This is something we all struggle with, especially in 2020. They say the attention span of the average YouTube viewer is measured in seconds if the video isn’t stimulating or interesting enough to keep one’s attention. Everyone scrambles toward the next best thing to lose weight quickly. We want it all, and we want it now. Health and fitness is one area that everyone is always looking for the best way to reach a goal quickly, but when it comes to health and fitness, slow and steady progress is typically best long-term.
I’ve seen people lose lots of weight very quickly through very questionable or dangerous processes I won’t get into here (I don’t want to encourage anyone looking for such shortcuts). I’ve known people personally who died from such procedures seeking the quickest route to weight loss. No-one’s life is worth a few pounds lost.
Anything of value and worth takes time. Think about relationships, degrees in education, certifications toward meaningful careers, etc. They all take time. The more valuable, the longer it takes. The same holds true for weight loss and physical fitness. I lost 150 lbs. Did that happen quickly? It took two years for me to reach my final goal the first time, and now, four years later, I’m working towards another goal, this time to lose 25 more (after re-gaining 30). This time, however, I’m armed with a tool that I thought I’d lost: patience.
I am patient with the process. I’m patient with my progress. I’m patient with my own limitations when I run. I’m patient with my healing shoulder, waiting for it to heal before I start weightlifting to ensure I can continue to do so long-term. I’m patient with my health and fitness.
Patience isn’t easy. It goes contrary to the burning desire within to reach goals. It goes against every instinct to complete every workout, and to make as much progress as quickly as possible. For me, it’s especially difficult. When I set my mind to accomplishing, completing, or getting something, I accomplish, finish, or get that thing as quickly as possible. I don’t like to wait. Ask my wife how many times she’s received birthday presents early.
But when it comes to this Whole30, with re-starting my fitness plan with running and eventually adding back weightlifting, I’m being patient. I have to be. I know that by rushing things, I can get injured or worse; I can damage my long-term health.
Be patient. Change cannot and will not happen overnight. You have to give it time. Did you gain all the weight you want to lose in a month? Did you get unfit overnight? The answer to both of those is most likely a, “No.” Getting back to where you were (or better) takes time, effort, and patience. Give it time.