Approximate read: 3 minutes; 

(Note: This blog post is part of a series of articles looking at how to set clear, motivating and purposeful goals.

Check out the Ultimate Guide to Goal setting for a blueprint to help you set goals in line with your likes and dislikes)

When people think of fitness training, they think of it as a way to stay healthy: physically, mentally and even spiritually. However, on top of all of that, there are incredibly valuable life lessons to be learned from engaging in physical exercise.

As you’re thinking about why you want to be achieving your fitness goals, I hope this will inspire you to think of fitness more as a life journey, than merely physical exercise.


Fitness lesson #1: Patience

Usually when you become active, you aren’t able to do very much. Your body is freaking out, it’s sore, tight, achy, you name it. When my husband and I started partner training through P90X, it was seriously pathetic. One hour of working shoulders and arms. Are you kidding me? I was done after the warm-up! I didn’t even know shoulders needed to be worked on! After our workout, lifting a glass of water seemed like a daunting task. We were miserable.

It would have been easy to just give up. Instead, we pushed each other through it and we improved. Now,  doing that shoulders and arms workout is not a problem. But to get to that point, we needed to learn to be patient. If you are patient and stick to it, results will come. It’s inevitable. You block that part of your brain that says “you can’t do this” and you take it one workout and one exercise at a time.

Chances are you will also experience setbacks, and they may be crazy hard to deal with, especially at the beginning.  And again, if you decide to keep going, to not let the setback get the better of you, you will see results! I guarantee it!


Fitness lesson #2: Things take time


I know this one is really obvious, but soooo many people expect instant results! We like in a world of instant gratification and sometimes we need to be reminded that some things really cannot be rushed. Think of all the big achievements in your life.

Did you get your university degree overnight?

Was your baby ready to be born right after conception?

D’uh! Of course not! And yet for some reason, when it comes to fitness we don’t apply the same logic. As a personal trainer, I would like to challenge all of you to think of your fitness the same way you think of your career. It is a long, hard road, that takes YEARS, but you are learning and growing along the way and that’s really where it’s at!


Fitness lesson #3: It’s ok to suck

This lesson is probably my favorite. The reality is you may never become an Olympic athlete. You may never be able to do those crazy yoga moves, or walk on your hands, and you know what? That’s ok. It’s just who you are.

Whenever my husband and I start a new exercise program, we ALWAYS suck! Always. It’s a lesson we learn over and over again, and it’s painful every single time because it’s a huge blow to our self esteem, and our self esteem doesn’t like that.

But let me ask you this: did you struggle with math in school? The majority of us did. But you didn’t give up – because that wasn’t even an option! – and you never rocked the math olympics (yes, there are math olympics) but you got better. Fitness works the same way. You may never become a star, but you will always get better!

Here’s another way to think about it: if you’re rocking your workout, what benefit are you gaining from it? You are rocking it probably because it’s too easy. When you suck, there is sooo much room to grow and that is the beauty of it: you get to see results and improvement, and that will make you so proud and so happy!

I would like to end by challenging all of you to embrace your fitness journey: understand that it will teach you patience, that good things take time, and, most importantly, that it is only by sucking at the beginning that you will ever get better.

Now go out there and kick butt!

More articles in this series:

The secret behind how to create motivating fitness goals

Is your personality sabotaging your fitness goals?



The Ultimate Guide to Goal Setting

Your blueprint for creating goals that are motivating, meaningful and purposeful

  • Understand the 3 key principles of motivation, and why they are crucial in your goal setting process
  • Uncover your interests, likes and dislikes, which will then guide you in your goal setting
  • Get clear on the reasons why you want to achieve your goals
  • Identify barriers that will prevent you from reaching your goals, and come up with solutions
  • Learn ways to motivate yourself when you don’t really feel like exercising
  • Learn ways in which you can prepare yourself for failure

Yes! I’m ready to take my goal setting to the next level!

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