Eating a few cakes probably won’t dent your fat loss goals for the year (if it’s a one off) but it will affect how you feel right now today.
Almost all of us think of improving our health and fitness as an ongoing journey which it is but where many of us slip is we tend to think of everything as a future benefit or goal i.e. we are losing weight to be 10lbs lighter by a wedding or 20lbs loss over the year. It’s vital to have targets, be it short , medium or long term. The issue is we tend to not think about how this benefits us today. It’s a process known as “delay discounting” where the further out the reward is the more we discount it.
For example eating a few cakes probably won’t dent your fat loss goals for the year (if it’s a one off) but it will affect how you feel right now today.
The trick is to try and make the reward more immediate – so that walk in the park will make you feel more energized TODAY, it will get you feeling better TODAY and so becomes a positive event with an immediate positive impact on health and wellbeing TODAY. If you try to make it a daily goal then those days add up and become a week of beneficial activity – which then becomes a month and so on. This makes hitting those medium and long term goals much easier.
This feeds through not just to fitness but to having a little ‘you’ time, reading maybe, or doing something nice for yourself, or focusing on a task at work – it has many variations but the concept remains the same.
When approaching a task it’s better to break it down – into small pieces that are easier to handle just like a child does with food. By adopting this approach you value yourself right here and now – and I am positive it will make a big difference. You often hear people say they try and live one day at a time – it allows you to appreciate the present so try and think like this. Motivate yourself by knowing you can make a difference with your fitness today!
What makes a big difference for you? Do you have you own “way around” it?
Let me know in the comments below.
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about the author
Franco defines itself as a person trapped in a sedentary lifestyle, however, he is an avid fitness "addict" and like, many more in his environment spends vast parts of his leisure time on a gym, running, cycling.