How to get motivated to change your lifestyle and health

Turning point

In my About Me write up I (Gordon Brebner) told you about my now not so 3 step secret to Effective Health. In this article I want to explore how to get motivated to change your lifestyle and share with you my wanting to change from being a sloth to now being the healthiest I’ve ever been. I suppose this will also include the sustainability piece too because over 2 years have passed so this can’t just be a passing fad!

Talk to the hand

To recap, I knew I was technically BMI ‘obese’ because the doc kept reminding me on my yearly medicals. I had a blip of hypertension range blood pressure but likewise with me being overweight I chose to ignore and do nothing about my weight. I didn’t do any exercise, I ate and drank as per the western diet, I was I suppose your average joe when it came to my diet and health.
So at this stage my head still wasn’t in that ‘change’ space.

Falling apart

Then in September 2012 (age 42) I had flutters in my chest almost constantly for 2 months. Very disconcerting; was I experiencing the start of heart failure? Well, after I saw a cardiologist who gave my heart the once over with an ultrasound he declared I had a healthy heart; not long after that the flutters virtually disappeared… thankfully. In 2013 I was diagnosed with Glaucoma. In addition work stank and a friend no longer wanted to be friends. I was it seems falling apart physically and mentally; not drastically about enough to fear me. I was statistically in that age range where my health could all start going horribly horribly wrong.
I have 2 young children and I wanted to be around long enough to see them grow up and have families of their own.

Transformation

The Turning Point

May/June 2013 was my turning point; the (mild) health scares, being in that age bracket where I could fall over at any moment and recognising mentally that I was at a low ebb culminated in me deciding to take myself by the scruff of the neck and sort myself out. I was now starting to think about extending the end game and making sure that my life support system, my body, was in shape to see me through to a healthy ripe old age. I’m sure some of you will tell me that I hit my midlife crisis!?, but whatever it was it worked; I had made the decision to change. Nobody forced me into doing something I wasn’t keen on, it was all my own doing.

Support came from my wife Jill, she’d just taken out a gym membership and was attending regularly. If she could do it so could I. But what was I going to do at the gym? I wanted something that was going to shed the pounds, burn fat and put some muscle on. I wanted something sustainable and effective. Internet research quickly found PEAK 8 interval training; perfect!

Diet was to be a lifestyle change too i.e. sustainable. Diet has everything to do with food. And nothing to do with food! I was aware that many many diets failed due to them being too much like hard work, a punishment and deprivation. :-(
I wasn’t out to punish or deprive myself I wanted mine to feel right.

The Motivation

The combination of effective exercise and effective diet was not just about losing pounds but I was after other benefits too that we sometimes overlook. These being lower blood pressure, no more back ache (I used to be bothered with lower back pain), improved lung function (I used to be quite wheezy and asthmatic), body satisfaction, general life satisfaction, improved mental function, getting my mojo back and being resilient. Somehow I knew these would all come in due course. I didn’t want to rush it and overdo it; slow and steady wins the race as they say and slow and steady is sustainable. My lifestyle change was not about a tyre squealing hard left turn, but a more about a controlled and thought out drift into a new lane of thinking.

weight-change-profile

The long game

So for me the goal was and still is the long game and always thinking about the greater benefits over the short term gains and that’s what keeps me motivated to stay the course.

Your goals are possibly similar to mine, maybe they are not. My motivation to change came because I was scared of what the future held in store for me. Yours may well be different. But all I can say is that its never too early or its never too late to change if you desire to. Everyone has an opinion on what you should do but ultimately the desire and decision is down to you; the silver bullet comes from within.

For me, it’s been totally worth it and I often contemplate why I hadn’t started the journey earlier, but no matter I’m on it now and not about to get off anytime soon; why would I, my future is healthy.
I guess reading back on this it appears my stars aligned at a specific juncture and I’m just glad that I noticed them.

What’s motivated you to change and keep your change sustainable? Please leave a comment with your own experience.

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10 Response(s)

  1. Lesley says :

    May 25, 2015

    Loving your story. What tips/advice do you have for a typical yo-yo dieter who loses a stone, puts it back on again, loses it again, puts it back on again…… You get the picture I’m sure!

    Reply
    1. Gordon says :

      May 25, 2015

      Hi Lesley, thanks for your feedback.
      I do know what you mean by yo-yo dieting. Starving yourself then binging isn’t healthy or sustainable for good health.
      At the crux of it you might want to self analyse why you do it; what motivates you to yo-yo and not undertake a more steady and sustainable approach?

      The desire to change is the biggest hurdle to overcome.
      Remove temptation; rid your cupboards of crisps, biscuits, crackers, fizzy pop, breads, margarines, pasta’s and sweets as these cause cravings. They are addictive in nature.
      You don’t need to starve your self to lose weight. By eating more green veg and healthy saturated fats you will fill yourself up and feel satiated and in the process you will start to turn your brain away from craving the bad stuff.

      Watch out for future posts on ways to improve your outlook on nutrition and eating healthier.

      Reply
  2. รับทำ seo says :

    May 29, 2015

    Hi, all is going nicely here and ofcourse every one is sharing
    facts, that’s genuinely excellent, keep up writing.

    Reply
    1. Gordon says :

      May 29, 2015

      Thanks for your encouragement.
      Gordon

      Reply
  3. Slim Bean 250 Kidney Bean says :

    May 29, 2015

    Appreciation to my father who told me about this webpage,
    this blog is really remarkable.

    Reply
    1. Gordon says :

      May 29, 2015

      Thanks for your feedback.
      Gordon

      Reply
  4. Sam says :

    July 9, 2015

    Hi Gordon,

    Long time no see but you’re looking amazing! I’ll be keeping an eye on your blogs :)

    Reply
    1. Gordon says :

      July 9, 2015

      Hi Sam, thanks for that. If you’d like to subscribe you’ll be kept up to date.
      Gordon

      Reply
  5. SG Tel says :

    November 14, 2015

    thanks for your a story, I really want motivation for change my lifestyle

    Reply
    1. Gordon says :

      November 14, 2015

      You are welcome SG Tel. Do you require motivation to start a change in lifestyle or have you changed and require motivation to keep going? Something to think about as this works for me (from Tony Robbins)…
      1. What do you want? What is your outcome? Is your outcome to lose weight? Is your outcome to live a long healthy life?… What’s the result you’re after?”
      Determine your objective before getting “bogged down in all the to-dos,

      2. Why do you want it? The next step is finding the reason why you want what you do.
      You can have all these things that you want, but if you don’t want them equally and you don’t have strong enough reasons, you’re just going to have these targets. Lets say you want to change your lifestyle, but its the specifics as to why you want to change. Be fit and healthy and around for a long time for your family, don’t want to get ill, improve your life soy can be a better person to others etc.

      The purpose is more powerful than the object.

      3. How will you achieve it; what is your plan?
      Only after determining the “what” and “why” can you move onto the “how”.

      Create a list of things to accomplish, and then edit it down to a point where it’s as tight as possible. Follow the Pareto principle, which states that 20% of actions are responsible for 80% of a plan’s effects. Creating a massive action plan entails cutting any minor benchmarks or instructions in your initial plan that will only hamper your progress moving forward.

      Good luck!

      Gordon

      Reply

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