tell you much. It’s kinda like saying I’m unhealthy because I weigh 200lbs or because my BMI is over 27. One metric can’t give me that conclusion.

When you’re only looking at one small piece, you’ll never understand the whole puzzle.

So Galaxy S Health sleep app, and fitness apps everywhere, thanks for being a fun toy that allows my inner nerd to feel incredibly special while quantifying my life, but I don’t think you’ll ever truly know how well I slept last night. Thanks but no thanks.

~ Chad

Accountability – how Gary Vaynerchuk got serious about his health

Accountabillity

One of my mentors: Gary Vaynerchuk recently figured out how to get serious about his health. It was all about accountability.

Sometimes I feel like I’ve talked about and written about this topic so much that I’m beating a dead horse. However, I just read another article that inspired me to hit the topic again.

I strongly believe that it’s the key to success so I’m going to continue to beat that horse till the message gets across!

The article I just read was by Gary Vaynerchuck and he posted it on Medium. I’ve been following Gary, his YouTube show, his books and all of his advice for years. He’s a very smart guy. So when he decided yesterday to write an article called “How I Finally Got Serious About My Health” I jumped on it! Continue reading “Accountability – how Gary Vaynerchuk got serious about his health”

Knowing what exercise to do isn’t enough, here’s why:

what exercise is best

I’d bet good money that you’ve done at least one internet search for a workout program or nutrition plan to help you reach your goals.

Am I right?

You may have even found THIS article through such a search.

The good news is that this interwebs thing happens to hold a TON of information. A simple search should yield hundreds, if not thousands of websites with daily workouts, hundreds of recipes, nutrition plans, and other sites blogging about what you should be eating and/or not eating.

There are 2 major problems that come from this: Continue reading “Knowing what exercise to do isn’t enough, here’s why:”

Recipe: 6 Ingredients To A Better Sports Drink

Recipe: natural sports drink

Why are we still buying Sports Drinks?

Look on the label of your favorite Gatorade and you will see ingredients such as Water, Sugar, Dextrose, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor, Salt, Sodium Citrate, Monopotassium  Phosphate, Gum Arabic, Sucrose Acetate Isobutyrate, Glycerol, Ester of Rosin, and Yellow 6… because… what sports drink shouldn’t be fluorescent Orange?

I first heard about making your own post run drink from Roger Banister’s book, The Four-Minute Mile, where he describes finishing a run at the local pub and dissolving a few salt tablets in his water in front of a very confused bartender.

Since then we have had many variations on the sports drink, from what could probably be called salt water to the notorious Gatorade itself. Unfortunately, the industrialization of products such as Gatorade and other sports drinks leads to this long list of otherwise non essential ingredients to make their product look artificially appetizing, as well as prolonging its shelf life.

Well, last week I had had enough and I decided I would try my hand at making my own sports drink, sans the bright Orange coloring… sorry. Continue reading “Recipe: 6 Ingredients To A Better Sports Drink”

Why “I don’t have time to exercise” is BULLSH*T! – Read this and get 30 minutes of your day back

I’m a fitness coach. Every single day I help clients reach their fitness goals. Can you guess the #1 excuse I get when people aren’t keeping up with their programs?

Yes, yes you can. You can because you use it too.

“But Chad, I don’t have time to exercise!”

BULLSHIT I say!

And here’s why… Continue reading “Why “I don’t have time to exercise” is BULLSH*T! – Read this and get 30 minutes of your day back”

How to get back on track after 2+ weeks off

25 minute home workout

Hello, my name is Chad Williams and I have a confession:

I haven’t worked out in over 2 weeks!

I know, I know, you’re probably thinking: “but wait, aren’t you supposed to be a coach?” “shouldn’t you be leading by example?” “how do you get other people to workout if you don’t do it yourself”.

Or, you might be thinking: “Thank god, he’s human too!”

It’s actually that last thought that is the reason for this post.

A lot of times I get comments from clients, or when I tell people what I do, that I’m some super human that works out 8 days a week and sleeps on a treadmill to keep my body in shape. There is an immediate higher standard that I get held to of persistent, consistent exercise habits that no other human being could possibly reach. It’s the standard of fitness coaches, trainers and athletes.

If you have that type of belief, then it’s a major reason you aren’t reaching your goals. You don’t think it’s possible. Let me help you change that belief…
Continue reading “How to get back on track after 2+ weeks off”

Getting Back on Track – You know what to do, you’re just not doing it.

getting_back_on_track

When you think about exercise or your diet do you find it really difficult to get back on track?

getting_back_on_track

Have you ever had the though: “I know what I SHOULD be doing, I’m just not motivated to do it”?

This is a very common topic that comes up with our clients and I wanted to share it with you. Most of our clients know what they should be doing:

  • I should be working out more
  • I should get up early and do it first thing in the morning
  • I should just get rid of all the snack food in the house
  • I should do a grocery shop every week so the good food is ready
  • I should write out exactly what I’ll eat in the week so I don’t have to figure it out at dinner time when I haven’t eaten for hours and am HAGNRY!!!

I bet you’ve thought most if not all of these.

So what gives? If we all know what we should be doing, why aren’t we doing it?

The answer is simple: you don’t know how.

Bullsh*t! you say.

“I know how to do it, I’ve done it before. Heck, I’ve done it many times, It’s just hard to keep at it”.

I’ll agree with that. You likely know how to start, but you don’t know how to keep going.

You don’t know how to keep at it long term otherwise you’d still be doing it.

Here’s the deal:

Building habits are harder than you think. No matter what changes you make in your life, there will come a time when it gets hard. With health and fitness you get sick, the kids get sick, you travel for work, you take a vacation, you get so busy you miss a week, etc, etc. Something gets in the way.

Then what?

Do you have the tools to get back on track no matter what? Do you have the drive, motivation, passion, knowledge of what to do next?

What I’ve found most people need to build is the strength to get back on track when times get tough or they fail. To this day, it’s still something I have to continually work on.

The moral of the story here is that it’s not going to be something magical about the program, workout, meal plan, diet, etc that’s going to get you back on track, it’s building the muscle of taking that first step. Over and over again.

For the first few months, think of every day as Day 1. 

You’ll need to take that first step every day, over and over again to not only get you back on track, but keep you there.

A great first step I recommend you take is getting some guidance. Click the button below to request a free consultation and we’ll help you get started.

How Many Habits Have You Built in 21 Days?

Have you ever heard the phrase “It takes 21 days to form a new habit”?

I’m sure you have. I’ve likely heard it hundreds of times.

Have you ever actually tried it though? How many habits have you formed by doing something for 21 days?

I’ve tried many things for at least 21 days. Heck, I’ve even practiced handstands every single day for 130 days! After that though I stopped. It wasn’t a habit. I didn’t continue doing it here and there or even at all. So what happened?

I recently read an article by James Clear called How Long Does it Actually Take to Form a New Habit? Like most of his articles, I really enjoyed it.

The phrase itself came from Dr. Maxwell Maltz. His actual quote came from his experiences around forming new behaviours and was specifically written as: “These, and many other commonly observed phenomena tend to show that it requires a minimum of about 21 days for an old mental image to dissolve and a new one to jell.”

Not quite “It takes 21 days to form a new habit”.

Like many quotes it’s been shorted and paraphrased down to a simpler form and, unfortunately in this case, steers people in an unrealistic direction. It sounds nice, but it’s rarely successful.

So how long does it really take?

Jame’s article goes on to talk about a study by Phillippa Lally at University College London. The study revealed that it actually takes 66 days on average to build a new habit.

The average is 66 days but the variance was between 18 to 254 days. This is a far cry from 21 days!

In the world of fitness this hasn’t exactly been a hard conclusion to make through observing people’s patterns.

How many thousands if not millions of people flock to the gyms every new years? Of those, how many do you think build a strong habit after just one 1 month?

I don’t have any accurate facts on this but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was less than 10%.

Most of those memberships drop off after 3 months, still proving that a habit can take a really long time to be built.

What can we learn from this?

For me, it’s that there isn’t a quick fix. You may get quick results, but if you want them to last you’re going to have to dig in for the long run. If you truly want to change your life and build a new lifestyle, you’re going to have to focus on long-term.

As James concludes in his article “embracing longer timelines can help us realize that habits are a process and not an event”.

I’ll leave you yet again with my favourite quote:

“Never give up on a dream just because of the length of time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.” ~ H. Jackson Brown

Have you struggled with the “21 days” concept? Share your experiences of habit building in the comments below.

Do You Suffer From Athletes Brain?

Athletes Brain is a term I’ve come up with for a common scenario I run into. At least I think I’ve made it up… Please correct me if not!

I use it to reference a time where people think they can do more than they are physically capable of. Or more specifically, their brain remembers what they used to be able to do but their body can no longer do that. Their brain remembers when they used to be an “athlete” of some sort, but their body is no longer at that same level.

It comes along with common phrases like:

“I used to be able to do that”
“I used to be able to lift more weight”
“I used to run way faster”
“But I should be able to do way more than this”
“Oh my god, I can’t believe how sore I am after such a simple workout”

As you can see, the theme is that the brain is still in the past. Your brain remembers everything you used to be able to do and for some strange reason your body isn’t doing it any more.

Your brain says “yes” and your body says “no”.

Guess what, your body wins.

The challenge with this scenario is that it can be frustrating as hell. I just want to be back where I used to be. Why can’t I be there now? I don’t remember it being this hard.

Fact is, in the past you worked really hard to get yourself to a certain spot in fitness or sports. You pushed, you overcame obstacles and you got results.

But then you stopped.

For whatever reason your life changed course and you stopped pursuing that path.

Maybe it’s been months, maybe it’s been years. Either way, it’s been a while. When you don’t keep at it, you don’t keep the results. As my university professor used to say: “If you don’t use it, you lose it”.

Your body has become de-conditioned and it now has to start all over. Although unfortunate and often frustrating, it is what it is. The only way to move forward is to accept it and just do what you can.

If you suffer from Athletes Brain, you’re going to have to tell your brain to shut up. Just like your parents when you were 16, it doesn’t know what’s best for you!

You need to get your brain to stop talking and start listening. Listen to your body and just do what it can. It may mean you start a little slower, but the good news is that won’t last.

You’ll start seeing results pretty quickly even at a modified level. If you don’t believe me, you might be suffering from All or Nothing which is a cousin of Athletes Brain.

Your body will actually re-gain a decent level of fitness pretty quickly. Within a few months (yes months, not weeks) your athletes brain will regain it’s value. Your body will have re-built a foundation and now you can use that same brain to start pushing yourself again. You’ll use it for good instead of evil and launch yourself into success!

Have you ever had Athletes Brain? Did it frustrate you and cause you to quit? Share your experience in the comments below.